Sweep rakes also
had to be totally modified for tractor operation. The sweep rake, or hay sweep
as it became known, was mounted on the front of the tractor. A single person
could therefore fill the sweep by driving along the windrow or collecting piles
left by a dump rake, and quickly transport the hay to the stack. The
tractor-mounted sweep was ideal for use in combination with an overshot stacker.
The hay was easily deposited on the stacker forks, and the tractor operator
could back up and quickly go for another load while stacking was in progress.
These tractor-mounted sweeps were designed with a larger capacity than
horse-drawn units, and furthermore, were dual purpose: they could collect either
hay or grain stocks.
buy tractor-mounted sweeps from Alberta machinery dealers from the 1920s through
the 1940s. Their potential, however, was not widely recognized until the Alberta
Department of Agriculture promoted them by publishing plans for building
homemade ones during the Second World War. Standard Iron Works of Edmonton also
produced a kit for farmers to build these combination sweeps. These sweep rakes
represented a major saving in labour because with them, stacking required only
three people: one to drive the tractor, one to drive the team operating the
stacker, and one to build the stack.
Judy Larmour. Making Hay While the Sun Shone: Haying in Alberta Before 1955. n.p.: Friends of
Reynolds-Alberta Museum Society and Alberta Culture and Multiculturalism, Historic Sites and Archives Service, 1992. With permission from
of the Reynolds-Alberta Museum Society.