They now own 140 tractors in all (believed to be the largest private collection of orchard tractors in America). Orchard tractors comprise most of the 74 that are completely restored. “Our goal has always been to own every make and model of orchard tractor made prior to the peak of the 1950s,” Diane says.
By their account, they only need a handful of orchard tractor models to complete their collection – tractors like the Waterloo Boy by John Deere, a rare Huber B and the Moline Jet Star.
While it can be a relatively inexpensive collector hobby to get into, Diane says classic tractors are becoming more popular. “Not only farmers and the children of farmers are collecting anymore,” she adds. “Shows and auctions are beginning to attract big money, white-collar buyers, which – at a recent show in Illinois – resulted in a vintage model Case selling for more than $400,000.”
There were only 100 Moline UDLX tractors ever made, and they have two on display – plus an even more sought-after Moline UTLX Open. There’s a 1946 Hudson pickup, a 1957 Dodge Sweptside D100 and a 1934 Chrysler Airflow.
“We own the only Plymouth orchard tractor in existence and a Sheppard Diesel, one of only 12 ever made,” Diane says.
Full gallery at http://photos.ducati.net/Cars-and-Airplanes-Tractors/Dream-Garage-Detroit-Michigan/i-TkW9QdP