What Is a Cotton Picker Spindle and Why Is It So Important?

As you would when you own any large piece of machinery, the best way to ensure you are using, cleaning and maintaining your cotton picker spindle properly is to have a basic idea of its function and mechanics. Having this understanding will also come in handy when you go to purchase replacement parts from a reputable source, like Certi-Pik, USA, as well as when your equipment requires regular care and maintenance. Being familiar with this harvester part helps you avoid unplanned downtime due to repair needs.

With this in mind, let’s take a closer look at cotton picker spindles, and clarify why regular maintenance is such an important part of owning cotton picking equipment.

What spindles are

The cotton picker spindle is one of the most essential parts to your harvesting machine, and therefore requires individual attention when it’s time for cleaning and maintenance work. Additionally, since the good condition of the spindles can better guarantee operational efficiency during harvest, regular inspections are recommended.

Spindles are not unique to cotton harvesters, as they are used in other machinery such as milling equipment and drill presses. But, as a tool for a harvester, they are made to rotate on an axis at very high speeds as a method of removing seeds from the picked cotton plants. In the past, the seeds were removed by hand, which took a significant amount of time to accomplish, making the cotton spindle a seriously time saving invention.

The cotton picker spindle has not change much since its creation. What has changed is the understanding of the importance of parts maintenance for long life and a superior harvest. For instance, you can tell there is a problem with the spindle when the cotton that gets picked is not usable or there is damage to the plants. If your spindles are properly maintained, they can last for years, so make sure preventative maintenance starts the day you get a new harvester.

Before and after harvest

As mentioned above, maintenance of your cotton picker spindles is an important step to prevent damage to cotton crops during harvest and to ensure a long machine lifespan. Check the spindles before harvest, and perform maintenance afterwards:

  • Before and during picking: A part of maintenance is to check the condition of the spindles regularly during the harvest season. Inspect them before picking, and then check for damage or needed adjustments throughout harvest time. Also, check other harvester parts that contribute to the function of the spindles—such as the moistener pads, bushings, doffers and cam track—for wear, damage and debris buildup.
  • After a harvest: You may be able to feel or sense there is something wrong with your harvester while it’s in action. Once the machine has cooled, check for broken parts or wear and tear. The spindles will also need cleaning after every harvest, especially since any green plants that touch the spindles could result in a jam.

Proper preventative maintenance of picker spindles and other harvester parts is the key to a successful and lucrative cotton harvest. Call the team at Certi-Pik, USA to find cotton harvester replacement parts, including cotton picker spindles, drumheads and slip clutches.