Ohio farmer/entrepreneur Mark Altemeier has invented what the international Utility Terrain Vehicle (UTV) community can use for practically unlimited purposes: a three-point hitch dubbed “The Farmboy,” converting Utility Vehicles into “a work vehicle capable of doing almost anything a tractor can do,” Altemeier said. Altemeier conceived, designed and manufactured the first of the “The Farmboy” series in the spring of 2010 in his suburban Cincinnati farm, unveiling it in September/October at the Farm Science Review in Columbus, Ohio and at the Sunbelt Agricultural Exposition in Moultrie, Georgia.
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“I needed another tractor for a 3-row John Deere planter that I recently purchased, but I wasn’t willing to invest in another expensive piece of equipment,” said Altemeier, a farmer who grows sweet corn, beans, tomatoes, pumpkins, etc. through his Foster”s Farm Market. “So I thought how can I make better use of my Kubota RTV, which already has a standard hydraulic system. I thought there must be a hydraulic 3-point hitch accessory for it, so I started searching, and to my surprise, there was nothing out there. Nothing.”
“So my 4-year old son and I headed out to the barn to invent “the Contraption” as he liked to call it. After I used “the Contraption” to successfully plant my sweet corn, beans, and pumpkins, I realized I had something I could market to other farmers, dealers, landscapers, hunters, park maintenance crews, municipalities, military divisions, and utility companies alike,” Altemeier said. “There”s a lot of Utility Vehicles in the world, and my Farmboy 3-point hitch exponentially increases their versatility.” Next came the daunting task of filing for patents for this new invention.
“The Farmboy”, capable of handling loads of up to 800 pounds, fits on the front and/or back of the Kubota RTV attaching planters, lawn aerator, cultivators, watering systems, seeders, lawn dethatchers, arena conditioners, beach groomers snow plows, or one of many 3-point hitch attachments that previously could only be used by a compact tractor. Following the original Farmboy, Altemeier has developed hydraulic 3-point hitches for a number of different UTVs, allowing owners of other brands to use their vehicles as a real work machine.