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John Deere’s premium circle

John Deere’s premium circle option in action.

It’s been nearly three years since John Deere launched its factory-installed Premium Circle option for all John Deere G-Series, GP-Series and SmartGradeTM motor graders. Roads & Infrastructure learns more about the option and what it offers the industry.

Unlike a standard circle, which necessitates maintenance and wear insert replacements, the ‘Premium Circle’ is a game-changer. It boasts a completely sealed bearing system, eliminating the need for shoes, wear inserts, and jack screws. 

This revolutionary design can only be found on John Deere machines and aligns perfectly with the cutting-edge John Deere SmartGrade mastless GPS system, further enhancing performance.

On a standard circle, the circle is more exposed by design leading to wear over time over the course of the machine’s operation. Wear inserts inside a standard circle require adjustments to keep a good tight circle for accuracy and to prevent damage to the circle before eventually, needing to be replaced. 

Customers could spend valuable hours in the workshop replacing or shimming the wear inserts as opposed to being on the job, leading to increased downtime over the lifetime of the machine. 

In comparison, in the Premium Circle option, there are no shoes, no wear inserts or jack screws exposed with the system completely sealed with the wear inserts being replaced with a sealed bearing. 

The pinion and circle teeth are also completely sealed from dirt and debris to minimise wear. John Deere’s design was focused on completely sealing, rather than simply covering the circle pinion drive that can still attract and hold debris. 

The option has also been designed to create a more simplified maintenance process. One of the main differences is the larger gearbox which has increased the oil change intervals to 4000 hours.  The bearing circle has five easy access grease points on the bearings circle, four on the table and one on the pinion. The recommended service intervals on these grease points are every 500 hours.

Unparalleled benefits

The Premium Circle presents a host of advantages that surpass conventional motor grader circles. Most notably, it offers an increase of up to 15 per cent in circle speed and up to 40 per cent in circle torque compared to the standard option. 

By eliminating the need for time-consuming maintenance and providing enhanced speed and torque, the Premium Circle significantly boosts productivity and reduces downtime for contractors and government sectors alike. 

John Deere has also focused on simplifying the service requirements with the Premium Circle. The larger gearbox on the Premium Circle contributes to its durability, while also extending the service interval for the circle drive system from 2000 to 4000 hours. 

Additionally, the Premium Circle features five grease points on the bearing circle, providing easy access for maintenance. With four grease CRCs on the top of the table and one on the pinion, technicians can efficiently lubricate these points every 500 hours during routine service intervals.


 

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The Premium Circle option helps to provide greater efficiency, as well as reduced maintenance costs.
The Premium Circle option helps to provide greater efficiency, as well as reduced maintenance costs.

Value for contractors

The Premium Circle offers substantial value to both contractors and government sectors. With its enhanced performance, streamlined serviceability, and increased productivity, the Premium Circle enables contractors to complete grading tasks with unparalleled precision and efficiency.  

Mark Johnson, the Motor Grader Product Consultant for John Deere says the company’s innovative breakthrough helps to reduce long term costs associated with operation.

“Customers using grade control systems will notice they no longer have to compensate for wear in the circle or stop the machine to adjust for looseness of the circle when using the option,” he says.

He says its especially impactful when coupled with the innovative John Deere SmartGrade system. 

“The same grader can now be used from initial site clearing to final grade without stopping to install masts or downing the machine to adjust for looseness in the circle,” he says.

Government entities can benefit from the reduced maintenance requirements and improved operational capabilities, allowing for optimal utilisation of resources and timely completion of infrastructure projects.

Motor graders continue to play a pivotal role in construction and infrastructure development, and John Deere’s commitment to innovation and customer satisfaction shines through in this “ground-breaking” feature. 

“The take rate of the Premium Circle is high, and the customer feedback has been that all of their future graders will have it,” Johnson says.  

He says the efficiency and lower maintenance it provides makes it a no-brainer for businesses. 

“Deere is still the only manufacturer who offers this industry exclusive, and it’s available right now on every grader model we make for the Australian market,” he says. 

The Premium Circle’s sealed bearing system, increased speed and torque, and simplified service requirements exemplify the manufacturer’s dedication to pushing the boundaries of motor grader technology. With the Premium Circle, the future of grading has never been more precise, efficient, and productive.

To find out more, click here.

This article was originally published in the September edition of our magazine. To read the magazine, click here.

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