Machinery Pete dishes the dirt on soil scrapers
You do what you've got to do.
Nearly 17 years ago, when I got into this crazy business of compiling sale price data on farm equipment sold at auction, the business itself wasn't much more than an idea. "Hmm, I think this info. will be useful to folks. Maybe they'll be some out there willing to pay for it. I sure hope so."
Ah, the confidence of youth.
There certainly wasn't much in the way of money coming in back then. As I began the slow process of building the idea into a going concern, I needed to make a few bucks. Something about having your first child about to arrive gets a guy motivated. Diapers and baby formula aren't cheap.
So I took on two part-time jobs to make ends meet. One gig found me working as an editor of a local senior citizens newsletter. The other? Working the graveyard shift as a sports reporter at the local daily newspaper. I'd go in at 9 p.m. and take phone calls from local high school coaches, do the game write ups and head home by 1 a.m. or so. Three nights a week.
Like, I said, you do what you've got to do.
Tough times, yes, but fun times, too. I'm thinking of the old sports reporter job as I write this week's column. I remember taking a phone call from the mom of a soccer player. She was disappointed in our paper's write up of her son's game.
"Can't you just say everyone played well and then name the kids by name?" she asked. Seems she was getting frustrated with the team's star players continually grabbing the headlines.
She was a nice lady, and we had a nice chat. I hope she understood where we were coming from. You score three goals and your name is going to get printed in the paper, simply the way it works.
Sometimes I feel the same way about the auction prices I write about. Late model tractors, combines, and planters are the star attractions on the sales. Everyone is interested in what these items sell for. They attract most of the attention, deservedly so.
Well, I guess that soccer mom's point must have sunk in way back when as I find myself looking to shine our spotlight on different types of equipment lately. Last week I provided our auction price data on 500 and 1,000 gallon tanks.
This week I'm going with soil scrapers.
Soil scrapers is one of the 75-plus categories of equipment we track sale prices on. This grouping of equipment includes land planes, dirt movers, dirt scrapers, field scrapers, land levelers. We've found they're referred to differently in different parts of the country. To make things simple, we just lump them under soil scrapers.
Below you'll find links you can click on to download a PDF file on auction prices for a few of the more popular manufacturers.
Oh, the first baby I mentioned that was on the way back when I held the two part-time jobs? She's 15 now. Starts drivers ed. class next week. I've collected a lot of sale prices since the diaper days. Time flies when you're having fun.