What’s The Best Product For Downforce Management?

What’s The Best Product For Downforce Management?

Bill Lehmkuhl

Regardless of what make or model your planter is or however many rows of plants you’re dealing with, in today’s world you can unlock incredible planting opportunities. 

Today, growers have the option to look at an automated row by row downforce management system. They can upgrade to a static spring, a pneumatic system, and even upgrade to an automatic pneumatic system.

One of the best ways to update your planting - and upgrade your planter - is to start using DeltaForce by Precision Planting. DeltaForce is the most advanced downforce automatic control system for your planter on the market today. 

The concept behind the DeltaForce is that it allows you to have the ability to take the whole planter system and put it into customizable remote control mode. 

How does the DeltaForce system work?

Our team always gets asked how the DeltaForce system works with the planter. 

The first main component is the DeltaForce four-cylinder. It has three parts to it:

  • The lift port

  • The pressure point

  • The return port

These parts give the down force control system the unique ability to raise and lift the row-unit. It then also applies a downforce to it. 

Off of this cylinder, you come down with an ROW harness and you then go to a communication module, which is the SRM module. This is the main brain behind the unit. 

Everything that’s on the row-unit will communicate back with the monitor through the SRM module.

The DeltaForce system takes data from each individual row load pin/sensor and reads about 200 per second. It reacts and controls rows individually in fractions of a second. 

The cylinder reacts every fifth of a second and can add or remove the exact amount of oil to give you the optimum seed environment for your planting.  

You’re probably wondering how much weight you can keep on a gauge wheel and still keep close to one hundred percent ground contact.

With older planters or wide downforce systems, you had to factor it in beforehand. 

But now that we’ve got the ability to go row by row we’re able to set a specific target so when the gauge wheels are at their depth DeltaForce can give you 100% ground contact without applying too much pressure. 

DeltaForce probably has the widest range of movement and weight. You can apply up to 600 pounds of down pressure with the unique features DeltaForce has to offer. 

What are the benefits of using DeltaForce?

1. Variability

Is your field full of soil variety? 

From soil type and drainage to moisture and plant variability most fields have a bit of variety. 

It’s always difficult to set a downforce airbag or spring for a field that has so much variability. 

The unfortunate reality is that it won’t always be right, which means whenever the setting is incorrect in a part of your field, the seed’s yield potential is lost. This can either be due to too much downforce or too little.

DeltaForce can solve your variability issues. 

DeltaForce replaces the springs or airbags on your planter with hydraulic cylinders. Its’ load cells that measure how much weight is being carried on the row-unit gauge wheels and most importantly it can keep it consistent. 

All you have to do is set a weight to be carried to the gauge wheels and DeltaForce does the rest for you. It maintains the same weight on the gauge wheels of every row and across every variation of soil in your field. 

Using DeltaForce will allow you to eliminate hidden yield loss and every row will be planted at the set depth. 

2. DeltaForce gets the correct depth for seeds

Getting the correct depth for your seeds and also placing them in an environment that’s free from compaction can be a difficult job. Your planter will have to measure the amount of weight on the gauge wheels and carry the weight consistently through the process. 

If there isn’t excessive weight on the gauge wheels then you’re not going to end up with compaction. 

These settings have to be precise and because of the changes in your field, the planter, and the environment, it will have to be changed more than once. 

The gauge wheel weight will continuously have to be measured but with the help of DeltaForce, you can automate the process and get the right depth for your seeds every time. 

3. Row-by-row accuracy

If one row of your planter is in a wheel track from a tractor then you’ll have to apply more downforce to maintain depth. With DeltaForce the cylinder on that specific row will apply more force for you automatically.

If another row is on very mellow ground and the weight of the row-unit is the only thing that’s needed, then no force will be applied. 

With DeltaForce these reactions happen every second at different times during the planting process. It makes sure that every seed in every single row is at the right depth and in the optimum seed environment. 

The number one thing to look for on a planter is downforce management and DeltaForce gives us that capability. 

This is why it’s our number one recommendation for growers if they ask us what they should spend their money on. 

So if you’re looking for a new investment for the season feel free to give us a call and we’ll go through the best downforce management options for your needs.

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