A.D. Baker introduced a lightweight steam tractor in 1923. Unfortunately, the market was very meager for a tractor of this kind, despite its great power and economy. The 16-30 was built in 1923 and 1924. Baker went another step with the steam tractor idea with a 20-40 model offered in 1925. Also rated as the 22-45, it was offered for only a short time. The cross-compound design was especially useful at the high pressure being used and made it very economical to operate. After 1925, it appears that the steam tractor was abandoned. Baker introduced its first gasoline tractor, a 22-40, in 1926. The Baker 25-50 appeared in late 1927, and for nearly twenty years it was one of the most underrated tractors on the market until production ended during World War II.
Abner D. Baker had worked for many companies as a machinist before he opened his own repair shop on his father’s farm in 1895. The first Baker steam traction engine was built in 1898, and the business was incorporated in 1901. On March 3, 1903, Baker was granted Patent NO. 721, 994 for his revolutionary steam valve gear. The general design was also used extensively in locomotives. Baker had a hunch that if an improved engine was put on the market, it would be a good competitor for the gas tractor. In 1921, he introduced a 15-30 steam tractor, followed a couple of years later by a 20-40 model. In May of 1925, he introduced a 22-45 steam tractor. When Baker finally relented and began building gas tractors, they received the same care in design and workmanship as the steamer had shared. A 22-50 was introduced in early 1926, complemented by a 25-50 model introduced in late 1927. Baker ended tractor production during World War II
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