The latest Kongskilde Stonebear rock picker, the new 260, had its Irish unveiling at the recent Fintona machinery event.

It is specially designed for the removal and picking of stones from cultivated land in one operation.

“It is used directly prior to the sowing of a crop,” said Kongskilde’s Irish Sales Manager Frank Ward.

“The machine can be powered by a 120hp tractor. It weighs 5t when empty and can hold its own weight of stones when fully laden.

“It will be of particular value to tillage farmers, who can use the stones collected on other parts of their farms,” he said.

According to the manufacturer, the Stonebear is designed to collect stones of approximately 28-30cm in size.  A working width of 4m or 5.2m allows for a one-man operation.

The machine is equipped with wide low-pressure tyres, to reduce compaction and tracks in the field. It is this configuration that allows the Stonebear to be used before drilling and planting operations.

Stonebear rakes are designed to follow the contours of uneven fields, as they rotate in the opposite direction to forward travel.

duty spikes, made of high-tensile steel in a spiral arrangement, draw the stones to the centre of the machine onto the sieve.

The depth of the sieve is controlled hydraulically by an articulating drawbar. The stones are sieved by tines on a rotor, passing over the exchangeable sieve. The tines then throw the stones into the hopper.

Extra soil and smaller stones go through the sieve and back onto the ground. When the storage hopper is full, a hydraulic dumping system allows discharge of stones directly into a trailer or a pile in the corner of the field.

The power transmission system consists of V-belts to protect against overload and absorb shock forces when the drum or rakes engage a large stone.