ONE rain drop hit this writer's notepad and Landmark auctioneer Andrew Viola was momentarily excited.
But any chance of rain vaporised in the heat of competitive bidding at last week's S & F Fowler's clearing sale at Yandanooka.
A total of 136 registered bidders kept Mr Viola on his toes to deliver a top price of $205,000 on a Case IH 340 Magnum front wheel-assist tractor (180 hours), equipped with an AFS Pro 700 monitor.
Predictably, harvest gear drew little interest with a 2016 Case IH 7240 axial flow combine harvester (1330 separator hours and 1600 engine hours) failing to reach the reserve when bidding stopped at $340,000.
It prevented the Fowlers from recording a $1million-plus sale but the sale gross of $790,665 reflected a sale that met the market.
There were some bargains and the Case Magnum could be considered one as it was presented in near-new condition and there was expectancy that a price of $250,000 would be needed to secure the unit.
From an opening bid of $150,000, the total quickly reached $194,000 before bidding stalled and Mr Viola declared, "you're not far away but I'll pass it in".
Some quick negotiations while the sale continued resulted in a successful bidder paying $205,000.
A 2012 year John Deere 9530 4WD tractor (4250hrs) also drew good competition with a winning bid of $140,000, which was above market valuation.
But perhaps the bargain of the sale was a 2008 Ausplow E Series DBS which had been recently refurbished and in very good order.
It sold for $74,000, about half of what a few bidders considered to be its value.
One buyer is now ready for the rain securing a 2017 Marshall 912, 12 tonne Multispread with scales for $52,000 which was about market value.
Rock pickers are always in demand and a 2014 Highline XL78 model was snapped up for $40,000 after bidders chased each other from an opening nod of $22,000.
A Gessner 13-tyne deep ripper with a six metre cut also made $40,000, no doubt helped by new tynes and points, while a 2010 Wespray R3070 boomsprayer sold for $36,000.
A Simplicity 12000 air seeder was passed-in at $30,000 but a quick negotiation saw a happy bidder parting with $32,500 to secure the lot.
With an eye to the 2020 harvest, bidding on a DE 63 tonne field bin was brisk, quickly rising from an opening $4000 to top out at $21,000.
Two other DE field bins, each with 43t capacity, sold for $3500 and $3000 respectively.
Bidding for a Buhler 841 Farm King auger (200 millimetres by 100 centimetres) took slow steps rising from $600 to a winning bid of $12,000, while a 10.6m Commander AG model went for $1750.
A 2012 Grain King 25T chaser bin on a single axle, was knocked down for $38,000 after bidding started at $15,000.
Other healthy prices included $16,000 for a 1985 Scania truck, $10,000 for a 7.2m Mingenew Fabrication tyre roller and $6500 for a 18 tonne capacity Coles 5-1-bin sandblasted and painted with a 19kW (26hp) Honda motor.
And to prove mother right with her familiar "what did you buy that for?", one successful bidder took home a Phillips false front with the comment, "I didn't mean to buy it, but for $50 you can't go wrong".
Two harvest fronts that failed to meet reserve prices and remain unsold were a 2152 MacDon draper front (10.6m) and comb trailer that was passed-in on a bid of $8000 and a Case IH 2035 'tin front' with comb trailer which was passed-in after attracting a sole bid of $2000.