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Water-driven Senter 360 nip cable thief plans in the bud

Coenraad Torlage en Bhoroti Hlatshwayo, een van sy werkers, voor een van die wateraangedrewe spilpunte wat Coenraad gebruik om weiding te besproei en kabeldiewe te fnuik.

This post is also available in: Afrikaans

Cable theft is a problem facing every farmer. Apart from the high cost of replacing a stolen cable, it is accompanied by production loss and unnecessary labour costs as the labour could have been used productively elsewhere.

However, Senter 360 made a plan to prevent theft of irrigation electric cables: Using a water-propelled centre pivot irrigator, which does not require electricity except for the initial minimum required for pumping water to a reservoir.

Coenraad Torlage is a farmer near Dundee in KZN who has acquired two of these water-propelled centre pivot irrigation machines and he is as pleased as Punch with the result. “I employ the centre pivots to irrigate fodder crops. The centre pivot irrigates approximately 4 ha per circle and I use this one to serve four circles,” says Coenraad.

How the centre pivot machine functions:

• Water is pumped from a reservoir (dam) to the pivot point;

• Instead of electric motors the centre pivot has water-driven rotors propelled by water pressure;

• The water-driven rotors then drive the gearboxes which provide the torque to make the wheels turn; and

• Consequently the centre pivot moves without the need of any cables or electric supply in the lands.

The centre pivot irrigator is propelled by water pressure which drives the water rotors. The water-driven rotor fulfils the role of an electrically-driven motor on a standard centre pivot irrigator.

When the machine has to be moved, the farmer simply flicks a lever, then rotate the wheels by 90° so that they move parallel with the span, and the machine is towed with a tractor to the next circle.

The centre pivot can be operated with or without an end gun at the outer end of the overhang depending on what the farmer needs. The end gun serves a diameter of 15 metres, thus irrigating an extra hectare.

“Except for a sprinkler that may become clogged with time, I have never really had to perform much maintenance or replace any part on any machine,” says Coenraad. “However, Marius Appel of Senter 360 and his team is available at all times should I require their assistance.”

Senter 360 claims that their centre pivot anchor point structure is more than strong and durable enough to handle radial, vertical and horizontal loads because the tower has three internally mounted cross braces and four on the higher towers for irrigating sugar cane. The material used is strong, durable and lighter than ordinary steel. These centre pivot towers stand firm and it requires and extraordinary strong wind to even stir it.

Senter 360 is a private company that has not only brought its footprint to Southern Africa, but also to rest of the irrigation industry in Africa. Their factory in Klerksdorp is unique in design to allow the construction process to run as smooth and quick as possible without any hiccups. In peak periods an additional night shift enables production to be almost doubled.

Not only the assembly line is aimed at nifty production – the complete design of the 360 centre pivot is aimed at easy transportation to and fast erection on the farm. The secret lies in the modular design and the fact that all the pipes are 6,4 metres in length, enabling transportation on a smaller-sized lorry. Should a farmer wish to extent his pivot machine, it is easy to insert a further section.

For more information, contact Senter 360 on 018-469-1331, or send an email message to info@senter360.co.za . Alternatively call Theuns Dreyer directly on 082-564-5955.

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