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8420 JD to Ag Leader
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Posted 12/4/2018 08:24 (#7147686 - in reply to #7147488)
Subject: RE: 8420 JD to Ag Leader

Southern Minnesota Between Freeborn & Wells
Bottom Ground - 12/4/2018 06:34

I have an 8420 JD with a JD steering valve on the tractor. What do I need to put in an ag leader or trimble auto track system? I know i'll need a receiver (globe) and some kind of monitor. Thank you. Used items will be fine.

You will need a Steering Controller besides the equipment you mention. The steering controller is a separate box with the electronics to actually control the steering valve. It goes between the display and the steering valve.

You have lots of possibilities and attempting to explain all the choices might lead to confusion but here goes with some of my experiences.

I bought an 8120 tractor new. It did not have the Deere Steering valve as that was an option. At that point in time the Ag Leader Insight display was current. It was possible to get a steering unlock to allow the Insight to work with Trimble's Nav II auto pilot. The Nav II is a separate box containing the electronics for steering. It has no display and mounts on the left side of the drivers seat. A GPS receiver was also needed and I went with a Trimble 332 unlocked for OmniStar. Since I did not have a steering valve this was also needed. The entire package consisted of a GPS antenna, the Trimble 332 GPS receiver, the Ag Leader Insight display, the Trimble Nav II steering controller, auto sense position sensor and steering valve as well as the various wiring harnesses and plumbing to install.

This combination worked fine for several years. Later the agreement between Ag Leader and Trimble was discontinued and it was no longer possible to get the unlock for the Insight for steering with the Trimble Nav II. The units that were unlocked such as mine continued to work. This combination continued to work well. At first the 8120 was used for planting so I purchased a subscription for OmniStar each season to achieve better accuracy. Several years later, another tractor came into the picture for planting so I discontinued purchasing the OmniStar subscription for the 8120.

A year or two after the above system was installed, I had another steering system installed in an older 8310 Tractor. That system consisted of a Trimble 750 display (the 750 consists of a display which contains the GPS receiver and a separate dumb antenna), another Nav II, steering valve, auto sense position sensor as well as the wiring harnesses and plumbing to install this. This was used for tillage only so the lower quality WAAS correction was acceptable. Since the all the equipment came from Trimble no unlocks were needed. Although the 750 steered the tractor fine, I never really liked the display compared to the Ag Leader.

More recently I decided to upgrade my equipment. Ag Leader had a trade-up program. The program I went with involved trading in pretty much all of the above equipment towards new InCommand 1200 displays, Ag Leader GPS 6500s, SteerCommand steering controllers, wheel position sensors and the associated wiring. The GPS 6500s were unlocked for TerraStar which allows me to use this improved correction source if I subscribe to the service. Since these tractors do not require the improved accuracy I have not subscribed to TerraStar for them although I could at any time.

The newer installs using the InCommands/6500/SteerCommand work well. I have yet another one of these in my newest tractor which is an 8310R. In this tractor an InCommand 1200/6500/SteerCommand is used also but the SteerCommand communicates with the tractor's CAN system for steering so no external steering valve is used.

There would be several other combinations of equipment that could be used on your 8420 besides what I mention above. The Insight/Nav II worked well for me but the Insight displays are getting quite old. The Trimble 750 did steer the tractor fine but I didn't care for the display. Several other Ag Leader displays could be used with a suitable steering controller so there are really lots of possibilities utilizing Ag Leader displays. Other combinations utilizing Trimble displays with their Nav controllers are available as well.

These would all be integrated steering which would make use of your steering valve. Others may chime in and suggest the assisted type steering such as EZ-Steer or OnTrack. These are the systems that use a motor mounted close to the steering wheel to turn it for you. These can work well also although the integrated style is generally considered to be a step above them.

If you find something used, you may want to post again before purchase for further comments or suggestions. There are many combinations that can work together. There are many other combinations that cannot. For example, an older unlocked Ag Leader Insight display can work with a Trimble Nav II controller but a newer Ag Leader display would not.

Edited by tedbear 12/4/2018 08:41
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