Antique and Vintage Farm Equipment

Whether you are interested in making a donation to a museum, starting your own historical farm, or looking for an interesting piece to welcome visitors to your homestead, you will be interested in antique and vintage farm equipment. Many old-timers will tell you about using horse-drawn plows, hand-cranked antique tractors, and hand corn fiddles. If you are pondering antique farm equipment, then you probably have many questions.

What are some different types of farm equipment?

There are many different types of antique farm equipment that collectors often add to their collections, including:

  • Chaff cutters- Equipment used for cutting hay or straw for fodder.
  • Dibbers- Wooden sticks with sharp ends used for making holes in the ground for planting seeds.
  • Horse boots- Usually made of leather, these boots were designed to be put on horses working on rocky ground.
  • Breast ploughs- Hand T-shaped tool used for removing turf so that the area could be planted with seed.
  • Barley hummelers- Similar to a pair of pliers, it was used to break off the awns from grains of barley.
  • Seed fiddles- Bag with a bow-like rod at the bottom carried by farmers to plant seed by pulling the rod back and forth like a fiddle.
  • Turnip picks- A straight steel blade with a hook at the end used for harvesting turnips.
What are some of the most common walking plows?

Regardless of whether they were made by Oliver, Daisy, Jethro, or another company, most walking plows fall into three categories, including:

  • Turning- Designed to turn over the dirt in a new field, allowing farmers to plant it
  • Middlebreaker- Used to create a furrow in the dirt so that farmers could plant their crops
  • Georgia stock- Used to weed around young plants
What are some of the types of antique tractors?

John Deere, Farmall, Case, Allis-Chalmer, KB, Massey, and others made several types of tractors, including:

  • Row-crop- Usually a tricycle-style tractor, this type of farm machinery had high ground clearance to go above young crops.
  • General purpose- Often used to power threshing machines, these low-profile tractors had lots of power
  • Industrial- These rugged machines usually had a low centre of gravity along with narrow wheels and foot throttles.
  • Utility- While starting out as general purpose tractors, by the 1950s, these tractors had strong hydraulics and wide front axles, allowing farmers to carry heavy loads on their front ends.
  • Orchard- Skirting covered these extremely low-profile tractors designed to fit under most fruit trees.
How do you start collecting antique and vintage farm equipment?

There are many ways to start collecting antique farm equipment. Some collectors choose to focus on one piece of equipment or equipment used to raise one type of crop or animal. Others chose to focus their collection on equipment produced during a single time frame. Still others focus on those made by a particular company or those handmade by farmers. Finally, some collectors focus on equipment made of a specific material.