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Trailer Surfing

I was picking up my first tractor. It was a MF2135 with a front end loader. Big Fred (from Tales) found it for me and it was exactly what I needed. Finding a trailer and truck to haul it took longer than expected and we didn't get to pick up the tractor until after dark but the drive wasn't too far from home.

Fred showed up to help with securing the tractor but I noticed he backed away as time came to load. (As you get to know Fred, you will understand he has an uncanny sense of self-preservation.)

Having never driven a tractor more than a few times around the barnyard, I was... shall we say... a bit less than graceful as I headed for the ramps to the borrowed 18' equipment trailer behind a borrowed Dodge 3/4 ton duley pick-up. Being completely in the dark in more ways than one, I did notice that as the tractor headed up the ramps, my tractor seat altitude remained constant. Then there was this strange and unexplained scraping sound. My daughter was standing next to my wife on the left and Big Fred was standing next to a tree on the right. Strange as it seems they were all moving toward me without moving their feet... and the tree Fred was standing next to was coming right along with Fred.

As it dawned upon me that trees don't generally move like that, I realized that it was the truck, trailer, ramps and tractor with me on it that were doing the moving.

By now the glow of Fred's overly widened eyes shed enough light for me to see my predicament.

In the absence of loading jacks the weight of the tractor lowered the tail of the trailer which raised the hitch. Since the trailer was secured to the back of the borrowed 3/4 ton Dodge, it was lifted about 24' above the ground which was enough to remove all traction from the rear tires. Since the rear duals were the only thing preventing the free wheeling nature of a truck with effectively no brakes, it began following the downward path toward Fred's parked truck.... hence Fred's overly widened eyes.

Realizing the situation was not getting better in a hurry... I goosed the throttle and got the tractor on the trailer which brought down the hitch, put the duals back on the ground, returned Fred's eyes to their normal state of terror and ended a memorable instance of trailer surfing.

We guessed a distance of about 50' to record in the 'Taler Olympics' record books but an actual measure was not made. To this day, it is an entry into the Tractor Tales Stories of Fame & Shame.

BTW - I now own an 18' flat bed tractor hauler of my own. I had it custom made with some behemoth loading jacks as a permanent feature.

[Big Fred] I can vouch for the veracity of Tyler's account of this story, except the part of 'securing the tractor'. I think 'securing' is an overstatement of what actually occurred. We did use the proper color of chains (also called 'natural color' as in, 'that tractor ain't rusty, it's natural'), but we probably took liberties with the legal definition of securing.

Tyler Woods, TX, entered 2007-08-31
My Email Address: Not Displayed

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