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Where Do You See The Garden Tractor Hobby In Five Years?

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#16 bgkid2966 OFFLINE  



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Posted March 07, 2012 - 01:28 PM

Josh, I sure hope you are right. I am not a collector, just a user and someone who appreciates nice GT's. I would not mind finding a DB like I abused as a kid. I guess then maybe I could be considered a collector.

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#17 josh deaven OFFLINE  

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Posted March 07, 2012 - 05:48 PM

Lauber1 I don't know about your shows but the shows around here we are seeing alot more gts than ever.The shows that adapt to the new trends in the general tractor hobby will be the shows that survive.I would have to say that maybe in the mid west states maybe there is not as many guys collecting gts.But that will probley change as the hobby grows.There will be alot more shows having a gt section.This is just my prospective but most every person has had some sort of relationship with a mower or gt.In this case most every can relate to a gt or mower.later Josh :bounce:

#18 Ryan313 OFFLINE  


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Posted March 07, 2012 - 06:53 PM

I think that the prices of GTs and GT related things will go up indefinitely. I also think that the tractors we love will become much more scarce, for a few reasons. Of course people scraping them, then the ones that rust away only to disappear forever, and then the ones that get found and snatched up by collectors. I think that it will become more popular, from people learning of the hobby and I think that if the economy doesn't turn around car enthusiasts may turn to GTs so they can still fix things up and have something with an engine they can restore for less cost then a car.
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#19 1978murray OFFLINE  


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Posted March 07, 2012 - 06:58 PM

I believe as the years go buy more people will learn the abilities of gts and start using them for small aplications around the farm. Also I hope i will have more space. I also think that as gas prices go up there will be an overwelming amount of gts at farm shows.

P.S. Sorry for the bad spelling. I cant spell
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#20 GTTinkerer OFFLINE  


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Posted March 07, 2012 - 09:34 PM

I think it is going to get even bigger tan it is now.I am actually quite amazed just how strong this hobby has come a long in the past five years.

I agree with Maynard on both the future and past growth. Back when I first started looking for the unusual riding lawnmowers and garden tractors they were quite plentiful and nobody wanted them. One big thing that did not help our hobby, along with the old demolition derby hobby, was the the astronomical rise in the price of scrap metals. When the price of short steel and tin doubled about eight years ago scrapers picked up anything and everything not nailed down. The two junk yards where I found many projects began selling anything they could because they figured the price was going to fall in short order.

Edited by GTTinkerer, March 08, 2012 - 06:27 AM.

#21 trowel OFFLINE  



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Posted March 07, 2012 - 09:56 PM

As a young collector, the furture looks very bright and dreary at the same time, with more people becomeing more interested in and trying out the hobby it has make the get-togethers more intresting, the information more readlly accessible and more willing but at the same time, as others has stated, it drives up the prices along with the scrapping.
I have the tendency to ascertain something mecanical in such a manor it has deamed me eccentric or nuts compared to guys of the same age in this hobby leaving me looking from outside the box, with my other unique tendencies and hobbys this upsurge in the antique markets has for the most part stopped me from collecting horse drawn tools seeing as i came in late in the hobby and i see the same happening with garden tractors, just in surges varying with the markets and amount of money in a individual's pocket and his wants which seems to be by populararity of a particular subject.
Monkey sees,...Monkey does, one follows the other, typical, very typical, i watched the Planet Jr. drill seeder market rise and fall 3 times in the past 10 years and for each time it rises it goes higher then the last time, especially on the East coast were all the ''Organic'' farmers live with their ''gas free'' market gardens, (organic, ha, ha, it always was, what's changed ?) Garden Tractors are hot stuff here on the East Coast but then again everything here is double compared to the mid-west and south.
Im thrilled to see so many younger collecter take such an intreast in the simpler GT's and is preserving and learning about them which mean more GTs will be saved as apposed to ending up in China to be sent back as trinkets that will break in a few short years, America was a industrial giant and these GT's were the results of many engineers hard work in building good GTs for a good price for the general market and beyond, we are preserving what was.
As someone who has spent the last 20 years of my life collecting Antiques and come from a family of collectors the computer age has open up a new area for me to explore and accelerated it with new friends and informations regarding subjects untouched for years and to be able to try out new things. With the many things that has been passed down to me the knowledge was also acquired with the promise that it will be taught to others also passing on what the goverment wants us to forget and accept what they want us to learn and remember so in a way this is a revolt to any and all that is against the old, ''out with the old, in with the new'' is a Phrase i have heard many say along with " old, tired and useless''. conveniences and easy is in and working with your hands and head is out, common sense died a long time ago along with using your head instead of a computer.
Too many time have i see a young man absolutely refuse to get his hands dirty, a sorry sight to see in this day and age so the more people work with tools and learn to truly appreciate the results of the work and reep the rewards the more over joyed i become knowing that there will always be a select few that will always be there to continue the hobby and way of life many has known.
Listen to those who knows, they more then likely are willing and will derive great pleasure in passing on what was once a way of life for them to become history and history is always remembered.

lownly sits the tool, waiting for old tired hands to tell the truth about the life it led,
The dull blade blends with the earth, in the sod's clutches waiting for the return of it's maker,
Patiently waiting it's timely return to mother earth. Amen
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Posted March 07, 2012 - 10:06 PM

Well fellas, I think this is really a question for the guys who have a few years experience. As I see it, if you don't know where you've been how can you know where you're headed? The popular sentiment is that Values go up...in actuality who knows? Ask a guy who has been going to shows and has a vast collection (for me that would be people like Steve Guider, Jack Penwarden,, Jim Daenzer, Jason Kozlowski, Herm Kruger, Wild Bill (Wheel Horse) people that have dedicated years to acquire and refine their collections, those will be the guys with true vision...the rest of us are dreamers.

The forums, the magazines, the camaraderie, the hunt for the missing part and uniqueness of a given tractor presents its real value...because after all the money is counted, it is the people that matter. Remember, the great deal on the great tractor? And the people you shared it with? Or, that damned elusive part that you thought would never surface then you found it? How about after you painted that tractor and found out it is much more beautiful than you expected?

Or that elusive wiring problem, after you got it resolved? How about the moment your son or daughter hoped on the tractor your dad gave you?

I am with Josh, I too want values to go up! But,each of these represents what is perhaps best about America (canada too), perhaps the essence of American, as is the work and dedication it to to bring it back to its original condition...

Remember to someone...it was a lawnmower!

again MHO...

Edited by NutCASE, March 07, 2012 - 10:07 PM.

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#23 Toolpartzman OFFLINE  


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Posted March 08, 2012 - 08:13 AM

Great Thread George and I would offer this:( From one who has a few years behind him-and fewer in front) IMO there are several Driving forces: Out many years, maybe 10 years plus-----Its going to fall on the young-uns here, and those rusty tractors and both are dwindling.

IMO, a time will come-whenever- the "hobby" will at least have to "Pay its Own Way" to sustain itself.

That's due to steel prices putting on pressure to scrap and fewer young-uns following us to beat the bushes to save them. THE ONLY FACTOR that preserved the presence of all those GTs I found last week is because the owner is still alive and knows the "importance" or knows that they are worth more than scrap. There were some 30 good tractors there and everyone of them, had he died of his last heart attack- would have gone quickly to the furnace. :confuse:
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#24 tractorman604 OFFLINE  

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Posted March 08, 2012 - 08:28 AM

I think that the prices of GTs and GT related things will go up indefinitely. I also think that the tractors we love will become much more scarce, for a few reasons. Of course people scraping them, then the ones that rust away only to disappear forever, and then the ones that get found and snatched up by collectors. I think that it will become more popular, from people learning of the hobby and I think that if the economy doesn't turn around car enthusiasts may turn to GTs so they can still fix things up and have something with an engine they can restore for less cost then a car.

Very well said Ryan.That's why we need your generation to keep pushing this great hobby along :thumbs:
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Posted March 08, 2012 - 03:39 PM

I agree with a lot of what has been said so far. It is unfortunate that so much "Old Iron" has been scrapped already due to the rising scrap prices. As the hobby grows, I see more parts being reproduced AND the not-so-well-known brands getting more recognition and possibly being more readily available since more people will recognize the interest in old garden tractors - meaning more people will try to sell the tractor they no longer use or want. The general public garden tractor owner probably doesn't see a diamond in the rough when looking at a 30, 40 or even 50-year-old garden tractor.

That being said, the prices for any tractor will rise along with everything else. I developed an interest in the tractors that are more rare recently and I have already begun taking Josh's advice by trying to collect the tractors I want while they can still be found, at a reasonable price too!

Edited by rajkowski@ymail, March 08, 2012 - 03:41 PM.

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#26 Toolpartzman OFFLINE  


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Posted March 08, 2012 - 06:36 PM

Really great thread and I'm wondering that will the "future of the hobby" be as regional as it seems today.? Just look at the member map? In my short time around GTs it seems prices out my way are much higher than East and NE. etc. Certainy most GTs were built in the NE, but it seems that even with so many members in say, PA.-you guys still seem to find tractors here and there. Distance does play a roll in supply and demand. Then, just today, a restored Simplicity Broadway showed up on local CL for $600.?? I guess I'm just trying get a handle on something without a handle.

In forecasting, its common to nail down a current trend and then carry that trend forward -Does anyone else get it?

#27 johndeereelfman OFFLINE  


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Posted March 08, 2012 - 07:47 PM

Five years down the road? I agree with the hobby growing, and being able to see more garden tractors at each, if not all, tractor shows. With the high dollar amounts of the antique farm tractors right now, collectors are starting to take a second look at the garden tractors, mostly because, they can buy more garden tractors for the price of one farm tractor. Yes, garden tractors are plentiful, but not as much as they were five years ago.

Next generation taking over for us? I really hope so, but with the texting, computers, and video games, that kids are so wrapped up in these days, will the next generation be interested in restoring something, that don't text back, call back, or has to die, in order to feel fulfilled with enjoyment? Kids now days, just aren't the hard workers that you and I were raised to be. If you wanted something back then, you had to work for it, or earn it. It just wasn't given to you. I have a fear, the next generation will be the scrapers, that we are dealing with today. They won't want to store our old junk.

Value? I started collecting garden tractors for the excitment of owning some rare tractors and accessories. As the collection grew, and became more complete, I have dreams of someday handing the collection down to my kids. With me gone, the kids now owning the collection, how much is the collection worth, if I'm not around anymore? The money won't be doing me any good. I won't be around to ever know, and if the hobby isn't as interesting in the future as it is now, how much is the collection really worth to my kids? My collection is already paying itself off, whenever I see the excitment in my kids eyes, as they drive their tractors, and take pride in what they have. There is no dollar amount big enough, to ever make me want to sell, and end up taking the joy out of my kids hearts. What they do after I'm dead and gone, is up to them. I can only hope that they will take care of the collection, and keep the hobby going strong for my memory.

Ten years? As stated in some threads above, prices will be higher than they are right now. The demand for reproduction parts will be high, but I feel the reproduction parts is what will eventually hurt this hobby. It will be cheaper to buy reproduction parts, then it will to find an original part. Each and everyday, I see the patience of people growing shorter and shorter, and so people just won't want to put the blood, sweat and tears, into doing a restoration themselves. If they can't buy it already painted and complete, they won't be interested. People won't spend the high dollar amounts asked for original, complete, unrestored garden tractors. The world is slowly turning into a world, where everything is easy, and bigger and better things are the lastest things to have. Sad to say, but I really think the old farm tractors, garden tractors, and even antique cars and trucks, will slowly start to decrease in interest within the next ten to fifthteen years down the road. Car and truck collectors will eventually start to sell their collections, as most cars will start to deteriorate due to not being designed to run on our current gas options. Higher amounts of Ethenol will eventually destroy these old antiques, and fixing them just won't be worth the time and effort of repairs anymore.

I really hope I'm wrong with my thinking, and I'm hoping our old machines will be around for a very long time. I guess only time will tell.

Edited by johndeereelfman, March 08, 2012 - 08:01 PM.

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#28 Reverend Blair OFFLINE  

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Posted March 08, 2012 - 08:55 PM

I think we're going to see some big changes over the next few years driven not by hobbyists, but by casual users. I'm noticing quite a few things: people moving to larger properties; a resurgence of vegetable gardening; an aging population; growing concern about the environment; and of course changing technology.

Put all of that together and I think we're going to see a lot of electric and alternative-fuelled (diesels running on canola oil, most likely) GTs hitting the market that do a lot more than mow. I'm guessing they'll be very easy to use (joysticks and drive controls very similar to cars), reliable (hydraulics that are efficient and non-leaky), and offer a lot of options.

That's good for the hobbyists because the older GTs will start showing up on the market more as casual users upgrade. It will also give us some different options for re-powers and maybe some more implements/accessories on the market. Of course anything new will drive nostalgia so collecting/restoring may grow as a hobby initially, but a lot of people won't stick with that aspect of it...think about the muscle car collection thing in the 1980's...so their finds will become available.

We'll also see more related things, like tools, available. Think about how few people had welders or air tools at home in the 1980s compared to now. It was too expensive and complicated for most. I'm guessing we'll see the same thing with CNC machines and some of the small-scale manufacturing devices coming out of the computer industry now. Imagine being able to design and build your own parts at the push of a button instead of having to find used ones.

I doubt we'll see a huge shift in five years, this will all build slowly, but it will be evident that it's happening in five years and in a decade it will be a whole other ball game.
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#29 Littledeere OFFLINE  



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Posted March 08, 2012 - 10:03 PM

AHH the future {crystal balls, black holes,ouija board's,shooting stars } I think like most here that
it will grow I hope it will stay at a level that if someone wants to collect they can do it on some level
and still have fun with it
But I think it does need to grow to survive, just like the scrap issuses if some one won't buy if for a better price
it will fall to the pile this will push what is left out there to a higher price.
I love going to the steam shows and seeing what is still out there , talking with the people and learnig about what is there
it's great win I see younger ones showing some interest in what's there also

On the other hand some have went to Garden tractors to make moveing from place to place easy
haul 4 tractors not just one big boy, easy to ride around the shows ,have something different a mini me for there large tractor

Lets hope this hobby keeps going strong
with the great people it has and more to come
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#30 chris m OFFLINE  

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Posted March 08, 2012 - 11:52 PM

My thinking is the same as everyone else, I really believe that on top of everything else already mentioned, People are finally getting tired of the quality ( or lack there of) of the new machines and products coming out. So more and more people will start looking for the old quality built things weather they restore them themselves or buy them already done.
Don't get me wrong I like technology and new things But I think things are getting out of control!
And from what I see, people in my age group ( growing up in the 70's and 80's) are starting to remember that old work horse of a tractor that there dad had when they were young, and as they are trying to start there new machine ( and failing) they remember how that old machine would start right up! even after sitting outside all winter!
And yes prices are going up and it is harder to find a good tractor (at a decent price) But I still believe this hobby will continue to grow as will our wonderful forum here at GTt! :smilewink:
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