The upgraded Case IH RB 344 fixed chamber round baler adds innovative design and performance features to the best elements of the previous model. This compact and manoeuvrable newcomer handles all baling tasks so that the farmer only needs one machine.
Michal Jankowski, Case IH Product Marketing Manager, states: “The RB 344 has gained a very strong following throughout Europe because of its ability to produce dense, perfectly formed 120cm x 125cm bales in all crop conditions. Farmers also appreciate its ease of operation, versatility, reliability, durability and low maintenance costs.”
“The new version of this popular baler has a modern, visually modern design in keeping with other Case IH products. We have two models, the RB 344 F Rotor Feeder and RB 344 R Rotor Cutter, which are available from Case IH dealers right now. Both work comfortably behind tractors of less than 80hp.”
The most obvious design feature of the RB 344 is its modern side shield, which incorporates a robust metal frame, top hinges and gas strut supports. Opening wide for easy access for service and maintenance, it also protects spare rolls of net wrap stored on the machine. Rubber bumpers on both sides of the tailgate’s frame ensure that it closes smoothly and quietly, while the wiring harness now runs inside the bull bar and front lights have been repositioned for a robust, professional appearance.
Behind new panelling the RB 344 introduces a host of mechanical improvements which enhance performance and durability while reducing operating costs. The stripper roll, bale chamber, floor roll and pick-up, for example, are now driven by drive chains with chromized pins and hardened plates that have a longer life cycle and reduce maintenance costs. The bearings which support the main drive, stripper roll, and drive side rotor have also been upgraded with highly efficient seals that prevent dust contamination.
Equipped with spaced steel tines and long pick-up guards which are painted red to make them more visible, the 2m pick-up collects the crop and delivers it in a smooth, continuous flow to the feeder and bale chamber. This maximises intake capacity so even heavy swaths can be handled without losses, while the Duckbill feeding system ensures a reliable net start in all crop conditions. A precise density control system ensures that bales are formed to the exact specifications that have been set which can be adjusted or monitored from the tractor seat.
Operators have a good view across the full width of the pick-up, which helps to maximise crop gathering and maintain bale shape. The design of the RB 344 also ensures that the bales are correctly formed and uniformly wrapped right to the edges whether the crop is wet, wilted, or dry, so that all their nutritional value and storage potential is retained. Regardless of whether net, plastic film or twine is used for wrapping, cutting is fast and automatic, leaving the bale ready for immediate ejection.
A further aid to reliable high performance is the well proven Case IH Hydraulic Rotor Reverser, a factory fit option for the Rotor Feeder model. This uses a free-run clutch which allows the operator to quickly and easily reverse the rotor to clear a blockage without leaving the cab.
The versatility of the RB 344 is further improved by the Rotor Cutter, with 15 electrically selected knives that ensure the crop is cut evenly, improving the quality of baled material and cutting crop losses. Another feature is the slat-chain chamber system which ensures a positive start to bale formation under all crop conditions.