A Brief Word

| November/December 1997

By the time of this copy of GEM is in your mailbox, we should also have a stock of our new Encyclopedia of American Farm Implements. (See our advertisement on page 59 of this issue). While we were at the recent Mt. Pleasant show, we had a great many inquiries regarding this new 400 page book, and along with that, many interesting comments about farm implements as collectibles. Even from folks not specifically interested in the book, we often heard comments about various farm implements becoming the collecting wave of the future. Some folks told us that certain implements have already begun rising in value because of demand. The tractors and engines are pretty well in the hands of collectors now. . . .it's becoming the exception to find one out in the woods or in a fencerow. . . .even ten years ago, this was often the case.

From a lot of people we heard comments such as, 'I'd like to find a Case plow to go with my Case tractor.' The same held true of John Deere, Oliver, and others. The pto-driven pulverizing plow that Massey-Harris built for a time is already a popular item. A few people are collecting ancient corn pickers, and the list goes on. For our part, we've kept the Red River Special 28x46 separator that came into the family in 1946, along with several small corn shellers, grinders, and even a couple of grain binders. One of them is an ancient Champion it has a drive wheel of wood construction over which is placed a metal band with drive lugs.

Our special thanks to everyone who stopped by the GEM display at the Mid-west Old Threshers Reunion. We had visitors probably running into the thou -sands during the five days of the show, and as always found it very rewarding to meet and greet everyone. We've learned of some hitherto unknown engines, and expect to have further information in coming issues of the Reflections column.

Also see elsewhere in this issue (page 48) our advertisement concerning the 1998 tour to Germany, Austria, and Holland. Actually, it is a two-week tour beginning in Zurich and ending after two weeks in Frankfurt. Then, for a bargain price, we have an optional ex-tension to the tour that will end up in Holland and the HMT, reputed to be the largest tractor and engine show in Europe. We're trying right now to get further information on the show, but of course it takes a bit of time, since all this is months away right now.

We've got all kinds of plans for the tour, and many interesting stops. There'll be lots of tractors and engines to see along our way, and we'll be spending an entire day in Munich, home of the world-famous Deutsches Museum said to be the largest technological museum in the world. There'll be a bit of (optional) culture along the way, and of course, the beautiful scenery enroute, including Zurich, Rhine Falls, Garmisch, Munich, Innsbruck, Salzburg, Linz, Passau, Bamberg, and much more.

We're limiting the tour to two coaches (about 80 people) because European hotels and restaurants often hold no more than that; many hotels don't have more than a dozen rooms and many restaurants don't seat more than 40 or 50 people. As a footnote, this tour will be covering all new ground with few exceptions. Our first stop at Roland Porten's Tractor & Engine Museum at Stuhligen will be a repeat of our earlier European Tour. Another possible repeat will be Wim van Schayik's fantastic engine and tractor collection at Langen boom in Holland. We under-stand it has grown considerably since we were there a couple of years ago. This gigantic collection has to be seen to be believed!


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