Norac Upgrades 2022
By: Derek Bontrager, Equipment Sales
Boom height control systems, like many other agricultural automated innovations in the last 15 years, have become a necessary part of today’s sprayers. Norac (now owned by Topcon) was one of the pioneers in ultrasonic boom height control with their UC3 and UC4 systems. Norac’s subsequent UC4+, UC4.5, UC5, and the current UC7 system have refined height control and made the system more robust while requiring fewer components.
The UC7 system, which has been on the market for five years now, requires only one module and zero roll sensors (the roll sensors are now built into the ultrasonic (MAX) sensors). The UC7 system can tie into the Norac Pulse display or most UT displays already in the sprayer cab. A typical sprayer with 90’ booms would utilize three MAX sensors, while any sprayer boom larger than 90’ would need two UC5 style sensors in addition to the three MAX sensors.
These sensors are connected to the new control module via an eight-way connector and very robustly designed Deutsch cabling (see Figure 1). The Deutsch cabling is so robust, we have found other applications to use it with as it holds up quite well in adverse conditions. Customers that have used a newer UC7 compared to older Norac systems have told us the UC7 is “night and day” better than the older systems. UC7 systems are far more reactive and are also far easier to diagnose if there are operating issues.
With many UC4+, UC4.5 and UC5 systems getting a “little long in the tooth”, Topcon has come up with an upgrade kit to make it easier to convert to a UC7 system. This upgrade kit includes everything a user would need to convert their older system to a UC7 system while allowing the customer to utilize their hydraulic block—which is typically the most expensive part of a new kit. (See Figures 2, 3, and 4 for typical installs of UC4+, UC4.5 and UC5.)
To be able to convert older UC system to a UC7 we need to know several items prior to ordering:
- Sprayer make
- Sprayer model
- Sprayer year
- Current Norac kit installed
- Picture of current hydraulic valve block
UC7 upgrade kits are currently available for many models of the following brands of sprayers:
- John Deere
- Top Air
Kit prices start at $6,840 plus freight. Like many other items right now, lead times from Topcon on Norac kits have been long. It is advised to plan accordingly.
As a reminder, we can test and rebuild Norac sensors in-house and we also try to keep a good supply of Norac parts on the shelf. If your sprayer does not currently have an automatic boom height control system and you would like to invest, we can help. For more information, please contact any of us in the precision ag department.