Boyden, Iowa 51234.
Gerrit Havelaar, 50, who farms with his son 3 miles west of
Hudson, South Dakota, has no time for loafing. When he isn’t
making a go of the farm he’s in his machine shop adding to his
line of toy machinery.
So far he has built to true one-half scale of these working
models of old-time farm machinery a 1930, 15-30 McCormick tractor;
a 1931, 28′ x 46′ Avery threshing machine; a wagon with
wheels; and a hay rack also with iron wheels. It took him 15 years
of part time work to complete these four pieces. Said Marvin Green
of Boyden, an antique enthusiast, ‘Gerrit Havelaar’s
tractor and threshing machines are just unbelievable.’
Havelaar was born on a farm south of In wood. There were lots of
moves throughout his childhood and the home-made models of farm
machinery he made from boards and such were always left behind.
‘Now I’m catching up on my childhood fun,’ he said,
‘and besides I like to help people stir up their memories of
the good old days.’
First to be built was the Avery threshing machine. His working
model was the 1931, 28 x 46 Avery owned by his uncle. He measured
it and modeled the miniature after the real thing–true in every
respect to the scale of one-half size. It is a true working model,
capable of threshing oats. It weighs about 900 pounds and took and
estimated 2,200 hours to build. In 1964 the wagon was built and the
hay rack in 1965.
The actual working model of the 1931, 15-30 McCormick Deering
tractor was started in November of 1970 and completed in December
of 1971. Helping him with this model was his son Chuck, age 27.
Some 1,500 hours went into making the old McCormick Deering. And
yes, it runs under its own power. Its engine is an old Kohler
engine cut down and modified to fit; its transmission came out of a
car. The tractor also weighs 900 pounds.
Havelaar’s models have been much in demand. He shows them at
from seven to eight old threshing machine day events. He is also
cordial to any visitors who happen to come by for a private
Minneapolis Cross Mount runs real nice. On display at the
Pioneer museum, Sigourney, Iowa.
Gerrit Havelaar and son, Chuck, stand beside Working Models of
Our 1918 Republic 2 ton truck built at Alma, Michigan.