15 January 2016

Farm Equipment Disposal

Welcome back. Do you need any farm equipment? I mean old, used farm equipment. Last summer, Vicki, Cam and Muns started wondering why they were keeping equipment, pipes, posts and, well, stuff that hasn’t been used for years, which they couldn’t envision using. Thus began their disposal process.


The farmhouse and adjacent
garage apartment.
Seconds after my wife, Vicki, retired in 2012, an incredibly powerful tractor beam, emanating from her family’s farm in Wisconsin, locked in on her. Resistance, of course, was futile, and we now live in an apartment over a garage in a former barn, adjacent to the farmhouse where Vicki’s father, Muns, resides. The two buildings have stood for perhaps 150 years, and Muns has lived here all his life. 

Lower level of barn where
contented cows once lined up
for milking twice a day.
The farm was once dairy with some 160 cows kept content by Muns, my late mother-in-law Shirley, a helper and a series of proud bulls, replaced by artificial insemination. In the 1980s, they sold off the herd and switched entirely to field crops. When Shirley passed away in 1997, Muns retired from active farming, sold much of the larger equipment and began renting out land with grain bins for others to farm with their own equipment.

Vicki and Muns needed the lift
to replace the windsock for the
farm’s grass airstrip.
Although some equipment is kept at the ready for farm maintenance, the unused equipment and sundries were stowed pretty much everywhere.

Taking Inventory and Craigslist

Vicki and her sister, Cam, hauled multiple pickup-truck loads of scrap metal to the local salvage yard. But the heavy lifting began when conversation with knowledgeable friends suggested that functioning or interesting equipment could possibly be sold on Craigslist. That would at least save trips to the salvage yard, which would be no mean feat with the bigger equipment.

They began a systematic inventory, making lists, reading name plates, taking photos, consulting Muns if they had no idea what they were looking at or what it was called, and collecting information about each item’s value and price. Muns’s approval was sought before adding any major item to the dispose-of list.

Given my vast experience with Craigslist (Selling the Car), Vicki knew better than to seek my assistance, though she did allow me to tweak the first round of photos. Since equipment in many of those photos was subsequently re-photographed after being spruced up or moved to a less cluttered setting, most of the photos I tweaked didn’t make it to Craigslist. I was shattered.

Enough chit-chat. Let me show you examples of the 20 or so items that are or were for sale, even if the photos never made it to Craigslist.

Items on Dispose-of List

A motor scooter sold as soon as it was spotted by the Saturday coffee klatch attendees (Saturday Coffee Hour). Two Yamaha 100s motorcycles remain.
It’s a long story, but Muns had acquired pieces of a Farmall-C tractor. That sold quickly.
An old plow also went quickly.
You’re too late if you’re after a double-screen grain cleaner.
Someone expressed interest in the 4-ton fertilizer spreader, but he wasn’t prepared to patch a hole.
How about an 8-foot Hansen snow blower? (Not the tractor in back.)
Maybe you’d like a gravity box hay mower.
This John Deere flight elevator is still available.
Wrap Up

Since Muns won’t be flying again, they also decided to start selling the aircraft. It didn’t take long for the homebuilt RV-8 to find a new home. And making everyone happy, the fellow who worked long and hard to complete the Wittman Buttercup (Building a Buttercup (Airplane), Wittman Buttercup Addendum)
took ownership of the plane and got it approved by the FAA.

The Pitts Special aircraft, in front, and the Cessna 182, in back on right, are still in the hangar, but the RV-8, whose tail is visible in back on the left is gone.
Wittman Buttercup taking off from the grass airstrip (From youtu.be/GEYorWQOp1M)
Vicki and Cam continue to remove and add items and may take a whack at the farmhouse attic treasures. If you’re interested in the current list, email me and I’ll pass it to Vicki. (I won’t vouch for any photos she might send you.) Thanks for stopping by.

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