Saturday, July 25, 2009

Free Parts

We bought our mower from a dealer up north a few years ago, and when I contacted them recently to replace a few parts on the rotary cutter, they were out of business. Shock, awe, concern, and I sent an email, not expecting anything.

After searching online and contacting other people, I finally got an email from one the old dealer and a guy I hadn't dealt with, asking what I needed. I sent a note back and he said he'd be at the shop yesterday after 3. So I left work early, packed up kids, and headed up there.

We hit tons of traffic, it was slow, and I am not sure I could handle that well anymore if I had to drive to work. I was getting stressed, but we managed to get up there. Having never been there, we found a building for rent with the right address, but no one was there. Empty warehouse, we checked the locked yard in the back, no parts. There was a pickup out front with a tractor on a trailer, so I thought we had the right place, but no signs, nothing.

I was disappointed, frustrated, and we were ready to leave when I noticed the lot across the street with a red tractor and various implements. So we walked over there and sure enough there were 6 or 8 of the same rotary cutter stacked up on a holder, along with blades, augers, etc. An assortments of various tractor parts. We walked around, looking to see if there were spares on the ground when I noticed a sign that appeared to be from this dealer on another building.

We drove over and found the guy, working on one last tractor that he had to deliver to a customer. They'd just run out of business, most of them moved on to new jobs (including this guy), but he was trying to close down the shop. I felt bad for them and we talked about what I had wrong and what I could do for service. He gave me the names of two shops (Colorado Tractor and Longmont Farm) to call for things. Then we looked through the bins of parts he was tossing in front and found an "A" frame and a wheel for the rear cutter. He just gave them to me, which was amazing.

I showed him the bent frame and he suggested heating it with a torch and trying to bend it back or calling Longmont Farm Supply and talking to them. He also gave me a free set of spare blades for my cutter.

So I can do a little fixing, but I think I'll email him today and ask what he'd take for another cutter. We could use the spare parts, it's cheaper than buying a new one and should give us a few years of service, and it would help them.

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