A sense of traditional wisdom leads to useful innovationsAug 6th, 2009 | By editor | Category: Agriculture, Featured Articles, Specials
The idea of making a tractor with a joystick came from the bullock cart
Simple and strong: Thesia driving his new invention in his field at Jamnagar, Gujarat. — Photo: NIF
IMAGINE A tractor driven like a bullock cart. Instead of using reins, two joysticks turn, accelerate or stop the left and right wheels independently.
“The very idea of doing away with the steering wheel would not even occur to most automobile designers.
“But for the 10th pass self-taught innovator and farmer, Mr. Bachubhai Savajibhai Thesia, inventing and designing several low cost farm machineries is a hobby,” says Prof Anil Gupta, Vice Chairman, National Innovation Foundation (NIF), Ahmedabad.
Mr. Thesia lives in village Kalavad, 30 km away from Jamnagar, Gujarat.
“I see new opportunities in what appears as junk to others,” he says.
His small wheel rotary tractor is operated by joysticks. He masked the gearbox with card boards.
A simple diesel engine fitted on a chassis made especially for the tractor using an old axle of a used vehicle. Motor power drives the rear wheels, equipped with brakes.
“The idea of making a tractor with a joystick came from the rope tied to the bullock cart oxen,” says Mr. Thesia
Same as bullock cart
As you pull the rope left or right, the animal turns and when you pull it hard andstraight, it stops. This tractor works exactly the same way.
The tractor takes sharper turns than any other existing tractors available in the market and a person operating it can manoeuvre it with ease using the two joysticks.
The machine operates on a 10 HP stationary engine and consumes around five litres of diesel for eight hours of work.
Low on funds
“I am not able to work on it further as I am low on funds at present.” he says. The Foundation helped him file a patent for his discovery.
“There are thousands of farmers with their acute sense of traditional knowledge and wisdom who discover several efficient and pocket friendly devices or gadgets. But they struggle hard to gain recognition.
Why should an innovator struggle so much?” asks Prof Anil Gupta.
Mr. Thesia’s other inventions are:
a simple seed sowing rolling device (He made two models of the device, one with smaller holes for smaller seeds and the other one with larger holes).
An explosion circuit made at a cost of Rs.700 that provides 500 volt power for exploding dynamite sticks to dig open wells in hard rocky areas.
A motorcycle plough scooter, an electricity tester which can test current without touching wires.
A metal comb for removing chickpea pods and a modified bulb which elongates the life of the bulb many times due to a small circuit that he inserts. The light is good for farm (though not for home) because of slight flickering. “Absence of encouragement for such practical creativity at community level is the main drawback in our country.
Not a simple question
These are not simple questions; answers to these will determine the shapethe destinyour country will takein the future,” says Prof Gupta.
For more details contact Mr. Bachubhai Savjibhai Thesia, Cinema road, opposite Sisu Mandir, Digvijay plot, village: Kalavad (Sitala), Jamnagar, Gujarat, mobile: 9375956870 and The National Innovation Foundation (NIF) , Bungalow No.1 - Satellite Complex, Premchand Nagar Road, Ahmedabad 380 015 India, website: www.nifindia.org, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, phone: 079-26753338 and 26732456.