Stubborn as a Mule

Despite the odds, the Bates Steel Mule saw years of success

Content Tools

The earliest Bates Steel Mule tractor was one of the ugliest and oddest-looking farm machines ever built. It was like a cross between a punctured steam boiler, a garden tractor and a Harley. At first glance, Bates Machine & Tractor Co. could at least blame another company, Joliet Oil Tractor Co., of Joliet, Ill., for its design.

Excerpted from the July 2006 issue of Gas Engine Magazine. Subscribe today to read the full article and more!