Q & A with Shannon Diem: How Wheelman Increases Efficiency for Ranchers

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June 14, 2019

TITLE: Q & A: How Wheelman Autosteering Increases Efficiency for Ranchers

Shannon Diem, Senior Director of Digital Marketing at AgJunction, recaps his recent visit to Susanville, CA. While in Susanville, Shannon filmed with Jeff Hemphill and learned about how ranchers find value in using the Wheelman system for a variety of day to day activities.

Q: Who did you meet in Susanville?

A: During my trip to Susanville, I met with Jeff Hemphill. He is a very nice, longtime resident and well-respected member of the Susanville community who was voted into political office as the Lassen County Commissioner. In addition to serving as County Commissioner, Jeff ranches and farms, selling beef and hay.

Q: What did you learn in Susanville?

A: While visiting Jeff in Susanville, I learned a lot about ranchers, how they make purchasing decisions and how they use Wheelman for all kinds of day to day ranching activities. This is something we at AgJunction had never thought about in the past, but the Wheelman system is undoubtedly useful to ranchers.

Q: What did you learn about ranchers’ buying habits and purchasing decisions?

A: I learned that much like farmers, ranchers also buy based on recommendations from others. At the same time, ranchers also like being the ones to find out new technology and bring it to their farming community first. It’s kind of like ‘bragging rights’ and gives them a sense of pride for being the first ones to try something new and innovative.

I also learned that farmers and ranchers, while used to buying equipment from dealers, will also buy online, but only if they believe the product and company are reputable.

Q: What kinds of activities are ranchers using Wheelman for?

A: I learned there are many ways that ranchers can use the device daily. Some activities include scraping, discing, spreading manure, feeding cattle, fertilizing, the list goes on and on. Needless to say, ranchers get a lot of use out of the Wheelman system for day to day tasks they have on the ranch.

Q: What are some of the benefits ranchers can get from using Wheelman?

A: Not only did I learn about Wheelman having year-round use for ranchers, but I also learned how the device can also help them achieve the requirements to apply for Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) and Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program grant money. These programs, as well as others, are programs put into place for farmers and ranchers to farm more efficiently and environmentally sound, preserving the soil, water and air quality.

Q: What was the biggest takeaway from your visit to Susanville?

A: I would have to say the biggest take away I learned was how the Wheelman system helps ranchers maximize efficiency. Ranchers and farmers can save time by multi-tasking while using Wheelman, as there are opportunities to do other jobs while in the cab. This makes them more efficient.  For example, ranchers can set lines for spreading hay to feed and spreading manure to fertilize pastures, and ensure they are not being mixed.  Using Wheelman to feed also allows ranchers to see their cattle and check on their health from the cab, saving time from going out into the pastures to see them.  In addition, Wheelman provides numerous farming benefits for ranchers who also plant crops, such as alfalfa and hay. The system helps to reduce overlap and cut costs on fuel, seed and chemicals, all while tremendously cutting time in the cab. 

Additionally, ranchers can use Wheelman on both an articulated as well as a non-articulated tractor for about $4,000.  This flexibility makes this autosteering device easy to use daily, producing more efficiencies for farmers and ranchers, each day. The Wheelman, to quote Jeff Hemphill, “is the best $4,000 you’ll spend on your farm or ranch, just because of how much easier it makes your life.”

Watch Jeff Hemphill use Wheelman on his ranch:

#3 Hemphill 16x9 imagination

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