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"Made to Scale" Garden Tractor Tillage Tools
“My friend Amos built a 6-bottom moldboard plow and I built an 11-ft. wide field cultivator for our recently restored Allis Chalmers 616 garden tractors. The implements are made to scale and are bigger than anything on the market,” says Steve Kauffman, Manheim, Penn.
    The two 616 garden tractors were built in 1972 and are identical, except that Amos made a custom hood so his tractor looks like a real Allis Chalmers D21. Once the tractors were restored, the men took on the challenge of building tillage tools for them.
    “You can buy 1-bottom moldboard plows and little field cultivators for garden tractors that are only 5 ft. wide. But as far as I know, no one makes an 11-ft. field cultivator or a 6-bottom moldboard plow,” says Kauffman. “The Allis Chalmers 616 garden tractor was the company’s first utility tractor and it was made to look just like their big 185 and 190 models. I bought the tractor a year ago. I had wanted a 616 ever since I was a kid but it took me 40 years before I finally got one.”
    Amos had a head start when building the plow because he already had a full-sized D21 tractor and a 6-bottom moldboard plow to go with it. So he made measurements of the plow and then shrunk it down to create his 3-pt. mounted mini plow. “He made the 8-in. moldboards from scratch by rolling a piece of sheet metal and then cutting the moldboards out with a torch to the right shape. The plow covers a 4-ft. wide swath,” says Kauffman.
    To build his field cultivator, Kauffman found a neighbor with an Allis Chalmers field cultivator and took measurements and photos. The cultivator is equipped with hydraulic-fold, 2 1/2-ft. wings on either side and 6-in. depth wheels on front, which came off a hay tedder. He built the cultivator by using the teeth off an old drag harrow and using a plasma cutter to narrow them down to scale. He built a rake on back of the cultivator by using the rake teeth off an old New Holland rake.
    “I’m in the ag equipment sales business and often spend time going to farms, which is where I found many of the parts I needed to build the field cultivator,” says Kauffman.
    “We proved to everyone that our implements matched up perfectly with the tractors and could really turn the soil over. My tractor has new, 16-in. wide lugged rear tires which helped add traction, and my 250-lb. weight over the rear axle didn’t hurt, either.”
    Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Steve Kauffman, 1202 Cider Press Rd., Manheim, Penn. 17545 (ph 717 940-4474; stevekauffman@live.com).

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2015 - Volume #39, Issue #1