Feb 7, 2012
Company offers new orchard sprayer, bin hauler

Precise Manufacturing Inc. started selling two new pieces of equipment last year: the Extreme Sprayer and the Bin Hauler. Both have advantages over other sprayers and haulers, said Mario VanDyke, the Conklin, Mich., company’s owner.

VanDyke started Precise Manufacturing in 1992. It started as a hydraulic repair and manufacturing company, mostly for the auto industry. As the auto industry shrank, however, Precise Manufacturing started working more and more with the agriculture industry, repairing sprayers and other equipment. These days, most of its work is done in the ag realm, VanDyke said.

VanDyke grew up on a dairy farm in west Michigan, so he had some ag experience. He and his handful of employees take a lot of pride in their work, he said.

They sold five Bin Haulers last year, and four Extreme Sprayers in December and January for use in the spring (one’s been delivered and three more are being built), he said.

Calling the orchard sprayer “Extreme” is a play on its extreme savings, extreme engineering and extreme efficiency, VanDyke said. The difference between the Extreme Sprayer and other sprayers is the patent-pending “clean fan” design, according to Precise Manufacturing’s website.

The sprayer takes in air from the front and sprays it in an atomized form out the sides. As you’re pulling the sprayer on a tractor, you’re driving away from the atomized, or contaminated, air, so it’s not building up on fan rotors. Other sprayers have fans in the front and rear, so dirty air comes out the front and builds up on the rear fan, VanDyke said.

So far, a handful of Michigan growers have purchased the sprayer, but it’s available anywhere. The company did a demonstration in New York state last fall that went pretty well, the owner said.

The company can adjust the sprayer for different orchard needs, including height, width, wind speed, wind volume, chemical break-up and tank size adjustments, according to the website.

The Extreme’s computer system is the only system on the market developed strictly for an orchard-style sprayer. It can make calculations based on tree height. Applications are very accurate, which leads to chemical savings, VanDyke said.

Precise Manufacturing can install the same computer system onto existing sprayers, he said.

The Extreme Sprayer costs between $75,000 and $85,000, VanDyke said.

Bin Hauler

The Bin Hauler can grab five fruit bins at once. Unlike other haulers, the Precise Manufacturing hauler can lay its rails almost completely flat, with only a minimal incline, which “allows the bin to easily come up the rails without racking the box or having to push on it with the bin behind it, and allows the least amount of shock to the fruit and bin,” according to the company’s website.

Like the sprayer, the hauler is available all over the country. It costs $8,500, VanDyke said.

To see the sprayer and hauler in action, visit the company website.

By Matt Milkovich, Managing Editor


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