‘We’ve been building 4-rotor rakes for 20 years’

20 years ago, Claas claimed to have introduced the world’s first four-rotor rake – namely the Liner 3000.

The aim was to eliminate a bottleneck, allowing the capacity of ever-larger forage harvesters to be realised. The manufacturer says that its current four-rotor Liner 4000 and 3600 models still follow this mantra.

Following its introduction in 1999, Claas says that its engineers doubled the productivity of existing twin-rotor rakes with the Liner 3000. In a single pass, the machine could mop up 12.5m of grass into a single, central swath.

The bigger Liner 4000 (pictured below), with its working width of 15.5m, was added in 2009.

Two years later, in 2011, the Liner 3000 was replaced by the Liner 3500, followed by the Liner 3600 in 2015.

At the heart of every Liner, says Claas, is the rotor dome assembly that’s “permanently lubricated in an oil bath”. All integrated tine-arms employ a patented attachment system. The manufacturer says that the integrated pre-defined bending points are located outside the rotor dome. This is to protect the dome components.

Forager timeline

Of course, Claas doesn’t just have a lengthy legacy when it comes to rakes; it also has a significant history in the self-propelled forage harvester sector.

Also Read: Looking back: Where did Claas self-propelled foragers come from?

It all started for Claas with the 120hp Jaguar 60 SF (pictured below); this was launched onto the market in 1973. The machine was borne out of the need to harvest more maize in a shorter time-frame.

Image source: www.agrartechnik-im-einsatz.de (PIRKACHER)

The 60 SF combined elements of the trailed Jaguar 60 with combine harvester assemblies; this approach, says Claas, enabled it to be launched after a “very brief development period”.

By 1976, more than 500 had been built. The rest, as they say, is history…

Major Claas Jaguar milestones:
  • Claas’ 10,000th Jaguar forage harvester was built in 1994;
  • The 15,000th unit left the line just four years later – in 1998;
  • The 20,000th machine was built in 2004;
  • The 25,000th unit was sold to a farmer in Wisconsin (US) in 2008; it was a 980. He had started with a Jaguar 820 20 years earlier;
  • The 30,000th Jaguar was built in 2011; it was finished off in a special black livery;
  • The 40,000th self-propelled forager from Claas was showcased this year – in 2019.