Submitted to: National Cotton Council Beltwide Cotton Conference
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/5/2000
Publication Date: 6/30/2000
Interpretive Summary: Seed damage and subsequent seedcoat-fragment generation as well as seed loss into saw ginned cotton fiber is a serious problem with newer, small- seeded cotton varieties. Research has been started to determine if the saw gin stand can be modified to reduce seed damage and seed loss during the ginning operation. Experimental saw guides attached to the gin ribs and made from ultra-high molecular weight (UHMW) plastic have been developed and tested. These guides hold each gin saw in the center of its operational space and do not allow the saw to wobble from side-to-side. Ginning tests of these guides show that their use significantly reduces seed damage from an average of 8.3 pct down to 5.4 pct. Also, the guides, significantly increased gin turnout and improved raw fiber length characteristics when compared to the standard gin rib. This decreased seed damage and improved fiber length characteristics resulted in yarn that was significantly higher in strength, evenness, and appearance. There was no apparent wear of the plastic guides during laboratory tests, but further long-term durability tests will have to be done in a commercial cotton gin.
Technical Abstract: Seed loss and seedcoat-fragment generation and contamination of ginned lint during the ginning process can be a problem with newer, small-seeded cotton varieties. Excessive seed loss means a loss of a valuable gin product. Also, seedcoats in ginned fiber cause textile quality problems during the spinning and weaving process. Tests were conducted on a method of holding the gin saws in the middle of the gap between the ginning ribs and its effect on seed damage and seedcoat-fragment generation. Results indicated that the experimental saw guides significantly reduced seed damage. The guides also decreased the level of seedcoats in the ginned fiber, as indicated by significantly higher quality yarn for the experimental method. Other benefits of the guides included a higher gin turnout and longer fiber. Further tests will be done to further improve and understand the somewhat complex interaction of gin saws, saw guides, and cottonseed at the eginning point.