A couple of questions at this year’s small group tour made us realize that we had not thoroughly cultivated the topic of work horse costs in this column. Tom Padua, recently hired to manage a CSA in New Jersey and convert it to the bio-extensive system, wanted to know how much hay, grain and minerals we feed our work horses. Miriam Gieske, a research intern at the Rodale Institute, took Tom’s questions to the next level. After browsing through the SFJ handouts at the end of the day, she wanted to know which costs more, farming with horses or tractors?
I first met Dan 10 years ago or more when I needed a radiator for my old John Deere A. Sure ‘nuff he had everything I needed and a whole lot more. With lots in common we became good friends. But as with so many things of such like, I completely put out of my mind my responsibilities as editor of this Journal until just the other day. Because it’s so close, and because I take it for granted, is no reason it wouldn’t help others to know about this ‘yard.’
I went to the Great Oregon Steam-Up over in Brooks, Oregon, near Salem. Lynn has been invited and has wanted to attend for years, but this time of year might very well be the busiest time of year for him. He’s always farming or writing or editing or painting or forecasting or businessing or just generally fightin’ the power, yo. It’s nuts, I don’t know how he does it all. So, when I told him I was going to go, he was very interested and wanted a good report.
The best thing about the SFJ website is “unlimited real estate.” With each issue of the Small Farmer’s Journal comes the required agonizing over what to keep and what to sacrifice due to page space. What follows is a photo gallery of every picture we took at the 2016 Great Oregon Steam-Up. Why? Because we can! And, because there were a lot of interesting machines there that we are sure some of you will enjoy seeing.
Your John Deere Tractor has a range of speeds. These various speeds not only give you the flexibility and adaptability you want, but also they enable you to balance the load and the speed for maximum economy. However, if you are handling a light load and want to travel at slow speed, it is far better to put your tractor into the gear which gives you the speed you want than to use a higher gear and throttle down.
Tractors used for cultivating require high clearance; the center of gravity is necessarily higher than in other types of tractors or automobiles, and to avoid accidents and injury when operating at the higher speeds, greater care must be exercised than is used in operating automobiles. Even modern automobiles with their low centers of gravity are frequently wrecked by thoughtless drivers when making sharp turns on smooth paved roads; this demonstrates clearly the need for care in turning in high gear with any high clearance tractor.
The Model “B” is ideal general-purpose power for farms of medium size. Available with either all-fuel or more powerful gasoline engine. Standard equipment includes self-starter, front and rear lights, power shaft, belt pulley, and power lift. Powr-Trol, Roll-O-matic front wheels, and a wide variety of integral equipment also available. The Model “A” matches the power requirements on larger row-crop farms. It has an abundance of power to handle big-capacity plows, bedders, and disk harrows, four row cultivators and the larger harvesting and belt-driven machines.
The 1938 SILVER KING is more than a NAME. It’s constructed right – only the best materials are used throughout, and the workmanship is of the highest quality. From end to end – the 1938 Silver King gives you more desired features than any other tractor. Accessible – easy to drive – the Silver King makes work a pleasure.
This grand, old, operating steam tractor is one of the center pieces of the new and exciting Yamhill Heritage Museum in McMinnville, Oregon, home of the Oregon Draft Horse Breeders’ Plow Match. As my grandsons, Reuben, Ben and Jean Pierre would say “Wow, Grampa!” And that is the essence of a cultural and historical handoff that each and every community should be proud to say they valued.