How does a combine harvester work?

A combine harvester harvests different crops automatically. Prior to the invention of combines, farmers had to not only cut down plants (such as wheat), but also separate the edible portion of the blant by threshing, and clean debris to make the seeds suitable for milling as well. The combine harvester does all of this.

Below is an overview of how combine harvesting works, along with information on the combine harvester.

What is a combine harvester?

Combine harvesters (or simply “combine”) are a key piece of harvesting equipment for harvesting a number of different grain crops. Popular crops that combines are able to harvest include wheat, barley, corn, and soybeans.

The name “combine” comes from combining the three functions of harvesting. Reaping, which is the cutting of the various plants, threshing - cutting the edible part of the plants from the straw, and winnowing, which involves separating the chaff from the grain. After this process, the grain is moved into the grain tank.

Prior to the invention of the combine harvester, all three of these processes had to be done separately. The invention of the combine was extremely significant in that it saved hours upon hours of manual labor.

What is the process of the combine harvester?

The inside of the combine harvester includes parts like augers, blades, gears, and levelers. The combine header is the attachment at the front of the combine, which takes care of the reaping process and cuts the plant from the ground and moves it to the combine harvester.

A spinning auger takes grain towards the center of the combine harvester and up the conveyor and into the threshing drum, where the threshing process breaks grain away from the plant. The separated grain goes into the grain tank, while the unwanted parts of the plant move to the back of the combine.

The auger takes the grain from the tank and into the cart or truck so it can be taken from the harvesting area.

The straw chopper chops the residue into small pieces as it’s spread across the field.

Who invented the combine harvester?

Hiram Moore, of Kalamazoo, Mich. built and patented the first combine harvester in 1835. The first harvester that Moore built was handled by farmhands and horses. Combines have evolved to being powered by steam engines and tractors up to the current diesel-powered models.

Combine Headers

Combine harvesters are equipped with a header used for harvesting specific crops. These are removable, and cut and separate the crops from the field. Common platform heads include grain headers, auger headers, draper headers, and corn headers.

Grain headers are used for wheat and grain crops, while corn headers are used for corn and other row crops such as soybeans.

Draper headers are also used for wheat and grain crops. Auger headers are an alternative to draper headers.

How much does a combine harvester cost?

The combine harvester listings on Fastline include popular combine harvester brands such as John Deere, Case IH and Gleaner.

The combine harvester listings on Fastline include popular combine harvester brands such as John Deere, Case IH and Gleaner.

Costs of the combine harvester can go anywhere from around $50,000 to around $700,000 for 2022 models.