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25th October 1921
Page 18
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Page 18, 25th October 1921 — THE AGRIMOTOR TRIALS AND AFTER.
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Which of the following most accurately describes the problem?

MANY ideas occur to one's mind when a few days have elapsed after the end of the trials. Formerly there have been many criticisms and suggestions to offer, but this year there appear to be very few criticisms and only a few minor suggestions, the whole of the arrangements being made and carried out so admirably by the officials of the S.M,M. -and T.

" Very good" is the mark which one would award to the Shrewsbury Trials. Those who attended--e exhibitors, competitors or visitors—were well satisfied. The event provided an excellent educational opportunity for agents, makers and users, and, sales being good, manufacturers and agents were naturally

well satisfied. .

There are some. people, both among farmers and manufacturers, who think that the benefits of trials do not altogether warrant the amount oftime and expense devoted to them. Sonic go so far as to. point to the non-succeSs of tractor trials in America, as thoughconditions in that country were the same as over here. The day might arrive—possibly it will arrive—when tractors become so standardized that . _trials of this sort will not be necessary, but even on this point, the salesmen would probably have 'something to say.

from all points of view the trials were a great success. The land upon which they worked was very heavy, and it also had the adva-ntage of being very dry, thus giving good wheel grip, • and the tractors had an opportunity of demonstrating their full powers.

By the use or the Watson dynamometer, it will be possible to ascertain to a very 'goat extent what a tractor is capable of doing. Tho figures in the tables issued by the officials do not in any way provide sufficient guide for the tractor buyer ; but, at the same time, they do give a vast amount of valuable information.

I am not going into any details of the figures kt. this juncture, as I think it would be better to do this when the tables are issued with the official report, seeing that. its publication is promised early. I would say this, however : that the variations that will be noticeable in the drawbar pull on the draw bar as compared with that on the actual ploughing in the observed tests is determined to a great extent by the resistance of the soil, the inclines in some of the fields, and so on. This is one of the points where the figures are not what one might call fully satisfactory, although we shall see more clearly into the matter in future discussions.

A point that naturally interests readers of The Commercial Motor is the number of people attend ing the trials and the localities from which they come. It so happens that I live in the local area. of the Shrewsbury Trials, and was, therefore, in a position to know a very large number of the farmers who attended. I believe I should not be far . wrong in saying that there were repesentatives at the trials from every county in England, and probably Wales. There was a good number of representatives from Scotland, Ent the majority of agriculturists who attended came from Shropshiro and the six to eight surrounding counties. There Wan a large number there from Worcestershire, Staffordshire, Warwickshire, Cheshire, Montgomeryshire, Herefordshire Glaucesterahire and Oxfordshire, and this,. I think, proves the wisdom of the S.M.M. and T. in endeavouring to arrange the trials in widely distant -localities each year.

The farmers are always ready to travel . a few miles to a good show if the'r think there is any knowledge or information to be picked up, but they are • rather diSinolined to travel more than about 60 or 70 miles. If it had been possible to have drawn a line haying a radius. of 50 miles around Shrews bury, it would have been found that the majority of people came from within that eircle. After all, that is, I think, quite in order. You take the trials to the farmers in different parts of the country every year. Men who would not think -of going, say, from Montgomeryshire to Lincoln would go to Shrewsbury, particularly if they had an idea of buying an agrimotor. I think this is very encouraging, and as long as it remains so the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders will be justified in continuing the project. When the same conditions exist in thi s country as in America, and farmers refuse to be interested in tractor trials, then will be the time to consider a new arrangement. The organization of the trials was simply splendid. One of the few criticisms that I have to make is that the machines were at work each day over an area much too widely scattered. I know it is a difficult matter to secure 600 acres with all the fields close to the centre. That difficulty could have been avoided if tractors had been moved round the area from field to field each day, keeping them working fairly close together. I am not saying that this was quite possible at Shrewsbury, but I mention it in view of future testa I think perhaps it might be as well in future to have an agriculturist among the officials. I do not mean that the Society should incur a lot of expense in this direction, but :1 am sure there are men about who have a good agricultural knowledge, and who would, if their services were obtained, save much inconvenience to other officials and to visitors, and also be able to give to the arrangements an air of agriculture. Another criticism of Shrawardine which I consider cuts no ice is that the central field was too far, re moved from the main road. That criticism is quite an empty one to my mind, as the fact of having a railway station on the field chosen as the centre com pletely outweighs any advantage that would have been derived from having the centre near the main road. Besides, it would not have been a centre, because the main road was right on the.out side of the site. The lanes were rather narrow, which made it difficult for visitors to get about with motorcars, but that did not matter. This _trouble is part of the difficulty of getting the -fields as close to the centre as-possible, wherever the _centra might be: AGRIXOT. .

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