Hillco Technologies

Hillside Leveling System (27%)

If you harvest in the hills with a John Deere combine, there is no better investment you can make than equipping your John Deere combine with a leveling system from Hillco Technologies.

Hillco Leveling Systems

John Deere Hillside Models

Hillco Leveling Systems are packed with a long list of industry leading features and benefits such as true bolt-on design, fully automatic variable speed leveling, and fully automatic header height and lateral tilt control.

Other benefits include increased hillside capacity, reduced hillside grain loss, improved sample quality, and comfortable hillside operation. Additionally, Hillco guarantees that your combine’s original John Deere warranties will remain in full effect after installation of your Hillco Leveling System.

Hillco Technologies offers a broad range of leveling systems specifically designed to maximize STS & S Series combine’s performance in all terrain.

Retractable Lower Step

Header Adapter and Header Tilt

Cab Controls

The Heart Of Every Hillco Leveling System

Rear Drop Axel

Crop Feeding System

 Hydraulic Pump- S660, S670,S760 & S770

Hydraulics- S680/S690 & S780/S790

Maximum level Potentiometer

Leveling Manifold 

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The Heart of Every Hillco Leveling System - John Deere Models

As combines evolve so do Hillco Leveling Systems. Staying true to the quality and performance of our previous leveling systems, the newly designed undercarriage accommodates today’s heavier combines and heads. Hillco keeps the design simple by moving the combine’s original transmission to final drive assembly from the combine’s main axle to the leveling system’s undercarriage. This simple but effective design keeps the treadface of the tires flat on the ground for improved traction stability and flotation. Go even further and equip your combine with dual tires and you can tackle any terrain.

Rear Drop Axle - Undercarriage - John Deere Models

The newly designed undercarriage has been built to accommodate the increased combine weight and larger platforms and heads. Because we raise the front of the combine with the overcarriage/undercarriage it is necessary to raise the back of the combine. The function of the drop axle is to balance the combine fore/aft. This bolt-on component is located between the combine’s main frame and rear axle. The result is an 8″ increase to achieve maximum leveling.

Header Adapter and Header Tilt - John Deere Models

As combines and platforms get larger and heavier, Hillco continues to meet the challenge. Staying true to our time tested design; Hillco Leveling Systems are equipped with an advanced master/slave hydraulic circuit, coordinating rotation between the combine chassis, header and ground to deliver optional ground hugging performance. This feature can be performed manually to give you control over unusual ground contours and any nasty terraces. Equip your header with Contour Master Sensors and enjoy the superb performance of fully automated lateral tilt/header height control.

Crop Feeding System - John Deere Models

When you purchase a new John Deere combine with a Hillco Leveling System you will experience maximum throughput. You can be confident the Hillco crop feeding system is designed for any type of crop whether it’s green, viney crops and weeds or short, slick straw conditions. The Hillside models use a low maintenance paddle beater feed system to handle the heaviest of crops. Bearings on the paddle beater shaft are protected by a cover that turns with the shaft which reduces wrapping and promotes longer bearing life. The paddles are available in either metal or rubber.

Leveling System Hydraulics - John Deere Models

On the S760 & S770 combines a pump is mounted directly to the output shaft on the combine’s rear engine housing; isolating the leveling system’s hydraulics from the combine’s main hydraulic circuit for improved reliability and simplified diagnostics.

Leveling System Hydraulics - John Deere Models

The JH9020 hydraulics are incorporated into the existing S780 & S790 closed center hydraulic system. This simplifies installation and eliminates the need for an additional pump reducing costs.

Leveling Manifold — John Deere Models

At Hillco we strive to deliver trouble free leveling systems. With our precision electronic slope sensing combined with variable speed hydraulic leveling control, we deliver the ultimate in smooth, responsive leveling performance. The clinometer-based slope sensor continuously monitors slope and maintains a level combine chassis. The technology utilized in the leveling controller and hydraulic control valve allows for variable leveling speed. The further the combine is out of level the faster the system corrects and, as the combine chassis approaches level, the leveling rate slows. The variable speed leveling is what allows Hillco Leveling Systems to be both smooth and responsive.

Cab Controls - John Deere Models

The leveling system controls are conveniently located next to the John Deere Command Center. Select Automatic mode and the leveling system corrects for slope changes without any operator input. Switch to Manual mode and the Automatic leveling function is disabled, allowing the operator to have full control of the combine’s chassis position. Monitor—An in-cab color monitor is used to display warnings and to provide electrical diagnostic information. The monitor also displays the current slope the combine is on.

Maximum Level Potentiometer - John Deere Models

Maximum Level Potentiometer indicates to the controller the undercarriage position in relation to the overcarriage; which proportionately slows leveling speed when approaching maximum level. This reduces stress on cylinders and stops, increasing reliability over mechanical switches, and allows the operator to set leveling limits from the cab for added convenience.

Ladder - John Deere Models

A retractable double step ladder is installed to the bottom of the John Deere ladder allowing for easier access to the cab.
Return on Investment Calculator

This calculator is designed to determine the return on investment for a Hillco leveling system equipped combine versus a non-leveling combine operating in sloping conditions.

Crop Type
Wheat       Corn and Soybean
Acreage Information

Crop Information

Enter your operation's statistics and estimates.

Acreage / Slope Information

Estimate the percentage of total harvested acres that lay within the various slope ranges in your farming operation.
For all Wheat Acreage
See Slope reference chart
Percentage slope values must equal 100%
Your Harvest Speeds and Machine Harvested Yield (MHY)

Non-Leveling Ground Speed in MPH

Enter the average harvesting speed for your non-leveling combine in the various slope ranges at the average yield entered in the Crop Information section above.

Slope Reference Graph

Reduction in Machine Harvested Yield (bu/acre)

Estimate the reduction of Machine Harvested Yield (MHY) for each slope range if you were harvesting at the speed you entered for 0-3% slopes. (The calcultor will then project expected reductions in MHY for each slope range at your previously estimated ground speeds.)

You may opt to enter the test data which was determined by actual field testing by Hillco (based on 5 mph harvesting speed).

Reduction in MHY is used in these calculations rather than field loss. Reduction in MHY is a more accurate guage of combine harvesting efficiency because it can be determined by actually weighing the harvested yield rather than estimating the amount of yield lost to the ground.

Use test data or your own
Your Combine and Header Information
Enter your expected combine harvesting efficiency. Typically a combine operates at approximately 70% efficiency. If the Total Annual Separator Hours calculated below look too small you may want to decrease the combine efficiency. If the Total Annual Separator Hours calculated below look too large you may want to increase the combine efficiency.
Wheat head width in feet
Corn head width in feet
Flex header width in feet
Combine Field Efficiency (Typically 70%)
(Must enter value other than 0%)
Your Operational Costs
This total should include additional cost of benefits and taxes. If you wish to include the grain cart operator's cost add the hourly wage to the combine operator hourly labor costs.
Combine Operator Labor Cost (per hour, including taxes and benefits)
Combine Fuel Cost

If you wish to include added grain cart fuel add hourly grain cart fuel usage to the combine fuel usage.

Combine Fuel Consumption (Hourly - Typically 11-13 gph)

Cost per added separator hour usually runs approximately $180 per hour for new combines to $30 per hour for older used combines. If you don't want to consider the added benefit of lower separator hours enter $0.

Cost Per Separator Hour
(How much does your combine devalue for each added separator hour of use?)

Use example prices below or obtain a quote from your local dealership.

List price examples for leveling systems used on John Deere combines:
Leveling System Model 2955S for -- 9560-70 STS combine dual tire, w/ Hillco Leveler Installed = $42,960.00 List Price

Leveling System Model 2970S for -- 96-97-9860-70 STS combine,dual tire w/ Hillco Leveler Installed = $42,085.00 List Price

List price examples for leveling systems used on Case-IH combines:
Leveling System Model 2800 for -- 2577-88 combine, dual tire w/Hillco Leveler, Installed = $42,210.00 List Price

See examples or call your local dealership for a quote.
(On Leveling System Financing)

Enter the number of years (from 1 to 5, whole number) for the desired calculation period.

Market value at the end of 5 years regardless of the length of the calculation period.

Used in net present value calculation

Cash Flows (Totals for Calculation Period)
Positive Cash Flows
Labor Savings
Fuel and Lubcriation Savings
Increased Income from Machine Harvested Yield
Residual Value of Leveling System (At end of Calculation Period)
Increased Combine Value Due to Reduced Separator Hours
Total Positive Cash Flows
Negative Cash Flows
Leveling System Cost (Total Principle & Interest Payments)
Remaining Principle Balance On 5 Year Note
Leveling System Maintenance Cost (Annual 2% of Purchase Price)
Total Negative Cash Flows
Total Net Cash Flow (Positive - Negative)
Investment Analysis
Total Average Annual Separator Hours (without leveling system)
Total Average Annual Separator Hours (with leveling system)
Average Annual Separator Hour Savings
Total Separator Hour Savings as % of Total Separator Hours
Average Payback Period (in years)
The length of time it takes for an investment to recover its initial cost.
Total Net Present Value of Cash Flows
NPV compares the value of a dollar today to the value of that same dollar in the future, taking inflation and returns into account.
Internal Rate of Return
The internal rate of return (IRR) method allows you to consider the time value of money. It is the interest rate that is equivalent to the dollar returns you expect from your project. Once you know the rate, you can compare it to the rates you could earn by investing your money in other projects or investments. Usually a business owner will insist that in order to be acceptable, a project must be expected to earn an IRR that is at least several percentage points higher than the cost of borrowing, to compensate the company for its risk, time, and trouble associated with the project.