Dealing With Dealers

With many no-tillers ready to invest in new seeding equipment, farm machinery dealers are anticipating a robust sales year.

A recent survey of 508 dealers by Farm Equipment magazine indicates that 94.5 percent expect planter sales to be as good or better in 2008 than this year. For air seeders and drills, 91.8 percent of dealers anticipate as good or better 2008 sales.

When it comes to working with dealers on replacing seeding equipment, David Sutherland has some solid advice. He and his father have no-tilled for more than a dozen years at Leroy, Kan. They no-till more than 4,000 acres and custom no-till another 4,000 acres.

Need More Capacity

With expanding no-till acres, the Sutherlands decided a few years ago that they needed a larger-capacity planter than their 12-row rig.

“The first questions to ask yourself are whether you need to trade, how many acres you need to cover and where you could trade,” says Sutherland. “You need to know how many acres have been seeded with your current planter, the amount of yearly upkeep, repairs that will be needed this winter, possible trade-in value, whether you want to expand your no-till acres or plant in a more timely manner.”

The Sutherlands had seeded 21,000 acres with a White 12-row planter equipped with splitter units to no-till corn in 30-inch rows and soybeans in 15-inch rows. He estimated he’d need to spend $4,000 to get the planter ready for another no-tilling season. The dealer said the planter was worth…

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Frank Lessiter

Frank Lessiter has served as editor of No-Till Farmer since the publication was launched in November of 1972. Raised on a six-generation Michigan Centennial Farm, he has spent his entire career in agricultural journalism. Lessiter is a dairy science graduate from Michigan State University.

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