Elaine: Leave them
Aruna: Let them get all leathery. The pods are big, but you want the seeds to grow.
Meg: How long does it take for the beans to ripen? Maybe someone can post a pic of a mature pod so that we know when to harvest. I've got beans too!
Aruna: This is what I found online.
Zoe: I've never grown these beans before but I've grown other beans for seed and what I did was let the pods ripen on the vine until the skin of the pod got thin and leathery, and the plant was withering/nearly dead. Then I harvested the whole plant and hung up the plant, with the pods on it, in a dry warm-ish place, to finish drying completely--to avoid rotting, don't put them in the cellar but on the porch instead. If a hard frost threatened (ie, something that warranted more than throwing a blanket over the plants overnight) but the beans weren't completely ready, I harvested them anyway and just let them dry.
Meg: Thanks for all of the info. Will do!
Neal: You can leave the pods on as long as possible to cold weather baring and rainy periods. If they see sort of crispy and it's going to be cold and wet then pull the whole plant with pods on and let finish drying in attic or garage hanging upside down.
Cathy: Can't believe we're talking about harvest already.