John Deere is phasing in several combine harvester updates for 2019.

Among these updates was the recent launch of second-generation versions of its W330 and W440 combines (built by Sampo of Finland for John Deere).

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Yet another update for 2019 is the arrival of the 700FD Series Flex Draper header (pictured above). This is being made available "following the increasing demand for draper headers in Europe".

New seals are claimed to reduce rapeseed losses by up to 45%. Up-time has also been improved - apparently by introducing corrugated edges on both sides of the belt (which delivers better belt alignment and guidance).

The optional top auger above the belt has an increased diameter of 45cm. The central feed drum now offers a second upper position - for improved crop-flow in oilseed rape.

To cope with uneven ground, the flexible knife can move up or down by 19cm (across the full width of the cutter-bar). According to John Deere, this greatly improves harvesting of soya beans, peas or laid crops (as the header can cut as close as 38mm to the ground).

Up to four header height sensors also improve ground contour following, according to the manufacturer.

John Deere claims that draper-type belt headers enable rotary combines to perform up to 10% better than machines equipped with standard rigid auger headers, due to "more even feeding of the crop head first into the combine".

Moreover, says the company, draper headers are lighter in weight and, therefore, reduce overall ground pressure.

In fact, claims John Deere, the new 700FD Series Flex Draper header now offers the possibility of harvesting everything from small grains and rapeseed to specialist crops such as peas and beans - with just one header.