Businesses of Agriculture

Deep in America’s heartland, Reinke Manufacturing Co., Inc., provides mechanized irrigation solutions for growers worldwide. Reinke was founded by Richard Reinke in 1954, with world headquarters in Deshler, Neb., and other locations spanning the globe. As the youngest of 12 children, Richard worked on the family’s 480-acre farm near Byron, Neb. Then, he researched engineering, architecture and draftsmanship; intent on inventing a better future, and became a pioneer in the irrigation industry.

We interviewed Reinke Marketing Administrator Jacob Knipp about the pivotal role Reinke plays in farming; from founding to today, and their latest news and products.

MM: What role does Reinke play in farming?

Knipp: When someone flies over the Midwest and sees the crop circles below – that’s Reinke. Our irrigation products range from Center Pivot and Lateral Systems to the latest GPS and VRI technology allowing the grower to maximize the number of acres under irrigation while improving yields.

MM: What is the latest ‘news’ or products?

Knipp: There’s lot of things happening at Reinke. Our recent products include the Reinke-UMC 740-U-AD 10/16 Wheel Gearbox, offering an industry-best warranty of 10 years or 16,000 hours. This warranty helps ensure peace of mind for the grower during peak irrigation. Another great product is the all-new RPM Advanced Plus Main Control Panel, giving the grower access to the latest technology with a 4.3-inch customizable touchscreen display and remote monitoring/operational access to the system using our web-based application ReinCloud®. These products are part of what it means to be 100 percent Reinke Certified.

MM: What are the company “favorites” — (long-standing, reliable products?)

Knipp: Reinke Manufacturing is all about producing long-lasting quality products. For over 50 years, the first ever 1968 Electrogator is still working great! Other innovations like Navigator GPS for Swing Arm corners was introduced in the early 2000’s and—offering precision guidance for nearly 20 years.

MM: What’s special that makes Reinke stand-out?

Knipp: Reinke irrigation systems are unique in many ways. In the 1960’s, Reinke introduced the patented V-jack truss design; the engineering structure below the main water pipe running the length of the system. This design improved mechanized irrigation systems world-wide by providing span lengths longer than 100 feet. The V-jack design is noticeable to the eye as a person passes along a highway looking at systems in a field.

Another noticeable difference is the Reinke single-leg tower design. Reinke improved the system performance by using C-Channel Legs, which provide more than double the structural support for the water pipe, reduces tension and stress on the pipe, improves the slope of the system and weighs far less than the traditional double tower legs.

These improvements are critical to help the grower reduce maintenance and repair costs. Reinke’s high-strength steel reduces the weight of the system, spans and tower legs; meaning there’s less stress on the system’s components. This improves the system’s ability to traverse hilly terrain, and reduce compaction. Many other important elements are designed into a Reinke irrigation system including the hook and receiver, V-ring seal with an industry-leading 25-year warranty, double-walled tower box and end of system booster pump. These elements together ensure system performance and longevity of the

Reinke line of quality products.

MM: What products was Reinke the first to market?

Knipp:

 V-jack design

 Interchangeable pipe and truss options

 Minigator — 4½ inch pipe for low water supplies and smaller fields

 Chromium-Nickel Plus (CN+) water pipe option

 Alumigator - aluminum system

 V-ring seal

 Double-walled tower box

 Energy Savers Package (ESP) for Swing Arms

 Bow string truss over 210 feet

 Navigator GPS guidance for Swing Arms

 Navigator GPS for End of System (EOS); Laterals

 Offer 5 types of water pipe

 Touch screen technology

MM: How would you describe ReinCloud?

Knipp: ReinCloud is a web-based application interfacing with the hardware RC10, on the irrigation system, providing monitoring and operational control. Using ReinCloud to remotely control the pivot, provides significant labor and fuel savings for a grower’s operation. There are ReinCloud-Ready products like RS300 and weather station that can help inform the grower of field conditions to improve yield remotely.

MM: What is Drop Span?

Knipp: It’s an important irrigation product to drop and add spans to maximize irrigated acreage on irregular-shaped fields. Other products to expand the number of acres under irrigation include the wrap span and swing arm corner.

MM: How does Reinke take pride in community involvement?

Knipp: In the home town of Reinke corporate headquarters (Deshler, Neb.), Reinke employee volunteers are currently assisting the local junior high and high school robotics teams prepare for state competition. The volunteers are helping provide the students with the necessary skills for problem solving in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) fields.

Amy Hadachek can be reached at amy.hadachek@midwestmessenger.com.