The Innovations Shaping the Future of Cotton Harvesting

The Innovations Shaping the Future of Cotton Harvesting

Cotton, a versatile and widely used natural fiber, plays a significant role in today’s textile industry. The process of cotton harvesting has come a long way over centuries, and modern technological advancements have revolutionized how cotton is harvested. From hand-picking to mechanized harvesting, the industry has seen tremendous progress. In this blog, we will explore the various innovations shaping the future of cotton harvesting, focusing on the integration of technology to improve efficiency, reduce labor, and optimize yield.

Mechanization of Cotton Harvesting

The First Cotton Picker

  • In the early 20th century, the first mechanized cotton picker was introduced, easing the burden of hand-picking.
  • The first pickers were rudimentary but paved the way for future innovations.

Spindle Pickers

  • Spindle pickers were developed in the 1940s, representing a significant leap forward in cotton harvesting machinery.
  • Spindle pickers used rows of spindles to pull cotton from the plants, facilitating faster and more efficient harvesting.

Cotton Strippers

  • Cotton strippers emerged as an alternative to spindle pickers in the 1960s.
  •  These harvesters used a series of bats and brushes to strip the cotton from the plants, reducing maintenance by creating a harvester with fewer moving parts to maintain.  These provided an alternative to improve yields in some conditions, helping in dryer areas with shorter cotton plants.


Modern Innovations in Cotton Harvesting

Cotton Module Builders

  • Cotton module builders have become essential in modern cotton harvesting operations.
  • These machines whether stand-alone units on the ground or mounted on newer harvesters, compress cotton into dense modules for efficient transportation and storage.

Precision Agriculture Technologies

  • The integration of precision agriculture technologies has revolutionized cotton harvesting.
  • GPS, sensors, and data analysis tools allow farmers to optimize harvesting by monitoring crop health, growth rates, and yield potential.

Autonomous Cotton Harvesters

  • Much time has been spent trying to build viable autonomous machines to pick cotton.
  • These advanced harvesters utilize artificial intelligence, computer vision, and robotics to navigate fields, identify ripe cotton, and harvest it with precision.


Genetically Modified Cotton Varieties

Bt Cotton

  • Bt cotton is a genetically modified variety that produces a natural insecticide toxic to certain harmful pests.
  • This trait reduces the need for chemical pesticides, improves crop yield, and minimizes the labor required for pest control.

Glyphosate-Resistant Cotton

  • Glyphosate-resistant cotton varieties are genetically modified to tolerate herbicides containing glyphosate.
  • This resistance allows farmers to control weeds more effectively, reducing manual labor and weed management costs.


Challenges and Future Directions

Conservation of Natural Resources

  • Sustainable cotton farming is important to practice for future generations to be able to enjoy an honest day’s work; working to best take care of the ground and resources we’ve been given.

Labor Shortages

  • Labor shortages in cotton harvesting pose a significant challenge for the industry.
  • In the event that autonomous cotton harvesters are produced they potentially could reduce reliance on manual labor and increase operational efficiency.


Contact Us Today

The future of cotton harvesting is being shaped by numerous innovations, combining machinery, genetics, and data-driven technologies. From mechanization to genetically modified varieties and autonomous harvesters, the cotton industry continues to evolve to meet the demands of a growing global market. As we embrace these innovative advancements, it is crucial to prioritize sustainability, and work together to better our lively hood and that of our neighbor.

Look no further than Certi-Pik, USA for all your cotton harvesting needs, including top-quality parts and expert advice. With a vast range of cotton picker parts and a commitment to customer satisfaction, Certi-Pik is your trusted partner in optimizing cotton harvesting operations. Explore our comprehensive part offerings and unlock the potential of your cotton harvest.

Choosing the Right Cotton Harvester for Your Farm

When it comes to harvesting cotton, having the right equipment is crucial. A suitable cotton harvester ensures optimal productivity and helps improve the quality of harvested cotton. With so many options available in the market, selecting the right cotton harvester for your farm can be a daunting task. In this blog, we will walk you through the important factors to consider when choosing a cotton harvester while highlighting the benefits of working with Certi-Pik, a renowned manufacturer of cotton harvester parts.

Understanding the Types of Cotton Harvesters

Before diving into the factors that will aid you in selecting the ideal cotton harvester for your farm, let’s familiarize ourselves with the two main types of cotton harvesters available on the market:

Stripper Harvesters

Stripper harvesters use mechanical beaters to strip the cotton bolls from the plant stalks. An important factor to consider is that more plant bark from the brushing action of the picker head will end up in the cotton, even with the harvested cotton undergoing initial processing inside the harvester with a burr extractor. Stripper harvesters are commonly used in areas where short-staple cotton varieties are grown in lower humidity or dry conditions and may improve yields in fields with a higher presence of cotton pests that may produce sticky cotton. Shorter plants with bolls closer to the ground can be picked more easily by a stripper. A stripper may also harvest better when picking cotton wet from rain where the fibers are matted together.

Picker Harvesters

Picker harvesters, also known as spindle pickers or spindle-type harvesters, are widely used in areas with higher humidity or where taller plants and cotton with longer staple cotton fibers are grown. These harvesters gently remove cotton fibers from the plant using multiple barbed spindles. Spindles, compared to the bats and brushes of a stripper, aid in cleanly picking the longer cotton fibers from the bolls. Pickers pull the cotton out of the burr instead of pulling much of the woody plant into the harvester, ensuring a product with a better grade or minimal plant residue desired by ginners. Some faster harvesting speeds can be achieved with high-yielding cotton because of one factor of not having to deal with the burr extractor in a stripper. Pickers can better pick cotton from taller plants with lots of bolls, and so are a more popular method of harvesting in most cases. In cases of picking shorter staple cotton, the deep scrapping plates designed by Certi-Pik, USA can help grab more of the cotton by utilizing the full length of the spindle.

Now that we have a basic understanding of the types of cotton harvesters, let’s delve into the factors you should consider when choosing one for your farm.

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Cotton Harvester

Farm Size and Layout

One of the primary factors to consider is the size and layout of your farm. Based on your picking conditions or type of cotton, you may find Stripper harvesters or Pickers will cover more ground in a shorter amount of time, making them ideal for your farm. On the other hand, picker harvesters will harvest at faster speeds in higher-yielding cotton, offer more precision, and are better suited for farms with irregular layouts or smaller field sizes. Some farms have both on hand to be able to respond to the best method of the current picking conditions.

Climate and Crop Maturity

The climate conditions and the maturity of your cotton crops are crucial factors to consider. Stripper harvesters are better suited for dry conditions and shorter staple cotton, while picker harvesters are preferable in areas with higher humidity or when harvesting longer staple cotton. In either case, the plants pick best when the cotton is fluffed out compared to rain-damaged cotton and the plant, when mature, has been defoliated. If you experience regrowth in the late season due to moisture reintroduced in your plants, causing them to begin growing again, a stripper might find this more difficult to harvest than a picker.

Labor Availability and Costs

Evaluate the availability of labor and associated costs in your area. Stripper harvesters require less manual labor, using fewer moving parts to harvest the cotton in the header. On the other hand, picker harvesters may require additional labor and maintenance due to a more extensive picking system. As both require ginning, they do differ in the cleanliness of the cotton brought to the gin, the picker bringing in a better grade. Cost considerations include both labor expenses and the initial investment in a cotton harvester, whether leased, purchased, or custom farming is utilized.

Customization and Additional Features

Different cotton harvesters, which have changed vastly over the years, offer various customization options and additional features. Consider your specific requirements, such as the need for row sensing technology, cleaning systems, satellite tracking systems, or just personal comfort. Desired row spacing coupled with varying plant heights in certain agricultural environments can lead to skip row harvesting needs with custom-fabricated Suction Doors from Certi-Pik, USA. Take into account the availability of reliable service and support for any advanced features you opt for.

The Benefits of Choosing Certi-Pik, USA

When it comes to selecting a reliable cotton harvester for your farm, Certi-Pik, USA stands out as a leading manufacturer of cotton harvester replacement parts in the industry. Here’s why you should consider working with Certi-Pik:

Established Reputation

Certi-Pik has been supplying top-quality cotton harvester parts since founded in 1988. With extensive experience and a time-tested reputation, you can trust Certi-Pik to deliver reliable and efficient equipment solutions.

Innovative Technology

Certi-Pik continually invests in research and development to enhance your equipment’s performance. We continually strive to partner with Dealers and Farmers worldwide to produce top quality parts that you need ensuring improved efficiency and precision in harvesting.

Tailored Solutions

Certi-Pik understands that different farms have unique requirements. Striving to produce top-quality parts and innovative solutions for trouble areas in your harvester, we have your best interests in mind. From reasonable pricing to a desire to improve or make new parts that help in your cotton harvest. Our experienced team can help find a solution not considered before, guiding you in choosing the right parts for your harvester.

Comprehensive Support

Certi-Pik prioritizes customer satisfaction and offers comprehensive knowledge we’ve gained over the years. From installation to maintenance and repairs, our team is dedicated to offering the parts you need to help your cotton harvester operate smoothly all year round.

Take the Next Step with Certi-Pik, USA

Now that you have gained valuable insights into choosing the right cotton harvester for your farm, it’s time to take the next step. Browse our website to explore our range of top-quality cotton harvester parts. You can also reach out to our knowledgeable team for personalized guidance in selecting the parts that fit your harvester.
Don’t compromise on the efficiency and productivity of your cotton harvest. Partner with Certi-Pik, USA and experience the difference a reliable and advanced cotton harvester can make for your farm!

Cotton Bale Definition and Production

A cotton bale is defined as being refined cotton, packaged at a particular size, manageable for use by modern production methods. That is to say, a cotton bale is cotton which has been put through a cotton gin (engine) to remove the cotton fiber from seeds or any dirt and grime which may have accumulated in the raw plant during growth and harvest. There are different cotton plants which produce different grades and qualities of refined cotton fiber.

The different types of cotton are used for different projects. Some variations are great for clothing, underwear, t-shirts, or nicer outerwear. Some are better than others in being used to press the seeds for cooking oils. Still others provide structural support for rubber products such as car tires. Regardless of its intended purpose, these bales conform to uniform standards which allow for transport and further manufacturing process needs.

Nominal versus Actual Weight

To provide a direct answer to a direct question, a bale by law weighs 480 lbs. For people using the metric system, that’s 218 kilograms. The 480 figure is nominal, in reality, bales of cotton average a weight of 495 pounds, or 225 kilograms. The extra weight allows for humidity and moisture which may have accumulated to dry out, and to assure the recipient of the product receives what they paid for. Cotton is typically grown in climates which are hot, humid, and generally wet during the growing season, and crops can vary annually based on rainfall during the dry months. Regardless of what might happen on the farm each year, the final product is going to be a bale ready for factory production usage, and it’s going to weigh 480 lbs., or maybe a little more in actual weight.

Cotton Bale Size by Volume

Volume is another consideration of cotton size. Bales are defined by law as being 55 inches long, 21 inches tall, and 33 inches wide. Cotton isn’t a factory-produced iron or plastic, such measurements can’t be guaranteed as absolute, but each bale is going to be within an inch of such measurements to assure efficient packaging and transport. The purpose of baling cotton is to compress it for storage and transport until later use.

Cotton Bale Size

The Worth of Cotton and Pricing

Cotton as an investment can be either risky or profitable, depending on one’s understanding of the market. Farmers seem to understand the market intuitively as if they know what the weather is going to be each season, and grow their crops accordingly. Pricing fluctuates each year according to supply and demand economics. Pricing it at around 80 cents per pound comes out at $384 per bale. That price has been much lower over the past few years, as low as 60 cents per pound, but is expected to jump up over the 2021 and 2022 growth seasons.

It’s a consumer-driven market. When the economy is tight and people aren’t spending, the price of cotton falls. In turn, production falls, until the need for these products exceeds the production levels. Then, the demand for cotton resumes and cotton sales skyrocket as prices go up and farmers strive to meet the demand. The cotton market may be driven by the rules of supply and demand, yet the size of a bale of cotton remains constant as an international standard which defines how much cotton is being purchased at the current rates.

John Deere Cotton Picker 690 FAQ’s

The John Deere CP690 is an extremely popular cotton picker available on the market today. Built, like all John Deere models, to be efficient, powerful, and durable, there are a few places that this model differs from the other equipment that John Deere offers. With that in mind, here are some of the most frequently asked questions around this model.

How Much HP Does the Engine Have on the CP690?

The CP690 uses a 13.5L John Deere Turbocharged Final Tier 4 engine provides 590 maximum horsepower, which is actually 560 standard horsepower with a 30 HP boost system for those times you need a little bit extra to get over rough terrain or come across other difficulties in the field. That amount of power is regulated by a Pro-Drive Automatic Transmission and front to rear traction stability. It harvests cotton at a standard speed of 5.3 mph, or can be switched to transportation mode and drive at 17 mph when moving between fields or back to the barn to drop off the harvest.

What Is the Capacity of the CP690’s Basket?

The CP690 is not a conventional basket style cotton picker. It, like its predecessor the 7760, bundles and wraps the cotton as it conducts the harvest, then drops each module in the field for later collection. As such, it doesn’t have a basket. This system requires each farmer to evaluate what works best for them to determine if this is the ideal machine to suit their needs. It has distinct advantages such as being lightweight, as the picking units have lighter components than older conventional and in-line units, and because of its design, it requires less additional harvesting equipment to process the cotton crop. This is an advantage over earlier machines that required separate module builders. Even with its advantages it still needs a separate machine to collect and potentially load the cotton bales. The system does fully wrap each round module to protect it while it remains in the field at the end of the row awaiting collection. The system is more efficient than traditional basket equipment in that you don’t need to compact the module separately from the picker, it simply might take a little different planning to harvest the cotton and prepare it for shipping.

What Is the Maximum Module Weight of the CP690?

The CP690 produces 4500 to 5500 pound cotton round modules, wrapped eight-foot-wide by 94 inches in diameter. This size bale meets the same specifications to be able to fit in standard module transporting trucks. Gin personnel are going to expect to be able to process the cotton they receive, and with a few modifications to the gin module feeder and machinery needed to break up the bales, from only processing the standard square modules in days past, they are equipped to process the cotton from raw form to a cleaned baled product which is what’s needed for making the end product the consumer will see.

Module Weight Of The Cp690

How Many Modules Can the CP690 Wrap?

The machine’s wrap magazine is able to hold enough wrap to wrap 120 round modules of cotton before reloading the rolls. Because it’s not a conventional basket style machine, the CP690 can bale cotton all day long, according to how much work is expected to be accomplished during a regular work shift. It’s going to bale more cotton than typically expected and produce much less waste, but even so, the cotton Modules which might be scattered around the field do have to be picked up later. Because of the way the CP690’s system works, the picker requires less support labor on the ground to help the machine operator, as the CP690 does the bulk of the work itself. It saves time with the process even with consideration of having to go back through to collect the modules, and it saves labor expense along without having the need to rely on additional people on the ground.

How Many Row Units Does the CP690 Have?

The six row units offer adjustable spacing for different farms and the different breeds grown in various regions which may need wide or narrow rows. Not only are the row units adjustable, but they’re also designed to be easily adjustable by a single person, and they allow for fine tuning to assure the most precise harvest with less waste than may be expected of traditional cotton-picking equipment.

Cp690 Cotton Modules

What Pro Units Are Available for Usage on the Cotton Picker 690?

The CP690 uses the John Deere roller and crank PRO series system which easily moves around the Pro 16 or Pro 12 Series Picking Units. The system is well known for both reliability and versatility, as it is a simple means of conducting the task being built of high-quality parts. The versatility comes from its simple hand crank, which is stored on the picking unit, and wide range of adjustability for different row sizes, whether a specific farm needs to set it once for planting crops in the same row width or if they need to adjust it for different breeds of cotton grown throughout a single season. The variety of cotton needed may change each year according to market demands.

How Large Is the Fuel Tank on the CP690?

In direct terms, the fuel tank holds 370 gallons or 1401 liters of diesel fuel. Additionally, the unit has a 16 gallon, or 61-liter, diesel exhaust fluid (DEF) tank used to mix with the regular fuel in order to reduce air pollution. What those figures mean in real time is there is generally enough fuel to last for an entire day of harvesting, reducing the downtime of having to refuel during the middle of the day or toward the end of a day’s work expectations. The picker was designed with the needs of farmers in mind and was built to maximize performance efficiency.

How Large Is the Water Tank for the Moistener System on the CP690?

The CP690 uses a Quick-Fill system which holds 360 gallons in the water tank to keep the equipment clean throughout the day. Just like the fuel system, the moistener system was designed for the needs of a commercial farmer who needs to spend working hours in the field rather than having to waste time conducting refills. Of course, picking is a messy job, the moistener system keeps the machine clean enough to keep running during the day, but it does need additional cleaning after the harvest is finished. It’s important to know your machine and field conditions to know if your machine needs cleaning more often, so keep a good eye on it.

Do You Need Replacement Parts for your John Deere CP690?

The John Deere CP690 is designed for industrial cotton farming, and like all other professional John Deere equipment, cotton harvesters were engineered with the input of experienced farmers to meet the stringent needs of daily field work. Although it is one of the well-known strongest brands of field equipment, even John Deere machines will require maintenance or repairs from time to time. In such cases, be sure to contact us at Certi-Pik, USA for quality aftermarket parts. By replacing parts with appropriate top-quality parts, you assure your equipment will be properly fixed and ready to continue performing for years to come. Each of our representatives understands the importance of your equipment, and will be happy to discuss your needs and help you make sure to order the right part and offer advice on the repair so you can get back to work as soon as possible with full confidence in your machinery.

John Deere Cotton Picker 7760 FAQ’s

John Deere is known as one of the most famous tractor companies who set the standard for farm equipment, both in terms of how the job gets done and quality of available machinery. They are most commonly known for providing industrial farm equipment, in addition to meeting a homeowner’s residential needs. The John Deere Cotton Picker model 7760 meets all the standards the company is known for. It’s a heavy piece of equipment designed specifically for the rigors of cotton farming.

There are a few common questions people ask, and rightfully so, to determine whether the machine is going to serve the needs of their farm:

How Much HP Does the Engine Have on the CP 7760?

The CP 7760 provides 560 horsepower with a 13.5-liter turbocharged engine. This amount of power is distributed through a four-speed transmission with either two-wheel or four-wheel drive configurations. Such a configuration has proven itself to be more than adequate for cotton farming use in most regular situations, and there are means of upgrading for extraordinary conditions.

What is the Capacity of the CP 7760’s Basket?

The basket is sized for production-based cotton farming and can handle around 2.8 tons of cotton. There are intermediate and full-sized baskets available, and extensions if needed to increase the volume of cotton the machine can transport. This is one of the most modern machines available and was designed with the needs of large-scale commercial farmers in mind while remaining dexterous and agile enough to remain useful on smaller farms which need maximum efficiency from their equipment.

What is the Maximum Module Weight of the CP 7760?

The average weight of a round module of cotton rolled off the harvester is 2.8 tons or 5600 lbs. The John Deere CP 7760 is overbuilt to easily handle the standard module weights or go over when needed. The machine actually has different modes in which it conducts the harvest, transport the crop, gate, and cradle the harvest, and finally wrap the load. The mode is set by the operator as they need to conduct each of the steps throughout the day.

How Many Round Modules Can the CP 7760 Wrap?

The unit is designed to pick and have enough wrap to wrap 120 round modules of cotton before re-stocking the magazine. Each module can be up to 90 inches in diameter by 96 inches wide which is about one fourth smaller in weight than a conventional module which measures 7.5 feet wide, 32 feet long, and around 11 feet high, but can be more desirable as it can maintain about half as much moisture, and can be much more cost effective to get to the gin.


How Many Row Units Does the CP 7760 Have?

The John Deere 7760 is designed to work with 6 rows of cotton. There are adjustments to account for different spacing between rows which can be from as little as 15 inches apart or up to 40 inches. Each row unit uses a 560-spindle system to pick the material while being constantly cleaned by the onboard moistener system.

What Pro Units are available for Usage on the Cotton Picker 7760?

The 7760 is compatible with either the PRO-16 or the PRO-12 VariRow System Picking Units. The final decision depends on the geographic location and therefore the breed of cotton intended to be grown and harvested. It’s always important to keep an open mind when purchasing new farm equipment, as technology has changed and what one person grew up with may not always be the best part for today’s equipment, so definitely discuss the situation with a dealer before determining which option to go with.

How Large is the Fuel Tank on the CP 7760?

The fuel tank holds 350 U.S. Gallons, or 1325 liters. The sheer amount of diesel it holds is relevant to mpg, which isn’t really a factor with this type of machine. To put it in usable terms, it’s consistent with what farmers expect based on other equipment and even similar pickers built by the competition. It’s impossible to predict local terrain conditions or how much fuel individual operators are going to use, other than you can plan on the fuel lasting as long or longer than you might expect based on experience with other machinery which conducts cotton harvesting.

How Large is the Water Tank for the Moistener System on the CP 7760?

The water tank for the moistener system holds 360 U.S. Gallons. Traditionally the tank used oil-based cleaner for the picker’s spindles, the modern standard has moved towards using a specifically designated soap with water. The 360-gallon tank is typically enough for a day’s worth of operation. The moistener system keep the machine running through the day, but just like other equipment used when harvesting cotton, the spindles are going to require a full cleaning each evening after the work is finished. A fully self-cleaning picker has yet to be invented, the fact is cotton harvesting equipment requires lots of lubrication and so can be messy to operate, so there’s no simple way around having to clean equipment after use.

Cp 7760 Water Tank

Contact Us at Certi-Pik, USA, for Quality Replacement Parts for You Cotton Harvesting Equipment

At Certi-Pik, we specialize in selling aftermarket parts for farm equipment, cotton harvester parts to be specific. You’ll find our representatives to be knowledgeable and experienced, prepared to meet your needs. If you already know what part you need, we’re here to get it ordered and shipped to you, if you aren’t sure, we can discuss your equipment’s failure and symptoms to help determine what the problem might be.

We’re available via direct phone call or through email at our website, whichever method you prefer. We understand how downtime affects both small and commercial farmers, especially during the planting and harvesting seasons, and therefore make it a point to provide service as quickly as possible on all orders. If your equipment is having trouble, we’ll do everything possible to get you back up and running, so you can continue to do the valuable job you provide to our country.