Harvesting and Threshing Equipment - AICRP on Farm Implements and Machinery

Self-Propelled Walking Type Vertical Conveyor Reaper

It is an engine operated, walk behind type harvester suitable for harvesting and windrowing cereals like wheat and paddy and oilseed crops.The reaper consists of engine, power transmission box, lugged wheels, cutter bar, crop row dividers, conveyor belts with lugs, star wheels, operator’s controls and a sturdy frame. The engine power is transmitted to cutter bar and conveyor belts through belt-pulleys. During forward motion of the reaper, crop row dividers divide the crop, which come in contact with cutter bar, where shearing of crop stems takes place. The cut crop is conveyed to one side of the machine by the conveyor belt fitted with lugs. The crop is bundled manually and transported to threshing yard. The field capacity of the machine is 0.15 - 0.17 ha/h. The cost of the machine is about Rs. 80,000. The cost of operation is Rs. 1150/ha with this machine as compared to Rs. 3200/ha by traditional method. There is a saving of 90-95% in labour and time and 63% in cost of operation as compared to conventional method.

Self-propelled Fodder Harvester (Cutter bar Type)

The self-propelled and tractor operated riding type cutter bar type (CBT) forage harvesters are in extensive use for forage harvesting. The cutter bar is operated by a suitable engine (7.6 kW, air cooled). The cutter bar is fitted as an attachment to the reaper-binder machine. The machine is used for harvesting fodder crops like berseem and Lucerne. The width of cut is 1.2 m and height of cut is 50-100 mm for berseem crop. The field capacity of the harvester is 0.4 ha/h at forward speed of 4.00 km/h.

Self-propelled Platform Type Fruits Harvesting System

Orchard management operations like harvesting, pruning, spraying and other canopy management practices in fruit trees such as mango, citrus and sapota are difficult and labour intensive. Hand picking continues to be the only method of fruit harvesting in India. Therefore, a self-propelled hydraulic multi-purpose system was designed and developed at CIAE, Bhopal for medium height fruit trees to increase harvesting/pruning efficiency in orchards. It has a maximum vertical reach of 6 m, load carrying capacity of 200 kg and can be operated at maximum ground speed of 3 km/h. This machine is designed with dimensions of 2.20 × 6.32 × 1.89 m and can be used as a platform to reach fruits on trees for easy picking. This machine is hydraulically powered by 8.7 kW petrol engine. Lifting and lowering of the platform, forward and backward movement, and steering of the machine are controlled by an operator from the platform. The machine is easy to operate and requires low maintenance. It can be operated safely on flat field as well as on hilly terrain having lateral as well longitudinal slope up to 5o. The operator is able to pick up 700-1100 mangoes/h depending upon the fruit density on the tree. The approximate cost of the machine is Rs. 7.50 lakh. The fuel consumption during harvesting of mango was 2 l/h.

Tractor Front Mounted Vertical Conveyor Reaper

The machine is used for harvesting cereal crops like wheat and paddy. It consists of a 76 mm pitch reciprocating cutter bar assembly, seven crop row dividers, and two vertical conveyor belts fitted with lugs, pressure springs, pulleys and gearbox for the power transmission system. The crop row dividers are fitted in front of the cutter bar assembly and the star wheels are mounted over the crop row dividers. The machine is mounted in front of the tractor and the power to the machine is given from tractor PTO. The height of the machine above ground is controlled by tractor hydraulic system with the help of pulleys and steel ropes. After the crop is cut by the cutter bar, it is held in a vertical position and delivered to one side of the machine by lugged belt conveyors and fall on the ground perpendicular to the direction of movement of machine in the form of a windrow. The field capacity of the machine is 0.4 ha/h at 2.5-3.5 km/h forward speed. The cost of operation is about Rs. 1600/- as against Rs. 3200/ha by traditional method.


Tractor Mounted Fodder Harvester

A tractor (41 kW) operated flail type harvester-cum-chopper-cum-loader was designed to facilitate harvesting, chopping and loading operations simultaneously. The crops viz. bajra, sorghum, maize, barseem and oats with height 1.00 to 2.50 m and stalk density 20-80 plants/m2 can be harvested successfully. The machine consists of a rotary shaft mounted with blades (flails) to harvest the crop, auger for conveying the cut crop, cutters for chopping and conveying chopped fodder through outlet into the trailer. The blades on the rotary shaft are staggered in three rows of 13 blades each on a horizontal axis perpendicular to the direction of motion. The blades cut the crop and auger conveys it to the chopper unit. The chopping mechanism having 4 blades cuts crops into pieces and the chopped material is thrown out at high speed and is filled into the hitched trailer to the machine. It also harvested lodged and over matured crop without any difficulty. The capacity of the machine is 0.20 ha/h at a forward speed of 2.5-4.0 km/h. The cost of operation of this machine is Rs. 1500/ha against Rs. 3200/ha by conventional method.


Aerial Access Hoist for Management of Coconut and Tall Trees

A tractor mounted aerial access hoist was designed and developed by TNAU, Coimbatore in collaboration with M/s Vanjax, Chennai. A full length chassis is extended from the front of the tractor to the rear and bolted to the tractor chassis. This forms the support for the hoist and provide for mounting of stabilizers. The total weight of the hoist and moments are transmitted through the chassis to the stabilizers without transferring to the tractor chassis. The aerial access hoist can go up to 15 m height and four coconut trees can be accessed from a single position. The time required for re-locating the unit and operating stabilizers is 1 min and positioning against a tree of 10 m height is 2 min. The positioning of the operator platform can be done by the operator using electro hydraulic controls.


Tractor Mounted Root Crop Harvester cum Elevator

A root crop harvester-cum-elevator was developed by PAU, Ludhiana for digging onion and other root crops. The field capacity of the machine is 0.28, 0.24, 0.21 and 0.21 ha/h for digging of carrot, potato, garlic and onion crops, respectively at a forward speed of 2.78, 2.41, 2.10 and 2.10 km/h. The damage to tubers is 1.98, 1.92 1.22 and less than 1.0% for digging of carrot, potato, garlic and onion crops, respectively. The approximate cost of the machine is Rs. 60,000/-. The saving in cost of operation and labour for harvesting onion, carrot and garlic is 52.28, 46.71, 52.28%, and 69.05, 59.29 and 69.05%, respectively as compared to manual harvesting.

Tractor Operated Groundnut Digger Elevator

A tractor operated groundnut digger cum elevator was developed at PAU, Ludhiana. The machine is operated by tractors above 26 kW. It consists of a digging blade of 1200 mm, elevator-cum-pick up reel, fenders, gauge wheel, coulters and power transmission system. The front end of the pick-up cum elevator reel is adjustable based on depth of working of blade. The front end of the pick-up rod is adjusted such that the spikes comb about 30 mm of the top soil to lift vines gently from the loose soil. It digs the groundnut vines below the pod zone and elevates them by an elevator-picker reel (conveyor) for dropping on the ground. The soil attached to the vines is shaken off in the process and a windrow is formed with the help of deflector rods. The vines are dropped in such a manner that pods get exposed to the sun for speedy drying. The machine can uproot and invert 0.16-0.21 ha/h. The unit price of the machine is Rs. 50000/ and its cost of operation is Rs 3200/ha. The machine saves 65% in labour and 32% in cost of operation.

Tractor Operated Garlic Harvester

Garlic harvesting is a very time consuming and requires labour of about 30 man-days/ha. Farmers go for single pass of duck foot cultivator for loosening of garlic bulbs from soil and bulbs are collected manually. A tractor operated garlic harvester cum windrower was developed at MPUAT, Udaipur for harvesting of garlic. The machine consists of a blade with triangular point knives mounted over a MS flat for its use in heavy soil for smaller size soil clods and less draft requirement. The machine has chain type separating mechanism made of MS bars of 12 mm at spacing of 38 mm along with horizontal vibrating forks of 250 mm length at spacing of 200 mm for good separation of soil from clods. The windrower unit is made of MS bars at spacing of 25 mm and mounted at 90 degree to conveyor direction in two unequal halves. The power is given by tractor pto to gearbox with a ratio of 1:1. The oscillating vibrating fork is also given power from gearbox with crank pinion arrangement. The effective field capacity of machine is 0.26 ha/h. The digging losses range 2-3 bulbs/sq.m. The unit price of machine is Rs 35000/ and its cost of operation is Rs 3885/ha.


Tractor Operated Cassava Harvester

In India, cassava is presently harvested manually by loosening the soil with crowbar if the soil is compact. The plant is pulled up gently without dragging the roots. Dragging can cause bruises and cuts to roots which may lead to early deterioration. This operation requires about 40 man days/ha. A tractor operated cassava harvester was developed by TNAU, Coimbatore to eliminate this laborious process. It consists of main frame, shanks, digging blade, hitching frame and depth adjustment wheels. It is designed for both two rows and single row operation. The shank is designed as a bent leg plough with an angle of 150o to accommodate the dug cassava tubers. The blade angle of 5o is provided for easy penetration into the soil. The row spacing can be altered by moving the shanks in the main frame. The depth wheels are provided to adjust the depth of operation. The harvester is tested in association with M/s SPAC Tapioca Products Limited, Anthiyur and works well with two rows in sandy soils and with single row in heavy soils at optimum moisture content. The field capacity is 0.08 ha/h for single row and 0.17 ha/h for two rows machine. The undug tuber is 2.5% and damage to tubers is less than 1%. The unit price of the machine is Rs 30000/. The cost of operation of cassava harvester is Rs. 2380/ha and saves 40% in cost as compared to manual harvesting.

Tractor Drawn Turmeric Digger

A 33.6 kW tractor drawn turmeric digger of 1.45 m width was developed by ANGRAU, Hyderabad. The penetration of blade of the digger into the soil is easy at blade rake angle of 55o and an additional dead weight of 150 kg is required for deeper penetration. The implement can dug four rows at 300-350 mm depth in single pass at 2.5 km/h tractor speed with a field capacity of 0.36 ha/h. The observed wheel slip is 12.5-15.0%. The developed turmeric digger is working well for digging the turmeric rhizome lying 200-250 mm deep into soil, with negligible damage. The cost of the implement is Rs. 22,000-25,000/-. The cost of digging of turmeric with the implement is Rs. 4830/ha.


Tractor Operated Potato Digger Elevator

It consists of a frame, shovel type-digging blade of 550 mm width, endless rod chain conveyor, gearbox, two gauge wheels, idlers and driving sprockets. The elevator conveyor is made of mild steel rods of 12 mm diameter, which are riveted/bolted to two endless flat belts. The pitch of the conveyor links is 25 mm. The length of the conveyor is 1500 mm and makes an angle of 20 degrees with the horizontal. The machine is operated by a tractor of 26 kW. Power to the gearbox is transmitted by a telescoping shaft from the tractor PTO. Soil-potato mass is picked up and lifted by the chain conveyor. Two agitator sprockets oscillate the conveyor chain rod, which help to separate the soil. Potato tubers with no or very little soil/clods are dropped on the ground behind the digger. Thus, the tubers are completely exposed which help in speedy manual picking. The unit price of digger is Rs 40000/ and its cost of operation is Rs 3080/ha.

Pedal Operated Thresher

It is suitable for threshing rice. It consists of wire-loop type threshing cylinder operated by foot pedal or motor. It saves 20% labour and 40% operating time as compared to conventional method of hand beating on a wooden platform. It costs Rs 5500/- and its cost of operation is Rs 28/q.


Groundnut-cum-Castor Decorticator

It is a manually operated oscillating type device having cast iron shoes with triangular projections for decortication of groundnut and castor pods to separate kernels. Separate concaves are provided for decorticating groundnut and castor. It is not provided with cleaning device. It costs Rs 2400/- and its cost of operation is Rs 0.56/kg. It saves 98% in labour and operating time and 89% in cost of operation as compared to conventional method of hand shelling.

Power Operated Axial Flow Sunflower Thresher

It consists of a feed hopper, bar type cylinder, thrower, two sieves, concave and a blower. It works on axial flow principle. The cylinder of length 1500 mm has two portions, the first one of 1300 mm is for threshing and the second one of 200 mm for straw throwing. The threshing portion has raised spikes. The cylinder-concave clearance is 40 mm and is uniform throughout its length. The cylinder is hexagonal in shape and is fitted with seven louvers at a spacing of 180 mm. The cleaning system consists of a centrifugal blower and three sieves inclined at an angle of 7-15o. The thresher eliminates human drudgery and also provides quality produce. The machine is operated by 5.6 kW motor/tractor and has a capacity of 8.0 q/h clean grains. The axial flow thresher gives 3-4 times more output as compared to conventional thresher. The threshing efficiency of the thresher is more than 99%. The unit price is Rs 80000/. The cost of operation of this machine is Rs. 450/t as compared to Rs. 1000/t with conventional method. There is a saving of 85% in labour, 75% in time and 30% in cost of operation.

Whole Crop Maize Thresher

A whole crop maize thresher is developed for shelling of maize cob and simultaneously converting stalk to chaff. The thresher is designed for 5.5 kW power with spike tooth cylinder having 6-7 bolts per row on periphery. Concave is prepared by placing 8 mm square bars at a spacing of 18 mm. Threshing speed is kept at 620 rpm. The output capacity of whole crop maize thresher is 210 kg/h. The output of grain is observed as 640 kg/h with chaff size of 18 to 52 mm. This chaff is fed to animals and 85% material is consumed in comparison to the whole stalk. The unit price of the machine is Rs 70000/-. Moreover, significant saving of Rs. 2000-2100/ha in labour was for detachment of cobs and transportation of crop from field to home.

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Tractor or Electric Motor Operated Multi-crop Thresher for Seed Spices

The traditional practice of threshing of seed spices is either by beating on drums or on wooden logs or treading under tractor wheels on mud floors. It requires lots of labour and lot of dust and stone comes in during the threshing process and are to be removed manually by hand sieves or cleaning machine in factories reducing the quality of seed spices. Therefore, a tractor/electric motor operated thresher was developed by MPUAT, Udaipur in collaboration with M/s Makewell Industries, Unjha (Gujarat) and evaluated for threshing of cumin and coriander crops. The drive to power transmission is given by telescoping shaft connected to PTO of tractor. An electric motor of 5.6 kW is mounted on frame so wherever electricity is available, thresher can be used with electric power. The output capacity of thresher is 240-260 kg/h. The unit price of thresher is Rs 70000.

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High Capacity Multi-crop Thresher

It is suitable for threshing wheat, maize, sorghum, rice, gram, pigeon pea, soybean, mustard, sunflower, safflower and linseed crops. It consists of spike tooth cylinder, aspirator type blower and sieve shaker. Two top covers, three concaves, three sieves and variable cylinder speeds (7-21 m/s) are provided for threshing different crops. Reciprocating sieve system consists of replaceable set of sieves and screens mounted on oscillating frame. The amplitude of oscillations could also be varied. Upper sieve separates chaff bigger than grain while lower screen let the dust and smaller particles than grain pass through thus help in delivering clean grain at main outlet. The thresher is provided with four wheels made of cast iron for transportation and motor stand to fit the motor on it. It also has provision for attaching universal shaft for operating the thresher by tractor PTO.
The grain output capacity is 16-20 q/h for wheat, 8-10 q/h for raya, 6-8 q/h for gram, 4-5 q/h for green gram, 4.0 q/h for moong and 5.0 q/h for guar crops. The machine is operated at the lowest cylinder speed of 300 rpm for moong to minimize the breakage while it is operated at 500 rpm for guar crop. Threshing efficiency, un-threshed grain and visible damage are 98-99%, 1.5-2.0% and 1.0%, respectively. Threshing efficiency and cleaning efficiency are observed to be within the recommended limit. An average total losses are about 5%. The cost of machine is Rs. 70,000/- to Rs. 80,000/ and operating cost is Rs. 250-300/h.

CIAE Multi-crop Thresher

It is suitable for threshing wheat, maize, sorghum, rice, gram, pigeon pea, soybean, mustard, sunflower, safflower and linseed crops. It consists of spike tooth cylinder, aspirator type blower and sieve shaker. Two top covers, three concaves, three sieves and variable cylinder speeds (7-21 m/s) are provided for threshing different crops. The diameter and length of threshing drum are 500 and 600 mm, respectively. Total 92 spikes were fitted in 8 rows. The concave clearance ranges 10-25 mm. It costs Rs 50,000/- and cost of operation is Rs 30-35/q.

Tree Climber

In order to harvest coconut and arecanut at faster rate with proper safety, a tree climber has been developed. The climber made of M.S. square pipe consists of two components. Adjustable belts connect the components. The upper component is provided with a seating arrangement and lower component is having provision for holding the foot. The rubber cushioning is provided at the portion of frames, which comes in contact with tree to avoid any damage to tree. By standing on the lower component, the upper component can be moved up or down over the tree. The operator can safely climb a tree of 10 m height in 1.5 min without any risk. The cost of operation with tree climber is Rs. 3500/ha as compared to Rs. 5000/ha with conventional system.

Tractor operated banana clump remover

Banana crop is maintained for two years to get the benefit of two harvests. The crop needs removal of clumps (plants along with root portion) after two years. During the process of removal of the clump, the mother plant along with the rhyzome and side suckers as a whole mass has to be removed so as to prepare the land for the next crop. Manual labourers do this operation using crowbars and spades. A tractor operated banana clump remover was developed by adopting frame of nine tyne cultivator. Two numbers of 100 x 15 x 1000 mm sub-soiler shanks with shares of size 190 x 40 x 5 mm were fitted to nine tyne cultivator frame at 225 mm spacing. These two sub-soilers work as a fork for removing the banana clump. A deflector was provided to push the soil sideways. The equipment is attached to the 3-point linkage of a 26 kW tractor. The field capacity of machine is 0.5 ha/h. The cost of manual digging of the clumps comes to Rs. 2000/- to Rs.2500/- per hectare. The unit price of clump remover is Rs 20000/. The cost of operation with the equipment is Rs 700/ha. Thus, there is a saving of Rs. 1300-1800/ha.