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The Little Red Combine

I still don't know what posessed me to get on the computer that early in the morning...but whatever it was, I am glad it happened. I woke up at about 6:30 AM one Saturday after a typical 2nd shift Friday night and got on Yesterdays Tractors.com and saw a combine for sale in the classified photo ad section. I was kind of gun shy at first since it was all the way over in Creighton, Nebraska...but for some reason, I called on it. After hearing it's story and talking to it's current owner who told me it was a 1963 Model 93 McCormick that hadn't been run in about 20 some years...I told him, 'Well...I think I will just go ahead and take it.' I recieved some ridicule for it from some friends and family at first...especially since I hadn't seen but one picture or even seen or heard it run...but none of this scared me and I had a 'good feeling' about it. So after recieving some more pictures and talking to the owner some more...we set a date to buy it and pick it up. So, My brother and I left at 5 AM on a Saturday morning and headed West! So after about 7 1/2 hours of driving, we finally arrived! I met the owner and his family and he showed me the little red combine. He fired it up and it ran so smooth...I could barely here it run..it didn't smoke or miss or anything! Then he put the seperator in gear and wound it up...once again...so very smooth! He then backed it out of the old barn it was setting in and driove it around and let me drive it around. I couldn't believe how nice it drove and ran. We decided to back it up on my gooseneck trailer and put the grain head on the skidloader trailer. After about an hour...we were loaded and headin' back East! It was quite the site with that little 227 two row wide corndead mounted on it and we got a few looks on the way back through western Iowa and at the gas stations we stopped at. Finally, at about 9PM that night...we were home at last! It didn't take long before it was all greased and oiled and 'Ready to Roll' again...in fact, we combined 2 acres of corn with it the next evening and cuaght on the go with a Farmall H! Then a couple days later, a friend of mine and I were talking and he said they were going to try ear picking about 25 acres of corn and asked if I could open it up for them. I was pretty excited at this point...more field time...heck yes! So I took it down and started combining. After they tried the picker it was decided that the first gear was too fast for the population of corn and that it would ALL have to be combined. Without hesitation, it was soon in action and after about three very long exhausting yet fun days, and alot of barge and flair wagons full of some beautiful looking corn...the last 2 rows of corn were combined off the field. It was quite a site and there were alot of pictures taken (some of which I have framed). For a machine that hadn't ran since 1978...it held it's own. 180 plus bushel per acre corn was shelled clean and taken out at 15% moisture. That was the combine's first big task. I will say one thing...we caught alot of corn on the go with an H, Super H, M, and 450 Farmall and that is something that I will never forget. It was cold, windy, dusty, dirty work with that little cabless combine....but we all had a ball and were pretty proud of what we had accomplished when all was said and done. I have since combine oats and will combine beans with it this fall. The Little Red Combine has a new home for life and many acres ahead of it. Thanks for reading.

Joe Ruley, IA, entered 2010-08-16
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