REPRINTED ARTICLE FROM THE FARM SHOW MAGAZINE
Nowadays there’s an association or forum for just about everything, including people who have an interest in foreign-built tractors. FARM SHOW recently came across an organization called the Chinese Tractor Owners Association (CTOA) www.ctoa.net that seems to have a fairly large following. We received information from Hal Mandelman, the fellow who set up the organization.
CTOA is a website-based group whose goal is to “Help Each Other With Knowledge”. For a $15 lifetime fee, a person can become a member and have access to Chinese tractor owners throughout the country, locate dealers who sell tractors and parts, and participate in forums discussing all aspects of Chinese tractors.
The site carries in-depth articles on topics such as lubricating oil, treating pistons in an overhaul project, mounting a backhoe, adjusting valves, tending to the 4-wheel drive, dealing with cooling problems, and identifying the correct torque for engine head bolts. As of January 2013, CTOA had just over 1,000 registered users.
In addition to providing useful maintenance information, the site lists seven dealers located around the U.S. A 150-word description tells viewers what equipment and services the dealerships offer.
John Barrett of Global Marketing, a dealer in Rhode Island, has imported and sold Jinma tractors for several years and says his company has an ad on the site that generates leads for new tractor sales and service.
Ron Macon, of Ranch Hand Supply in Virginia, says he got a fair amount of leads from the site before the economic downturn a few years ago. Those calls have mostly dried up, but he still has people emailing and calling with mechanical questions.
The Chinese Tractor Owners Association’s website is www.ctoa.net.