With 382 exhibitors, 174,500 square feet of displays and a myriad of educational sessions, the 2011 Ag Connect Expo, January 7-11 in Atlanta, Ga., offered enough to keep four Farm Equipment editors more than a little busy.

This year’s show attracted some 12,000 visitors, which was a major step up from last year’s 7,700 attendees. Ag Connect Expo will now go to a 2-year cycle with the next show scheduled for Orlando, Fla., in 2013.

While searching out the newest innovations at this year’s show, we focused on products from shortline manufacturers that don’t always get the attention that they deserve.

The following photo gallery shows some of what we found that will be of interest to North American equipment dealers. Readers can also see more of what we saw at the 2011 Ag Connect Expo by going to http://www.farm-equipment.com/pages/Spre/Slideshow-from-AgConnect.php

We’ll also be reporting from the National Farm Machinery Show in Louisville in the March 2011 issue of Farm Equipment.


Endurance Wind Power’s small wind turbines present an opportunity for dealers looking for a new product line to carry. Its wind turbines are designed for less-than-perfect wind conditions as most of its customers, such as farmers, are looking to generate power from the wind that’s available to them.At this point, Orthman’s unique Concept Loader is only a “concept model” developed for testing and feedback before final design. With a multitude of attachments, the loader is being developed to handle a wide range of tasks on the farm.Wacker Neuson created a buzz as it shakes off the notion that it only builds construction equipment. Marcus Auerbach says its wheel loaders, generators, pumps and light towers are creating a lot of interest in the ag market.

Krone's Big X 1100 forage harvester

Krone’s switch to MAN engines in its newest Big X 1100 forage harvester is a major step forward for the company, according to Rusty Fowler. The 1,100 horsepower MAN engine, which replaces the Mercedes engines that Krone previously used, not only means more power and improved fuel economy, but it also allows Krone personnel and its dealers’ service techs to repair and maintain the engines. Mercedes had required that its “certified” personnel only repair their engines. “They just never felt the sense of urgency that we or our dealers felt when a farmer was down,” Fowler says.


Krause Excelerator

The Krause Excelerator vertical tillage system was a winner of a 2011 AE50 award for outstanding innovations from the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers. According to Curt Davis, the Excelerator employs a 4-step process to accelerate residue breakdown. It’s capable of moving soil laterally to fill ruts and smooth fields following less than ideal harvest conditions. It also leaves more residue to meet the requirements for highly erodible land conditions. It utilizes Excalibur blades to efficiently cut through tough GMO residue. 


AgriPROBE professional soil-sampling machine

GVM’s Denny Stahl says its new AgriPROBE professional soil-sampling machine automates the process and allows the operator to test more acreage in less time. From the comfort of the cab, the operator lowers the probe to collect the sample, which is then vacuumed to the rear of the unit. From there, operators engage the bagging switch and the sample is deposited via conveyor into a bag within the cab. The system allows for a more consistent, repeatable service over more acres.

Art's Way's 6520 4-ton grinder mixer

It’s portable, but Art’s Way’s 6520 4-ton grinder mixer is the industry’s largest, according to Kevin Zahrt. It features an extra large 165-bushel tank with one-piece 26-inch hammermill. What’s really unique about the new model is that its 10-inch diameter unload system has increased the discharge rate by up to 50%, reducing time and labor costs. All unload discharge augers are operated by hydraulic orbit motors.


Amazone's Catros compact disc harrow

Amazone, the developer of the Catros compact disc harrow, says it takes tillage a step beyond vertical tillage. Because it runs somewhat deeper than typical vertical tillage tools, it’s able to incorporate fertilizer while covering the residue with soil to prevent it from blowing away. Another unique feature of the Catros is the sprung rubber mounting blocks for each individual disc, which allows the discs to adapt to ground contours while maintaining work depth.


Dave Kanicki of Farm Equipment

Dave Kanicki (ctr) of Farm Equipment entertains questions from financial analysts and equity fund managers following his presentation on the 2011 North American Dealer Equipment Outlook & Trends. According to Kanicki, dealer sentiment is exceptionally strong going into the new year. Other data that has emerged since Farm Equipment conducted its dealer survey in September continues to reinforce the dealers’ solid outlook for 2011.


TYM's new snow blower

In addition to 4 new tractor models, TYM unveiled a new snow blower to its line of attachments. Charley Mullet said this new 60-inch front-mount snow blower can be used with any of its 23 or higher horsepower tractors that also come with an optional heated cab.


Ingersoll Tillage Group's SoilRazor VT

According to Steve Kertesz of the Ingersoll Tillage Group, the SoilRazor VT is a “breakthrough” in disc technology because it redefines vertical tillage. The serrated edge maintains its ability to slice and size the toughest residue as it wears. It’s also designed to operate at the higher speeds used in vertical tillage.

Endurance Wind Power's small wind turbine


Brielmaier Q1 motor mower

The Brielmaier Q1 motor mower is designed for mowing slopes up to 60 degrees. The walk-behind mower’s Kohler 27 horsepower engine and hydraulic drive components are inside the drum. Remote control is optional.

Orthman's Concept Loader Wacker Neuson