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Which is the way to choose an olive harvester?

Being ready for the olive season means choosing the tools and accessories that will be indispensable for the harvesting operations, for the conservation of the drupes and for the production of oil. The olive growers who decide to take advantage of the opportunities of mechanization, can choose among various types of harvesters, primarily according to the kind of power system. Those who prefer to exploit the power of compressed air, or already have a PTO or an engine-driven compressor, can think of purchasing one of the various pneumatic models, while those who choose an electric tool  want above all to count on a greater freedom of movement during the harvesting sessions.

Regardless of the chosen power-supplying system, the characteristics of the harvesting head make a big difference in the selection of the tool. In fact, the rakes can perform different types of movement and are fitted with teeth of various materials, shapes and lengths.

What are the most important peculiarities to be evaluated during the purchase phase?

The material of the prongs

The evolution of research in the olive sector has made it possible to identify the most suitable materials to produce the harvester teeth, opting for those that guarantee the utmost respect for the foliage of the olive trees, while ensuring an excellent harvest yield.

The techno polymer rakes with long, elastic and interchangeable prongs, such as those mounted on DIABLO 1800 EVO pneumatic harvester, guarantee smooth movements among the branches, even with the thickest foliage.

Models such as STORM or HERCULES 58, on the other hand, have long high-strength carbon teeth, which are perfect for easily penetrating the tree-top, without ever damaging it. For the 2022 season we propose a new harvesting head for IRON, which are fitted with long prongs with a patented semi-diapason design. They are made of techno polymer and have a carbon holder. They are perfect for carrying out the most intensive interventions with the total respect for the plant.

The type of movement

Harvesters make olives detach from the branch by carrying out different types of movement and oscillations.

The first is the opposed movement, that is the vertical open-and-close one, which particularly characterizes pneumatic harvesters. The opposed side movement, like that of STORM, and the vertical opposed movement are also very efficient for intensive operations on olive groves.

Electric harvesters such as HERCULES 58 and HOLLY 58 have been designed, on the other hand, to move between the branches with an elliptical movement, which allows them to easily penetrate among the branches, without damaging or barking them.

ALICE PREMIUM 58 is, on the other hand, the top of the range in the category of the harvesters, since it performs an opposed elliptical movement, a system patented by Campagnola to obtain an excellent yield, limiting leaf fall and accidental damage to the branches.

The shape of the prongs

The shape of the rake teeth can improve the tool harvesting capacity. There are two main categories, namely the long and straight prongs and those in the shape of a tuning fork. Moreover, there is the newly created type of teeth with half-tuning-fork shape, a design patented by Campagnola.

To choose the best shape, as well as to understand which type of movement is the most suitable, it is necessary to carefully evaluate the type of olive trees. For example, well-pruned, polyconic pot-grown olive trees are much easier to work, while bushy plants need harvesting heads with long and particularly resistant teeth, which penetrate the foliage without getting damaged or broken.

The speed of movement

Traditionally, harvesters operate at a speed, which can be different according to the model of the tool and the skill of the operator, but it cannot be changed. The most modern harvesters are, on the other hand, fitted with advanced speed selection systems (expressed in rpm, i.e., rotations per minute), which can be automatic or directly regulated by the user.

Our Campagnola Line 58 olive harvesters, for example, have advanced speed adjustment systems, which allow the operator to choose the one that best suits the degree of ripeness of the olives and the characteristics of the tree top. In fact, they can work at 1080, 1150 or 1180 beats per minute, relying on an electronic speed control.

In addition, they are equipped with an electronic power saver that can automatically slow down the speed of the rakes, when the tool is not among the branches, and then accelerate it, when the rake teeth touch them.

Do you still have doubts about your next harvester?

Contact our Campagnola dealer who is closest to you and ask for personalized advice!

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