Dollar-plus cotton, beans near the teens, corn pushing $5.50 or higher and $7- to $8-wheat have many growers ready and willing to pay more for good used equipment — if they can find it. That’s the feeling of equipment auction and implement companies who’re looking for a good 2011.

Planters, sprayers, tractors and harvest equipment that can handle more acres and yields are in demand across major production areas. So used equipment handlers believe growers looking to upgrade their equipment need to have plenty of feelers out there.

Gary Dewitt, general manager of Dewitt Auction Co. in Sikeston, Mo., says equipment markets are strong, but availability is tight in much of Missouri and other regions. “There’s not a lot of good used equipment (for auction sale). And there’s not as much at the dealers, either,” says Dewitt.

A North Carolina auction owner says equipment availability is tight. But he likes the possibilities of strong sales when supplies loosen up. “I think prices are going to be good for sellers, if we get some equipment out there to sell,” notes Frank Godley, co-owner of Godley Auction Co. in Charlotte, N.C.

“If farmers had good crops they got a lot of money for them. I think late-model equipment will sell pretty high. But just finding equipment is going to be the problem. I think that with the good crop prices, some growers who wanted to sell out may be staying around a little longer.”

Colby Flaming, general manager of Western Equipment, LLC, an Amarillo, Texas-based John Deere dealer network with eight locations in the Southwest, can’t keep enough new cotton or grain harvesting equipment to meet grower demand. And that spins off into less good used equipment that would be traded in on new models.

He stresses that growers need to allow six months or more to find the exact used equipment they want. “If growers don’t already have the new updated equipment they want, they’re probably in trouble,” says Flaming. “The struggle for guys who haven’t made decisions and lined up what they want is — what they want, and what they get, might be different.

“Cotton strippers are in short supply,” says Flaming, adding that support equipment like quality boll buggies are also rare in many cases. “For grain, combines are also in short supply. What a grower wants may not be available for a while.