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Gehling Auction Company celebrates 40th anniversary

Fri, Jan 25th, 2013
Posted in Preston Features

Ron Gehling

In 1973, Ron Gehling was looking for a place to start a business. He started selling farm machinery in Preston, Minn., which turned into Gehling Auction Company. Forty years later Ron Gehling is still selling farm machinery, but now additionally sells light construction equipment, real estate properties, and commercial properties. Ron Gehling and Gehling Auction Company are prime examples of what progress is all about.

Progress is what motivated Ron to build an office and shop in 1973 and then add onto that building in 1980. In 1986, the building that now houses Gehling Auction Company’s offices was built. Progress was key with the fast pace of technology through the years as well. Ron recalls when fax machines first came out on the market and he immediately purchased one. Prior to the fax machine any advertising for auctions had to be explained over the phone one item at a time. Gehling put in a whole new computer system in the seventies and has updated it many times in order to keep up with technology as the auction business has changed drastically with online auctions now taking place.

Ron explains that over the course of forty years he has seen many repeat customers. He says about his auctions that, “I used to see kids coming with their dads and now those kids are bringing their own kids.” Ron said, “we are now starting to see the beginning of the third generation of customers.”

“We’ve got a good customer base and they come from all over,” Ron said.

Auctions now are held and streamed live on the internet so progress caused Gehling to install cameras on their trucks and bids are taken from online customers as well as those attending the auctions in person. Gehling says that ninety percent of the business today is done off-location. When dealerships have close-out sales or inventory reduction at a certain branch, or need their inventory sold for any reason, Gehling Auction Company will come in and sell their inventory for them.

Another thing that has changed a lot over the last forty years according to Ron is the price of what things cost and what things sell for at auction. A further sign of progress at Gehling Auction Company are the number of employees. Gehling currently employs nine people full-time and another 25 people on a part-time basis.

If you are interested in having an auction, give Gehling Auction Company a call. It is a full-service auction company ready to meet your needs. According to its website,, it states “we furnish set-up/clean-up crews who wash, wax, polish, clean glass, touch-up paint & detail-out to make your equipment look as sharp as possible, at no extra cost” so really the only thing you have to do is make a phone call.

Gehling Auction Company is located at 27741 State Hwy. 16 in Preston, Minn. and can be reached by phone at (507) 765-2131. Business hours are Monday - Friday 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Saturday 8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m., and Sunday - closed. More information can be found at

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