Farm Classics with Peter O'Brien
NEW Holland combines have always enjoyed great success in Ireland, with 1970’s ‘law of the lever’ combines to the latest touchscreen harvesters a common sight in golden fields at harvest time. The TX60 series of combines continue to be a very popular machine with grain growers and contractors, in particular the TX66, which offers a good balance of technology, power and output.
Launched over a quarter of a century ago in 1995 as a replacement for the TX30 series, early TX combines are recognised by their yellow wheels while the slightly more powerful, revamped models post 1998 have white wheels. More importantly, many electronic niggles had been ironed out and the entire series benefitted from a higher standard of specification.
Powered by a New Holland 675 engine producing 271hp, the TX66 is a high output, six straw walker combine, capable of cutting seven to nine acres per hour, a figure very acceptable by today’s standards. Commonly fitted with a 17ft header, the TX66 also features an AutoFloat system for working on uneven ground. A self -levelling header feature, AutoFloat, allows the header to pivot from the elevator housing based on feedback fed from sensors and the skids on either end of the header.
The grain tank of the TX66 has capacity to hold 8,000 litres of grain, with an unload speed of 72liters/sec, allowing the operator to unload the tank in one minute,51 seconds. The combine is also fitted with a self- levelling cleaning shoe that features automatic levelling on side slopes to prevent grain loss when cutting crops on sloping ground.
The Discovery Cab is akin to the New Holland Silage harvesters of the same era. The angular cab of the TX series is replaced with curved glass accounting for 210 degrees of visibility. Just as impressive is the complete absence of levers replaced with a solitary joystick controlling all main combine functions as well as hydrostatic drive. The reel, drum, and auger controls have also been relocated allowing for a passenger seat.
Furthermore, the pillar mounted InfoView monitor provides constant digital feedback to the operator, on the entire harvesting process including header ground pressure, drum speed, engine workload and grain loss.
Sadly, for Ford enthusiasts, the TX60 were marketed solely as New Holland combines with both the Ford badge and name being ultimately dropped. However, the bloodlines of the TX66 cannot be denied, as it still proves to be a formidable harvester today.
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New Holland TX66
New Holland 675 TA
Years of manufacture