Giant in its field – a wide, wide roller

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It’s a giant in its field, has a rolling width of 6m and is likely the widest land roller in New Zealand.
Manufactured by Rakaia based agricultural machinery specialist Pluck’s Engineering, the roller weighs close to 10 tonnes when empty. Fill it with water and it weighs in at a hefty and impressive 26.6 tonnes.
The roller is made in three sections to ensure it turns freely and is manoeuvrable in both the paddock and on laneways.
It has a special spring loaded towbar attachment, unique to Pluck’s Engineering, which takes out the shock of towing.
Pluck’s Engineering owner Neil Pluck said he believed the roller was the biggest in New Zealand, if not in weight, then certainly in rolling width.
He said his company took a lot of pride in the preparation work before the bolting and welding process of building a roller began.
The full strength of the steel section was used and frames and drums were strong and stiff, which prevented cracking.
He said big rollers were typically between 3m and 3.6m wide and the 6m version was by far the largest his company had ever produced.
‘‘Occasionally we build a 4.6m roller, but they are not all that common.
‘‘Farmers often tow a twin roller, but the advantage with this new roller is that there is no folding in and out needed.’’
The roller has been manufactured for a Kirwee farmer who specifically asked for a single, very wide roller.
It is suited to the farmer’s flat land and large gateways and will need to be towed by a very powerful tractor.
Mr Pluck said a lot of drawings, calculations and thinking had gone into the design and manufacturing process.
The process had been completed in around a month and the roller would travel to its new owner in bits and then reassembled on site.
He said the standard large roller currently being built at Pluck’s looked ‘‘tiny’’ compared to the giant beast that had just rolled out of the workshop.