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The Vitamech MacDon foils fierce winds . . . to ensure bumper crops

For many farmers in windy regions MacDon’s self-propelled windrower means the difference between profit and loss.

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Wild winds are not unusual in the domain of the Overberg. They hit farmers hard, searing their crops in the undulating Rûens countryside that is otherwise perfect for the cultivation of wheat and canola. With the stalks in the ripening stage the howling wind simply whips the grains from the wheat ears and pips from the leguminous canola pods. They land on the ground and is worthless to the farmer.  

But a farmer always makes a plan and luckily there are companies, such as Vitamech, ready and able to assist the farmer to make his plans come together. Vitamech’s MacDon M155 self-driven windrower works fast and tidily to mow crops clean and gently just before it ripens and then make it lie in neat windrows where it can dry at its leisure until the combine picks it up and ensures that every grain and seed becomes part of the yield.

For windrowing wheat MacDon’s conveyor table is the best as it handles the material tenderly and makes the neatest windrows, but should one want to mow and windrow anything else, such as fodder crops, any type of table can be fitted to the MacDon.

The available window to windrow wheat is very limited before the wheat starts losing kernels – therefore the Macdon is a fast worker at 25 kph on the land and, when one turns it around for road travelling, it moves at 37 kph. For road travel the operator simply swivels the seat 180 degrees to engage MacDon’s Dual Direction® and there you go in the right direction without wasting a precious minute.

The Macdon’s reliable Cummins engine (116 kW at 2 200 rpm) is a skinflint with diesel, runs quietly and delivers more than enough power for its job.

The M-series has a wide wheel stance and unobstructed, unmatched 1160 mm clearance below its belly, not spoiling the neatly made windrows and making the cutting of bushy crops an easy chore.

For the operator, in the ultraglide air-suspension cabin prevents cab roll and chop, and the armchair seat (also air-suspended) makes managing the MacDon windrower a dream-like experience. The computerised table control system shows the operator exactly how the windrower is performing and every aspect is under logical control from inside the cabin; even clogging, which occurs rarely, can be unblocked on the move.

Another important feature is that the MacDon M155, for all this top quality performance, requires minimum time and trouble when it comes to the necessary maintenance and servicing.

This photograph indicates how the sections of the MacDon FD1 Flexdraper can move to enable exact adjustment according to the slope of the land to ensure a first-rate cut.

If wheat could choose it will be Vitamech’s MacDon FD1 draper table

It is the ideal of every decent wheat crop to be harvested with a MacDon FD1 Flexdraper. The MacDon FD1 Flexdraper simply follows the slope of the land, neatly cutting the stems and arranging them carefully, heads on the same side, on the conveyor from where they are transported softly and carefully into the harvester’s mouth.

This careful handling means a minimum wheat grains are lost and the combine performs better and lasts longer because it is fed continuously without fits and starts.

Die FD1 series boasts with a 20% higher work capacity than previous models; adjustments and servicing has been made easy and it is made to fit  to any good combine.

The names of the model series is based on the width of the equipment in feet: FD130 (9,1 m), FD135 (10,6 m), FD140 (12,2 m) and FD145 (13,7 m). The mainframe is named the FM100 (Float Module).

The hydraulic tank holds 75 litres and three pumps drives all the hydraulic actions briskly and soundly.

The drum, with its retractable tines, (“Retractable Tine Drum (RTD)”, and its FeedMacX feed technology, can be adjusted to an exact fit with the mouth and working speed of the harvester combine. Auger vanes can be bolted to the drum in various places to ensure the best flow of material towards the innards of the combine. The teeth on the drum is known as DrumSaver Tines. They are hollow tubes that move faster in and out to improve the feed. Should there be a big obstruction, these tines may break to protect the drum and prevent damage to the insides of the combine.

There are three floating sections on the pickup and cutting side of the table, which follows the land contours exactly, even with the huge 13,7 m table.

The centre section in all models are of the same size; it is the length of the flanks that differ. The angle of the flanks can be adjusted mechanically, should it be necessary. One can also adjust the table with a lever from “Flex” to “Rigid” should you not want to utilise the flexibility function.

A smart, lively censor follows the height of the cutting shaft above the ground and automatically keeps it at the selected height of between 1 and 5.

Cutting remains perfect because the mower reel is mounted on the cutting shaft so that a critically small distance is continuously ensured between the reel tines and the cutting shaft.

Vitamech, the familiar and trustworthy supplier of agricultural solutions, is the distributor of MacDon in South Africa. Contact them on (+27) 021-907-8000; Louis van der Merwe: (+27)072-626-8409; Jurie Swart: (+27) 083-375-8840; email: or visit

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