New High-Tech Farm Equipment Is a Nightmare for Farmers

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Dennis
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New High-Tech Farm Equipment Is a Nightmare for Farmers

Postby Dennis » Fri Feb 06, 2015 1:55 pm

I squatted down in the dirt and took stock of my inadequate tools. Over my left shoulder a massive John Deere tractor loomed. I came here to fix that tractor. So far, things weren’t going as planned.

I’m a computer programmer by training, and a repairman by trade. Ten years ago, I started iFixit, an online, DIY community that teaches people to repair what they own. Repair is what I do, and that I was being rebuffed by a tractor was incredibly frustrating.

Kyle Wiens is the co-founder and CEO of iFixit, an online repair community and parts retailer internationally renowned for their open source repair manuals and product teardowns.

I tossed my wrenches and screwdrivers. The conventional tools of my trade had no power here. This job called for something different. Armed with wire, alligator clips, a handful of connectors, and a CANbus reader, I launched myself back into the cab of the tractor. Once more into the breach, dear friends!

The family farmer who owns this tractor is a friend of mine. He just wanted a better way to fix a minor hydraulic sensor. Every time the sensor blew, the onboard computer would shut the tractor down. It takes a technician at least two days to order the part, get out to the farm, and swap out the sensor. So for two days, Dave’s tractor lies fallow. And so do his fields.

Read the rest of the story here: http://www.wired.com/2015/02/new-high-t ... e-farmers/
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danovercash
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Re: New High-Tech Farm Equipment Is a Nightmare for Farmers

Postby danovercash » Fri Feb 06, 2015 4:41 pm

Wow, it's like that with a lot of automotive stuff, you have to go through the dealer. Sad.
Last edited by danovercash on Fri Feb 06, 2015 5:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Eugene
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Re: New High-Tech Farm Equipment Is a Nightmare for Farmers

Postby Eugene » Fri Feb 06, 2015 5:17 pm

danovercash wrote:Wow, it's like that with a lot of automotive stuff, you ha e to go through the dealer. Sad.
Yup. Pull the hood on wife's vehicle - nothing but plastic to see. Even if I pulled the plastic, everything is still computer controlled.

Picked up a 2003 Ford Expedition at police auction. Couple of easily solved problems but had a parasitic drain. Spent weeks studying the wiring diagrams, talked to service dept technicians, took me about 3 weeks, part time, to discover the source.
I have an excuse. CRS.


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