Aerators - review

The latest additions to the UK distributors' ranges are offering improved performance, says Sally Drury.

Terra Float aerator - Image: Wiedenmann
Terra Float aerator - Image: Wiedenmann

The newest deep, fast aerator to join the Terra Spike fleet from Wiedenmann is the GXi8 HD. Wiedenmann UK sales manager Chas Ayres explains: "New technology has meant a very smooth-running, quiet and productive spiker with low maintenance. The results are excellent where heave can be seen but with a pleasingly clean finish."

The GXi8 HD has eight legs to give more holes per square metre than on a tradition 1.6m-wide machine. In development, this machine sailed through a production test with 5,800sq m/hr at 110mm square hole-spacing.

Ayres says: "Our feedback from owners is that this machine delivers a super uniform job throughout because the tines are now even closer to the front roller. Moving parts have been repositioned behind covers at the front of the machine. This reduces wear and tear and helps quieten the machine." Its centre of gravity is now closer to the tractor, making it more stable.

Further new products from Wiedenmann include the Terra Slit - a 1.6m-wide unit for slitting, spiking and aerating sports surfaces and parkland down to a depth of 150mm - and the Terra Float. The latter, also 1.6m wide, is a spiked aerifier with a three-piece, floating, ground-driven roller.

Shown for the first time at IoG Saltex last September, the DT30150 tractor-mounting, deep-tine aerator introduced by Groundsman Industries has four major patented innovations. An independent crank suspension absorbs impacts, protecting against undue stress. A quick-change anti-release tine-holder system uses a single bolt to release multiple tines. The machine also has an automatic depth-control option to ensure consistent depth on undulating terrain. When set at maximum depth, the ground roller is automatically adjusted to remain on the ground.

The DT30150 weighs in at 750kg. It has a 1.5m working width and can penetrate to 300mm at a moderate pace. Accessories include a large range of quick-change tines for solid, needle and hollow coring, plus the Flexblade Core Collector. A 2.25m machine is expected in mid 2010.

Designed for very heavy soil, the Aera-Vator line-up of machines is now available in the UK from JSM Distribution. It is likely to appeal to managers of sports pitches and those tending worn areas, such as walkways on golf courses or pathways in car parks. Units have also been used on synthetic surfaces.

The soil-penetrating system of the Aera-Vator uses a series of vibrating tines to shatter the soil and penetrate hard ground down to a maximum depth of 90mm. The vibrating action allows the equipment to be used with small, lightweight tractors.

JSM has also been appointed UK distributor for the Classen "steerable" pedestrian aerator. Aimed at landscaping and garden maintenance contractors, as well as small sports clubs and the hire market, these units will aerate on the turn and can core to a depth of 70mm.

Terrain Aeration Services (TAS) has acquired the Deep Drill from C&P Soilcare. The unit, which penetrates 250mm with a drill head holding 60 tungsten-tipped drills, joins TAS's Airforce Terralift Fleet to give turf managers more choice when it comes to decompacting turf.

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