Tuesday, March 03, 2009

"Oh for Two", or "How Not to Buy a Tractor"

That is my score right now when it comes to finding a tractor. Of course I have been looking for another Farmall 450 or at least a good complete engine, but so far I have yet to find any that I can look at right now or that fit my bill. In the meantime I decided to look at a few other tractors. Specifically I wanted to look at tractors that I could buy and use some of the stuff from the 450 if I wanted/needed to. I'm talking about swapping over my brand new tires, the three-point hitch, the wide front end, or even the loader.

My most recent tractor search took me to a very nice looking Farmall 560 that had a narrow front end and a loader. I drove the tractor and really liked everything about it (except there was a little hydraulic leak up front). The only problem is that with all of the projects we have coming up (plus the need of a new washing machine) and taking into account the problems I have already had I was a little gunshy and didn't buy right away.

I looked at the tractor on Saturday and by Sunday evening I decided that it was a good enough deal and something that would work great for our farm. So, I called up the guy ready to tell him I wanted to buy ... except someone had already decided to buy it earlier that day. Yep, I was a bit disappointed.

As soon as I got off the phone Sunday night I started scouring TractorHouse.com, TractorShed.com, and IronSearch.com (this was like the 400th time I had scoured those sites). In those searches I came across another 560 with a loader and a wide front. It seems like this tractor had been listed forever as I had come across it quite a few times, but I thought I would go ahead and try and find out more about it.

Since I didn't figure the dealer was open at the time I sent an e-mail. After not hearing back all day I decided to call in the late afternoon. Yep, you guessed it ... sold that day (pending pick-up)! I couldn't believe it...

Now we are back to square one ... last evening I searched those same sites again looking for tractors within a 250 mile radius. I didn't really come across anything in our price range, so I guess I'm going to keep looking.

On the plus side, I did find some large round bales of grass/alfalfa and I'm off with a friend from church to pick them up today. Sorry for the rambling post, but just thought I would give a little farm update.


Jean said...

My dearest attended tractor rescue training last weekend. Think of tractors tipping over the wrong way and how to rescue trapped person(s) without adding more to injuries and 'zero' dangers to people helping. My dearest said that narrow front is most dangerous. So, if you have hilly land- consider wide front. Extra bonus would be safety bar (required for new tractors) and it is effective only if you also wear seat belt.

BlueGate said...

I second Jean's warning...especially since you are wanting to utilize a loader. Be very wary of narrow fronts. They are just not a safe combination.

Ethan Book said...

I am with you both. A narrow front end is not an option on our farm. That is why I was looking at tractors that I could put the wide front onto that I already have.

We have to many hills to be bouncing around with a narrow front end!

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