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Illinois collectors own more than 200 tractors
Carl and Darrell Ebersten, Williamsville, Ill., aren't sure how many tractors they own.
"But it's more than 200," says Carl, 57, noting that he and his son Darrell, 32, got started collecting in the 1970's.
Each tractor in their collection demonstrates something in the evolution of agricultural engineering or adds something in the way of character. Their costs have ' varied widely, from $250 to several thou-sand, but the Ebberstens estimate the aver-age value is about $1,000 each.
Their collection is wide ranging, and tractors have come from many parts of the country, far and near. Many of the tractors are old favorites but the Ebberstens have a lot of "golden oldies", too. Here are some: Heider, 1919; Rumley, 1927; Waterloo Boy, 1923; Cockshutt, 1942; Case 25-45 with cross-mounted engine, 1928; International Harvester, 1918; Titan, 1921; Huber, Super Four, Twin City, 1918; Altman-Taylor, 24-25; John Deere GP Wide Tread (rear end similar to IHC Farmall); Hart Parr, Wallis; David Bradley; and a Moline Universal, 1918.
Three large machine sheds, which pro-vide cover for the tractors, are almost filled up so the father-son team has had to slow down the purchase of additional tractors.
"We only bought five last year," Darrell says.
Aside from collecting tractors and talking about them with just about anybody and everybody, the Ebberstens take their vintage machines to old-timer tractor pulls. Darrell says he gets just as much fun out of pulling with an antique tractor as with a new one.
"I like to get one running good and go pull with it. My pleasure comes from the people we meet," says Darrell, who's currently competing with an Oliver 99. "We know everyone in the sport, and we stay in touch, go out to dinner after the pulls and talk. I'm mainly concerned with having fun."
Participation in vintage tractors pulls has to be for the sport, not the money, because top place prices usually are around $200. Even when participating in more than a dozen pulls each year, as Darrell Ebbersten does; the best any competitor can do is just about break even.
"There's a lot of technique involved but each tractor out there is capable of winning. A lot of times it's a matter of luck," says Darrell.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Carl & Darrell Ebbersten, Williamsville, Ill. 62693 (217 947-2480).

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1990 - Volume #14, Issue #6