Deere installing interface system for GPS, laser guidance

John Deere has begun shipping some of its construction equipment with integrated hardware, software and wiring ready to support global positioning or laser guidance systems.

Deere worked under development agreements with Trimble and Topcon to create the system, which includes an onboard PC integrated into the existing machine monitor, eliminating the need for an additional monitor and making the operator’s station less cluttered and less susceptible to blind spots.

The system’s electrical connection is better than hydraulic interfaces because the connection uses an industry standard communication code, allowing other branded products to connect to John Deere equipment, said James Mitchell, manager of marketing communications for John Deere Construction and Forestry.

“Contractors familiar with one (GPS/laser) brand can use this equipment with whatever brand they prefer,” he said.

Deere is already putting the system on new 450, 550 and 650J crawler dozers and motor graders. Hydraulic valves and hardware components installed at the company’s factory are covered under Deere’s machine warranty.

Mitchell said testing for the system’s compatibility in bulldozers and other low-tolerance precise graders is in progress.

Ebony Horton can be reached at ehorton@randallpub.com.