Submitted to: World Cotton Research Conference Proceedings
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: September 6, 1998
Publication Date: N/A
Interpretive Summary: A cotton gin is equipped to remove a large percentage of foreign matter from the cotton that would significantly reduce the value of ginned lint. Most spindle-harvested cotton in the U.S. is processed through a standard machinery sequence which includes a dryer, cylinder cleaner, stick machine, dryer, cylinder cleaner, extractor-feeder/gin stand and two lint cleaners. This machine sequence is used regardless of the trash and moisture levels, and cleaning difficulty of the cotton. The combination of gin machines that produce a satisfactory compromise of cotton quality and producer monetary returns most of the time is used to process the majority of cotton. However, this standard processing at the gin does not minimize fiber damage and maximize monetary returns. Thus, performance characteristics of several different machinery combinations were developed in terms of fiber quality and monetary returns. This new information on the impact of machinery combinations should allow ginners to more selectively process cotton. Monetary returns should increase and fiber quality improve when these findings are implemented.
Technical Abstract: Studies involving moisture levels, gin machines, and types of cotton were conducted to assess their impact on cotton market value and fiber properties after processing with various gin machinery sequences. Bale values ranged from $357.13 for the standard machine sequence to $404.10 for the extractor-feeder/gin stand only sequence for DPL 50 variety cotton. The predominate optimum sequence for the hairy-leaf cottons was stick machine, extractor-feeder/gin stand, and two lint cleaners. The smooth- leaf cottons required fewer cleaning machines to maximize monetary returns and also provided higher returns than hairy-leaf cottons. Short fiber content and neps were dramatically lower when fewer machines and less drying was used. Using fewer machines than the currently recommended machine sequence indicated more profits and resulted in other fiber quality factors that were more desirable than the standard machine sequence. Selecting the optimum machine sequences increased monetary values from $12.22 to $20.85 per bale and averaged $16.72 per bale.