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October 2, 2010 | Vineyard | OS VINE

Our First Machine Harvest!

Our first machine harvest was done on the Roussanne planted in 2008. It was a beautiful sunny day for a harvest and we got a total of 15.5 tons of grapes from 2.3 acres of third leaf vines. Family and friends gathered for the event. We really appreciate all the support!

Our First Machine Harvest - Roussanne grapes on the vine.

The Harvester

The harvester is a very ominous piece of machinery. First I will give a quick summary of how it works and then individual pictures of some of the workings. The harvester straddles the vine row and has bows that vibrate the vines. As the vines vibrate, the grapes fall off into buckets on the harvester. These buckets then carry the grapes to either the chase trailer or the gondola. These are dumped to fill bins which are then trucked to the winery. In this case, most went to a local winery where they were crushed and pressed. The juice will be shipped to the final destination winery.

Our First Machine Harvest - The harvester we used to harvest. It is a rented Braud.

Unloading on the Go

As the harvester works its way up the rows it dumps into the chase trailer you can see positioned a couple of rows away.

Our First Machine Harvest - The set up.

The arm, stretching out the side of the harvester, across 2 rows, is like a conveyor belt carrying the berries bin on the chase trailer.

Our First Machine Harvest - Unloading the grapes on the go.

Unloading the On-Board Bin

Once the chase trailer's bin was filled and while it was being transported to the truck, the harvester filled the gondola. Once the gondola is filled, it is dumped into a bin.

Our First Machine Harvest - Unloading the on board bins.

The gondola is a large tank on the side of the harvester. You can see it on the left side of the harvester in the first picture - the large silver tank. Inside the gondola is an auger which works to disperse the grapes evenly inside the gondola.

The off white, cone shaped pieces that you see are the "buckets" that  carry the berries and juice to the top of the harvester where they fill into either the gondola or the chase trailer. This is selected by the driver of the harvester, who in this case is our oldest son.

As I said earlier, it can be an ominous piece of equipment. Here it comes - get out of the way!

Our First Machine Harvest - Harvester coming down the row.

Actually, I guess I was exaggerating, it is giving rides!

That's a Wrap

All in all it was a wonderful harvest. And now for the rest of the story...

There is a reason that my daughter is taking pictures while eating grapes (multi tasking). I am at home sick in bed during the whole harvest. That's right - I missed our very first machine harvest! Thankfully, a lot of pictures were taken so it is almost as if I were there, almost.

For more harvest posts, check out the links below!

Pellenc 4560 Grape Harvester

Roussanne Harvest 2020

Montepulciano Harvest 2020


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