Florida's Largest Peanut Farmer Prefers Challenger Agricultural Equipment

May 17, 2010 at 9:18 AMRing Power

Gene Waldron Explains Why He Chooses Challenger over John Deere Tractors Gene Waldron Shows Famous Green Peanuts

"God first, family second and farming third." These are words Mr. Gene Waldron (of Waldron Farms’ green peanut fame) lives by. He says, "It really is just that simple."

Waldron’s journey as a peanut farmer began fifty years ago. He quit school and went to work farming at the age of fifteen. He began with one hundred acres of peanut fields in 1959. He would sell these peanuts to the Jacksonville Farmers Market by way of a neighbor’s truck and a borrowed tank of gas. Waldron recalls, "My neighbor had a truck he said he’d sell me for sixty-five dollars. I said, ‘Okay, I’ll buy the truck, but can I borrow five dollars for gas?’" At fifteen, he then drove without a driver’s license from Citra, Florida up to Jacksonville to the Farmers Market. He did this for two weeks and the following Monday returned to his neighbor to repay him for the truck and the gas money. And that’s where it all began.

Fast-forward fifty years and Gene Waldron now farms 7,000 acres of peanuts across the state of Florida. He owns 3,200 acres near Citra and leases the remaining land farther south where he has a longer warm season for growing. Waldron Farms are particularly well known for their "green" peanut. The green peanut has reached its full maturation size, but is not allowed to completely dry out. This creates a taste that most peanut connoisseurs prefer. Green peanuts are also harder to come by; because they are not completely dried out and cured like dry-roasted peanut varieties they have a shorter shelf life. Most green peanuts are eventually boiled to become the southern road-side snack favorite "boiled peanuts". During Waldron’s busy months, they produce 5,000 bushels of green peanuts a day. Waldron sells these peanuts from as far south as Homestead, Florida, to as far north as Boston and Canada and all the way out to Texas.

The interesting thing about Gene Waldron is that he used to be a John Deere dealer. He owned Marion Tractor and then Green South with locations in Florida, Georgia and South Carolina. So how did this John Deere aficionado become a Ring Power customer? Challenger tractors. Waldron has a fleet of thirty-six agricultural tractors. Of these, his favorite are the four Challengers he bought from Ring Power. The Challengers are his favorite for a very simple reason: they save him money. And a lot of it. Waldron said that he can run a Challenger MT575B with the same horsepower as his 7820 Deere machine for twice the amount of time on the same amount of fuel. Pulling the harrows, his Deere machines have to be refueled every day. Challenger tractors only need to be refueled every two days. The Challenger tractor saves him at least fifty gallons of fuel every day. That comes out to over $23,000 worth of savings per year for just one tractor alone. Waldron says, "The savings in fuel alone makes it worth it, but it’s the service that really makes the difference."

Waldron explains that every hour a tractor isn’t Waldron Farm's Green Peanutsworking, is an hour he’s not making money. He said Ring Power’s one hour field service turn around time makes all the difference in the world. Waldron explained, "Deere never once made it out here in under an hour, even when I owned the company!" Waldron can’t afford any down time, especially during harvesting season, and that is why he relies on Ring Power’s service department to be there at a moment’s notice to get him back up and running.

Of the thirty-two Deere tractors remaining in Waldron’s fleet, he plans to keep zero. Every single one will be traded in for the Challenger equivalent as soon as the warranties run out. Waldron could not be more pleased with his Challenger machines and is happy to tell anyone about it! More Challengers mean more peanuts!

 For more information about Ring Power Corporation's Agriculture Division, please visit ringpowerag.com.

 

Not All Boom Mowers Are Created Equal

March 22, 2010 at 3:22 PMRing Power
A Challenger tractor matched with a Diamond Boom Mower is perfect combination for roadside mowing.

Diamond Boom Mowers and Challenger Ag and Farm Tractors: a winning combination for roadside vegetation managementDiamond Boom Mower & Challenger Ag Tractor

When it comes to roadside mowing, the boom mower of choice for Ring Power is quality Diamond Boom Mowers. In a side-by-side comparison, competitive boom mowers, like Alamo Industrial, do not even come close to the features and quality of Diamond Boom Mowers. Review the comparison of Diamond’s key features and see for yourself. The photographs are an Alamo Industrial mower mounted onto a John Deere tractor.

Ease of Maintenance
The simple drive system used by Diamond’s boom mowers utilizes high performance pumps, motors and controls.
Alamo uses a large front-mounted pump and control system that operate the boom and turret assembly.

Field Usage
Diamond Mower, when coupled with the Challenger 500 Series tractor, has 12 inches of clearance—that’s nearly three-times the clearance of the competition. Most other boom mowers have only 4 inches of ground clearance.

Turret Assembly and Boom Mounting Pins
Diamond’s simplistic design incorporates one very large and strong pin and one cylinder with over 75 sq. in. load bearing surface on the swing pin. This gives the boom mower many years of trouble-free service and low maintenance cost.
The underside of the competitor’s turret assembly uses a pin and bushing assembly. The clutter of hydraulic lines and grease points makes servicing the competition’s turret assembly difficult to service. The load-bearing surface on their swing pin is less than 30 sq. inches compared to Diamond Boom Mowers 75 sq. inches.

Mounted Counter-weights
Diamond uses a tire-mounted counter-weight, allowing the tire to absorb all of the shock.

The competition uses an all-steel frame-mounted counter-weight. The shock load with their system is directed to the tractor frame making it susceptible to wear and tear.

Steel Hydraulic Lines
Hose failure is one of the most common maintenance problems, and most costly, with any hydraulic-driven machinery. Diamond Mowers utilize steel lines in place of rubber hydraulic hoses, whenever possible, to reduce maintenance cost, better manage routing and dissipate heat more efficiently.
Alamo mowers have their hydraulic hoses routed inside the boom.

More Cutting Strokes
Cutting is the name of the game when it comes to roadside mowing applications. Diamond Mowers uses a Tri-hex Carrier, that’s 3-blades rotating at an 1,750 rpm, equating to an astounding 5,250 cutting strokes per minute. The competition: 2 blades at 1,200 rpm equals 2,400 strokes per minute—no comparison!
Diamond provides nearly 120% more cutting strokes per minute, faster and more efficient mowing.

About Diamond Boom Mowers

Did you know Diamond Mower’s customer service is considered the best in the boom mowing industry?
Diamond Mowers is willing to provide warranty “at the mower.” All other manufacturers provide warranty at the dealership.
Diamond Mowers guarantees parts shipment for your boom mower in 72 hours or less.
    If Diamond does not ship your parts in 72 hours or less we will give you the part for free and pay the freight.

Diamond Mowers actually covers bearings and belts under their standard warranty. All other manufacturers consider bearings and belts as wear items and are your responsibility from day one.
Diamond Mowers offers customers a choice on one, two or three years of warranty without any degradation of coverage during the full period of coverage. The extended warranty of Diamond is a full continuation of the first year’s coverage.
Diamond Mowers provides written and video documentation of compliance with all the ANSI/SAE safety standards that apply to their products. How does this fit with your operation’s liability concerns?
What other dealer in your trade area can offer the number of service facilities, service trucks and technicians to care for your purchase? This makes a huge difference in how long you may have to “wait in line.”
What other dealer Florida has more experience servicing heavy equipment “in the field.” For the most part, farm dealers are “in the shop” operations. Check how their service trucks are equipped and compare them to Ring Power’s field service trucks.


Ring Power is here to serve the farming, agricultural and mowing industries with the best ag tractors, farming implements, attachments and mowers in the business. Call toll free, 1-888-535-3380 or click below to see the Ring Power difference.

Ring Power Ag division is the Challenger farm tractor dealer in north and central Florida. We carry new, used and previously-owned agricultural and farm tractors and deliver to farms throughout the southeast, midwest and the plains states, like Kansas, Illinois and far west as Texas. For information on Challenger farm and agricultural tractors, Sunflower discs, Rome plows,  Land Pride mowers, Schulte cutters and rotary mowers, Spra-Coupe ag sprayers, Terra Gator agricultural sprayers, Diamond Mowers, ICON scrapers and pans, and Trelleborg  agricultural wheel systems, please visit RingPowerAG.com.
 

 

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