2008 - Volume #32, Issue #2, Page #42[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
Rare IH Tractors Wow Showgoers
The Super A Fire Tractor was built by IH, but outfitted for fire-fighting by the Stephan Fire Apparatus Company. Added gear included a 150-gal. water tank, a reel fitted with 200 ft. of hose, a heavy duty front bumper, and a siren. The tractor originally was used to pull a small wagon that carried an asbestos blanket.
According to the Roses, the Fire Tractor was in good shape and wasn't rusted at all. It had most recently been used at a GE plant. The first time Jim saw the unique little tractor, he was putting out a fire at the Delphi GE plant. "My husband was a firefighter and saw this tractor at the Delphi plant. During 2005, the GM plant sold everything including this rig," says Jane.
After buying the tractor, the next step was to find the information they needed to completely restore it. "A guy at the Hail Pump Company knew the history of the pump," says Jim. Restoring the fire tractor for a fireman was a joy, and Jim's found a fun use for the tractor on hot summer days.
Last June the Roses's granddaughter graduated from nursing school. "Jim pumped the tractor up and we had a lot of happy, wet kids," says Jane.
Christmas Tree Tractor
Another interesting tractor at the Red Power Roundup was this International Harvester "Christmas Tree Tractor".
The tractor was parked outside a restored IH dealership belonging to Frank "Tubby" Bartlow. The Christmas tree tractor was not manufactured by IH, says Donna Sharrow, Frank's daughter. She explains that a manufacturer in Canada took a few Super C and Super A tractors and added the Christmas tree apparatus. "There were only seven of them made. They were very top heavy and not a smart idea."
The tractor the Bartlow's had on display was used at the Abraczinska's Nursery and was one of three they purchased in 1953.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Cindy Ladage, 35216 E. Fifth Rd., Virden, Ill. 62690 (ph 217 227-3563; Cindy1@consolid ated.net).
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