Belt Baler Recommendations

David1968

Member
Mixed Farmer
Location
SW Scotland
Good evening everyone :)

So, I'm thinking about a baler upgrade, and found myself here after some googling. I have seen a few baler threads but I thought I should maybe start my own rather than hijack someone else's. Not really sure what the etiquette is.

Looking for something that will do a bit of everything, hay, straw, haylage and silage.
Are McHale V660's as good as they're cracked up to be? Seen a couple advertised in my price range (around £15k) but also a very cheap one that looked like the pickup had taken quite a beating from blockages, or maybe it had just been pushed too hard.

I've also seen a tidy looking Kuhn VB2160 which I like the look of . The rotor sits further forward than on the McHale and looks to be pulling the grass straight off the pickup tines. So could be less prone to blocking maybe?

Anyone running either of these just now? Or should I be looking at something else?

And if there are any missionaries from the fixed chamber brotherhood :p I'm not looking to be converted. Been running a belt baler for over 20 years and prefer to stick with that for various reasons.

All advice appreciated (except "buy a roller baler") ;)
 

Stw88

Member
Location
Northumberland
If your on heavy wettish ground remember the Mchale is over a ton heavier before you put a bale inside. They probably do make the tightest bales but netter on the earlier ones can be temperamental! For 15k your probably going to get quite hard worked Mchale. If you can stretch your budget you might find a ex demo or very young vicon or Kuhn then you know how its been treated. We run a Kuhn, great baler only problem is the sealed bearings on the bottom rollers are to watch. Easy and not an expensive fix but there to keep an eye on as they get very hot when they go.
 

David1968

Member
Mixed Farmer
Location
SW Scotland
If your on heavy wettish ground remember the Mchale is over a ton heavier before you put a bale inside. They probably do make the tightest bales but netter on the earlier ones can be temperamental! For 15k your probably going to get quite hard worked Mchale. If you can stretch your budget you might find a ex demo or very young vicon or Kuhn then you know how its been treated. We run a Kuhn, great baler only problem is the sealed bearings on the bottom rollers are to watch. Easy and not an expensive fix but there to keep an eye on as they get very hot when they go.
That's a lot of extra weight, I didn't realise.
We do have some wet ground around the steading but it gets normally chopped. On t'other hand, when we do bale it, it's because the chopper can't travel...
 

BredRedHfd

Member
BASIS
Location
NE Derbyshire
Kuhn 2160. Has soft core. Most reliable netting, excellent intake. Has drop floor, but would have to be reckless to block it.
IMG_20210813_195336__01.jpg
 

David1968

Member
Mixed Farmer
Location
SW Scotland
Thanks to everyone who's taken time to reply.

What kind of life are you guys getting out of the belts on these balers? Most of the ones I've seen in that price bracket are around 30k bales.
Would the belts be an issue at that sort of bale count?
 

BredRedHfd

Member
BASIS
Location
NE Derbyshire
Thanks to everyone who's taken time to reply.

What kind of life are you guys getting out of the belts on these balers? Most of the ones I've seen in that price bracket are around 30k bales.
Would the belts be an issue at that sort of bale count?
Our is a 2010, completed just 20,000 bales. One belt has a slight delamination on a join, but seems no worse than 3k bales ago. Chains maybe getting ready. Have owned it 4 years now. No complaints, although we only bale hay, haylage and straw. Not had any wet stuff through it...
 

Stw88

Member
Location
Northumberland
Have you totally ruled out a new one? most have good 0% finance deals on. That way you know exactly how it’s been treated and will last you a lot longer. We had a 9k trade in then 4 annual 4.5k payments. It would have cost more than 4.5k to get a contractor to bale our silage and hay and we have a low bale count baler which should last 20 years or have a good residual value to trade in.
Its a good time of year to get a good deal on ex demo machine as the dealers won’t like them sitting in the yard all winter.
 

Two Tone

Member
Mixed Farmer
I was never a fan of the old chain and slat balers, but I expect belt and slat will be a different beast.
Haven't come across any for sale though.
The belt and slat is superb. Never had it block or the pickup block up in 2 years. The slats let the air out and allow the crop to move sideways to make a far more even, dense bale.
10CC00D7-7191-4E63-A88D-AE364173FCD2.jpeg
 

David1968

Member
Mixed Farmer
Location
SW Scotland
Have you totally ruled out a new one? most have good 0% finance deals on. That way you know exactly how it’s been treated and will last you a lot longer. We had a 9k trade in then 4 annual 4.5k payments. It would have cost more than 4.5k to get a contractor to bale our silage and hay and we have a low bale count baler which should last 20 years or have a good residual value to trade in.
Its a good time of year to get a good deal on ex demo machine as the dealers won’t like them sitting in the yard all winter.
A new one won't fly, sadly. Not doing more than 1000 bales most years. And the trade in wouldn't be more than £1500 maybe, if they even wanted it. It's a JD 545 (no laughing at the back there :mad: )
Even £15k is too much really, for that workload, but contractors who can do the type of bales I want are very thin on the ground.
But the right machine would hopefully last me a very long time and there is value in being independent, especially in a bad year.
 

BredRedHfd

Member
BASIS
Location
NE Derbyshire
A new one won't fly, sadly. Not doing more than 1000 bales most years. And the trade in wouldn't be more than £1500 maybe, if they even wanted it. It's a JD 545 (no laughing at the back there :mad: )
Even £15k is too much really, for that workload, but contractors who can do the type of bales I want are very thin on the ground.
But the right machine would hopefully last me a very long time and there is value in being independent, especially in a bad year.
If you're baling hay, I'd say you have to have your own baler. It's expensive yes, but saves a fair bit on wrap, that goes towards the baler...
 

KB6930

Member
Location
Borders
A new one won't fly, sadly. Not doing more than 1000 bales most years. And the trade in wouldn't be more than £1500 maybe, if they even wanted it. It's a JD 545 (no laughing at the back there :mad: )
Even £15k is too much really, for that workload, but contractors who can do the type of bales I want are very thin on the ground.
But the right machine would hopefully last me a very long time and there is value in being independent, especially in a bad year.
Definitely welger 445 I'd reccomend .

I see A M Phillip had a tidy looking late model for sale but it was at a far north depot
 

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