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The Rogator Applicator

The Fendt Rogator 900 Series Applicator is the first of its kind—the only self-propelled, rear-mounted boom applicator with adjustable clearance and easy conversion between liquid and dry systems.

Now pre-plant, postemergence, mid-season, late-season and post-harvest applications may all be accomplished with one applicator. The H models adjust between standard crop clearances of 56-60 inches (1.42-1.52 meters) and high clearances of 72-76 inches (1.83-1.93 m) in just 45 seconds with the push of a button, and can switch from liquid to dry application or vice versa in as little as two hours. The industry-leading LiquidLogic system comes standard on the Fendt Rogator, providing the product- and time-saving benefits of:

• the FlowLogic Recirculating System
• ClearFlow Product Recovery
• the all-electric, one-button OptiLoad Rinse System

The Rogator Applicator | A Real Show-Stopper

It’s really not a surprise that when the impressively tall, green Fendt Rogator 900 Series applicators made their debut at major North American farm shows, attendees flocked to the Fendt display to watch the new machinery’s transformation from standard to high clearance in less than a minute. The new product received the ShowStopper Award at the Midwest AG Industries Exposition (MAGIE); was named CropLife IRON’s Product of the Year, and won not only an AE50 engineering award but also the prestigious Davidson Prize for agricultural engineering excellence awarded by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) and the Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) to their three top-scoring AE50 winners that represent the best of each year’s new products. That’s what happens when the best of two worlds come together—the historic application experience of AGCO in Jackson, Minnesota, with the exemplary quality of Fendt engineering. The RoGator, once in yellow and introduced in 1993, was almost completely redesigned and became the Fendt Rogator 900 Series to meet the challenges identified by voice-of-customer input from retail and farmer applicators.

The Rogator Applicator | Our Customers' Challenges

Through interviews, surveys and voice-of-customer events, the design engineers and product management compiled the priority needs of both farmer and custom-applicator customers in North and South America, including:

• A growing need to clear tall crops later in the season to apply nutrients and fungicides or to seed cover crops in growing crops without causing damage.

• A more affordable way to apply both liquid and dry products without using multiple machines or time-consuming changeovers.

• Increasing time pressures to try to cover more acres in tight windows of opportunity between weather events and at the right time for the crop.

• Higher capacity, application speeds and productivity.

• A safer way to transport high-clearance applicators on roadways.

• A high-clearance applicator whose coolers and engine air filters wouldn’t plug in tall crops.

• Greater comfort and intuitive systems for operators working long hours in the field.

• Meet all of these needs with one, versatile base machine with multiple options.

The Rogator Applicator | Ground-Up Design

The creation of the Fendt Rogator was completely from the ground up in many areas, yet also included the enhancement of tried-and-true existing systems, such as LiquidLogic, to add features and advancements requested by customers. The list of requirements was long, involved and sometimes potentially conflicting. For example, achieving optimum crop-clearance height without going above the maximum machine shipping height meant spending many hours moving components around to fit everything into a confined space.

The project lead engineer in Jackson drew his first napkin sketch for a lift system to take the applicator from standard to high clearance long before the idea became part of the Fendt Rogator. He and AGCO acquired about a dozen patents out of the brainstorming that ensued. During the literal ground-up approach to designing the new Rogator, the team included a whole new tire offering, new fenders that wrap the tires better and a new, independent-strut suspension system. They kept the C-channel flex frame, but on it are a new engine with fewer components, new cooling package with reversible fan and new hydraulic pump stack to make it easy to switch between liquid and dry systems.

Creating the Fendt 900 Rogator Series was the largest and one of the most challenging engineering projects to date for the application team and plant in Jackson, with several hundred thousand design and test hours invested. To achieve the Fendt look, the team borrowed particular features from Fendt tractors—the hood from one series, the cab from another, to provide a huge improvement in cab comfort for the operator. The Fendt color scheme was applied, and casting for the front of the machine was designed to blend in with established Fendt styling.

The team recalls high points when growers and retail customers were brought into a unique setting in Jackson to discuss what the machine should look like. Wearing virtual-reality goggles and gloves, the customers reviewed CAD models in 3D for several days, giving valuable input on the visibility of the fenders and tires from the cab, and the best placement for handrails, as the designers made real-time changes in response. Real-world validation came from field tests done from the state of Washington to Ohio and from Florida to South Dakota.

There were also challenging points that required the use of other new technology. At the start of the pandemic in 2020, the engineers went from an in-office working group to a remote group. The Fendt Rogator design team was the first within AGCO to set up a remote dashboard system as a one-stop shop to coordinate files and communication so team members could work from any location. The team also bobbed and weaved through supply issues and other logistics challenges.

The Rogator Applicator | Fit For All Operations

One of the lead engineers has said the Fendt Rogator 900 Series Applicator is “kind of like a Swiss Army knife,” configurable to any customer’s needs and budget and allowing them to use one applicator for more hours in a season for a better return on investment.

Two models have 56-inch (1.42-meter) standard clearance; one has 60-inch (1.52-meter) standard clearance; and the two high-clearance, dual-position chassis models change to top clearance heights of 72 inches (1.83 meters) and 76 inches (1.93 meters), respectively, and return to standard clearance for safe transport between fields.

The variable height positions—from 56 inches (1.42 meters) to 72 inches (1.83 meters) of clearance on the Model RG934H, and from 60 inches (1.52 meters) to 76 inches (1.93 meters) on the RG937H—are made possible by the patented design of a suspension and lift system using one hydraulic lift cylinder in each wheel leg. The 16-inch (41-centimeter) height change in either direction can be initiated with one push of a button on the armrest while the machine is stationary, and takes less than 45 seconds.

Customers can convert between liquid and dry systems on a universal chassis easily in about two hours, as the connections are all packaged as bulkheads and located for easy access. Fendt also offers a swap stand through AGCO Parts to provide an engineered structure that is OSHA-approved to growers so they can easily and safely change the systems without waiting for a hired crane or other assistance.

All models can be equipped with a liquid or dry spinner system, and all but the smallest model can be equipped with an AirMax Precision R1 or R2 pneumatic boom spreader. Owners can truly tailor the machine to their operation; different horsepower, tank sizes, boom sizes and many other options are all available on the 900 Series Rogator.

The Rogator Applicator | Benefits

Feedback from new owners of Fendt Rogator 900 Series confirms that the design team succeeded in its mission to create a new machine that makes sense for both farmer and customer-applicator customers. Operators report that they are pleased with:

• a machine that gives them the chance to run more days of the year as well as a better return on investment by using just one applicator for more hours in a season

• the product, time and money saved with the many advantages of LiquidLogic • the superior visibility from the cab to see on the road and in the field, as they sit up higher in the crop than other high-clearance applicators

• having the spray boom behind the cab rather than in front, as every other high-clearance applicator has. Now they can choose the Fendt Rogator 900, with a rear boom that keeps the cab, stairs and reload station clean from spray residue and folds low and out of the way in the back of the machine for transport

• improved leg room, joystick operation and overall cab comfort

• the automatic reversing fan that lessens the need to stop and manually clean pollen and crop residue from coolers, increasing productivity

• four-wheel steering that creates only two tracks in the field for less crop damage and higher yields

• the ability to seed cover crops in a growing crop for an earlier start, again without damage to the existing crop

• the agronomic results of healthier crops and higher yields achieved with on-time applications.