Tuesday, November 30, 2010


There is an auction tomorrow I would like to attend. There is always a story behind a farm auction. By farm auction I mean machinery, not real estate.

At least half the auctions are sad stories. This one is. The dad was a real good farmer but died at my age of a heart attack. The son took over and couldn't make it so now all the chattels are being sold.

The next door neighbor was one of my students and also died suddenly at 53. That community has been hard hit.

There are three pieces which would add to our versatility here. A 1955 Oliver tractor, a Gleaner R-72 and a Rogator crop sprayer.
The 1955 would pull a notill drill to get the little fields or patch bigger fields. The R-72 is the same size as the R-75 but a little older but could be bought cheaper than renting a second combine.

Those combines are still bringing around the $100,000 area as a replacement is closer to $400,000.

That tractor is what I would call a classic tractor, over 30 years old. Still it would be new to me. They are selling for 5-10 thousand dollars but this one needs up to 5 grand of work in the transmission so I wouldn't want to bid over $5000 for it even though it is a good tractor in good condition other than the tranny.

That Waukesha engine is known for spitting connecting rods out the side and there goes another five grand if it does. Some of us know how to prevent that but many don't.

My brother traded my 2-70 White I had sold to him and dad and they got a 1955 in the deal. The first day dad was spreading manure on the 27 acre field by White Oak Creek it spit a rod out the side that went several hundred feet. That tractor is still on the old farm but it has never been the same.

The Rogator would make the most money spraying our own crops as much as possible. The entry level would be so much cheaper than buying newer. Tractorhouse has these sprayers selling in the $50,000 ballpark.

I like going to auctions but not when I am bidding on big ticket items as someone always wants to talk when you are in the middle of a thinking process and you hate to be rude but if you don't pay attention, you will be on the wrong side of the deal.

I guess auctions aren't the best places to buy big ticket items.



  1. I used to spend a lot of time at auctions when we had a local auction company. It is amazing the deals I have seen. I always sat out the big ticket items.
    It always seemed like I'd run into some old plugger who would have a story right when the item I wanted was up for bid.

  2. So true that farm auctions are great places for visiting. Unless you go many miles from home where you don't know anybody. And then its too far to transport anything big home.
    Next spring will mark 40 years since I went to my first farm auction sale. Good entertainment and a few good deals too. Nowadays I mostly attend to take pictures to show off all the good deals I passed up.

  3. Thanks for your comments. You two are an inspiration to me if you didn't know it. I think I should add a LOL for our readers but it is really true. I think we are all in pretty much the same camp. I went over the checkbook and yes we are in the plus Thank God but about the time I buy something, there comes that big bill!

  4. I think my best auction deal was in about 1991 when I got a MM G706 at a consignment sale for $1400. It needs a clutch now but have been using it ever since. Still running our $1100 garage sale combine, but we only do 2-300 acres.

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