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Portable Power Unit Handles Many Farm Jobs
“There are many farmers out there who need or want horse-drawn power units and they like the design I came up with,” says Sam Blank of Narvon, Penn. “I can build them with a gas or diesel engine, and steel or rubber wheels. They have air bag suspension and hydraulic remotes.”
  Blank’s power units can be used for cutting, raking and baling hay, chopping silage, digging vegetable crops, harvesting corn and other farm jobs that require tractor-like power.
  “This power unit has an adjustable hitch that makes it easier on the horses,” Blank says. “The tongue can be adjusted shorter or longer depending on the hitch weight of the implement being pulled. The idea is to keep the hitch weight that the horses carry fairly low so they’re used for pulling, not carrying a heavy load,” Blank says.
  The power unit has operator comforts as well as many functional features. The driver sits in a comfortable padded seat that absorbs rough field conditions. The platform rides on four air shock absorbers similar to those used on semi-trailers. “I came up with this idea initially to cushion the power unit and keep it from vibrating,” Blank says, “but the ride is definitely smoother for the operator, too.”
  Engines can have 20, 25 or 30 horsepower and that’s plenty to handle a baler or chopper. His rigs have a 540 pto and two hydraulic remotes. He also sets them up with hydraulic steering, side draft control and adjustable axles. “Farmers pull different implements and aren’t always on level fields, so they need to set up a wider axle for hilly ground or for larger equipment,” Blank says. The units can be set up for two, four or six-horse hitches.
  “This power unit will basically do everything that a small tractor will do,” Blank says. “It doesn’t cost as much, and the operator needs good horses, which isn’t a problem for people who farm that way.”
  Blank has built power units for several years and sold them in Pennsylvania, New York and Ohio. One of them went to South America a few years ago. He says prices range from $9,000 to $14,000, depending on the options that a customer wants. “I build every one myself, exactly the way a customer wants it, so it’s going to be done right,” Blank says.
  Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Samuel Blank, 203 Churchtown Rd., Narvon, Penn. 17555 (ph 717 768-7105 or 717 768-7663; www.sunsetcreation.com).

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2012 - Volume #36, Issue #4