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Issue # 32 - The Oliver Manure Spreader Line

Helping someone to identify a manure spreader is something Iím asked to do on a regular basis. I had written a story many years ago about spreaders but due to numerous requests, Iíve updating the story and added a little more information. This article will help you to identify the various models in the earlier years of Oliver and color schemes.

Even before the 1929 merger with American Seeding, Oliver was involved with Superior Seeding Company in Springfield, OH. The Oliver Chilled Plow Works was an agent for many of American Seedingís products, including their Black Hawk spreaders. The No. 26 spreader was designed specifically to be horse-drawn. It had a full load capacity of 60-80 bushel.

In 1930, following the formation of the Oliver Farm Equipment Company, Oliver introduced the Superior No. 75 spreader, which was still built in Springfield, OH. This steel wheeled spreader had a load capacity of 75 bushel, thus the designation ď75Ē. The wood that was used in the spreader was long leaf yellow pine, which had high resistance to the acid in the manure. Oliver boasted that this was a modern machine with light draft, a spring suspended axle for a smoother ride and easy to operate. The company also boasted that it had the shortest turning radius of any spreader on the market at 92 inches. In 1932 Oliver announced that the Superior 75 had been improved and was now designated the 75-A.

The upper cylinders where raised higher on the A model. This also permitted the spreader to carry an addition 5 bushel over the previous model. An optional tractor hitch was available for the 75-A.

Other optional equipment included a brake attachment, an end gate and a lime sowing attachment. The hammermill could be removed with the lime thrower put in its place. On the later models you could even order wheels that could be fitted with pneumatic tires. This was Oliverís primary spreader until 1939. Up to this point, the body on the 75 and the 75-A was red with yellow wheels and lettering.

In 1939 Oliver introduced the Oliver Superior No. 7 spreader. This was the first spreader designed specifically for use with rubber tires. This was the Cadillac of all spreaders. With rubber tires, a smooth ride and a wide non-slip footboard for the operator, hauling manure was no longer a painful chore (unless you filled the box with a pitchfork.) The farmer now had a handy pedal clutch to start and stop the spreading. The tractor user could operate the spreader with a rope. The machine was made was with sheet ingot iron instead of wood which saved 400 pounds over competitive outfits. Ribs were incorporated into the sides for additional strength.

To read the entire story, subscribe to Oliver Heritage.

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