On a recent trip to a machinery sale to shoot segments for the Successful Farming Machinery Show, I noticed a curious thing driving by dealers’ lots. They were full of used equipment. Specifically, they were inhabited with far greater numbers of late-model machines than they have been over the past several years.
This population boom got me speculating about late-model machine values on dealers’ lots.
Unlike farm machinery, tractor trucks come with huge variations in sizes and options, making shopping for a used vehicle a challenge.
The challenge with buying tillage tools is that they often lack detailed usage information. With a motorized machine, you can check on engine hours to gauge its use. Implements demand a personal inspection to size up their condition.
“Much can be discovered about an implement’s use by walking around and looking for indications of wear, tear, and lack of maintenance,” says Derek Wiemen of Wieman Auction.
Here are 4 key inspection points when evaluating tillage implements:
While lower commodity prices have had a dampening effect on the sale of big-ticket items such as used tractors and combines, the same isn’t necessarily true of tillage implements. If anything, buyers are looking for late-model used iron when considering an upgrade to bigger or more advanced tillage tools.
Case in point is vertical-tillage tools.
This winter promises to offer some great bargains in late-model used combines. Prices don’t lie.
Take a look at the chart below. This represents the trends in auction (live and online) prices for various Case IH combines going back to July 2012. Below, you will find a table revealing recent final bids on late-model red harvesters.
Those Case IH trend lines reveal two key facts:
John Zakovec is a great example of what is happening with vintage tractor collecting. Zakovec grew up driving an Oliver 66, but his passion is for 40- to 50-year-old tractors, especially Oliver models. His growing fleet of collectibles fills the sheds on his farm near Lincoln, Nebraska. “I grew up farming with earlier-model tractors,” he says, “but I made a living with the tractors from the 1960s and 1970s. This was the era of the 100 hp.-plus tractors with cabs, turbocharge diesels, and dual wheels. You know, the muscle tractors!”
If your cutting platform is getting long in the tooth or you’re looking to upgrade to a wider head, now is the time to be looking for a deal on a late-model used replacement. My certainty of this fact was borne out by a shopping trip I took to Marion, South Dakota.
Marion is home to Wieman Auction (wiemanauction.com), which holds a massive consignment sale each year before harvest. By massive, I mean that nearly 140 corn heads or platforms sold in a day in addition to hundreds of combines, tractors, tillage equipment, and more. Acres of iron were up for sale.
I took a trip to South Dakota to confirm a rumor. I had been receiving reports of a potential glut of used late-model combines this summer, so in August, I traveled to that state to determine if there was any truth to the rumor.
So why South Dakota? One of the premium late-summer consignment sales was held there by Wieman Auction the first week in August. This particular sale was huge.