Indiana inventor receives top farmer idea award at annual meeting


SAN ANTONIO — Daniel Prough of LaGrange, Ind., earned the grand prize in the Farmer Idea Exchange competition at the American Farm Bureau Federation’s 90th annual meeting.

Prough won a year’s use of a New Holland TV-145 bidirectional tractor. New Holland has provided a year’s free use of a tractor to the grand prize winner for 19 of the 20 years the program has existed.


Prough’s invention, an illuminating grease gun, is a xenon flashlight mounted on a heavy-duty pistol grease gun.

Having the flashlight mounted on the grease gun makes it easier to pump the gun and hold the grease tip at the same time.

The illuminating grease gun saves time when lubing equipment because there is no need to find a flashlight and then try to balance it on the equipment while holding the gun tip and pumping with the other hand.

It also minimizes the number of bearings needing lubrication that might be missed in poorly lit areas on the equipment.

Other top winners

Three other top award winners of $500 were recognized during the award ceremonies.

Mike Brookshire of Winchester, Ky., developed the most innovative concept. Brookshire’s hitch allows its user to safely tow any type of agriculture machinery.

Using the hitch, which fits into any standard two-inch reece hitch receiver, machinery is hooked up to a draw bar and power take off shaft.

When equipment is properly attached to the truck or towing vehicle it will look as though it were hooked to the tractor.

Richard Layden from Hoopeston, Ill., developed the most cost effective concept. Layden’s modified crutch tip gas spout cover prevents the loss of the gas can spout cover.

Without a cover, a gas can could easily spill and create a safety hazard. The crutch tip fits in the spout and is secured through plastic wire ties and an I-bolt Layden attached to the spout.

Donny Smith of San Saba, Texas, developed the most usable concept. Smith’s tank gauge allows the user to determine how much liquid feed, fertilizer, water or fuel is in a tank without climbing to the top of the tank.

Smith’s gauge uses a five-gallon bucket, a rope, two pulleys and a counterweight.


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