Published by AMTEC on 24th Mar 2023

The Versatility of Combination Drills and Their Role in Modern Farming

Combination drills help farmers save time, reduce fuel consumption, and increase planting efficiency, by combining the cultivation and planting processes.

Blog Image

Farming is an essential component in our food system, and planting is one of the most critical processes in crop production. The quality of the seedbed and seed placement directly impacts crop growth, yield, and profitability. To optimise planting efficiency, it is important to utilise the advanced equipment that is on the market today. Combination drills are one solution that combines seedbed preparation and seeding operations in a single machine - improving efficiency. We will explore the advantages of using combination drills for efficient and effective planting, highlighting the benefits of this technology in modern farming practices.

What is a combination drill used for?

A combination drill is a type of agricultural machinery used for planting seeds in the soil. It combines a seed drill, which creates furrows or holes in the soil to place the seeds, with a cultivator, which prepares the soil for planting by breaking up clumps and removing debris. The combination drill is designed to perform both tasks simultaneously, which can improve planting efficiency and effectiveness, reduce soil disturbance, and ultimately lead to better crop yields.

Features of a combination drill

Combination drills are typically equipped with a number of settings so you can adjust the seeding depth, row spacing, and seed rate, providing flexibility for planting various crops. In addition, certain models come with fertiliser attachments and precision seed placement technology, further enhancing their capabilities. This mix of features can help improve the cultivation process, ultimately leading to better outcomes for farmers.

The benefits of using combination drills

Suited to wet weather conditions

Combination drills mounted on power harrows are a great choice for wet weather conditions. Their design makes them ideally suited to handle less than desirable conditions, allowing for the creation of a good seed bed with ease. With the ability to perform both seeding and cultivation tasks in a single pass, combination drills can quickly and efficiently prepare the soil for planting, even in wet weather. This can help farmers take advantage of optimal planting times and maximise their crop yields, even in challenging weather conditions.

Combination drills create the optimal growing environment

Combination drills are an essential tool for creating the optimal growing environment in farming. This precision placement can help improve seed-to-soil contact and seed germination rates, leading to healthier, more robust crops, which reduces weed competition, and minimises soil-borne diseases. They help to create a uniform seed bed and enhance nutrient uptake. Combination drills can also help farmers achieve the optimal growing environment.

Valuable tool for plough-based farming systems

Combination drills are an excellent drilling solution for mixed farms due to their versatility. They can plant a variety of different seeds, including small grains, oilseeds, and cover crops, making them an ideal choice for farmers with diverse cropping systems. Additionally, combination drills can be adapted to suit different field conditions, further increasing their flexibility. One notable feature of combination drills is their use of precision seed placement technology. By planting seeds at the optimal depth and spacing, farmers can achieve better crop emergence and higher yields. Overall, combination drills offer an efficient solution to planting a wide range of crops on mixed farms.

Convenient to use and cost effective

Combination drills are an effective, quick, and compact planting solution that can help increase farming efficiency. By combining the functions of a seed drill and cultivator, they can perform two tasks at once - reducing the number of passes needed in the field. This can help save time and reduce fuel consumption, ultimately leading to cost savings for farmers. Additionally, combination drills are typically easy to transport between fields, making them a convenient option for farming operations. Combination drills offer a practical and effective way to save farmers both time and money.

Fertiliser placement technology

Combining the functions of a seed drill and cultivator in a single pass helps maintain soil structure and reduce erosion - as opposed to using separate machines for each task. Additionally, some combination drills come equipped with fertiliser placement technology, allowing farmers to apply it in the same row as the seed. This precise placement enhances nutrient delivery to the crop, leading to healthier, more productive plants and less wasted crops.

Do combination drills have a place in the future of planting?

At AMTEC, we are always discussing what the future looks like for farming and how we can work together to shape the future of agriculture. Not only do we want to be your trusted supplier of farming equipment like combination drills, but we aim to be leaders in agricultural knowledge sharing, keeping you up to date on the development of tools, and be the central community hub for farmers and organisations that make up our industry. We understand the need to find the balance between managing the environmental pressures to advance farming practices while maintaining production, which is why we consider all factors when conducting research into the benefits of these developments to provide you with the knowledge you need when considering a change.

Soil health

Healthy soil is critical to the success of both crop production and healthy livestock on a farm. The productivity of a farm is directly impacted by the quality of soil. To ensure that their land can support their operations, farmers need to maintain healthy soil. They can achieve this using combination drills, which help to reduce soil disturbance and improve nutrient delivery. Combination drills are an ideal tool for farming practices that prioritise soil health.

Combination drills’ rise in popularity

Combination drills are a popular choice for farmers who rely on tilling and seeding practices. They are usually favoured by traditional farmers and are sometimes referred to as a “one-time pass” drill. With the ability to perform both tasks in a single pass, combination drills can help farmers save time, reduce fuel consumption, and increase planting efficiency.

A lot of farmers depend on combination drills due to the location of their farm; this is because the drills are better suited to specific soil and weather conditions. By understanding the unique needs of their farm, farmers can choose the best planting method for them. Some factors that may influence a farmer’s use of combination drills include:

Soil type

Combination drills are particularly effective in soils with high levels of clay or loam. This is because these soils tend to be more compacted and require a more aggressive tillage to create a good seedbed. Combination drills help break up the soil, creating a uniform seedbed, which will have a direct impact on seed germination and plant growth.


Combination drills are well-suited to regions with more rainfall as they can function well in the wet weather. Helping farmers plant their crops quickly and accurately, no matter the weather conditions, improving the chances of a successful harvest.

Crop type

Some crops are better suited to combination drills than others. Crops that require deep planting can benefit from the aggressive tillage of combination drills. Whereas other crops may not require as much tillage and may be better suited to other planting methods.

Where can I buy used combination drills in the UK?

As one of the nation’s leading suppliers of used farm machinery and equipment, we offer a wide range of used combination drills, including a variety of models from popular brands, such as Kuhn, Kverneland, Maschio, Accord, and more. With more than 25 years’ experience, we have the knowledge to help you get the best deal. Our 9-acre site has hundreds of machines in stock. We’re conveniently located in central England.

Our customer-centric approach is at the core of everything we do, ensuring all the farmers that choose us as their equipment partner save time and money while making the best decisions for their needs. Contact us today by calling 01926 640637, sending an email to [email protected], or by using the contact us form on our website. Discover the ways we can help - you won’t regret it!

Contact us