Parker Couple Sells Mower Parts Around The World
Someone You Should Know
Customers all over the world depend on a couple who live on a farm southwest of Parker. It’s not what they grow, it’s what they collect. You see, they have a thriving business selling used lawn mower parts called Dakota Outdoor Power Equipment. It is a business so unique; we think they are Someone You Should Know.
At a farm near Parker, there is no plowing, planting or spraying, but there is plenty of harvesting, of parts. They have parts from motorcycles, golf carts, skid loaders and ATV’s, but mostly lawn mowers, many lawn mowers.
“There’s over 1,900 the last time I counted them anyway,” said LeRoy Oleson.
These mowers may look like junk to some, but to the practiced eye, this is a treasure trove… of parts. It all started 23 years ago, by chance Leroy came across a deal on a mower, the next day he put it up for sale.
“A lot of people called and I thought maybe I would do that again and started getting a few more in here and there, just was my hobby now there quite a few setting here, said LeRoy”
So how did all these mowers get here? Leroy goes to auctions and estate sales; he buys them by the truckload and even has people dropping them off. You will find the major brands here, Including Cub Cadet, John Deere and Snapper but you will also find names like Dynastar, Homelite, and Wheel Horse. Most will never run again. This John Deere riding mower, on its own it’s not worth anything. But part it out and it can be worth hundreds.
So maybe you are looking for Kohler Magnum M-18 cam, a Cub Cadet creeper-gear or a Briggs & Stratton vanguard flywheel shroud.
Yep no idea what I’m talking about, but Leroy knows exactly what these parts do, where they go and how rare they are. And so does his fiancé Brandi Schumack
“I love it you know I’ve learned so much from Leroy, I’ve learned that its fun to take thing apart.”
Brandi and Leroy sell their parts on Facebook and on EBay where they have their own store called “manymowers”.
According to Brandi
“Over 90 percent of our sales are online, so that’s why we ship so much stuff.”
Through Ebay, they send parts all over the world including France, Russia, Puerto Rico, Finland, Norway Germany, New Zealand, Ireland and Canada. As for the language barrier with customers in far off lands, it is no problem because Brandi is fluent in… Google Translate.
“If they send me an email I translate it, and then I type it into Google Translate and then I translate into their language and send it back,” said Brandi.
The most sought after part in the lawn mower world comes right back to John Deere, used Hoods for some models can fetch hundreds of dollars. Leroy says if he advertises one, it does not last long.
“I got 56 phone calls before 11 o’clock; I think I got over 80 that day,” said LeRoy.
On this day, we watched a semi drive up the gravel road and stop at the driveway of their farm. The drivers know this will be an easy stop. Like a well-oiled machine, Leroy at the controls of his favorite skid loader puts the order on the truck and Brandi takes care of the paperwork. Today’s sale, a palette loaded with a tiller and tires for a garden tractor ready for a buyer in Georgia. Tomorrow’s order may be headed for France or maybe Australia, so it is back to the office
And while it may seem to be just another farm on rural gravel road, people might be surprised to find a thriving business run by two people using their unique knowledge and following their passion to reach people in other parts of the world.
“It’s just so fun, I guess having fun every day,” said LeRoy.
Dakota Outdoor Power Equipment also sells working mowers. You can find pictures and video on their Facebook page