Whole Leaf Tobacco

New System for Stringing

istanbulin

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Although there're few stringing machines (manual or electric powered) a Turkish company invented a new machine for stringing tobacco leaves. It does not require any type of yarn and does not work with needles, it just uses air to fill the leaves into a netted tube. Just wilt the leaves after filling into the tube and hang it outside under sun (I wish it was as simple as written).

It works faster and does not require too much work, this is probably why farmers started to buy it. It's for sure that this machine lowers the labor costs. We'll see how it turns out, quality of the sun cured leaves is more important.

Although machine is brand new, the company already started to export it to other Oriental tobacco growing countries like Macedonia and Greece.


rsz_dizimmakine_01.jpg
Conventional stringing machine (manual).



New machine


This video shows the working principle of the machine.




1.jpg
Wilted green leaves in the shade are ready for sun curing.

2.jpg
Hanged tubes under a plastic covering.

3.jpg
Here's the result. Leaves look good to me.

Company info
 

leverhead

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Knucklehead has been holding out on us, he's been using bud bags to do something similar. It's a pretty slick way of doing it if it works well. I wonder how hard it is to get the leaves out of the tube after curing.
 

istanbulin

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Knucklehead has been holding out on us, he's been using bud bags to do something similar. It's a pretty slick way of doing it if it works well. I wonder how hard it is to get the leaves out of the tube after curing.
Yes, he's a wise guy.

Actually I was not planning to add the "taking out" video but as you asked here it is. Easier than the old method.


There're many green-tinged leaves in it. They're probably lower leaves (first primings) but it may also be because of premature priming or just because of the light.

Actually some varieties cure to a green-tinged color e.g. İzmir but the company says this is just a random video for showing how to take out the leaves, a tutorial.
 

leverhead

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That looks fast enough, just a piece of drain pipe. The reverse process, but vertical, would work for filling the tube with small quantities without a blower.
 

pacman

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That's great and appears to be efficient. Sliding that plastic netting on a plastic tube is creating a static electrical charge causing the leafs to fly around. If they ground the pipe out with some copper mesh it may stop most of that. Also if they had a device that could be mounted above that tube like a baseball pitching machine, something with 2 rubber wheels that when put in contact with the mesh over pipe would roll that mesh back at a moderate speed. It may throw the leafs out a bit further into a container. All in all that appears to be a great setup they've got going!!!
 

ne3go

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Although looks like a simpler system, the leaves in the center of the tube don't take any solar rays. Maybe that's explain the green leaves in second video.
 

istanbulin

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pacman, the company's website says that netting is 100% cotton so it's hard to produce static electricity.

ne3go, I watched the video few more times after your comment. I believe most of them look green because of the light conditions where video was taken. Before the leaves fall into the box they look normal but when they fall into the box they start to look green. I might be wrong, ideas are welcome. On the other hand, if it's because of not getting sun light I'd expect more darker (reddish brown etc.) leaves. Furthermore, as you know solar radiation has various electromagnetic spectrums so some of them may still help to heat up the leaves. Actually, non of the sun curing setup provides 99,9% effective solar energy usage, most of the leaves don't get direct sunlight completely but they're heated up by sun - plastic coverings also help to retain and increase the heat.
This machine is new so there's limited amount of knowledge about the results. Farmers have the last word, we'll see if they'll be satisfied with the results or not.
 

forumdotabaco

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This technique as everything to be the future, less hand work, they are protected from wind, and the can even join a rotation system to the nets
 

ne3go

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istanbulin you're right that in stringing method, a part of the leaf is covered by the others and don't get direct sunlight.The sun movement, maybe makes this part bigger.
Maybe the net-system is doing exactly the same work.It's just difficult for me to understand "sun-cure", with leaves in almost dark covered by others.;)
 

deluxestogie

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ne3go, try holding 4 or 5 thin Oriental leaves up to the sun. Some light goes through.

Once leaf has yellowed, the main task of sun and wind is to rapidly dry the leaves. The sun-curing process is not as efficient as flue-curing--and many Oriental types don't come out well in the high heat of a flue-cure, but it is much more efficient at rapidly drying the leaf than hanging in a shaded shed.

Bob
 

DGBAMA

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In a dry climate it seems this method could improve consistency of curing. In more humid regions, would be a recipe for compost.
 

BarG

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I'm thinking you could probably compress the entire tube and smoke it like a cigar! It might take 3 weeks to smoke though.
Or hook it to a hookah.
You have to imagine the labor involved for a small leaf and price per lb.
Any labor saving could mean the difference between getting ahead or a swift kick in the ass.
 

ProfessorPangloss

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Or hook it to a hookah.
You have to imagine the labor involved for a small leaf and price per lb.
Any labor saving could mean the difference between getting ahead or a swift kick in the ass.
and this will make it possible for some of the small farmers who grow our leaf to turn up production. I suspect a win for end consumers as well.
 
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