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Home-Built "Croc" Works Like A Gator
Bill Wilson didn't want to spend the money for a Deere Gator-type utility vehicle. So he built his own by stretching out a 1971 Minneapolis Moline garden tractor, fitting it with a school bus seat, and mounting a cargo box on back. The tractor measures 8 ft. long and is painted dark green.
  "I call it my Croc because it looks something like a Deere Gator. It just cost a lot less," says Wilson, of Thompson Falls, Montana.
  He cut the tractor in half, then welded in new material to lengthen it by 36 in. He had a local fabrication shop build the 36-in. long metal cargo box. He replaced the original drive pulley on the engine with a bigger one. The engine belt-drives the original pulley on the rig's transaxle. "The big pulley on the engine speeds it up so we can go 15 to 18 mph," says Wilson.
  "It'll do a lot of things a Gator can do. I paid $80 to have the pickup bed built and $20 for the bus seat. My total cost was about $100. Even a used Deere Gator would have cost at least $3,000. I already had the tractor - my two sons learned to drive on it years ago."
  Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Bill Wilson, 44 Gable Road, Thompson Falls, Montana 59873 (ph 406 827-3006).

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2004 - Volume #28, Issue #5