Agricultural contractors: improving quality of service with an adapted agricultural tyre

To win more customers you have to offer more than what a farmer can do alone, provide better quality, quick service, in short, a highly professional service. You know that the difference can easily be made by the quality of your equipment; with machines that are more recent and more powerful than average you will be able to draw wider implements and complete more operations in less time.
Tyres are not an exception, because with more technical tyres your soil will be better preserved, there will be less compaction, better traction, less slip…. and in addition to these sales arguments which count for your customers, you will be able to reduce fuel costs while working more quickly.

In this article we look at the agricultural tyres best adapted to quality work.

How can an agricultural tyre be used as a sales argument?

If your agricultural contracting company has neglected its tyres to make savings, you may find yourself in a difficult situation in terms of quality of service.

By continuing to use standard tyres which are cheaper to buy, you risk compacting your customers’ soil and facing difficulties during operations in wet conditions.

Reduce the risk of slip linked to tyres

The tyre is the only element in direct contact with the ground to transmit your machine’s tractive force and enable your combination vehicle to move forward.

Yet this traction capacity is only possible if your tyre lugs have a proper hold on the ground and slippage is under control with the right slip ratio.

In wet conditions, the slip ratio must be between 8 and 15% to obtain optimal traction, without ever exceeding 30%, in which case you might sink into the ground and get stuck with your trailer.

If your tyres are unsuitable, with too high an inflation pressure to compensate for the weight of the implements, there is a genuine risk of excessive slip and soil sealing. This will have a negative impact on your land and slow down your work rate considerably, and as such your productivity.

Limit soil compaction linked to tyres

Soil compaction is a widespread phenomenon linked to the increasing weight of the equipment used. It occurs essentially when you work with standard or poor-quality tyres, in wet conditions.

To compensate for the weight of the machines or implements you effectively need to increase inflation pressure to avoid the tyre crushing into itself. This pressure makes the tyre more rigid and reduces its soil footprint, so that it has to dig deeper into the ground to meet resistance and find the soil bearing capacity necessary to move forward.

Low-quality tyres or the wrong pressure settings linked to the limits of a standard tyre will lead to two types of soil compaction:

  • Surface compaction
    This type of compaction is often due to excessive tilling with tyres that are overinflated or ill-adapted to the type of ground. This compaction will increase erosion and leaching because it compacts the surface and blocks water infiltration.
  • Deep soil compaction
    This is directly linked to the weight of the machines or the load with very heavy implements. It occurs generally on wet soil when the weight of each axle is above 5 and 7 tonnes. The depth of the compaction varies from 30 to 60 cm. It limits the biological life within the soil, prevents water from reaching the deep layers of soil and blocks root development.

Reduce working time

Working with standard agricultural tyres or lower quality tyres extends your working time.

Bad lug design can effectively reduce the wheels’ self-cleaning capacity and as such the traction capacity of your vehicle. This will limit the load that your tyres can bear, involving a high inflation pressure and generating slip.

You will therefore have to change pressure every time you go from one type of ground to another, in particular from field to road.

In the end, all these aspects lead to a massive loss of time and a higher fuel bill for each campaign.

 

1. The advantages of low-pressure VF tyres for power and field crops

For an agricultural contracting company which sells services linked essentially to field crops, using VF (Very High Flexion) technology tyres such as Bridgestone’s VT-Tractor tyre provides a real advantage.

Bridgestone’s VT-TRACTOR tyreBridgestone’s VT-TRACTOR tyre


This type of tyre has many benefits:

  • Optimal traction: the VT-Tractor’s “involute” lugs provide a contact patch up to 26% bigger than other models on the market, which improves traction.
  • A faster work rate: these better designed tyres allow you to cover several more hectares per day.
  • A very high load capacity: you can work with wider, heavier implements thanks to an additional load capacity of 40% more than standard tyres.
  • Great resistance to wear: tyres such as the VT-Tractor have a reinforced structure comprising many additional plies with a very flexible yet highly resistant sidewall.
  • Reduced fuel consumption: the innovative VF lug design slots perfectly into the ground. This guarantees better transmission of power to the ground, while leading to fuel savings.

 

2. The advantages of IF and VF technologies for harvesting

When an agricultural contracting company takes on a harvest operation, it can hail the benefits of working with low-pressure tyres for soil preservation, while obtaining a greater load capacity.

Tyres such as Bridgestone’s VT-Combine CFO are designed to offer a very high level of traction thanks to a contact patch with the ground that is around 22% bigger than that of a standard agricultural tyre.

These tyres have reinforced yet supple casing, making it possible to work with your harvester at an inflation pressure of 2.4 bar when loaded, which is a major advantage in addition to the fact that you can maintain a speed of 15 km/h.

impact on the ground of a VT Combine tyre compared to a standard tyreComparison of the impact on the ground
of a VT-Combine tyre compared to a standard tyre with the same load


The advantages of these technological tyres include:

  • A load capacity that is +86% higher: thanks to their innovative, robust design, VT Combine CFO tyres can bear up to 86% more load than a standard tyre with the same inflation pressure. This additional capacity allows you to carry out transfer cycles from the hopper to trailers at the edge of the field in the appropriate transfer areas.
  • An ideal solution for soil preservation during harvesting: soil compaction is one the main concerns facing farmers, a major advantage for agricultural contractors. Thanks to their supple yet resistant casing, VT-Combine CFO tyres can work at very low pressure to limit soil compaction thanks to a large soil footprint.

 

3. The advantages of top-of-the-range equipment for mixed crop/livestock farming and transport

Although agricultural contractor contracts tend to be for transport or the management of livestock farming, the use of tyres like the VX-Tractor allow you to reduce operating costs, because they are more resistant to wear and more efficient for traction compared to standard tyres.

This more solid type agricultural tyre can bear heavier loads with a low slip ratio due to its longer lugs.

Bridgestone’s VX-TRACTOR tyreBridgestone’s VX-TRACTOR tyre


There are also many other benefits:

  • A more resistant tread: the VX-Tractor is more resistant in its design thanks to a greater number of plies, a thicker layer of rubber, up to 20% more than a standard tyre, ensuring a longer tyre lifespan and optimal traction.
  • A wide range of possible pressure settings: the high-end VX-Tractor tyre can operate at an inflation pressure of between 0.6 and 2.4 bar, with a bonus load of up to 3 bar at a reduced speed of 10 or 15 km/h.
  • Better resistance to wear: by opting for a high-end agricultural tyre such as the VX Tractor, you obtain a very high load capacity with excellent durability thanks to the innovative composition of its structure. The rubber contains specific vegetable oil which reinforces the tyre’s resistance to wear.
  • A better level of safety: The casing is shock resistant and can withstand higher loads, which improves safety on the roads and in the fields.

 

Conclusion

Agricultural contracting companies that chose better tyre technology obtain an advantage for all their customers: high-tech equipment ensures better quality of service.

 


The Bridgestone-agriculture.eu blog is written and administered by tractor tyre experts who are available to provide you with the advice you need on the subject of your agricultural tyres. They allow you to maximise your productivity with information on all subjects linked to tyres: Cheap tractor tyres — Technical data for agricultural tyres — Air pressure advice — Solutions to avoid soil compaction — Sprayer tyre pressure — Why and how to ballast your tractor tyres — When to use dual wheels — The mechanical causes of abnormal wear — Cheap agricultural tyres – etc…

To learn more and boost your farm's profits, Bridgestone-Agriculture is offering you a free, detailed white paper that explains the essential role your agricultural tyres play in your productivity.

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This information is intended only to make you aware of the technical and functional aspects of agricultural tires and their use. It does not allow you to make a judgment or a definitive conclusion on a given problem. Only your agricultural tire expert is able to make a technical assessment and take a final decision, case by case.


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