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Tillage Price Trends Drop in Winter Months
Bargain is a dubious term to use these days to describe used machinery, as nothing seems to be a bargain to farmers facing depressed commodity prices.
Instead, I’ll describe tillage equipment as representing some of the best deals available in iron this winter.
Case in point was a 2013 Deere 2623 disk that I watched sell last December at a consignment sale held by Wieman Auction. The five-section 33½-foot-wide disk came loaded, selling with hydraulic wing control and hydraulically adjustable rolling baskets. When the bidding stopped (and it was sporadic, at best), the price was $27,000.
True, it was a 6-year-old implement. Yet, the disk was in great shape, having been well cared for. For comparison’s sake, I “built” a similarly equipped 2623 disk on John Deere’s website. It would sell new for $74,178.
I won’t bother talking about what similar used disks sold for in 2012 or 2013, as those times bear no similarity to today’s depressed market. A more pertinent comparison, however, can be seen in similar age and size Deere disks that sold in 2017. Back then, disks similar to that 2623 I watched sell were fetching prices ranging from $32,000 up to $48,000.
For good measure, I researched dealer asking prices for Case IH and Deere disks. See those prices in the table below.
SNAPSHOT OF DEALER ASKING PRICES FOR 28- to 35-FOOD, 3- TO 5-YEAR-OLD DISKS
Case IH RMX340
|Average price: $32,450||Price range: $25,000 to $37,500|
|Average price: $31,500||Price range: $25,500 to $39,500|
|Average price: $36,800||Price range: $31,900 to $45,900|
|Average price: $39,500||Price range: $35,500 to $42,900|
John Deere 2623
|Average price: $43,900||Price range: $28,500 to $66,000|
|Average price: $42,300||Price range: $27,900 to $66,500|
|Average price: $42,400||Price range: $33,500 to $68,100|
|Average price: $49,250||Price range: $28,500 to $58,600|
tillage implements are often a local buy
Disks, in particular, and tillage equipment, in general, represent some of the best values in used equipment today because of two factors.
First, tillage equipment is sold almost exclusively locally. Unlike tractors or combines, implements are more difficult to transport distances. “Buy a large implement with the thought of driving it home, well, you better pack a lunch,” observes Scott Steffes of Steffes Group. “Big tillage tools stay close to where they sold, because it can be a challenge to remove their wings for loading onto a semitrailer for transport.”
This, thus, restricts the number of potential buyers for used implements. Tractors and combines, which are more easily transported, attract buyers (often buying online) who can be across the state or even several states away. This larger group of buyers has a stabilizing impact on the values.
retirement sales putting lid on prices
The other recent trend depressing tillage equipment values is the huge number of retirement sales taking place this winter. For example, the Illinois-based Sullivan Auctioneers held 28 retirement machinery auctions in November and December. All these sales dumped large numbers of tillage implements on the market.
There is one exception to this downward price trend on tillage implements, and that involves vertical-tillage (VT) machines. Increasing interest in this tillage practice is pushing demand for late-model VT implements, which, in turn, has stabilized their values.
Still, even VT implements are feeling downward price pressure. An example of this was a 26-foot, well-maintained 2012 Landoll 7431 VT that sold at the Wieman auction I mentioned for $26,250.
Similar Landoll VTs were going for $30,000 to $32,500 a year ago.
Good examples of current VT implements can be seen in the Pocket Price Guide. This list comprises 3- to 5-year-old, 28- to 35-foot-wide models.