Valentini's story of manufacturing progress

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The addition of a fourth gear made all the difference to Valentini’s range of power-driven cultivation machinery

The story of Italian agricultural machinery manufacturer Valentini begins in the town of Camposampiero in the 1970s, when Antonio Valentini set out on his own after years of design and manufacturing work with leading agricultural machinery companies in the country’s north.

With time, he developed a business where many of the leading European manufacturers of power-driven cultivation gear brought him hoes, harrows, mulchers and other equipment, which he joined into a folding frame configuration.

Eventually these manufacturers began to make their own frames at a cheaper cost and Valentini began to manufacture his own hoes, harrows and mulchers, but unlike the others, he focused on building them with strength and reliability.

Valentini Mammut rotary harrow

While the search for quality is always tough, the biggest challenge Antonio faced in developing his business came with the steady increase in the power of the tractors that pull the cultivators.

Two decades ago a 120 horsepower (89kW) unit was considered large but has now pushed aside by units about 300hp (224kW).

Over time, chain drive transmissions proved to be inadequate in high horsepower applications and were replaced with a three-gear system.

As tractor horsepower rose to above 180 (134kW), the three-gear system was found to have limitations, mainly because of the friction derived from heat.

Thicker gears, more oil and oil coolers were all tried, but Valentini realised that it was a design problem — the small top drive gear simply was not able to handle, with any type of acceptable longevity, the double problem of both transmitting the enormous power from the tractor and withstanding the backlash and shock from the collision impact and inconsistent power requirements of the rotor blades.

On top of this, Valentini also started making stone crushers during this time – brutes of machines that must be built to withstand tortuous conditions such as high power, shock and heat.

For years, he appeared to be always 30hp behind as tractor powers climbed before he made a discovery that was to be the hallmark of his career, one which would catapult his products and his personal industry reputation to the highest levels, where they remain today.

In the first real advance in power-driven cultivation machinery in 50 years, Valentini developed a four-gear system, where the centre gear becomes a cluster with an intermediate gear fitting into it by way of a splined hub.

The top gear meshes with the normal middle gear, which drives the intermediate gear, which in turn meshes with the rotor drive gear.

The result is remarkable. Not only is the machine easier to drive, but the lack of heat due to friction is hard to believe. Even with Valentini’s 7.7m hoe in the hotter parts of Australia, there is no need for high maintenance oil coolers.

All Valentini folding machines fold into well below 3m in width and are offered with an extensive range of rollers, rotors and wheels.

For more information about Valentini’s range of products, contact Australian importer and distributor Vin Rowe Farm Machinery on 03 5622 9100.

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