The possible applications of a silage spreader

Updated on:
December 12, 2023
Silage loading technology
Karoline Glöckner

Content

Harvesting technology not only plays a major role in the field. Bottlenecks often occur, especially in the silage clamp, due to insufficient efficiency in forage distribution and compaction. A silage spreader provides a remedy here: thanks to sophisticated technology, the forage is distributed evenly and more time is gained for compaction. In this article, we explain the possible applications of a silage spreader, but also what effects the device has on the silage. In addition, we provide information about the most popular type of silage spreader – the Silo Fox GIGANT – and offer insights into the experiences of some customers.

Function and mode of operation of a silage spreader

The silage spreader is a forage harvesting support device that has been specially developed for distributing green fodder in the travelling silo. Its main function is to distribute the introduced grass evenly in a silo. This process is crucial to ensure the quality of the silage in the long term and to guarantee efficiency during harvesting.

The way a silage spreader works is basically quite simple: the rotating movement of the drum causes the welded-on blades to distribute the grass evenly throughout the silo. The rotation of the drum is in turn caused by the tractor’s PTO shaft – the power of the PTO shaft is transferred to the gearbox and a hexagonal shaft then moves the drums of the silage spreader. Alternatively, the silage spreader can also be driven hydraulically (e.g. with a wheel loader).

The use of a silage distributor ensures that there are no air holes or cavities in the silo, which minimises the risk of spoilage or loss of quality.

Possible applications of a silage spreader

Silage spreaders are used to process the forage in the silo during harvesting. Their areas of application include:

  1. Silage preservation:
    Silage spreaders play a central role in the preservation of forage crops such as grass, maize or GPS (whole crop silage). However, their main area of application is in grass silage. The even distribution and compaction favours the fermentation process, which preserves the silage.
  2. Improved feed quality: A homogeneous spreading pattern and homogeneous feed distribution in the silage clamp ensures stable silage and prevents air pockets, fermentation pockets or even spoilage. Silage spreaders are therefore used to produce high-quality forage, which increases the health and performance of the animals.
  3. Efficient storage: Silage spreaders help to optimally utilise the storage capacity of the silo. Rapid distribution means that more time can be devoted to compaction, allowing more feed to be stored in a smaller space.
  4. Saving time and labour: Every minute counts during harvesting. When large quantities of grass are delivered in the shortest possible time, efficient feed distribution is essential. Silage spreaders provide a significant time advantage through their use in the mobile silo and also save strenuous manual labour.

Get even more information now!
Click here for the product overview, where you can find out even more details about the silage spreaders from MAMMUT. Because good research is always an advantage when buying a machine – we will help you with this and provide useful information about the device on the respective product pages.

Effects of a silage spreader in the silage

The use of a silage spreader offers numerous advantages and effects in terms of silage quality. A comparison of various silage tests reveals the following interesting findings:

  • Acid development: In order for the silage to be stable and keep well, a certain amount of acid development in the feed during fermentation is important. However, too high a proportion of acetic acid or butyric acid means a poorer flavour, whereas lactic acid makes the silage palatable for the animals. By working with a silage spreader, the feed is introduced evenly and optimum compaction is ensured. This optimises lactic acid fermentation and keeps acetic acid and butyric acid within the normal range.
  • Less reheating: Especially in summer, too high a temperature at the silo cut surface can become a problem – unwanted mould quickly forms in the forage. However, if the green fodder is already optimally processed with a silage spreader during feeding, fewer air holes form in the silage and optimum compaction is guaranteed. The silage now remains stable even at high outside temperatures and fermentation pockets or incorrect fermentation have no chance.
  • Higher compaction: Even distribution of the forage in the silage clamp saves valuable compaction time. The grass brought in is ideally prepared for the rolling process so that a higher density is achieved. So if you work with a silage spreader during harvesting, you create the ideal conditions for perfectly compacted silage and therefore the highest silage quality.
  • Good flavour: Cows are gourmets too! If you compare evenly distributed and ideally compacted silage in the silo with silage that has a high vinegar or butyric acid content, for example, you can immediately recognise the difference. High-quality feed smells good and provides the animals with energy – poor quality silage, on the other hand, is immediately noticeable due to its acrid odour and is not eaten by the animals.
  • Cost reduction: Thanks to a higher forage quality, less additional feed is required and this can reduce operating costs. By using a silage spreader in combination with optimum compaction, the farm’s own resources are utilised in the best possible way – high-quality silage therefore contributes to the profitability of the farm.

Choosing the right silage spreader

Various factors influence the selection of the right silage spreader. These include the size of the farm, the technology used for harvesting and the available budget. You should consider the following points when selecting a silage spreader:

Coordination of the technology

When harvesting green fodder in particular, it is important to adapt the technology used in the silo to the harvesting technology’s collection performance. This means that the silage spreader used should process the unloading quantities from the loader wagon quickly and reliably. The higher the unloading height, the larger the drum diameter of the silage spreader must be selected. Of course, you should also consider the dimensions of the bunker silo system – with narrow silos, the unloaded piles are higher than with wide systems.

Fahrzeugbreite

Ideally, the width of the silage spreader roller corresponds to that of the tractor used. This means that you can drive right up to the silo wall and the edge areas in the silo are also ideally processed. A hydraulic swivelling device is also available as an additional option for the MAMMUT silage spreaders: Thanks to the cleverly selected pivot point of the SILO FOX models, it is easy to free them from the wall and the implement can be just as wide as the tractor.

Tractor power

To ensure that the tractor can also cope with the respective silage spreader, the horsepower and size of the tractor should always be a good match for the spreader. The Silo Fox CLASSIC is ideal for smaller tractors, while all larger models such as the Silo Fox TITAN or GIGANT are ideal for tractors from 80 hp upwards. The Silo Fox KOLOSS silage spreader stands out as an absolute professional machine: with a drum diameter of 1.48 m and a tare weight of 1,400 kg, it is the ideal machine for contractors and tractors from 140 hp.

Silage spreader Silo Fox KOLOSS

Area design

The layout of the harvesting areas also has an influence on the work in the silo: the more volume is delivered in the shortest possible time, the more powerful the technology in the silage clamp needs to be. In the case of rounded areas, for example, it is advisable to select a larger silage spreader to save valuable time during harvesting. Detailed information on the technical data of the individual silage spreader types and the available accessories can be found on the following product pages:

Silo Fox CLASSIC

104 cm drum diameter
175 to 215 cm drum width

Silo Fox TITAN

115 cm drum diameter
205 to 245 cm drum width

Silo Fox GIGANT

128 cm drum diameter
230 to 280 cm drum width

Silo Fox KOLOSS

148 cm drum diameter
260 to 290 cm drum width

Cost-benefit ratio

Every investment on the farm should pay off in the form of increased efficiency and improved quality. When purchasing a silage spreader, the available budget is of course also a guideline for selecting the model size. However, you shouldn’t make the mistake of buying a silage spreader that is “too small” just for cost reasons – after all, the machine has to be able to cope with the quantities of feed delivered, so a drum diameter that is too small doesn’t really help. The fact is, if you consider the efficiency and the increase in quality of the silage, buying a silage spreader is certainly an economical investment.

Top seller: Silage spreader Silo Fox GIGANT

In recent years, the GIGANT size silage spreader has proven to be the best-selling device. With a drum diameter of 1.28 and a drum width of 2.30 m or 2.80 m, this model is clearly one of the larger devices in this sector. One reason why the second largest model among the MAMMUT silage spreaders has already become a “top seller” could of course be the growing farm sizes. However, we will explain the exact features that characterise the GIGANT in the following points:

More information about the Silo Fox GIGANT

References for the silage spreader

Numerous satisfied customers accompany us on our journey in the development of MAMMUT silo distribution technology. They all help us to obtain honest feedback and sustainably improve the quality of our products. Increased efficiency and added value for the farmer are always our top priority. To conclude this article, here is an overview of some customer testimonials that tell their story about the MAMMUT silage spreader:

2 pcs. SILO FOX "SF 290 KOLOSS" silage distributors
Günter Schütze contracting company
Wittingen, district of Gifhorn
Lower Saxony (Germany)
2 Silo Fox GIGANT – in use since 2005
1 Silo Fox KOLOSS – in use since 2019
silage roller SILO KOMPAKT -
in use since spring 2021
Winkler KG
Fohnsdorf, Murtal district
Steiermark (Austria)
silage spreader SILO FOX
„SF 230 GIGANT“
silage roller SILO KOMPAKT
"SK 250 H"
Alexander Kopper
Grafendorf, district Hartberg
Styria (Austria)
Silo Fox KOLOSS silo distributor – in use since 2020
Freund agricultural contractor
Eitzing, Ried im Innkreis district
Upper Austria (Austria)
silage distributor SILO FOX
"SF 230 GIGANT"
shear bucket SILO BUCKET
"SB 220 H"
front loader LONG LIFE
Schmidbauer family
Lohnsburg, Ried im Innkreis district
Upper Austria (Austria)
Silage spreader SILO FOX
„SF 260 GIGANT“
Family Mitterdorfer
Strassburg, St. Veit district
Carinthia
More about the silage harvesting technology from MAMMUT
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