Bean Fest 3: The Threshening is a workshop demonstrating results of our 2015 Specialty Crop Block Grant funded by the Hawai‘i Department of Agriculture.
Our third Specialty Crop Block Grant workshop was held on February 19, 2017. We hosted 15 participants at Counter Culture Farm to demonstrate the mechanical thresher in operation; to educate attendees on post-harvest issues and concerns regarding threshing; to demonstrate hand methods for final winnowing and sifting; and, of course, to have a bean potluck!
A great local company, Agrefab, fabricated our thresher was fabricated from a donated chipper-shredder using these plans as a basis. (See the bottom of this post for more thresher resources.) After a few design iterations of the thresher with Kevin from Agrefab, we finalized on a design that was on a trailer for portability and ability to share among O‘ahu farmers, with some basic winnowing (to separate lightweight chaff from heavier beans). There are some further improvements we’d like to make, namely a larger hopper area to queue up more plant material to be shoved into the threshing chamber and an adjustable exhaust ramp to control how many beans vs. chaff get blown out the back.
Counter Culture’s Top 5 BEAN VARIETIES
Of the 10 varieties we trialled in the 2016 replicated trial, we recommend local Hawai‘i farmers experiment with the following five bean varieties based on yield, growth habit, taste, and threshability:
- Beniquez (purchase soon from Hawaii Seed Growers Network)
- Grey Speckled Palapye Cowpea (purchase now from Adaptive Seeds)
- Six Nations (purchase now from Resilient Seeds)
- SBDT-1 (purchase soon from Hawaii Seed Growers Network)
- Mayo Coba (purchase soon from Hawaii Seed Growers Network)
- Home-Built Threshing Machine Building Instructions
- W.S.U. Small-scale Bean Harvesting has a chipper/shredder thresher design and seed cleaner design
- Design ideas from Tanzania (view on YouTube)
- U.C. Davis Convert Shredder to Thresher
- YouTube Converted Shredder-Thresher
- E.F.N. Small-scale Equipment Designs