How deep do you plant your crop? You can measure the offset between the blades and the gauge wheels, but that does not always answer the question. In dry, tight soils, how do you know that your seed trench is cutting to the correct depth? In loose or moist soils, how do you know that you’re not going too deep when the row unit sinks? The answer to both of these questions could be to wait until emergence, and then you’ll definitely know—or, consider investing in Ag Leader Hydraulic Down Force.
Utilizing Ag Leader Hydraulic Down Force, each row unit has a piston-style actuator that presses the unit to the ground. How much downforce is needed to plant? There needs to be enough downforce to maintain the right seed-trench depth, but how much is that? The Ag Leader Hydraulic Down Force system utilizes strain gauges to determine how many pounds of weight are registering on the gauge wheels—with that information, you can customize how much pressure you want to have on the row units, or you can let the display (Integra or InCommand 1200) make the decisions for you based on the changing soil conditions. The large reservoir on the actuator means that hard shocks to the row unit will not interfere with the downforce operation. Response time for changing soil conditions is in fractions of a second, compared to what is often several seconds of adjustment on a pneumatic-style downforce system.
You can choose to “section” the downforce application on your planter in 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, or 8-channel setups, or you can have each row unit perform as its own channel. Individual row control is only available with the InCommand 1200 display, but it can also be controlled via ISOBUS on any equipped third-party display.