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Machinery Pete: Shopping for a used 16-row planter

Agriculture.com Staff 02/09/2016 @ 8:42pm

It's basketball tournament time of year again. March Madness.

In the used farm equipment market, March Madness applies just as well as it does for hoops. Tons of auctions, both farm sales and larger consignment auctions crammed into the next three weeks across much of the country.

I think a piece of basketball advice given decades ago by a youth coach, "Keep your head on a swivel," can be just as relevant if not more so for folks in the market to buy or sell equipment this month. In basketball terms, keeping my noggin on a swivel meant setting up screens so the guy I was guarding didn’t break free for a layup. Concerning buying or selling equipment, keeping your head on a swivel means looking forward while keeping an eye on the recent past.

Let me explain.

A week from tomorrow (March 17, 2006) on a large consignment auction in Annawan, Illinois, a White 6180 16-row narrow planter is up for sale. It has insecticide, Keaton seed firmers and a DM 3000 monitor.

Ok, there you go, you've been looking for a 16-row White 6180 planter for months now. Here's a good opportunity. Only one problem: what's it worth?

Time to swivel your focus backward to look for recent comparable sale prices, giving you an informed opinion of the current market value. This is where I really become a big fan of what technology can do for us. With a simple click in our Web site, I can shift from looking at White 6180 planters available for sale on upcoming auctions, to viewing auction sale prices on 6180s. Check out the data table below to see what they've been going for.

Note the first one listed in the table, a 6180 16-row in good condition that just sold February 25, 2006, in north-central Illinois for $22,000. Hmmm, Annwan in northern Illinois, February 25th was less than two weeks ago. Now I have some pretty firm info. to hang my hat on. Notice the three 6180 16-row planters that sold at auction last year, one for $15,000 in west-central Minnesota, another for $23,500 in north-central Indiana and a 1998 model for $31,000 in southeast North Dakota.

Wondering how this planter will hold its value should you acquire it? Good question. Looking at our actual sale price data, I'd say it will hold its value extremely well. Note the pair of 16-row 6180s that sold in my neck of the woods, southeast Minnesota, back in 1998 and 1999, selling for $21,250 and $24,000.

Pretty similar sale prices to that 6180 that sold for $22,000 in Illinois two weeks ago, isn't it? Seven, eight years down the road, but worth the same money.

See what you can learn if you're head is on a swivel and you know where to look.

It's basketball tournament time of year again. March Madness.

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