Family steps into the future with RoGator WEED-IT

26 July 2022

Peter Whykes and his sons with their two RoGator RG1300C sprayers, the newest of which is fitted with WEED-IT sensors.

May we all be as productive and willing to learn in our 90s as Peter Whykes.

Now 91, Peter and his son Chris are the primary sprayer operators on the family’s cropping farm, and they are mastering a new RoGator 1300C with WEED-IT spot spray technology.

Three generations of the Whykes family work their 4700-ha dryland farm west of Charlton in Victoria’s Mallee region. They produce barley, wheat, canola, lentils, peas, fava beans, lupin and vetch and oaten hay.

Because they sow their crops using direct drill or minimum tillage, they depend on agrichemicals to control weeds. They use their sprayer to apply a full range of crop protection – herbicides, insecticides and fungicides.

In April the family took ownership of their second self-propelled RoGator, which is equipped with dual spraying technology. It can do traditional blanket spraying or use its WEED-IT Quadro sensors to target individual weeds.

Peter says he and his sons were impressed with their previous 6000-litre RoGator 1300B self-propelled, so they were keen to upgrade it for the new 7000-litre RoGator 1300C.

“We bought the first RoGator in this area. It is a great machine with a strong boom. We ordered the new one with WEED-IT sensors because we want to reduce our chemical usage.

There are two big benefits to using less chemicals. One is that it is better for the environment and our soils, and the second is we will save money and time.

Peter Whykes

The Whykes family was hoping the new sprayer would arrive as scheduled at the beginning of the year because they plan to use its spot spraying capability during late summer and early autumn.

As it turned out, it did not arrive until April. Although it was late, it did arrive in time for them to see how effective it is. Both Peter and his son Jon are impressed.

“The sensors need to be able to distinguish the green weeds against brown soil, so we will mainly use spot spraying to apply glyphosate and paraquat during the summer fallow prior to sowing.

“It seems to be very accurate and it has done a good job. We were able to target weeds with the sensors while operating at 17-18 kph,” Peter says.

Jon estimates the WEED-IT spot spraying technology will reduce their chemical use during summer and autumn by 50-80 percent.

We would have saved $100,000 if we had used the WEED-IT over the whole summer. We did one job for a neighbour on contract and we used 30 percent of the amount of chemical we anticipated to do the job.

John Whykes

During blanket spraying, Peter says it is easy to prime the boom. An agitator in the tank works continuously and the product is continuously pumped through the boom so there is not a delay when spraying starts.

RoGator RG1300C


The RoGator 1300C is also very easy to calibrate and has impressive section control, both of which come down to Capstan Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) technology. PWM regulates the application rate independent of pressure and it gives the ability to control every nozzle individually.

With Capstan PWM, 50hz solenoids mean nozzles constantly switch on and off up to 50 times per second. This gives the ability to vary the amount of time a nozzle cycles, making it possible to vary application rates while keeping the pressure constant.

“Using the previous system, if you wanted to increase the spray rate, the pump sped up and that increased the pressure so a bigger volume of chemical went out. The problem with that is it can encourage spray drift through fine droplets as the pressure increased,” Jon says.

“With this system, you put in the preselected application rate and pressure. As the speed of the sprayer varies, the pulsing rate of the nozzles adjusts to maintain the rate and the pressure. You know that 99 percent of the droplets are the right size to hit the target.”

nozzle control

Jon says this system also gives full individual nozzle control. This includes turn compensation so that during turns, each nozzle applies the exact rate required to make coverage consistent across the boom.

Individual nozzles also turn off if they are approaching an area that has already been sprayed. Section control in the Whykes’ previous RoGator deactivated and activated a cluster of nozzles.

This meant a number of nozzles would turn on together, even if only one in the cluster was over an area that had been not been sprayed. This could lead to over spraying and the extra costs and potential crop damage it can cause.

Boom auto fold and cruise control

“Another big step up with our new RoGator is the auto fold function for the boom,” Jon says. “With this one, there is just a single button that you push to fold out or in.”

“The new RoGator also has two auto cruise controls. You select the work speed and the turning speed and then you can just switch between them.”

sustainable spraying with WEED-IT

With its ability to reduce drift and spot spray, the new RoGator with WEED-IT is helping the Whykes family keep up with the very latest in technology and stay ahead of the regulators.

They believe that in the future all farmers and contractors will have to be able to show that they are only using the chemicals they need to use, and that they are only applying them where they need to go.


Roylances appointed self-propelled dealer in NSW

9 February 2022

Dave Farmer Croplands and Justin Roylance
Croplands Territory Manager, Dave Farmer welcomes Roylances Dealer Prinicipal, Justin Roylance.

Croplands is very pleased to announce the appointment of Roylances Tractor Replacements as newly authorised self-propelled sprayer dealers in Forbes, New South Wales.

Roylances is a 3rd generation family-owned operation with more than 65 years’ experience in the mining and earthmoving industries. offering quality machinery, parts, service, and after-sales support.

“Our success can be attributed to the professional approach of our team, the quality brand products we sell and our ability to adapt and look outside the square when locating hard to find parts,” explains Justin Roylance, Dealer Principal.

Roylances’ appointment to the Croplands dealer network represents an exciting step for the machinery dealer as they continue their expansion into the agricultural industry which commenced in 2020 with the addition of well-known brands Kubota, JCB and Krone.

As a newly appointed Croplands self-propelled dealer, Roylances will be offering the market leading RoGator C Series self-propelled sprayers.

RoGator RG1300C
RoGator sprayers are now available through Roylances in Forbes

We are very pleased to be expanding our offering with RoGator sprayers. There are a large number of broadacre farms in the Forbes region and these sprayers have the durability needed to stand up to the challenging New South Wales spraying season.

Justin Roylance, Dealer Principal

milestone celebration

Roylances is joining Croplands at an exciting time as the sprayer manufacturer celebrates 50 years of operations in 2022.

Since Croplands inception in 1972, it has grown to become one of the most popular sprayer brands on the market, servicing the broadacre, horticulture, viticulture, tree crop, compact and home garden sectors.

“Croplands has a long history of delivering practical solutions for Australian farmers,” says Dave Farmer, Croplands Territory Manager Northern NSW/TAS.

RoGator C Series self-propelled sprayer is a great example of this. It’s a machine designed to meet the demands of today’s farmers and spray contractors.”

Mr Farmer goes on to say, “We are very pleased to welcome Roylances to the Croplands dealer network. With a long history in the region and a strong focus on customer service, we are excited with the potential of this new partnership and look forward to working closely with the Roylances’ team.”

Find out more about RoGator online or drop into the Roylances showroom at Unit 10, 42-46 Sam Street, Forbes.


RoGator with WEED-IT impresses farming family

18 January 2022

Croplands Customer - Simon Donovan
Brother and sister, Simon and Sarah, from Donovan Farming Company take deliver of their new RoGator RG1300C with WEED-IT technology fitted.

Central Queensland farmer Simon Donovan has used RoGator self-propelled sprayers for 14 years.

He says every model has been better than the previous one, and his latest has been kitted out with great new technology – WEED-IT optical spot spraying system, Raven XRT boom-levelling and Ag Leader GPS.

Simon manages Duaringa Station. It is one of three properties in Central Queensland owned by his parents Bruce and Beryl Donovan under the umbrella of Donovan Farming Company Pty Ltd.

They produce durum wheat, chickpeas, cotton, sorghum and corn on 4800 ha. The RoGator covers that ground at least four times a year.

The family purchased their first RoGator in 2004. A local contractor had one and it seemed robust, so that was their choice when their old sprayer needed replacing. They are now onto their fourth one.

For the durability and the toughness of the machine, we have found RoGators to be second to none.

Simon Donovan, Donovan Farming Company

Every model has seemed great, but then the next one arrives and it has improved. It is a nice feeling knowing that the manufacturer is listening to farmers and making the changes.

For example, Simon wanted to spend more time in the paddock. He now has a 6000-litre tank with the chassis upgraded to accommodate this.

“There have been upgrades in the wheel motors, so it handles the conditions even better.”

The filtration system has also improved. Previous models relied on filters at the nozzles and Simon had to organise his own filtration system.

“It never worked that well. This machine has its own awesome filtration system. They have nailed it. It is built to handle the volume of water we want to use.

“Another improvement is to the boom. Other brands don’t seem to handle our conditions. We can’t fault this one.”

RoGator RG1300C boom
RoGator. Better booms. Better yields.

The boom is 36m, fully recirculating, and is equipped to do both broadcast spraying and spot spraying with WEED-IT.

weed-it precision spraying

The WEED-IT system has blue LED sensors at 1m intervals along the boom. Each sensor controls four nozzles which are fired when a weed is detected. The superior mode of detection used by the WEED-IT system ensures very small weeds can be targeted before they set seed.

With spot spraying we are saving at least 80 percent in chemicals even though we apply at a higher rate.

Simon Donovan

“We are really smashing it, hitting the plant with four times the rate.”

He can also use more targeted sprays, which are usually more expensive.

Croplands WEED-IT Nozzles
With WEED-IT fitted to his RoGator RG1300C, Simon can target those hard-to-kill weeds.

A particular problem in central Queensland is Feathertop Rhodes grass, which is becoming resistant. The WEED-IT system allows him to control it.

“If I didn’t have this I would have to put steel in the ground and break up the soil structure. I am hitting the target weeds harder and saving ourselves a lot of work and money.”

Spot spraying is slower at about 14 kph compared to the 24 kph Simon drives when using the RoGator as a blanket sprayer.

raven XRT delivers boom stability

At those speeds Raven XRT boom-levelling is quite handy.

“When I turn corners or drive through a washout the boom height stays consistent. It does not hit the ground so it protects the boom. It should really be compulsory.

“Each WEED-IT sensor is worth $5000 so you don’t want to start smashing them up. Without Raven I have to rely on my ability to keep it level.”

Raven XRT’s radar-based sensors detect the ground and keep the boom stable in three dimensions. This also helps reduce spray drift because the boom is at a consistent height above the crop.

unprecedented product recovery

The RoGator has a recirculating boom and ClearFlow product recovery. It uses air to push unused product back from the lines into the tank, or it can blow it out of the nozzles.

Combined with the rinse tank, they clean the RoGator out and ready for its next task. So, it is not hard to change from herbicides to fungicides or foliar fertiliser.

RoGator ClearFlow product recovery
ClearFlow full-recovery system minimises waste and contamination.

A large induction hopper allows for easy mixing of any product, be it liquid or granules, while in the tank the product is constantly moving and mixing.

With OptiMotion, the amount of agitation automatically changes as the level in the tank drops.

operator comfort

Simon says the new RoGator 1300C is really user-friendly. The cab is comfortable and quiet, which is just as well since he feels like he lives in it.

It becomes his office and is set up with air-conditioning, a sound system, Bluetooth and connections for his iPad.

The RoGator even comes with its own weather station.

“It gives you the humidity and wind’s speed and direction. Info is king. We can make decisions on the go, so the chemical is on the target and we do not affect neighbours,” Simon says.

He particularly likes the reversing camera. It reduces the stress of backing a large machine when kids and animals could be around.

RoGator RG1300C cab
The RoGator cab combines functionality and comfort.

The width of the wheel track is adjustable from the cab to fit with different tramlines.

Ag leader for more control

GPS, auto-steer and sectional control are through Ag Leader.

Runs on Duaringa Station are up to 8 km long and auto-steer takes the fatigue out of the day.

“You can change everything on the go. You don’t have to get out of the cab to make an adjustment.”

a drive system that practically runs itself

The RoGator has an 8.4-litre, 340hp, engine connected to a new SmartDrive transmission which automatically adjusts engine RPM to the power required – this means Simon sets the speed and the RoGator does the rest.

“Fuel efficiency is awesome. It does not work harder than it has to.”

RoGator RG1300C Smart Drive
SmartDrive. All-wheel traction control. All the time.

service and support

Croplands Toowoomba supplied the sprayer, and Simon says product delivery was done really well.

“Croplands spent all day with me. This is a massive investment and you get what you need. Training and the answers to any questions are only a phone call away. I can’t fault them.”

No matter how great the technology, a business has to justify the investment and the RoGator adds up for the Donovan family.

“With the amount of work we do, we should pay it off in 1100 hours. I plan to turn it over on 3000 to 3500 hours,” Simon concludes.


Dual purpose RoGator gives contractor options

20 December 2021

The Liverpool Plains Groundspray team with their new RG700B with WEED-IT technology fitted.

A RoGator RG700B has proven to be the ideal ground spraying tool for New South Wales contractor Bob Sipple.

Bob purchased his second self-propelled RoGator RG700B sprayer in July 2021, to replace his previous RoGator RG700, which he had for five years.

“The two RoGators are both essentially the same. We had a good run overall with the first RoGator 700. It was a good machine.

“We probably do 1200 to 1500 hours a year on it. It all depends on the season. In the summertime we do night work if we get behind, so we do some big days.”

Bob has been operating in the Liverpool Plains region for 25 years from his base at Quirindi in northern New South Wales.

Liverpool Plains Groundspray operates on 15 to 20 properties all year round mostly doing broadacre spraying plus some dryland cotton spraying.

“Over Spring, growers are sowing sorghum, cotton, beans and sunflowers. This year there has been a reasonable amount of rain, so there will be quite a bit of cotton over the summer.

“Then we do Winter wheat, barley and chick peas. Most people will plant half the farm and leave some of the farm fallow. We usually get good rainfall all year, so people can sow summer and winter crops, which keeps us busy.”

dual purpose machine

RG700B with WEED-IT sensors
RoGator RG700B with WEED-IT spot spraying sensors fitted.

Bob’s new RoGator RG700B has a 120-ft boom and a dual-purpose spray line with WEED-IT Quadro sensors that allow him to do both broadacre spraying and spot spraying.

The boom is fitted with Arag 2×2 nozzle bodies, each of which has two nozzles for spot spraying and two for broadacre spraying.

Local Croplands agent, NFS Ag in Gunnedah, sold Bob his Rogator RG700B and installed its dual-purpose spray system.

Along with the option to do spot spraying or full boom spraying, the RoGator RG700B can work on 3m-4m wheel spacing. This gives Liverpool Plains Groundspray the flexibility to operate in the different terrains found in northern New South Wales.

“We have a mix of sloping country with contours and flat plain and sub plain country, so there is plenty of variety,” Bob says.

He says the RoGator 700 sprayers are a good size and lightweight compared to other sprayings, so they do not leave big wheel tracks.

“Sprayers can be quite heavy these days. The main thing with the RoGator is that it is light – we don’t want big wheel tracks everywhere.”

Bob likes the 120-foot aluminium boom, which is sturdy and provides good coverage so he can get through a large area of work in a day.

The sensors that operate with WEED-IT Quadro spot spraying technology ensure precision spraying by detecting chlorophyll in the leaves of actively growing weeds in fallow fields. Spray nozzles are then activated via a 50Hz 6-volt PWM-capable solenoid releasing a burst of spray directly onto the weed. This advanced mode of detection enables faster travel speeds and targets even the smallest of weeds.

They are really good. We pick up quite a bit of spot spray work as there is quite a bit of demand from growers

Bob Sipple, Liverpool Plains Groundspray

Inside the cab, the RoGator has all the standard features including Trimble autosteer, and air bags for safety.

The RoGator can travel on the open road at 50 kph, so Bob can travel between jobs efficiently.


Bob has been dealing with NFS Ag for a number of years and buys all of his equipment from them.

“They are only 80 km away, so they are pretty handy. They always come over when we have a breakdown and are here when we need them.

“Our last RoGator had minimal down time. There were some little things, but as a rule it just kept going.”

Bob has no hesitation recommending RoGator sprayers and WEED-IT technology to other contractors and farmers.


Easy-to-use RoGator gives NSW family more precision and speed

31 August 2021

Rodney and Joel Jelbart farm in the Alectown, NSW district.

When father and son Rodney and Joel Jelbart were looking to improve the efficiency of their spraying, they decided to take a chance on a self-propelled RoGator 1300C.

Moving to the RoGator in February was a big decision as it was different to anything the New South Wales farmers had used previously.

“This is the first RoGator we have had. We have had trailing booms before this,” Joel says.

“I was keen on the increased efficiency of the self-propelled sprayer and the ability to apply higher water rates over shortening spray windows. The higher clearance also gives us the flexibility to apply later in the season.

“We are very happy with it so far.”

Joel and his wife Laura are based at ‘Tarcoma’ in the Alectown, NSW district. They farm about 2000 hectares in partnership with Joel’s parents Rodney and Penny.

The broadacre cropping operation grows wheat, barley, canola and pulse crops – mainly lupins and peas.

They sow winter crops in April and May, ready for harvesting in November and December and do all their own spraying.

The Jelbarts purchased the RoGator 1300C in February this year, and Joel has been the main operator so far.

In the last six months he has done one round of fallow spraying, some pre-sowing applications and some in-crop work.

Jelbart 2

Joel says he likes the SmartDrive traction control feature, which is standard on all C series RoGators.

SmartDrive controls each wheel to ensure any wheel slip is automatically countered as power goes to the gripping wheels. This gives the slipping wheel a chance to regain traction. It also matches engine RPM to the power required ensuring minimal fuel usage.

SmartDrive, standard on all C Series machines, continuously and independently controls each wheel.

He also likes the operating controls in the cab and is impressed with the boom.

“We have got other AGCO gear, and the RoGator is very similar technology. We are very familiar with it. I have also been impressed with the boom’s strength and stability.”

The ClearFlow chemical recovery system allows the operator to flush unused product out of the boom and back into the tank at the end of the day. Joel says it is another big plus.

ClearFlowTM pushes unused product from the plumbing back into the tank, prior to a tank or boom rinse.

It means the boom can be properly rinsed and cleaned out after use, while minimising waste and contamination.

Joel is also impressed with the Croplands fill station which makes it easy to fill up with chemical and water. “It is all very quick, whether you are filling with liquid or granular.”

RoGator’s LiquidLogic recirculation system ensures a more accurate application, with less overlap. Nozzle body valves provide precise section control giving the operator more control of where the spray goes.

“We have noticed an improved coverage with the nozzles spaced at 250 mm compared to our older 500 mm spacings.”

The increased precision of the 1300C means the RoGator can get the job done efficiently and Joel can keep on top of his busy spraying schedule.

He has no hesitation in recommending the RoGator 1300C to other farmers and contractors.

I have been very impressed so far. It has got all the features that you would expect in a sprayer these days, but it is really easy to use and to get going in the paddock.

Joel Jelbart, NSW

Joel is the fifth generation of the family to farm Tarcoma. He returned home in 2014, after working away for several years.

Now the sixth generation of Jelbarts is on the farm, as Joel and Laura have two children aged 3 and 5 years.


Twin RoGators the centrepiece of year-round spraying business

31 August 2021

KAAS Spraying
Angus and Andrew Scott from KAAS Spraying and Agriculture, Tasmania

When a Tasmanian agricultural contracting business made the switch to RoGator sprayers, they were so impressed they added a second one.

The Scott family runs KAAS Spraying and Agriculture from their base in Hagley, northern Tasmania. They provide a mix of services to cropping and livestock farmers.

Andrew Scott started the contracting operation 10 years ago. Now his son Angus manages it, while Andrew looks after the family’s firewood business.

KAAS Spraying and Agriculture purchased its first RoGator RG700B in September 2020, and added a second one in December.

The self-propelled RoGator RG700Bs have fitted in nicely with the company’s busy spraying schedule.

They are the centrepiece of our business.

Angus Scott, KAAS Spraying and Agriculture

“We spray anything from vegetables, onions, potatoes, cereals, broadacre crops and high value small seeds such as carrot seeds. Pasture clean-ups keep us busy over the winter,” Angus says.

“The RoGators are quite simple machines. They have got everything we need, and they have some creature comforts, which makes using them a bit nicer,” Angus says.

“It is easier to get spare parts when both our sprayers are the same, and they are both under warranty,” Angus says.

“We are very happy with the way they are going. We have had other sprayers, but we have just found with the RoGators, we don’t have to wait weeks or months to get spare parts. Servicing is the main thing, which has been really good.”

He says KAAS Spraying and Agriculture’s previous sprayers were rear-wheel steer and ran into problems. The new front-wheel steer, four-wheel-drive RoGators have had no major issues.

“They are the centrepiece of our business. We use them all year round, in spring, summer and autumn, and even while it goes a bit quiet in the winter. We need them to be running smoothly all the time.”

The sprayers typically do about 1000 hours each over a 12 month period.

“We aim to do spray about 10,000 hectares a year when things are going well,” Angus says.

Standard specification on the RoGator RG700B is a 2700 litre tanks, but the Scotts have upgraded to 3200 litre tanks to give them a bit more capacity.

While the RG700B is the smaller model in the RoGator line-up, Angus says the steel boom makes them quite a hardy and straight forward machine.

“For a contractor, it just makes sense.”

Croplands RoGator RG700B

RoGators are all-wheel drive and designed with the engine, hydrostatic drive and gearboxes linked together. This ensures the system runs smoothly and delivers up to 20 percent more efficiency than other systems.

All-wheel drive and traction control allow RoGators to work in wetter or hilly areas without getting stuck and ensure an extra level of safety.
Speed sensors at each wheel motor ensure all four wheels turn at the same speed to reduce the risk of wheels spinning or slippage.

“If a tyre slips, the power goes to the other wheels so you don’t lose control,” Angus says.

RoGator RG700Bs have adjustable track width. Angus generally works with a track width of 1.8m to suit the crops he sprays.

The 24m folding boom provides flexibility, which suits KAAS Spraying and Agriculture because the paddocks they work in vary from 3-6 ha up to 40-80 ha.

“It allows the RoGators to fit through tight gates and tree lines. They also have good crop clearance.

“Even in the higher crops, you never hit the plants with the belly of the RoGator as they have a lot higher clearance than any other machines we have had.”

Priming the booms with product and emptying them are both “quite straight forward”.

“You can rinse them out in 10 to 15 minutes and go into another chemical group which is a good time saving.”

Angus has also been impressed with his RoGators’ fuel efficiency. They average around 12 litres per hour “which is a lot better than similar sprayers on the market” and they have an impressive road speed of 50 kph.

The Scotts bought their RoGators from Nutrien Ag Solutions in Launceston with back up from Croplands in Toowoomba, Queensland.

“The mechanic came down from the head office when we first purchased them and we can get help from both offices, which is always good,” Angus says.

“They have both got a two- year warranty, which a lot of other brands don’t have. That is quite handy.”

From his experience so far, Angus has no hesitation in recommending any of the RoGator sprayer range to other farmers and contractors.


Performance, stability, comfort

04 August 2020

Todd Orrock with his new RoGator RG1300C

Todd and Brooke Orrock bought their first RoGator self-propelled sprayer after an accident that involved an insurance company and the need for a quick changeover.

There was a RoGator on a dealer’s lot, 40 km away and Todd was always keen on the brand, so the deal was done.

When the family bought their second RoGator, it was no accident. In February they bought a RoGator 1300C for their 2400-ha cropping farm near Murray Town, South Australia.

It is a family farm owned by Todd, his mum, Karen, and his wife, Brooke. Todd and Brooke’s children, Sophie and Mitchell, also work in the business.

They grow wheat, barley, canola, beans, export hay and some lentils. The last three years have been tough with drought and late season frost, but even so they have managed to get crops. This season is looking better.

Todd says the things he liked about the first RoGator are still there, but the new model had enough new technology that it was worth updating.

The Orrocks specified their RoGator 1300C with a 36m steel boom. Todd says he would have liked to go wider, but 36m fits with their tramlines, where the urea spreader is the limiting factor.

Along with looking after the family farm, Todd sprays for neighbouring farmers on contract. The contracting gives him an income, and it means he has newer gear for his own farm.

“We specialise in desiccation and fungicides in canola and beans.”

He can do that because he invested in crop dividers and sprays tall crops without damage.

There are many things he likes about RoGators.

I like the simplicity of the drive system and the stability of the booms. RoGators carry the boom really close to the axle, so they don’t get a waggle up.

Todd Orrock, Murray Town SA

Stability also matters for accuracy. The Orrocks farm is undulating country, and keeping the nozzles at the right height mitigates the risk of drift.

Stability also minimises stress on the machine and the operator. The boom wings go back and reset during cornering, controlled by a ram that works as a big shock absorber.

Todd has to work in small paddocks, and the ability to spray folded up at 60 ft is another advantage.

The boom is divided into 35 sections. Every four nozzles have their own section. The nozzles are 250 mm apart.

It has the ability to apply variable rates as prescribed by a map, but Todd does not use this feature.

Then there is the continuous boom recirculation.

I am in love with it and it should be standard on every boom sprayer, especially for contractors changing brews every day.

Todd Orrock

He used to either park in a corner and prime up the boom, or else he did laps.

“It took 300 litres of product to ensure it was primed. Now I can prime on my way to the paddock and start as soon as I am in the gate. It cuts down the boom sprayer’s hours.”

Another advantage of boom recirculation is that left-over product goes back into the tank. It keeps the boom clean with water, which minimises contamination and makes decontamination easy.

Todd describes the RoGator’s suspension as like driving a big bean bag.

“It has air suspension on the cab and boom. I have had major back surgery with discs removed. At the end of a day spraying, I get out and I am still walking. I couldn’t do that with our old trailed sprayer. Comfort is good.”

He usually drives at 25 kph and says it is smoother than going slower.

The RoGator 1300C has a 6300-litre tank. It does make for a heavy load, but Todd says for a self-propelled it is not overly weighty. He can carry less product if traction is an issue.

Its tank has automatic agitation. Agitation reduces as it empties to limit foaming.

The RoGator has a 60 kph road speed, which appeals to the contracting side of the business. Unfolding from transport mode is done with the push of one button.

Todd does not want to cart a trailer, so he uses the RoGator as its own batching plant and gets water where he is working.

He says his RoGator 1300C is more fuel-efficient than his previous one. Traction is also better with power to all four wheels.

“It has a smarter drive that doesn’t have to run at full revs all day. It matches the engine speed to the load.”

“We had a wet block this year and the old one would have spun a hole. This one moved the drive between wheels and drove through it.”

RoGators come with their own screen and controller, but they can also play nicely with others. Todd runs tests for a company that supplies GPS and control units, and he wanted their software in his sprayer.

Croplands worked with him and his GPS company to ensure it happened.

Easy operation is another benefit of the RoGator. Todd often sprays at night when the temperature has dropped, so this is a huge advantage.

“Maintenance is also easy. There are only two filters on the spraying side, so cleaning out is a breeze.”

Todd bought his RoGator 1300C directly from Croplands. He says they are good to deal with and he is lucky to have an agent just 40 km away.

It is working very well. Product recovery and boom recirculation are amazing features.

Todd Orrock

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Sprayers don’t come tougher than RoGator

19 June 2020

Greg Younghusband has been purchasing sprayers through Croplands since 2009. In that time he has run 10 Croplands sprayers, primarily RoGators.

“I have had them for a fair while. The first one I had was a RoGator 1286 and then I got the 1300A.

“I usually try to get 8000 hours out of them, but now I think we will push them out past 10,000 hours or until they wear out.

“We just know how to run RoGators and they are a very strong machine.”

His latest acquisition is the RoGator 1100C with a 120-ft boom. It joins the other self-propelled sprayers in his shed, a RoGator 1300A, two RoGator 1300Bs and a Spra-Coupe 7660.

Based in Curban, in the Gilgandra region of central New South Wales, Greg has contracts to spray 42,000 hectares of crops farms in a 250km radius from his home base.

Depending on the season, he can spray crops five or six times a year, hence the need for so many strong and reliable machines.

Greg says while the RoGators are not perfect, they have proven to be very reliable.

“Croplands has made massive improvements with the C Series. I don’t expect to have problems with hoses and the under carriage is a big improvement.

“There are guys out there who would say other brands are comparable, but I doubt any of them would say their gear is better. You can find faults in them all, but in my experience Croplands has the most reliable gear.

The bit I am looking for is the strength in the design and the RoGator booms are very strong. We give them absolute punishment and they handle it.

Greg Younghusband, Curban NSW

Greg says he drove the new RoGator 1100C for 250 hours in one fortnight recently and he didn’t get tired.

With his fleet of sprayers, Greg has half a dozen different sized booms to meet the varied needs of his clients. The RoGator 1100C has a 36.5m boom.

“We started out with little Brumby booms and built out from there.”

Greg and his wife Gai-Maree farm at Curban with their two daughters. The farming operation produces grain on 2100 ha.

They lease the cropping ground from Greg’s father, Neville, who oversees the day-to-day running of the farm when Greg is away with his contracting work.

The farm has been severely impacted by the drought over the last couple of years, but Greg is hopeful this season’s grain crop will be a healthy one to get the farm back on track.

Over the last 18 months Greg’s team of nine full-time workers has also been kept busy cutting and transporting close to 45,000 big square bales of hay from Victoria to farms in NSW and Queensland impacted by drought and fire as part of the state government’s relief effort.

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Trio of RoGators for Day family in NSW

16 March 2020

The Day’s impressive fleet

Running a large farming operation requires efficiency, and RoGator self-propelled sprayers have proven to be just the ticket in that regard for the Day family.

Based in Oaklands in southern New South Wales, Shannon Day and his uncle Gavin farm around 14,000 hectares (35,000 acres), with the bulk of the operation, nearly 10,000 hectares, in broadacre crops.

“With a property of this size, time is everything for us. Having these machines makes the work easier and we get more time to concentrate on other areas of the business,” Shannon says.

“It also frees you up for family time. Definitely getting family time is a priority.”

Shannon’s grandfather Pat started out as a local transport operator serving farmers in the area and he could see the opportunity that farming offered.

“Pop started buying farms in the early 1970s. He was always working for farmers carting fertiliser and grain, so he always had a connection with farming.

“He bought smaller properties in the same area and joined them together, gradually building it up to the business we have now.”

Shannon’s father Peter continues to run the transport operation with a fleet of 40 trucks on the road, while Pat is still very much hands-on with both businesses.

Six full-time staff are employed on the farm, along with Gavin and Shannon, and they employ seasonal workers as needed.

The farm runs a cropping rotation primarily of wheat, barley and canola.

“We do two or three cereals to break it back into canola. Around here that’s the standard rotation,” Shannon says.

“The yields have not been great the last couple of years with the dry conditions, but in the last 10 years we have averaged 3.8 tonnes of cereals and 5 tonnes in a good year. Canola yields are 2-3 tonnes.”

The Day family has been using RoGator self-propelled sprayers for the last 15 years. They bought their first RoGator 1274 from their local Croplands dealer back in 2005, and it is still going strong, having clocked up more than 11,000 hours in operation.

They are a simple enough machine to operate. It is really the ease of use and the simplicity that has kept that one going for so long.

Shannon Day, Oaklands NSW

“We have had no serious mechanical issues, only with the hydraulic piston-driven motors, which we have replaced.”

Shannon says the newer models now have a motor and hub design which make them more efficient.

The Day family added a RoGator 1100C with a 120-ft boom to their fleet last year, and they took possession of a brand new RoGator 1300C at the beginning of the year.

The RoGator 1300C also has a 120-ft boom. Shannon is particularly impressed with the simplicity of the new machines, their automation, and the height controls on the boom.

“The screen has a lot of information on it and they have done really well putting that whole package together and getting it working well.

We looked at other machines, but we have just been blown away with 1300C. It is really compressed and simple.

Shannon Day

“While we have only been operating it for a couple of weeks it is amazing to think about how far we have come with the technology.”

While his uncle Gavin is the main driver of the RoGator 1274, Shannon has been taking charge of the new machines. He says he would have no hesitation in employing and training new operators for them.

“They are simple enough. You don’t need to be a rocket scientist to drive them. In the long run, we will probably have drivers for the two new machines.”

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