Gopher General meters slow release fumigant tablets into an artificial tunnel.
The gas released is heavier than air and stays below ground. It is not detected by the gophers and it remains effective for a number for days.
The gopher finds this new tunnel and quietly succumbs to the fumigant in this tunnel.
The fumigant tablets are poured into an enclosed hopper at the start of treating a field.
The operator is only exposed to fumigant for a short period at the start and end of the day.
The fumigant tablets will continue to gas off if left in the hopper overnight. They must be returned to their original container at the end of the day. To make this easy and minimize operator exposure, the enclosed hopper flips over to empty the remaining product back into original container.
A Well Sealed Tunnel is Key to Keeping the Fumigant in the Ground:
A 20 inch diameter disk, independent to shank movement, enters the ground first. It cuts a deep slot in the soil to keep roots from wrapping around the shank.
The shank and torpedo enter the soil after the disk is fully engaged. The torpedo runs level at a depth of approximately 10 or 12 inches.
The shank must stay clean to ensure only a narrow slit is made in the ground. This is accomplished with an automatic shank scraper which cleans the shank each time it is raised or lowered.
The slit is sealed with two pneumatic packer wheels angled together. Packing pressure and movement is independent to working depth.
The entire machine is well built with lots of steel to ensure durability and ground penetration under all field conditions.
Following treatment, the final sealed slit and tunnel in the ground should be similar to this picture.
Like many farmers, we have our share of rocks. Some great big ones in the ground, some smaller ones that get rolled out and have to be picked as in this picture. These rocks can destroy poorly engineered ground engaging equipment.
Gopher General is designed with protection against rocks and other obstacles.
The disk will automatically ride up as much as 14 inches to clear whatever it encounters and then re-enter the ground.
The shank and torpedo will pivot back and up as much as 18 inches to clear obstacles both buried and rolled out during operation. The shank re-enters the ground as soon as it clears the obstacle.
The packer wheels move independent to the shank. They move up and down to apply the preset packing pressure, but will move up to clear any obstacle.
This is accomplished with a hydraulic accumulator system that provides trip pressure to the disk, shank, and packer wheels.
The trip pressure is easily adjustable and is usually not changed unless field conditions change significantly.
There are no shear pins or resetting of trips. Everything is completely automatic.
Fumigant tablets are metered from the hopper into a venturi induction air stream. An electric fan provides an air blast which transports the tablets down the back of the shank and out the rear end of the torpedo.
No tablets are metered unless torpedo is at working depth to ensure tablets stay in the ground.
There is no open bottom on the torpedo to plug with trash or mud.
Air Induction Product Metering: