Reliable and practical solutions for the agricultural sector with elobau’s angle sensors and joysticks.
Steketee BV has been producing hoeing and tillage machines for the agricultural sector for mechanical weed control and tillage for over forty years. From small to large machines, they are suitable for different crops and markets. For the past ten years, Steketee has specialized in high-tech camera-controlled hoeing machines. Although the mechanical aspect at Steketee is just as important as it used to be, Steketee is now adding intelligence with high-tech developments. Steketee has been part of the German Agrovision company, Lemken, since the summer.
“We were looking for angle sensors that are reliable, suitable for agriculture and mobile automation, and that are also not too expensive.” – Lauwrens Struik, an engineer at Steketee.
Challenge 1 – Our automated machines needed sensors.
ELOBAU’S ANGLE SENSORS
At Steketee, the operation of certain parts of their machines, which used to be operated manually, are automated. The reason for this is the improvement of work quality and ease of work for the customer. Since Steketee started to automate machines, they needed sensors. Everything in which a certain angular movement is made must be monitored by a sensor. Take the hoeing machines that are hanging behind tractors: such a machine can only have a certain deflection with respect to the tractor, so that is constantly monitored by sensors. With the help of sensors, you can, for example, measure the angular rotation of the adjusting element on a machine, and this ensures the correct rotational movements.
“We were looking for angle sensors that are reliable, suitable for agriculture and mobile automation, and that are also not too expensive,” said Lauwrens. “And so we ended up at elobau a few years ago.”
From the start of this automation process in 2009, elobau’s angle sensors have been used.
The elobau angle sensors don’t break, are of very high quality, and are well priced. This, in combination with good communication with elobau, ensures an easy collaboration with which Steketee is very satisfied. The quality of the sensors is so good that there have never been any problems with it. “I have never had to send parts back for repair,” says Lauwrens.
“The elobau angle sensors don’t break.”
Challenge 2 – Our large machines require smart controls.
As a result of the positive experience with elobau’s angle sensors, Steketee has started to look further into the elobau portfolio. They faced a new challenge: they had a new project for a customer, namely, the development of a large machine with three hoeing machines, each nine meters wide, hanging in a large frame. This frame is then pulled behind a tractor. This customer wanted more capacity which meant looking for smart solutions regarding operation.
Steketee’s normal hoeing machines have angle sensors and a control sensor with a camera. From the tractor, you can control the main functions with the help of a touchscreen. For this project, they needed to think further. “It has many more functions than we normally have on our machines, so we started investigating what a good way to operate the machine is. Is that still possible with a touchscreen, with buttons, with different options? And then we ended up with the elobau joystick,” says Lauwrens.
The J4 joystick from elobau is a multi-axial joystick with a multi-function handle. The joystick can be assigned all kinds of functions, and it has various function buttons on the back. “We can use them nicely to operate the most common hydraulic functions,” says Lauwrens. All this without having to press a screen or switch to another button. Thanks to this multifunctional and practical solution from elobau, Steketee will be happy to use the joysticks again in future projects.
“elobau has a nice, no-nonsense mentality.” – Lauwrens Struik, engineer at Steketee
Steketee on cooperation with elobau – continuous development and a no-nonsense mentality.
Lauwrens explains how important it is to see that elobau continues to develop as a company. The product portfolio has grown enormously in recent years, and this is attractive because they offer so many different products and solutions. They work well together in terms of technology and communication. Someone from elobau always comes by to review and test new products together, and this is a pleasant and efficient process. “elobau has a nice, no-nonsense mentality that appeals to us. We are also used to working this way,” says Lauwrens.
Are you curious about what solutions elobau has for your company? Feel free to contact us. We are happy to help!