As early as 1974,Vervaet introduced the world's first self propelled tanker harvester. A machine which was capable of topping, lifting, cleaning and transporting the beet simultaneously. In the 30 years since, almost all competitors have followed in our footsteps.
In 2001, to stay ahead of the competition, and to keep sugar beet lifting profitable in the future, Vervaet introduced the "Beet Eater", the first 9-row ,tanker sugarbeetharvester in the world.
Capacity has proven to be at least 50% more then the conventional 6-row machines. Up to 3 Ha (7,5 acre) per hour is possible
New constructions (Patent applied for) have been developed, unique for sugar beet harvesters. On the Agribex agricultural show in Brussels, we won the prestigious "gouden aar"
Let us go through the machine from the front to the rear.
Obviously, the lifter needs to fold-up for road transport too. This one folds up in 3 parts (3 x 3 rows) This lifter can bend down a little more then horizontal,so when the land is not flat, it can still maintain a shallow lifting depth.Each side of the lifter has it's own depth control,as well as the middle section,which has a left and right depth control, like the conventional 6-rows. Both side-sections are also provided with an automatic rowfinder. They can move left and right for about 15 cm (6 inches) on top of the 8 cm which each element could move already, solving the problem of beet being drilled with 6 or 12 row drills. It is even possible to lift only 6 rows, simply by lifting up the right hand side section. The shares are driven separately, by hydraulic motors, instead of v-belts.
Behind the lifting shares are 3 turbines (1,35 meter on the sides and 1,85 meter in the middle) Due to the ideal turbine configuration, the beet flow is just perfect and the length of topper + lifter are nearly the same as the 6-row 17-Tonner. Hydraulic 45-50 cm (18-20 inch) row-width adjustment from the cab is optional. Other row widths are possible on request.
The topper can fold-up in two parts, maintaining good visibility for the driver.1 part is 6 rows (3 meter) , and the other is 3 (1,5 meter) While folding,the entire topper slides to the left, positioning the 6 row part in the middle of the machine. After the leaf is cut of by the flails, an auger transports the leaf to the right hand side, where it is dropped onto and spread by a disc-type leaf spreader. The leaf spreader has been increased by about 35%, to handle the extra leaves. Adjusting the scalpers from 18 to 20 inch row-width is done hydraulic.
When we want to lift 9 rows at the same speed as a six row machine,we need to have bigger and additional turbines accordingly.That is why we have 5 big turbines behind the 3 of the lifting unit.
The gates around the turbines are adjustable from the cab, and mounted in rubber silent-blocs for beet-friendly treatment,and less maintenance.
Needless to say, that all the speeds of the turbines are adjustable from the cab as well.
The ring elevator also been extended. The width is now 90 cm instead of 80 and the depth of the baskets has also increased, thus giving 50% more capacity.
Tank capacity is 25 tonnes.The discharge elevator is situated behind the front wheels making it possible to lower the tank floor about 30 cm compared to other systems, effectively lowering the centre of gravity.
The discharge elevator is 1,70 m wide and unloads the entire tank in approximately 40 seconds.
This is something special:
Because of the working width of 4,5 meter, we can use the same area to drive on. We accomplished this by extending the front wheels each by 50 cm. Consequently the machine drives one wheel per track.
Also the stability of the machine is greatly improved with the wide front axle.
For those who don't favour full land coverage; it is also possible to lift with the front axle kept narrow, leaving about 1 meter of ground un-touched.
All 4 front wheels are mounted on hydraulic cylinders,which are coupled so their weight is spread 50-50. Also it makes the wheels follow the surface perfectly.
It is possible to lift the machine up 10 cm should the machine get stuck ,or lower it 10 cm for low bridges etc.
All 6 wheels are driven and steered ,which gives a short turning circle of only 8 meter, despite of its size.
The new Michelin radial tyres are 800-70 x 38 and have a 2,10 m. diameter.
There are other wide tyre options, because of the wide working width.