I took advantage of the mild winter weather and went to the Louisville Farm Show last week. On an average year 300,000 farmers are there. My guess is that there were more this year. Farm Industry News has a banquet each year at which they give FIN awards away. This year Geringhoff won the top award for their folding corn heads. They are a German company and they market their corn heads worldwide. They had on display a corn head prototype that they hope to introduce in a couple years. It is able to harvest any row spacing from solid drill seeding on up without any adjustment. The header excels in picking up down corn. This is the most exciting product I saw at the show.
I took time to ask about changes in the Gleaner combines. Company people said they are working on a Class VIII version that will be released in a couple years. It will have the 7-cyl., 9.8-liter AGCO engine that is currently available in the Class VIII Massey Ferguson combine. The unique thing about the Gleaner combine is that they are using the same platform on their new models as they did on previous R-66 and R-67 models. Their philosophy is to stick with the relatively compact and light machine and just beef up the capacity of it. I agree with their logic that the competitors' combines are getting too bulky and heavy to be transported easily.
On our way home we took I-65 and I-69 right through the center of Indiana. Very little fall tillage was completed and very little wheat seeded. But at least the harvest was complete on those roads. The worst ruts in the fields that we saw were in Putnam County, Ohio, where I live.