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Chris Bourns ZA-TS Spreader


Chris Bourns ZA-TS 4200

Chris Bourns is farming in East Galway. Lisbeg Farm operates a beef finishing unit, a flock of 1500 breeding ewes and a mixed tillage operation of both winter and spring crops as well as fodder beet. Chris Bourns explains “On average every year we’re spreading about 2000 ha of ground with the ZA-TS we bought in 2018, so we’re going into our 5th season with it now, it’s a fully hydro machine with GPS section control that we run through the JD system.”

The ZA-TS mounted spreader is available with a tank capacity ranging from 1,400 l to 4,200 l and is equipped with the new TS spreader unit. The TS spreader unit provides working widths of up to 54 m together with excellent border spread patterns, meaning that the ISOBUS spreader ZA-TS is one of the best high output spreaders.


Chris Bourns

Co. Galway


Tom Shaw Farm Machinery

Co. Tipperary

“We have it on a JD 175R which handles it well in all conditions, we also use it on 155 on row crops when we’re spreading on tramlines.” Chris explains “We’re using this with ISOBUS. It did come with its own GPS and joystick system but I wanted to spread a bit of fertiliser and the guys were gone mowing silage so I said I’d just plug it in to another ISOBUS tractor and away it went.”

The ZA-TS is ISOBUS ready and comes with the latest technology. It doesn’t matter whether you use an Amazone operator terminal or any ISOBUS terminal directly installed in your tractor. You just connect the machine to your ISOBUS terminal, and the normal operator interface is displayed on the monitor screen in your tractor cab.

“We find it very easy to set up, back up and hook on the lift arms the wheels are there so you can pull it out, hitch it up, couple of pipes and you’re gone spreading.” Chris explains.

The Amazone ZA-TS comes with parking wheels as standard, these facilitate easy mounting and manoeuvring of the spreader around the yard. The wheels are permanently mounted on the spreader, and quickly folded out of the way once mounted on the tractor.

“At the moment we’re putting out 100kg to the ha so we’re doing 90 odd acres out of a fill of it there so you do geta lot of work out of it,” Chris explains “It’s very easy when you’re doing paddock to paddock to skip from one to the next and when you get into a big field, we can spread over an acre a minute.”

As well as accurate application, the maximum application rate is also significant in ensuring efficiency. The flow rates of the ZA-TS or ZG-TS can be infinitely adjusted between 3 kg/min and 650 kg/min by means of the volume shutter slides. For example, a maximum application rate of 500 kg/ha at a working width of 36 m and 22 km/h can be achieved. This provides a combination of precision and maximum efficiency.

“Spreading on headlands, it’s always a debate we have, there’s a couple of different sections so if you’re beside water courses you can let the section right in that it’s not putting any into it” Chris explains “It’s great that it turns off on the short ground we did see that in previous years with other spreaders we’d have lodged bits but we’ve tried and tested it since we got the Amazone now and we have no lodged bits on short ground.”

Amazone offers the GPS-Switch automatic part-width section control for fertiliser spreaders, crop protection sprayers and seed drills for exact switching in wedge shaped fields and on headlands. In this respect, the part-width sections switch on and off automatically depending on their position.

“I always remember the first year we done with the spreader we came out to this block of 15 has, and put on 1500kg on it 100kg/ha and we bought home 20kg,” explains Chris, “Its own scale on it are very accurate”

Amazone offers online weighing technology for the ZA-V and ZA-TS mounted fertiliser spreaders and the ZG-TS trailed fertiliser spreader, to ensure that the application rate of the fertiliser spreader is constantly monitored. The weight cell measured the weight 200 times per second and feeds this information back into the spreader, in real- time.

The shutter slide is automatically adjusted if there are any changes in the flow due to changing fertiliser properties and the setpoint and actual values no longer match. This ensures that the correct application rate is applied over the entire area. Thanks to the weighing technology, the driver always knows exactly how much fertiliser is left in his tank.

“I’m confident that in the morning if I send the guys out to spread a lot of fertiliser they will put it in the right place at the right rate” Chris explains

“This is our 3rd Amazone spreader on the farm at the time when we started looking we looked at all the different spreaders and got to the Amazone and it was my wife who works here with me, the financial controller as we call her, that said the Amazone works for you all the time, the build quality is there, and in her words the Amazone was the spreader to have,” explains Chris “and our local dealer Tom Shaw Farm Machinery, where we buy them and any parts, they have good back up, normally if a fault does come up on it I can send a picture to Austin and he’ll be back with an answer in a couple of minutes.”

“We’re very happy with it” Chris concludes “and we would be happy to recommend it to anyone that was in the market for one.”

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