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Pedal Tractor Collector Also Builds Models
With shelves on three walls of his shop filled with 240 pedal tractors, Dave Nigg “blames” a local dealer for getting him started.
    “I bought a Case IH air seeder, and they gave me a pedal tractor. It got a little out of hand after that,” he says with a laugh, adding that these days he buys less and is building his own pedal tractors.
    The Browns Valley, Minn., grain farmer was already collecting smaller scale toys that he picked up at shows and dealerships. But the “kid in him” really liked the pedal tractors so he started seeking out models that replicated the full-size equipment he owned. He bought a 450 International, 730 John Deere and a pedal tractor that looked like a John Deere garden tractor, for example.
    His collecting budget increased with the purchase of a John Deere A pedal tractor. Through eBay and attending the National Toy Show in Dyersville, Iowa, his collection grew even more colorful with Allis-Chalmer, Oliver, Case IH, Steiger and other model pedal tractors. His collection really grew when he purchased 83 pedal tractors from the widow of a collector. Some were in good condition; others were for parts or needed work. “If they are a little rough, I restore them,” Nigg says, noting he leaves powder coating and painting to a professional.
    Now that he is retired, Nigg started building his own models. He’s made a 2+2 International Harvester, grain carts and augers.
    “My favorite is the John Deere Waterloo Boy because it is unique,” Nigg says. He built the frame from materials he had on hand, used plastic plumbing parts to make the gas tank, cut down a car radiator for the radiator and removed the rubber from buggy wheels to make the back wheels.
    His current project is a 1938 Minneapolis Moline UDLX, a tractor/car hybrid marketed to “plow all day and drive to town at night.”
    Nigg admits he has a reputation for being obsessed with his pedal toys. He jokes that his wife says that when he dies, she will “have his funeral at 10 and the auction at 2.”
    Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Dave Nigg, Box 335, 101 Broadway, Browns Valley, Minn. 56219 (ph 605-880-1806; dmnigg@prtel.com).

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2022 - Volume #46, Issue #2