The Hustler Combi CM156 is “the best investment we’ve made” for this New Zealand dairy farmer

Published 2nd February 2023
New Zealand

New Zealand dairy farmer Joe Burgess bought a Hustler Combi CM156 multi-feeder wagon after his old 23-year-old feedout equipment broke down on him at the start of the season. This last-minute purchase turned out to be “the best investment” he ever made. Watch the video to find out why!


Joe Burgess farms in Rangitata, South Canterbury, New Zealand on a 657-acre property where he contract milks 850 cows.

For those reading this article from abroad, contract milking is a common system in New Zealand’s dairy farming industry where a farmer (the “contractor”) provides labor and management services to a landowner (the “principal”) in exchange for payment and the right to milk the cows on the landowner’s property. 

“I had an old wagon that was 23 years old and it decided to break down on us. So I knew our local dealer in Hinds had a Hustler wagon sitting on the lot and we ended up going up and purchasing that to get us through the winter – keep all our cows fed and happy, and it’s turned out to be the best investment we’ve made,” Joe told us.


“It’s turned out to be the best investment we’ve made.”


The Hustler Combi CM range is able to feed all types, shapes and sizes of bales including straw, hay and baled silage, fine chop silage, maize silage, root crops and literally any type of feed you can lay your hands on. The unique elevator design delivers feed out of the side of the machine allowing you to feed into troughs, feed pads, bunks or open pasture without spillage. “Being able to feed out multiple different types of feed – everything from fodder beet, maize silage, grass silage, and baleage,” Joe explained.

Joe added a Hustler Swifthitch quick hitch to his new wagon. This piece of gear helps to speed up the connection process of the machine to the tractor, while providing the operator with excellent visibility, good manoeuvrability. 

“One of the good benefits we’ve found is the direct drive motors, eliminating all the little drive chains and that always fail on the older equipment. It’s very robust!” Joe detailed. Instead of dragging the load forward like a sled, the 12,000 lb roller chains on all floors lower the constraints on the drives, chains and bars. By using a single bar set up on each floor the need for extra sprockets, bearings, wearing parts and ongoing maintenance is eliminated.

The main body is welded and not riveted or bolted, making the Combi CM156 more reliable. “Found it excellent,” Joe said. 

Hustler’s tandem axles are built extremely strong with over 2,000 cm² (310 in²) of pivot pin surface area and 100-mm (4-in) diameter pins. These are the strongest axles on the market and can hold up to 17 tonnes. Also, these axles have 15 degrees of oscillation, which is another industry’s best. The pin is also bolted on the outsides and fastened on the inside, so they can’t float out of the housing for extra safety. The Combi range also embarks optional 2 or 4-wheel hydraulic brakes, ideal for rough country or hilly terrains. 


“The build quality on the wagons is very good”


“It handles what we do. We do a lot of feeding out over winter and fodder beet ground which is very hard terrain and rough, and it seems to handle that. Build quality on the wagons is very good,” Joe continued.

And everything has been designed to make life easier for farmers. “Got all the easy-reach grease points on it,” Joe said. The Central greasing now comes standard on Combi CM, which was not the case on the previous Comby models. The new Feed Control in-cab joystick gives fingertip control over the entire feeder, letting the operator control the feed row of any feed type and density. “Good smooth operation and the new little control unit that they’ve got. This little suction device clips onto the window, so it’s nice and easy to change between tractors.”

“Just being able to load it up and feed out to both herds in one hit” is great and “it definitely cuts down a lot of time as well,” Joe concluded.


“It’s an awesome machine, easy for staff to use. Excellent piece of kit in our business”


Do you want to know more about Hustler’s Combi ranges? Contact us today, you’ll be glad you did!


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