Over the past few years, I’ve had several requests to create a calendar featuring some of my tractor and nature photography. Well, I finally built up the ambition to go and print/create such calendar. I’m introducing the 2017 Old Iron calendar, featuring some of my tractor photos taken throughout different times of the year. I only have John Deere tractors, so the calendar is mostly John Deere (with one exception in December). Please visit the following link to view/order a calendar. Thank you very much!!
The 730 Diesel is a pretty impressive machine. It was Deere’s largest row-crop two-cylinder, and also happened to be the last series to feature the two-cylinder before their introduction of the “New Generation” machines in 1960. The 730 was about the same size as the 3010, which according to Deere literature at the time, was its direct replacement.
Driving a 730 Diesel is unlike any other machine, before or since (with the exception of the 720). This particular machine is a direct-drive electric start. The 720, which was a near-identical model before it, had more pony engine starters than electric starters. The Pony, or cranking engine, was a small gas engine that you would start up first, which would then be used to turn over the large diesel engine. The electric starters were large 24 volt starting systems.
Since not everyone will have an opportunity to drive a 730 Diesel, I thought I’d share this video to replicate the experience as well as I can.
This video is of the John Deere G and John Deere 2010 raking alfalfa. It also has some slow-motion video. Because the large baler needs to be fed so much hay, and the hay needs to be turned to dry, we rake the two rows together. Eventually it will be nice to have a twin rake that does it both in one pass. In the meantime, this is what we have–one or two tractors that rake and roll the hay together. The slow-motion of the iPhone 5s is kind of fun to watch as well.
This video shows some hay (alfalfa) being hauled with a 1950 John Deere Model G. The model G was the largest row-crop John Deere at the time, with more CI displacement than even the 4020 at 412 (vs 404, but not near the horse power). The G was replaced by the 70, which was replaced by the popular 720 and 730 series of John Deere two-cylinder tractors. The other tractor in the video is a John Deere 4020, which loaded the bales.
This year I took the opportunity to have a little fun with planting oats in one of our smaller fields. I used the 1947 John Deere Model A that I recently restored, as well as our old grain drill (aka planter, late 1950s). It may not have been the quickest way to plant the oats, but I, and the dogs, had a lot of fun doing it!
The three videos here show us getting the drill ready and making sure everything on it works. The second video shows the John Deere 4230 disking the field. Last year we used the Model A as well as the John Deere 2010 to plow the field. Since it was plowed last fall, you disk it before you plant it to break up the larger chunks into a more fine powder, so the drill can do accurately seed the crop. The final video shows the actual planting process.