Submitted to: Internet Web Page
Publication Type: Other
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/1/2010
Publication Date: 8/26/2010
Publication URL: http://www.cottoninc.com/Cotton-Harvest-Systems/
Citation: Wanjura, J.D., Faulkner, W.B., Boman, R.K., Kelley, M.S., Brashears, A.D., Barnes, E.M., Searcy, S.W., Willcutt, H.M., Buschermohle, M.J. 2010. Stripper harvesting. Internet Web Page hosted by Cotton Incorporated. Available: http://www.cottoninc.com/Cotton-Harvest-Systems/. Interpretive Summary: Cotton produced in the Southern High Plains of the United States is predominately harvested using cotton strippers. Stripper harvesters use an indiscriminate action to gather seed cotton and other undesirable plant material during harvest. Compared to picker type cotton harvesters, cotton strippers are much less mechanically complex machines but provide a cost effective means of harvest for farmers with crops characterized by short plant heights, tight or "storm-proof" boll conformations, and relatively low yields. This manuscript details the development of the modern brush-roll cotton stripper and discusses pre-season configuration and maintenance procedures and in-season operating practices for maximizing productivity. This information will be disseminated to farmers, researchers, and other agriculturalists through web-based media. This work will provide timely information to producers looking to maximize harvesting productivity and cotton quality through the use of stripper harvesters.
Technical Abstract: Cotton produced in the High Plains of Texas, Oklahoma, and Kansas and the Blackland, Coastal bend, and Rolling Plains regions of Texas is harvested using brush roll stripper type harvesters. These machines were developed to harvest cotton characterized by low yield, tight boll conformation, and short plant height. Initially, two harvester designs were developed that used the stripping method to harvest cotton: the finger stripper and the brush-roll stripper. Finger strippers were developed to harvest cotton planted on broadcast or narrowly spaced row patterns while the brush-roll stripper was developed to harvest cotton planted on wider spaced row patterns. Over time, the brush-roll stripper gained wide-spread acceptance as farming practices favored cultural practices with plants grown on rows spaced 30 to 40 in apart. The performance of brush-roll stripper harvesters, with regard to field productivity, harvest efficiency, and harvested cotton quality, is influenced by factors such as pre-harvest crop management, travel speed, machine loading, brush-roll configuration, field cleaner configuration, and air system operation. This work will provide timely information to producers looking to optimize economic returns from stripper-harvested cotton in the U.S.