Stump Jump Plough

Stump Jump Plough
Tilling of the land also improved with Clarence Smith’s 1878 invention of the Stump-Jump Plough. Ploughs up till Clarence’s invention had always been of fixed frame construction, and when the plough hit an obstruction, such as a rock or the remains of a tree stump, the plough quite often broke, meaning expensive repairs. The Stump-Jump Plough solved that problem by having each plough body hinged to the main frame, and a counterweight attached on an extended arm to push the plough back into the soil after rising up and over the object.

Later model Stump-Jump Ploughs had an improved linkage system utilizing a 'Bridle-draft' linkage of inter-linking chains and steel rods, some on the underside of the main frame and others above the main frame. Ploughs also became larger from single furrow to three, five, eight, even ten and twelve furrows wide. These were pulled by a team of Clydesdale horses.

Clarence H Smith chose the town of Ardrossan to set up his implement factory and was soon selling the Stump-Jump Ploughs to farmers from all over Yorke Peninsula, plus exporting them to other farming regions of South Australia, then interstate to Victoria, NSW, Southern Western Australia, Tasmania, etc.

Because the idea was never patented, other implement manufacturers round Australia also brought out their own variations of the Stump-Jump Plough. Even today the modern spring-release Cultivator and Wide-line Air-seeders are based on Clarence Smith’s invention.