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In almond harvesting, the star of the show is the mechanical shaker, a machine that grabs the trunk of the tree to knock off all the nuts. The almonds, still inside their shell and hull, are left on the ground to dry naturally.
Then the real work begins.
In Central California, almond season typically runs from July through late October. Harvesters work around the clock in the hottest, driest time of year.
The Jackrunner from JackRabbit in Ripon, Calif., helps shuttle nuts out of orchards quickly and efficiently. The low-slung truck slips in behind the harvesting machine and, with both vehicles moving in tandem, transfers up to 7,000 pounds of almonds into its dump bed. The operator then swivels his seat 180 degrees, shifts gears, and peels away in the opposite direction to offload.
The Jackrunner’s small cab interior is typical of vehicles designed for almond groves, olive groves, and other orchard operations, says JackRabbit’s Dusty Boothe.
“They’re built low to the ground to reduce the risk of the vehicle knocking off tree limbs,” he explains. “As a result, the cabs are compact. The trouble is, it’s hard to find effective cooling in a compact package. Factor in the long hours, the high temperatures, the dust, and the abuse that comes from every bump, hole, or tree limb—well, it’s a demanding environment.”
Red Dot’s R-2300 ductable heater-A/C unit is a great solution, says Boothe. Available in 12- and 12-volt models, it produces 17,700 Btu of cooling and can be mounted on the floor, ceiling, or under the dash. Optional air outlets allow the air to be ducted wherever it’s required.
Combined with a R-9720 remote-mount condenser, the R-2300 gives the customer a tough, reliable, high-performance unit that’s easy to install and maintain. The R-9720 mounts on any horizontal surface or can be hung below a roof or floor panel. It opens up on a piano hinge without requiring tools, making it easy to access the coils.
“If you have blow dust out of there two or three times a day you want that job to be as simple as possible,” Boothe says. “That’s the difference with Red Dot units. They’re built for uptime, and that means everything to our customers. When the A/C isn’t working, the vehicle stops. Their Red Dot units keep them going.”