1953, Arlin’s Grandfather, Reuben, purchased an implement dealership in Watertown, Minnesota, called “Fratzke’s.” As a small child, Arlin used to sit on his grandfather’s new Farmall tractors: 706 & 806 & 1206 & 656 & 756 & 856 & 1256 & 1456. For over two decades, these beautiful red tractors lined the front lawn of the Fratzke business and were sold and delivered to their new owners. Today Arlin is working his Farmall 656 D (Diesel) and spraying “2-4-D” for broadleaf leaves such as clover, dandelion, and buttercup to help our pasture grow. Before spraying, Arlin cleans and sets the nozzles for the proper spray pattern. He likes to spray in the fall, before the weeds go dormant, and this particular sprayer he purchased fifteen years ago in Ronan, Montana, after finding an ad in the paper (before the days of craigslist!). At first, Arlin tried to put the sprayer on “my” Farmall 230; the 230 supported the sprayer but as soon as you increased the throttle and moved forward---the front end came up and bucked in “wheelie!”
This is “Gumby,” my favorite John Deere Tractor! For many years, I fed cattle by myself with the help of this Tractor and a bale processor. Lots of folks thought Gumby was “overkill” and not needed in a cattle operation. But whenever my husband, Arlin, was flying round-the-world as a captain for FedEx (away from home two weeks each month), I could feed our entire cattle herd, by myself, efficiently and without a lot of manual labor. In the old days, Arlin and I used to feed cattle off our 1986 Ford 250 flatbed pickup by hand-stacking small square bales, cutting the twine, and throwing the feed on the ground so our cows could eat. I remember many days during the winter when we would have to put chains on the pickup and carry a shovel, just in case we got stuck. The heater didn’t work and the air conditioner was worse, but it made for an adventurous day! It also made me forever grateful for Gumby!
2018 Midland Bull Test 2nd Report Leaders are posted! Group 1 Angus - Final ADG Leaders: Flying AJ Ranch in Stevensville, MT earned Second Place with Lot #7 ADG 4.43 and WDA 3.28! For nearly twenty years, the Flying AJ Ranch has been a long-time supporter of Midland Bull Test Sale. Midland is known as “The Granddaddy of Performance Testing” and provides objective and comprehensive performance testing for consigners. There’s nothing that helps our customers more than providing them with a productive, nice-looking, fertile, long-living, maternal cattle herd that puts money in their pocket! So every April, the Flying AJ Ranch sells our performance bulls at the Midland Bull Test Sale and this year have select bulls from 44 Ten Gallon, AAR 10X, Connealy Thunder, and Sitz Dash. Most of our Flying AJ Ranch calves are born in February and weaned the first of September. This calving season of 2018, Arlin and I are excited to experience our first EPIC calves and look forward to watching them grow, before our Register Angus bull calves head to Midland each September to put on test. We look forward to seeing you April 2018 at the Midland Bull Test Sale!