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IHC 3588 Tractor in Nebraska

GREG PETERSON 08/09/2012 @ 1:59pm Greg Peterson writes "Machinery Pete" column for Successful Farming magazine and appears on the Machinery Show on RFD-TV, talking about trends in the used equipment market

Just another tractor?

No, it never is. Each and every piece of equipment that comes up for sale at auction has a story behind it. I’ve always loved this part of covering machinery auctions like I have been now for almost 23 years. Sure there’s the baseline info on the tractor: what model is it? What year? How many hours? How does it look? Any work done to it?

But there’s always more.

I enjoy talking to the owners of the tractor, the folks who are selling it at auction. Tell me about the “story” on this tractor. Where and when did you buy it? Was it shedded? Who operated it and what tasks was it used for?

The more information the better.

Take the tale of the 1980 IHC 3588 2+2 tractor up for sale on an August 18th farm auction near Scribner, NE. I was contacted last week via email by Sid Ready, son-in law of Arland C. Witte, whose estate auction this is. The IHC 3588 is Sid’s. He is not getting out of farming, but just adjusting his operation a bit.

“I am not quitting farming, just cleaning out and downsizing the machinery line,” said Ready. “I farm and teach high school science, a busy combination!” I guess so. Hats off to you Sid for farming and for educating Nebraska kids in the sciences, knowledge that is vitally important.

Here’s a pic of Sid’s 1980 IHC 3588 for sale on the auction:


1980 IHC 3588 2+2 tractor on August 18, 2012 farm auction near Scribner, NE. Sale bill:  http://olsonpearson.com/Witte%20first%20page.htm

Sid offered more about his 3588:

“I have farmed here since 1986. We always disked with it. Other than that it was in a machine shed. He (father in-law) bought it new in 1980 from Scribner Implement. Somewhere along the line the original tach quit and was replaced. The tractor pretty much was a self-propelled disc until I went to no till nine years ago. We did put new radial tires on it and rebuilt the center pivot point ten years ago.”

“It has somewhere around 3,000 hours. It’s one heck of a tractor that saw way too little use.”    

So there you go, you now have the “scoop” on this 1980 IHC 3588 2+2 tractor with around 3,000 hours on it for sale on the August 18, 2012 farm auction in Scribner, NE. Click on the link below to view other IHC 3588 tractors I’ve seen sold at auction over the years:

Of course we’ll find out exactly what this tractor is worth come August 18th, sale day. I will get the sale price report from my auctioneer friend Ed Olson and we’ll pump those sale prices into our www.machinerypete.com web site right away. But here’s my question for you:

Does the “story” behind this tractor affect its value?

That is up for you to decide and of course the bidders on sale day. But if I am a seller (private seller, auctioneer, dealer), you better believe I’d try everything I could, using any technology or method available, to more effectively “tell the story” of that item or items I’m selling. If you looked at my “Pete’s Auction Prices on IHC 3588 Tractors” link above you may noticed the 2nd highest auction sale price over the past 16+ years was the IHC 3588 with 1,200 hours sold for $18,500 on a June 12, 2010 farm auction in northeast Nebraska. The “story” on that 3588 was that the brothers who owned it were in their upper 80’s and had shelved the tractor back in the mid 1980’s when they CRP’d their land…so it sat unsed for decades. Here’s video I shot at that auction:


The key lies in “being real” in relaying the complete story of an item for sale. If it’s a piece of junk, call it a piece of junk. If it has issues, tell about the issues. On the + side if you are the original owner, let it be known. If it was shedded every night of its life, say so. Do you have complete service records? Let everyone see them.

This “realness/truthfulness” has always been at the core of the long-term success of the best auction firms and implement dealers selling tons of equipment over the decades. Do you trust them? If so there is real value in that trust. Now along come new technologies and new ways to “tell the story” of your equipment for sale to audiences far and wide through the internet and social media.

Failure to effectively communicate the “story” of your item for sale could well mean leaving dollar bills on the table. Not something any seller wants to do.


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