Can you give me some resources on purchasing horsedrawn plowing or cultivation equipment?
M.G.VirginiaAnswer: First, you may be able to find antique equipment through antique dealers or by networking with landowners in your area who have older farms with extensive junk piles. If you’re buying antique equipment, there are a couple things to be aware of: key pieces of it may be missing (which can jeopardize both safety and performance), and it might be hard to find equipment that is the right scale for your operation. Lots of old equipment is really large, and plows in particular often have shares that are too big to be pulled by a single horse or even a team, but are sized more for three or four horses. They also may plow deeper than you would want to go. A further consideration is that modern plowing equipment has some design features that improve its safety and riding comfort, like shear bolts.On the other hand, antique single-horse cultivator equipment is sized about right for a lot of modern market garden applications, and there shouldn’t be much problem in getting an older piece back into usable shape.There is some information on equipment and equipment suppliers in ATTRA’s new publication “Draft Animal Power for Farming.” Currently we have a PDF version online, and you can request a hard copy if you want by calling our toll free line (800) 346-9140.Some manufacturers of modern horsedrawn plows and cultivation equipment that are comparatively near your area are:Pioneer Equipment Inc.16875 Jericho RoadDalton, OH 44618(330) 857-6340(330) 857-0296Manufactures a broad line of horsedrawn wagons, forecarts, PTO carts, harrows, plows, and eveners. Available from a network of local dealers, or from the manufacturer.I& J Manufacturing5302 Amish RoadGap, PA 17527(717) 442-9451www.farmingwithhorses.com/threepointattachments.htmlHorsedrawn plows, and a range of three-point attachments for carts, such as harrow, rototiller, and mower.White Horse Machine5566 Old Philadelphia ParkwayGap, PA 17537(717) 768-8313