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John Deere 635FD Flex Draper

John Deere Combine

Competitive comparison: John Deere 600FD vs. MacDon® FD70

Matching the right platform to the right combine is very important. Today’s combines are only as productive as the platform to which they are attached. The new 600FD HydraFlex™ Drapers provide productivity enhancing features over not only traditional auger platforms, but competitive flex draper platform as well.
Outlined below is an overview of the key functional areas applicable to any flex draper. This bulletin will highlight within each functional area, the benefits of the John Deere 600FD vs. MacDon FD70.

  • Cutting performance 
  • Ground following
  • Flotation
  • Feeding
  • Draper belt protection  

John Deere 635FD Flex Draper Frame

A dual, timed knife-drive cutting system provides unmatched performance and reliability on all 600FD HydraFlex™ Draper models. The 4-in. cutting system is shaft driven from the feederhouse to the dual epicyclic knife drive gearcases providing uninterrupted cutting in all crop conditions. The timing generates minimal cutterbar vibration while splitting the cutterbar load, thus improving overall cutting system reliability.
The MacDon FD70 Flexible Draper utilizes either a single or an optional dual knife drive on the 35-ft. and 40-ft. models. A dual knife drive is standard on the 45-ft. model. The MacDon cutting system is hydraulically driven and cannot be timed due to the hydraulic drive system of the two independent pumps and drive motors.
Ground following
The 600FD HydraFlex Draper cutterbar is designed to flex within a 7.5-in. range across the full width of the cutterbar while maintaining a low cutting height in all cutting conditions. The 600FD HydraFlex is a true flexible cutterbar similar to the 600F HydraFlex auger platforms. View a video of a 640FD HydraFlex cutterbar following the ground contour over 8-in. levees.
The MacDon FD70 Flexible Draper utilizes a rigid, three-section cutterbar system. The cutterbar flexes across two pivot points, allowing three rigid cutterbar sections to cut on the ground. This system is incapable of handling local ground contours found within each rigid cutterbar section.

View the Ground following performance of the 635FD HydraFlex Draper
John Deere Video


 John Deere 635FD Flex Draper Feeding

The center draper belt on the 600FD HydraFlex Draper is 60 in. wide and utilizes a 16-in. fixed-feed drum for in-line crop flow into the full width of the combine feederhouse. This matched design generates maximum feeding efficiency increasing the overall performance of the combine, especially in tougher crop conditions because of the smooth crop flow.
The MacDon FD70 Flexible Draper design utilizes a 14-in. auger with 4-in. flighting that is 65.3-in. wide. This system indexes the crop as it transitions from the draper side belts onto the center draper belt. The center draper belt is 73.6-in. wide and funnels the crop into the combine feederhouse.
Draper belt protection
John Deere 635FD Flex Draper Belt

Side draper belt protection

The 600FD HydraFlex Draper has side draper belt slip protection built into the design. When any of the four draper side belts start to slip, the combine operator is warned that belt slippage is occurring. If this condition persists, the draper side belts and reel stop functioning until the side belt slip situation is corrected. This system provides for increased belt life.
MacDon is a U.S. registered trademark of MacDon Industries Ltd.

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