The Right Equipment

Longtime Allis-Chalmers and AGCO tractor owners, the Bennetts recently switched to Massey Ferguson and are happy they did.

Jeannie, Rich and Ken Griffith.

Jeannie, Rich and Ken Griffith.

Working the fields on the 1,100-acre Bennett Farm isn’t just Rich Bennett’s job.

In fact, his wife, Jeannie, does much of it on her AGCO DT180. “She does a lot of fall tillage and any spring tillage ahead of the corn planter,” Rich says. “And in fall, she’s right behind us as we harvest, trucking the grain.”

“The DT180 is Jeannie’s tractor, and she keeps it polished,” he deadpans. “She’s up to every three rounds before she takes the dust off.”

“I do like to keep the windows clean,” Jeannie admits, smiling. “I know that tractor inside and out. It’s a joy to run. All I have to do is touch a button and we’re off. There’s no shifting.”

Rich and Ken Griffith keep a new MF7485 busy doing utility work. “It’s our catch-all tractor,” Rich says proudly. “I had an Allis 8050 and a 7045 and wanted to update them, and I did it with the Massey 7485. It’s a good tractor to do anything from hauling grain wagons to planting soybeans. It was the first red tractor Mitchell Farm Equipment sold when they switched from orange to red.” Everyone on the farm gives high marks to the tractor’s continuous variable transmission (CVT).

Rich says the DT and the MF7485 operate almost identically. “The only differences are the color and the horsepower,” he says.

Rich is totally impressed by the CVT that’s standard on his MF7485. “It’s just so smooth,” he says. “And you can go at such a slow speed. It really takes the stress out of operation. We’re really learning to take advantage of it. With a clutch, you’re always changing gears, but with CVT, you don’t have to be shifting.”

Catching the Pitch

High school sports started a long relationship between the Bennetts and Mitchell Farm Equipment. A quality product and excellent service have kept it going.

It was the mid-1960s, and on the mound for the Liberty Center Tigers was young Bob Gyurasics. Behind the plate, calling for Bob’s fastball, was Rich Bennett. The two have been friends ever since.

“I’m still pitching and he’s still catching,” quips Gyurasics, who is sales manager for Mitchell, referring to the men’s current business relationship. “I’ve been here 33 years, and it started when I came here. Rich is loyal to our dealership.”

Excellent service builds such loyalty, and Mitchell Farm Equipment provides it. “If Rich has a tractor that needs something, he can drive it over here and park it at the door, and we go to work on it,” Bob says. “We do the same for anybody who brings their machinery in, and we also have three service guys who can go on the road.

“I use the servicemen as salesmen,” continues Bob, “because they know the nuts and bolts, and can tell the customer what the machines will do. I think personal relationships and service are what sell, and we want to keep it that way.”

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