This Year’s Model

After a tough break, a young Massey Ferguson fan finds an outlet creating his own farm display.

Eric Rinkel and his diorama extraordinaire. Photo by Jason Hasert.

Eric Rinkel and his diorama extraordinaire. Photo by Jason Hasert.

Take a 14-year-old with an active imagination, a plaster cast and a bunch of Massey Ferguson farm toys, and what do you get? A detailed diorama of a hardworking farm…with a few twists.

That’s just what Eric Rinkel produced after he broke his ankle in a baseball game. Placed in a full-leg cast for several months, the youngster from western Illinois needed a new outlet. So, he got to work on a farm display that he showed at this year’s Mid-America Toy Show. That’s where he caught the eye of numerous attendees, including Jason Hasert.

Now, Hasert is the publisher of Toy Tractor Times, so when he contacted us about Eric’s display, which just happened to include Massey Ferguson models, we paid attention. “It was neat to see a young person so enthusiastic about Massey Ferguson and AGCO,” Hasert
wrote us.

Enthusiastic, indeed—Eric used plenty of red models for the display. He also created his cornstalks from corn tassels, made harvested corn from cornmeal, and even included a small pond with real, wet water. “It leaked a little,” says Eric. And when he couldn’t find a Sunflower tiller, he made one from toy Deere and Case IH models.

Then, to inject a little real-world excitement into the display, he added the wrecked hulk of a certain green combine and a pickup truck crashed in the creek. Eric confirmed no one was actually hurt in the construction of his diorama, but he did note, “The driver of the pickup was on his cell phone and in a hurry as he tried to pass an 8103 Terra-Gator air sprayer.”