Looking to operate more effciently, Norfolk farming and contracting firm HC Beales has been gradually changing the bias of its tractor fleet to include a greater number of Fendt tractors.
“Fuel effciency and overall reliability are keyf actors for us,” explains Charles Saffell, who runs the farming operation from Crown Farm, Great Ellingham, Attleborough.
“We’ve had a 724 in the fleet for two years now, and we’ve been so impressed with it, that we quickly added a second 724 to the line-up,” he says.
The family business currently handles a 530ha workload on mixed soil types, and includes a mix of combinable crops and sugar beet.
Frontline tractor power comes from the two 724 Pro Plus models equipped with RTK and auto steering guidance, and an older 939 Vario. Annual hours are approaching 1,100 per tractor, while service and support comes from local dealer TNS. With extended warranties o ering veyears/5,500 hours of cover, Mr Sa ell’s Fendts are delivering with xed costs and a frugal approach to fuel use. And up until Spring 2014, the firm also had two John Deere’s on the fleet, one of which is less than two years old. “We had seen as much as 80 litres of fuel saved each day when using the 724 ontrailer work, instead of the newer John Deere,” he says. “With such an impressive fuel saving, the difference in purchase price between tractors is no longer an issue. Over a five year ownership period, the extra cost of buying the 724 will become insignifcant.”
And it was this evaluation processthat formed the catalyst for further change, with both Deere’s making way for two more Fendts, giving the farming business an all Fendt fleet.“This season, we’ve added a 516 to pull ourtrailed sprayer and an 828 to handle heavierdraft work,” he says. “The Vario transmission isn’t just about economy – it delivers power too. All we need to do is choose from performance or economy settings, and the cruise controlsystems do the rest.”Providing a wide variety of services including whole farm agreements, stubble-to-stubble contracts plus hay and silage services, HC Beales demands productivity and efficiency from all its tractors and equipment. But tractor cabs need to be comfortable too, and this is an area where the latest 700-series score for the Norfolk farmer. “I believe our Fendt 724’s are the most comfortable tractors on the market,” hes ays. “We spend long days in cabs so it is important that operators have a spacious,quiet environment to work in.”
“Fendts are no more complex than any other tractor,” he says. “In fact, the Pro Plus and large touch screen makes it very easy to tweak virtually any setting to get the best from everything these tractors have to offer.” “We aim to carry out work to the highest possible standard, so we need to use the best tractors for the job,” he says. “Now that we have an all-Fendt fleet, I believe we are in a strong position to deliver higher efficiency for our customers and our business.”