Imagine hitching up 46 percherons to plow a field!

Neil Dimmock drives a 46 Percheron hitch with a team put together in just three days.

I’ve heard of monster trucks. But what about monster hitches? “Big Hitches” are part of rural history. Farmers with large tracts of land often used multiple horses or mules. In fact, the first equalizing hitch (like the one we use on our trailers today) was designed in the 1900s by Buster Talkington to ensure that each horse on a team pulls an equal share of the load.

Enter Neil Dimmock of Mundare Alberta. Mr. Dimmock still uses horse power, Percherons, to be exact. He had too much land to be farmed by a two-horse hitch and his grandfather told him that his ancestors on both sides of his family had farmed with “big hitches”. This piqued his interest.

Dimmock read about the Talkington equalizer hitch and found several original parts, but not a complete set. Using a diagram of the original hitch, he built his own so he could start farming his land with a 12-horse hitch.

According to an article RFD-TV states:

Neil is the only person in his area to farm with more than eight horses in a single hitch. In 1999 he was asked to drive a 30- horse hitch for a local celebration. He had so much fun he expanded his equalizing hitch to 18 horses, then 26, then 32. At that point he decided to try for a Guinness record driving the world’s largest Percheron agricultural hitch.

The biggest agricultural hitch Neil could find consisted of 44 horses pulling a combine during the heyday

This 12-horse hitch is shown in a photo from Life Magazine.

of big agricultural hitches. The largest Percheron hitch he found was 40 put together by Barnum and Bailey of circus fame. With assistance from members of the local Draft Horse Agricultural Society, Neil put together a 46-Percheron hitch and used it to pull a 26- foot deep tillage cultivator built by Ezee-On Manufacturing of Vegreville, Alberta. The implement is designed for a tractor with at least 130 horsepower.

Some of the horses had never been used in a big hitch, so first they were given experience working in a 20-horse hitch. The next day Neil added two 12-horse equalizing hitches for a total of 44. On day three he added two horses to one of the 12-horse hitches, and drove 46 Percherons.

The smallest horse in the outfit was a mare called Bob, weighing 1,500 pounds and standing 15 hands high (one hand = 4 inches). The largest was a gelding named Roy, weighing 2,400 pounds and standing 18 hands. The youngest was a 2-year-old unnamed filly; the oldest 24-year-old gelding Bannick.

Neil drove from a two-bench forecart he made, with the seats 8-feet up so he could see all the horses in the hitch. The length of the hitch from the back of the cultivator to the lead horses was 160 feet. The distance from the lead horses’ mouths to Neil’s hands was 130 feet. The clevis attaching the back of the forecart on a cable to the cultivator was strong enough for 20 tons.

That is one long train of horses! Even more amazing is that Dimmock wrote in response to the YouTube video that it took only 20 minutes to hitch them up. It takes me that long just to tack up one horse.

Here’s the video showing Neil Dimmock and his record-breaking hitch:

16 thoughts on “Imagine hitching up 46 percherons to plow a field!

  1. He included a un-named 2 year old filly in this hitch? That’s INSANE. What if she had freaked out, and in doing so caused a wreck with all those horses? I’m not impressed, I’m appalled.

  2. Anon you don’t know much about horses do you? or you talking out your butt? if you have 45 well trained horses do you think 1 2 year old filly will be freaking out and causing a wreck. God I haven’t have such a good laugh in ages, thank you Anon. I just love these morons who know nothing about horses and commenting on these sites.

  3. OMG, that is amazing! I am now going to make it my life’s goal to break that record! LOL, JK.
    Uh, you obviously haven’t seen that many horses at once, huh? I’ve seen over 50 horses do just that: one, completely indominant, 2-year-old filly got spooked, and EVERY single horse followed her lead, even ones that were over 20 years older, and most were very trained.
    BTW, unnamed doesn’t mean untrained; with working with her long enough, she would have been just fine.

  4. What a rush that must have been, the amount of devastating power that it takes to draw a 26′ chisel plow!!! The equalizer worked quit well and by the stills i see they were at times moving at a trot? Absolutely amazing, I ride a tidy little 1350lb 2yr old gelding that I broke as a stud and the amount of power that he can produce is impressive so 46 would be monumental!! Good for you Neil Dimmock, if you never do anything else this was truly amazing and a good plug for the breed’s awsome temperment. HURRAY!

  5. Disagree with Mr. Dimmock or have a different view and you will see a side of him that will change his mind. He is on several draft boards and I have seen him become very condescending to others who expressed their views or gently reminded him that he wasn’t exactly right. Telling one member to shut the F up, making snide comments, that is not the true teamster who is generous and kind to all. Mr. Dimmock does this for attention, nothing more, he isn’t a gentleman, he is a pretentious jerk.

    1. Claire Gale speaks the truth. N. Dimmock blocks people from DraftHorseFriends FB page on a regular basis for doing nothing more than helping others out. Pretentious jerk is quite fitting for him.

      1. no you folks were removed for bulling other members and are only mad because we wont let u

  6. Mr. Dimmock is NOT a Guinness Book of World Record holder for the largest hitch, this man is: http://teamapproach.ca/tal/clyde.html, if you do a bit of research you will find that he isn’t even the 2nd person to do it, he is only recognized by the Canadian Percheron Association.

  7. Well I see Cari is speeding her lies every where see goes ! And there is always some one with an opinion on every topic that knows nothing about it but makes noise to fell big ! I have the record for the largest hitch of Percherons and have the certify at from the Percheron association to prove it ! All she has is her own poison opinion !

  8. Oh and I never swear at any one and there are 30000 members in draft horse freinds and only 43 people have been blocked for bulling or swearing or just to nasty be get along ! So if u have been remove there is a very good resaon !

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