Friday, May 24, 2013

Potato Harvester

Potato harvest was one time my father would hire labor (often migrant.)  The harvester would pull the potatoes out of the ground, and then send them down a chute which was made by a series of rods which would go around. 
These rods would carry the potatoes, while letting the dirt fall.  There was a place for several people to stand, and the would pick out the things that were not potatoes, rocks and clods.  One time someone was injured on this machine; I think it grabbed his finger.  There was also a time a rock was thrown that struck my father in the back.  I am not sure if it was the same machine.  Here is a description of a potato harvester from Wikipedia:
Potato harvesters are machines that harvest potatoes. They work by lifting the potatoes from the bed using a share. Soil and crop are transferred onto a series of webs where the loose soil is sieved out. The potatoes are moved towards the back of the harvester on to a separation unit and then (on manned machines) to a picking table where a people pick out by hand the stones, clods, haulm and reject clod. The potatoes then go on to a side elevator and into a trailer or a potato box.  (Wikipedia)

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