Manual transplanting, a pre-dominant practice in almost all the paddy growing areas in India, is laborious, burdensome, and has many expenses on raising, settling, and transplanting nursery. The transplanting process’s limitations motivated the replacement of conventional paddy transplanting methods. The study was divided into two phases. The first phase included laboratory testing of three levels of metering mechanisms, namely cell type (M1) with 10 cells grooved around a circular plate having a 13 cm diameter, inclined plate (M2) containing 24 U shaped cells provided on an 18 cm diameter plate, and fluted roller (M3) with 10 flutes on a 5 cm diameter shaft. The testing matrix included a missing index, multiple index, and seed damage with forward speeds (2.5, 3.0, and 3.5 km/h), and pre-germination levels of 24 h soaked (P1), 24 h pre-germinated (P2), and 36 h pre-germinated paddy seeds (P3)). The second phase included selecting the best combination obtained from the laboratory study and developing a new efficient planter for the puddled field. The inclined plate metering mechanism operating at 2.5 km/h for 24 h pre-germinated seeds was reported most efficient from the first phase. Therefore, a self-propelled 8-row planter equipped with an inclined plate metering mechanism having a row-to-row spacing of 22.5 cm was developed, fabricated, and evaluated in the puddled field. The designed planter was assessed on two different soils: sandy loom (ST1) and clay loom (ST2) and at two different hopper fill levels as ½ filled hopper (F1) and ¾ filled hopper (F2). The number of plants per square meter and hill-to-hill spacing was measured. The on-field evaluation revealed that the number of plants per square meter was non-significantly affected by the type of soil but was significantly affected by hopper fill.
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