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Common Types of Farm Machinery

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  • 25-03-2021
Common Types of Farm Machinery

We take a look at the most common types of farm machinery used for UK farming. Find out more about agricultural uses of tractors, combine harvesters, UTVs and other tractor attachments.

Uses of Common Farming Vehicles 

Farmers need a wide range of farm equipment and farming machinery to ensure they can complete all the necessary jobs that need to be done on the farm, whether it's a small-scale farm or an industrial-sized farm. A farmer can widely use a truck in agriculture, as well as a tractor. 

It is important for farmers to know the various types of farm equipment available to them and what they need to use the equipment for. Therefore, on this page, you will find a simple guide to farming and agricultural machinery.


Tractors are such important pieces of farming equipment. They are available in a wide range of sizes to ensure they can pull all your farming implements and completed agricultural work. These include transportation from one field to another, harvesting crops, spreading fertilizer, soil cultivation, planting seeds and much more. 

There are also many different types of tractors, including:

Wheeled Tractors 

Compact Tractors 

Orchard Tractors 

Track Tractors

Combine or Harvester

Combine or Harvesters, also known as a combine harvester, are used to harvest crops more effectively. Both small and large scale farmers can benefit from this excellent piece of farm machinery. They are widely used for the following:

Reaping: Reaping is basically cutting the plants. The machine uses the header, which collects all the crops; the reel connects the crops to the cutter bar, which cuts the grains.  

Winnowing: Winnowing uses sieves to separate the grains from the light chaff in the threshing drum.  

Threshing: Threshing separates the crop parts that you can eat from the parts of the crop that you can't eat. 


ATV stands for All-Terran Vehicles, also known as four-wheelers, and are commonly used on farms, and UTV stands for Utility Vehicles, which are also widely used on farms. They are handy, as farmers can drive them across rough grounds and fields much better than normal road vehicles and much faster than tractors. You can also add attachments to these vehicles to do your farming jobs, including spreaders, mowers and trailers. 

Uses of Common Tractor Attachments

Tractor attachments are basically a trailer or piece of equipment attached to the tractor so that the tractor can pull it around. They are used for various reasons, from plant production to soil management. Here are a few of the main attachments:


Ploughs are larger attachments that are used for cutting furrows in the soil with sharp blades. This helps kill off vegetation that isn't supposed to be there, such as weeds. Here are a few of the main ploughs and how they work:

Moldboard Ploughs: This is usually the machinery used on land that has been free from crop production for a long time, as it is more shallow. The blades are shaped like wings and cut through the soil and turn it.  

Disc Ploughs: These aren't as effective as moldboard ploughs, which is why they aren't used as much; however, they are excellent when the soil is sticky. They are used to cut up weeds using discs that rotate.  

Chisel Ploughs: If a piece of land has been used consistently for crop production, Chisel ploughs are essential. 


Harrow attachments are used to break down soil that has formed large clumps to make the ground more level so that crops will start to grow again. Harrow machines can also be used after fertilizer and manure have been spread to make the ground more level. 

There are many different types of harrows, including:
 Spring Harrows 

Roller Harrows 

Chain Harrows 

Disc Harrows

Fertiliser Spreaders

Fertiliser spreaders are machines that spread fertilizer across the fields to help the plants and crops grow. 

Here are the main types of feriliser spreader: 

Broadcast Spreader: The Broadcast Spreaders used fertilizer and spread it around the fields using the force of gravity. 

Manure Spreader: Manure spreaders use solid animal manure and spread it around the fields.  

Slurry Spreader: These spreaders spray liquidised manure on the farmland.   


Seeders are used to spread seeds across the fields. They are usually pulled by tractors on larger and more modern farms, and smaller farm used the hand-seeding method instead. 

There are different seeder machines, including:

 Broadcast Seeders: These can also be known as Rotary spreaders, and they come in a wide variety of sizes. The seeds are put inside the hopper, where a plate rotates to spread them around the field.  

Air Seeders: These seeds are huge and work using compressed air, which shoots the seeds into the ground.  Box Drill Seeders: Most farmers use the Box Drill Seeders, as they are simple, and you can use various seeds. They drill into the soil to the required depth and plant the seeds.  

Planters: Planters are incredibly quick and accurate but the most expensive seeders. They use large blades and seedboxes where the seeds are kept. They cut into the ground, plant the seeds and even close the ground back up again. 


Balers are used to collect hay, corn and straw. Once they have collected the hay, corn and straw, they will then gather them into bales to make them easier to carry. Here are the three main types of hay balers:

Round Balers: Round balers roll the hay into round parcels. 

Square Balers: Square balers collect the hay in compressed bales. 

Large Square Balers: Large square balers work the same as square balers but can be used on larger farms

Wagons or Trailers

Wagons and trailers are widely used on farms, as they are useful for almost all farming jobs. They come in a variety of sizes and materials, and farmers can use them for so many farming and agricultural jobs, including:


Human Resources Equipment 


Material Handling

Other Tractor Attachments

As well as all these, there are also many more tractor attachments, including: 

Transplanters: These are used to transport many plants, which is useful when moving their growing plants. These machines will also dig holes for them to be re-planted in.  

Sprayers: Sprayers are used to spray fertilizers, pesticides and other useful farming resources across the land.  

Plastic Mulch Layers: These machines are used to spread, flatten and transport large amounts of plastic.  

Mowers: These help with harvesting jobs and also grass maintenance.  

Cultivators: These are used for soil cultivation to control weeds in a certain area of the farm.  Rakes: You can find a wide variety of rakes, depending on the materials you are working with.  

Backhoe: These are used for digging holes in the field, but you should only need to purchase these if it's essential. 

If you work in the agricultural industry in Scotland, you can find a range of agricultural machinery for hire. For Farm Machinery Hire in Aberdeenshire and North Scotland follow this link to find out more.