A farmer from Northern Ireland says his working day has been transformed by Michelin’s new AxioBib 2 tractor tyres – after becoming the first person in the country to fit a set.
Richard Lyons – who farms hens for free-range eggs and 180 acres of wheat and barley with his father on their 250-acre farm near Bushmills, County Antrim – ordered the tyres for his 2017 John Deere 6155R Ultimate Edition after being bowled over by an AxioBib 2 demonstration video sent to him by Phillip Armstrong of local Michelin Exelagri dealer JB Tyres, showcasing the fitment’s versatility.
Michelin’s latest agricultural tyres boast the highest load capacity on the VF 650/65 R42 174D/171E market, provide excellent traction for heavy machinery, and can run at very low pressures to minimise soil compaction and crop damage in the field – making them ideal for ploughing, drilling and cultivation.
Lyons, who specified AxioBib 2 Very High Flexion (VF) 540/65 R30 front and VF 650/65 R42 rear tyres, reveals: “I’m proud to be the first farmer in Northern Ireland to be running on AxioBib 2 tyres and I’m so impressed with their all-round performance, especially given the wet conditions we’ve had.
“Tractors are getting heavier, so there’s a growing need for tyres to handle substantial loads while protecting the land. These AxioBib 2s are designed to do both, so it’s a win-win. Running at low pressure creates a larger footprint and spreads the load out, preventing damage like soil compaction.
“Remarkably, there’s almost no wheel slippage because the soft pressure allows incredible grip in the field – even when driving uphill on soaking wet soil – which improves fuel efficiency. Whether ploughing or drilling on wet land or dry, I’ve been massively impressed.”
Designed for 160hp to 320hp tractors, AxioBib 2 has enabled Michelin to offer a patented Ultraflex technology tyre for all high-horsepower tractors – bridging the gap between the existing XeoBib (120hp – 180hp) and AxioBib (300+hp) ranges.
Each VF 650/65 R42 AxioBib 2 tyre is also capable of carrying an extra 2,450kg at 65kph than the same size Michelin MultiBib tyre, making it particularly desirable given the increasing weight of new farm machinery, and can operate at up to 70kph. The tyres also stand out for their Narrow Rim Option (NRO) markings on the sidewall, which confirm their higher load capacity without the need for farmers to upgrade to wider wheel rims.
Although the lion’s share of Lyons’ work is in the fields, the AxioBib 2’s performance on the road also came as a revelation to him: “Most tyres driving at speed on the road make a fair amount of noise. With AxioBib 2s, there’s nothing. Not so much as a hum.
“Also, when I’m driving off the fields, the mud and muck gets ejected really fast thanks to the flex in the tyres. In just the distance of two lengths of the tractor, 90 per cent of the big lumps of mud have gone – so by the time I hit the road my tyres are virtually clean.”