This tractor was first originally bought just for the mower deck as I did not have one for my Ford LGT 145. I bought it sight unseen and had a friend pick it up for me so I had no idea what I was getting. When this tractor first came home I knew that it had to be brought back to it former glory. It was put in the back yard under a tarp with the intentions of getting back to it in a couple of years. But then I came across the a Miller bobcat welding machine that the welding side no longer worked. And you ever google searched Ford LGT Diesel the first tractor that come up is skyryder2s Ford with a diesel. Right away I knew this is something that I would like to take on. I started by asking on this forum if and how it could be done and I was told that it could be done and has been done.
That is the welder that the motor came out of.
This is the tractor when I first got it.
The blower came with my first tractor a close side LGT 145, it was rebuilt last year with new bearing, chain, sprockets and a fresh paint job. I used it a little last year during the test stages of building the tractor and seemed to work very well. The motor is rated at 14.9 KW or 21hp so chewing up snow should be a blast with this machine.
I just installed a new seat so the tractor is pretty much done. But I sure there will be something else that I need to change!
Here is video that was taken today in the first snowfall of the complete tractor.
- Dec 05, 2017 03:32 PM
- by pryan05
This is my 1968 Wards Garden Mark Squire 12. I have gone trough this tractor, and made it presentable and functional again. It has a 16hp briggs in it. My grandfather purchased it new and he gave it to me. He didnt expect me to restore it. When he saw pictures of it working again he was impressed. This tractor was originally a gold color, but was painted red some time in the 1980s. My main use for this tractor is to use it in the garden.
[attachment=252879:squire1.jpg] [attachment=252880:squire2.jpg] [attachment=252881:squire3.jpg] [attachment=252882:squire4.jpg]
- Nov 01, 2017 12:36 PM
- by Z71 Sierra
I am going to nominate my latest haul. The history of this tractor is unclear, due to the previous owner not asking anything about the tractor when he bought it 8 years ago out of Eastern Pennsylvania. However, he did not do anything to it or with it himself, so it sat all this time, either inside or outside depending on available shop space. He listed the tractor on Craigslist and I bought it. As some of you knew I had been wanting a homemade tractor for some time now.
After tinkering on the tractor for two hours it was running and driving around the yard. Power is provided by a UC-60 International Harvester power unit from the 1940s as it is a Continental Y69 sourced engine. This chain drives a late 1930s Dodge 3-speed transmission, which finally chain drives a 1950s Pontiac rear axle. If white wall tires isnt class I dont know what is, mabey the three brake pedals, none of which operate both brakes simultaneously. Or could it be the living room furniture that offers a little comfort until you realize it tilts opposite of direction of travel every time you change direction. Maybe some open chains near your feet when you let out the clutch pedal you cant really reach easily is that extra bit of class to tip the scales. Speaking of tipping the scales, that concrete might set that idea in rock solid form.
Now the big quiestion, what is it? I am going to take a shot and pick a decade of manufacturer, key off the styling a branding, and make up a model. 1970s International Harvester Custom Crop.
My plans for this tractor include leaving it mostly alone except to refine the operator controls slightly to make it easier and safer to operate, and swap out the dryrotted tires for ag lugs and tri ribs. I am slowly debating implementation for this tractor, possibly a plow or grader blade is in its future. If only I knew of the original intended task this tractor was built to handle, I would equip it accordingly. As most of you guys know, the Custom Crop has found itself a home where it will get well deserved exercise and shown to future generations of tractor gurus in hopes of prolonging the hobby, and stimulating the creativity of the newest generations.
[attachment=250364:haul2.jpg] [attachment=250365:haul3.jpg] [attachment=250366:haul4.jpg] [attachment=250367:haul5.jpg]
- Oct 04, 2017 12:45 PM
- by wvbuzzmaster
I'll enter my 1977 Economy Powerking.
This tractor used to belong to the family next door who bought it new originally. I have fond memories as a little kid watching it in action during summers from across the chain link fence. In fact, as soon as I would hear the screech of the starter whirl from inside our house- (it's that loud) when they would fire it up in their garage I'd go running out to see it in action while they mowed. I used to think it was one of the neatest looking (and sounding) tractors as something like this is quite uncommon in our neck of the woods and I had never seen one like it. Fast forward to 2013 - a couple of decades later - I asked if I could buy it as they had not been using it for a few years and had also moved it outside where it was being stored under a tarp. To somewhat of a surprise, they let me buy it.
Since then, I have enjoyed using it, fixing it up where it needed it, and upgrading it as well to my style. I really didn't know much at all about these tractors but after researching them when I was considering buying it, I discovered this one didn't come with many options. I knew I still wanted one so I had briefly considered finding another one instead that was optioned better but that idea was quickly thrown under the rug as no other tractor would replace the emotional attachment to this particular one, which was more important to me. The manual lift had to go seeing my intended uses for it so I ended up tracking down a complete factory hydraulic lift setup from someone out of state. Most recently I purchased a secondary transmission setup for it as well which I'll be installing down the road when I restore it. Other things that some other things include changing the stance with custom made wheels spacers from Motorsport Tech, larger front and rear Carlisle tires, refinished/powdercoated rims, all new hydraulic hoses, taller 24" rear wheel model front king pins, battery box, weathered fasteners replaced with stainless where necessary, and a rear vintage style LED taillight.
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- Sep 03, 2017 09:18 AM
- by Austen
I put forth for your consideration, my 1962 Gemco Big Boy. I purchased this machine three years ago. And after an extensive search I managed to find one in South Carolina. Since I only heard, but never seen one before, well you know I, I had to have it. The tractor is shown here with its original Brinly implements the cultivator being my favorite. This tractor is becoming exceedingly rare as there were not many built. They were manufactured in Norfolk, VA. and were distributed by National Mower corp. from a warehouse in Buffalo NY. they were also available for purchase at Goodyear tire stores. The machine is chain driven and also has chain steering. But it's most interesting feature is its innovative implement lift system. While most if not all manufacturer's used an arm lift, this use's a leg lift system for front and rear implements, as the lift arm is reversible. While I personally know of eight of them, one belonging to GTTalk member jabelman and another I owned now in the hands of GTTalk member Andrew Black aka Panzer boy, I have never come across one with it's original lift arm. I should add those are the original paint colors. Thanks Hank.
[attachment=244367:big boy 3.jpg]
- Aug 03, 2017 10:50 AM
- by HANKG
For "lawn motoring" this is what I have. Here`s my 1920 Milbradt riding mower, probably one of the first gas powered riders! It is powered by a Missouri Gas Engine Co. engine, I`ve been told that they mainly made marine engines. The transmission is a forward/reverse marine transmission. A good friend of mine had this for sale, my wife loved it too when she saw it, and she bought it for my birthday almost 2 years ago! It certainly pays to wait for the right woman!
The transmission slipped badly when I finally got it running and picked up a very large (and expensive!) drive chain for it and tried taking it for a test drive. I hope to have all the bugs worked out of it for the shows later this summer. It has a very primitive condenser on the engine for cooling, and tiller steering. Ignition is by a timer on the engine and a battery and coil under the seat. A very cool ride!
- Jul 11, 2017 09:34 AM
- by Rustysteele
]I'm going to nominate Alice for this month, I picked the tractor up the end of July, 2015. When I first saw it, I saw the potential to make a good working tractor from the mods already done to her. She was owned by someone into pulling and the frame had been cut to accept a Kohler Magnum 18, which I had sitting in the shop. This is what she looked like the day I brought her home.
She was a 716-6 speed, I wanted a hydro. So everything from the BGB back was removed. It took me until mid-October to get her put together. I made a frame for an Eaton 11/Peerless 2500 out of a Ford LGT 165. Even set up the foot pedal drive. I moved the brake pedal to the LH side while I was at it. Next was using the 3-Point rock shaft off a Sears FF tractor. I found an MTD drive shaft through this forum, this has u-joints and not the discs like the AC uses. Added in an oil cooler since I did not have a fan to cool the hydro. Since getting it going, I have installed a two-spool valve from a MF. Rear fenders are early Sears/Roper. Seat slide is from the Ford. I have a tool box under the seat. I also had to extend the hood and front frame 4" to make room for the exhaust.
Before taking her to Ball Hollow Plow days last Spring, I bought some tri-ribs for the front and a set of BKT 26-12's for the rear. Made a pair of suitcase weights for the front out of lead, 40 lbs. each. The rears are full of washer fluid, each one weights 120 lbs. I have Sears 40 lb. weights on the outside, and Gravely two-piece 40 lb. weight installed inside each wheel. I have no spinning issues!
I have also built a canopy for the hotter days. Implements I have built that I use on the 3-point are:
Modified a Brinly 10" sleeve hitch plow to 3-point
3-Point to Sleeve Hitch Adapter
I also have a Brinly 12" plow that I have no problem pulling.
Here's some pics.
- May 08, 2017 10:46 AM
- by KennyP
I would like to nominate my 1967 Minneapolis-Moline 110 Hydro.
This tractor was listed on EBAY in September 2014, and I won the auction. My friends brother hauled it to Pennsylvania from Ohio, and the work began. This tractor only had one front wheel on it, the other front spindle was broke off, the rear axle housing was missing. There was no grill and the glass headlight lenses busted, the seatback was cut off and the steering wheel busted. The motor did run after the usual cleaning of the fuel pump, carburetor, and gas tank.
[attachment=231052:of the month 2.jpg] [attachment=231053:of the month 3.jpg]
This tractor took a little over a year and a half to restore. Every nut and bolt, roll pin, cotter pin, set screw was removed. Bushing were made in the steering to remove all the wear, the transmission seals and bearings replaced and new gear oil, the hydro seals replaced new filter and oil, the engine was rebuilt but when it was started it had a vibration in it that I did not like so it was taken apart the 2nd and 3rd time changing crankshaft, flywheel, installing new crank bearings. On the 4th time we sent the flywheel, crankshaft, piston and rod out and had it balanced its a lot smoother running now. The generator was rebuilt and we made a new wiring harness. This tractor is as good as new, saved from the scrap heap and will live for another 50+ years! Thanks to my brother this Minneapolis-Moline looks better than new with that paint.
- Apr 03, 2017 12:06 PM
- by MM MARK
I would like to nominate my Vaughan model E Flex Tred , but first Thanks to Doug for bringing back the Walk behind category. I found this Vaughan on Craig`s list four years ago in Connecticut, the second one I found in that state , strange considering they were made in Portland Oregon The tractor was purchased in the 40`s (used) and stayed in that family until the son sold it to me in 2013.
This Vaughan made in the late 20`s to early 30`s as a guess no production records are known to exist, still very close to it`s original condition, Schebler carburetor , Bosch magneto , Powell oiler and fuel filter.The original magneto has been rebuilt and it runs good , what the early Vaughan`s lacked were turning brakes or individual clutches to make a turn with this it is a matter of strength. yours. The water cooled Vaughan`s made in models K , M, D , H , E , E1 and E2. E2 was the two cylinder model. After that came the models S , W WS and the factory built riding version of the WS These models were air cooled.
- Mar 02, 2017 04:02 PM
- by Columbia236
Here's my 1976 Case 220. I found it at my local small engine sales/repair shop in May '15. I get some parts there, especially when I'm in hurry. Cool place, old school. The owner was busy that day, so it gave me a chance to check out machines in the repair lot, where I spotted this sitting. The shop owner's brother walked over and shared it's background. One owner, and it was serviced at that shop since new. K241 Kohler, with 800 hours. I jokingly asked if it was for sale, thinking he'd say no. To my surprise, he said the owner was moving and was planning to sell it after getting it serviced. We fired it up, and after I took it through a little test run, I called the owner from the shop and we made a deal.
Original paint, decals, stickers, etc. Tires also, pretty sure. The only thing I never verified was the seat, so no claims there. There is some wear gathered through it's life, scratches, chips, etc., but overall she's pretty darn clean for her age. All I've done is clean/degrease it, and wax it occasionally. It is always stored inside, but it is still worked. I use it to mow an acre of flat field once a week during the season. And it pulls some boat trailers, and wagons, now and again. Starts every time on a 1/4 choke and runs smooth without a lick of smoke.
- Feb 01, 2017 10:53 AM
- by tiretrx
So, what's happening this month. One entry! Last month was a great month for participation. Any way, that's the way it goes. Busy month for most people.
I'll enter my (guessing year) 1980 Ford LGT 165. All decorated up for Christmas. First time I decorated this one , I think.
We bought this tractor 12 years ago. It came with 50" deck, 42" snow blower, 36" tiller and cab. This is the first garden tractor that my son and I bought. You know the rest of the story, we bought more tractors over the years.
This tractor only does snow removal now. And it only gets out every now and then, because I have a John Deere and a Massey Ferguson that does snow also. They all take turns.
When we first got it, it did all the work. Grass, gardens, snow removal. Then I made extra attachments for it and it did even more work. Then slowly more tractors came along and the ford did less and less. Motor was done once while I've had it.
I plan to change the chute on the blower after Christmas decorations come off. Going to be taller with a power top chute defector. I made a new impeller for the blower, two years ago.
Thanks for reading and looking. Hopefully more entries come along.
- Jan 06, 2017 03:02 PM
- by propane1
Posted November 06, 2016 - 01:20 PM
I am going to Nominate 'Rusty' ...again .
He is a 1959 David Bradley Suburban Model#917-60601 SN3658
Recoil start 5.75 HP Briggs and Stratton Horiz shaft . Model 143302 type502527 SN 17690
I am very proud of this tractor .
When I got him Dec. 2014 this was a pretty rough looking machine , but I could see that it had a lot of potential .
I worked my magic , with a lot of help from my Uncle and by mid-summer 2015 we had this machine refurbished and fully functional.
At this point he won the Vote for T.of M. for Sept. 2015 on GTTalk forums in the 'open' category .
He was prepared for his first working season , outfitted with a 42" dozer blade and chains .
After some adjustments and tinkering with belt tensions and clutch settings he was doing what was intended .
He will be sporting a set of wheel weights this year and though I don't have a lot of driveway , Rusty makes it fun to clear the snow .
He will be back to doing what he loves most , working at his primary function ... snow removal !
- Dec 21, 2016 07:51 AM
- by MGP59DB
I'd like to nominate my 1919 Midwest Utilitor garden tractor with matching cart.
Bought this one at auction in the summer of 2015. It had been sitting as a static display in a private museum, and not run for quite some time. Got it running with just a filing of the points and some new gas. Had some oiling problems initially but they somehow healed themselves. I tore into the crankcase but found nothing wrong. The tractor runs good, but it's very crude and primitive design makes it a handful to operate. The tractor shakes and rattles when running. This was before the counter-balance and rubber mounts of small engines. Straight cut drive gears are noisy and only add to the vibrations.
With no governor on the engine, constant attention is required on the throttle. There is only one speed forward and no reverse. Transmission doesn't even have a neutral. The clutch has a lock on the handle to hold it disengaged and stop the tractor from driving. Luckily there are independent turning clutches so turning is actually easy but with the large lugs its not going to turn very sharp.
The engines crankshaft runs through the drive wheels with a flywheel on each side. Makes for built-in wheel weights. One flywheel has the crank for starting and the other side has a flat-belt pulley to power freestanding attachments. The lugs would have to be removed from the right-side drive wheel so they didn't interfere with the belt. Narrower lugs were offered so you could use the belt pulley without lug removal. There is no provision for a belt pulley clutch. If the engine is turning so is the pulley.
Engine is a single cylinder of about 4 horsepower. Water cooled, the front of the hood holds a neat little radiator with a flat belt driving the fan blade. Magneto ignition provides the spark with impulse feature for easier starting.
The cart came with the tractor and I believe its much more modern and fully homemade. The boards show no sign of wear. Someone did a whale of a job building it! The design is period correct and old style square hardware was used throughout. I've ridden the cart around quite a bit but its just too nice to haul anything in. The tongue of the cart sports its own toolbox and oil can holder with the old-style, bottom pump "clicker" oil can.
The seat pulls out easily and I always remove it and the tailgate for transport to shows. Those two pieces get wrapped in an old blanket for protection and secured for transport.
Thanks for reading and please vote for your favorite tractor this month and every month right here on Garden Tractor Talk!!!
Garden tractors collect the nicest people!
- Dec 16, 2016 07:11 PM
- by Gtractor
I throw my ugly old Jake into the mix!
This is a Jacobsen Super Chief 1450 I found on CL for $100. It is a Hydro tractor that had a rough life. I also got the tiller with it, but no mounting hardware. I had to buy another complete tiller to get that. Also, the electric lift was missing. Found a replacement lift that would work. After pulling the head and finding it warped bad enough you could see the warp, I got that flattened and put it back together. Got it running.
Then it was trial and error to get the new lift working with this heavy tiller. That was a challenge in itself. The actuator is just a bit small for this, but I haven't used the tiller as yet.
- Oct 10, 2016 10:42 AM
- by KennyP
WrenchinOnIt (Kevin) suggested that I do this, so here goes.
I am nominating one of my Bolens Large Frames (an HT23) with a Danuser CD-1 post hole digger. I got the tractor, which according to the tag is probably a 1979 model year, some time after moving to a country property where I needed to mow about 3 acres. At the time I had a Gravely 1238H rider, which had been adequate for a smaller property, but not what I needed to care for the greater acreage. It would take most of every weekend to keep up with the yard work, especially in the Spring here in Illinois where we have such rich dirt that stuff grows while you are watching it. A friend knew I was looking for something bigger and told me another friend of ours was losing his storage on “a big garden tractor”. I tried to trade a couple of compact cars that I had fixed on the side for the “big garden tractor” with 54” mowing deck and 48” snowblower, but the friend with the machinery did not want the cars. BUT, he owed money to yet another friend who did want the cars, so the tractor and attachments went to him and I made my original trade of cars for the Bolens with him instead. That got me into Bolens tractors, and the rest, as they say, is history. Clearly I got the bug. If you notice the power steering, I added that later. And the wheel weights came with the tractor, too.
The Danuser CD-1 post hole digger has an equally weird story. Many of you know that I grew up in Maine, just outside Bangor. I still have family there. I saw the post hole digger on eBay, saw it was mostly set up for a Bolens Large Frame, saw it was located in Maine, and figured I could get my youngest brother to pick it up and store it until the next time I was in Maine. So I bid on it, and the price kept going up, so I kept bidding. In the end, I lost the auction because I was not using sniping software. I thought it was probably gone for good.
About a year later I saw what I thought at first was another Danuser CD-1 post hole digger on eBay. It was in Connecticut, but it struck me that the pics looked familiar. I double-checked my saved pics, and sure enough, it was the same unit and the seller was using the pics from the original listing. The guy who bought it had been trying to fit it up to an International Cub, but found out the PTO turned the wrong way, so he could not use it. I bought it from him for less than he had paid for it when it was still in Maine. I did happen to be in Maine when I won the auction that time, so I made a somewhat longer return trip to Illinois by swinging through Connecticut to pick up the digger. It just fit into the back of my Audi A6 sedan with the rear seats folded down after the guy and his wife in Connecticut and I wrestled it into the car. On the road the car then felt like I had a couple of sumo wrestlers in the back. I did have presence of mind enough to spread a tarp under it to minimize the filth transferring to the car.
To mount the digger on the tractor it was necessary to fabricate a top mount to go between the frame rails of the tractor. Glenn Danuser, the grandson of the founder of the company, was only able to confirm that the digger would have been painted School Bus Yellow when I talked to him on the phone, but that only gives me a range of color, so I painted the new mount in a color that I thought would look appropriate. I have seen other CD-1 post hole diggers, but never another for a Bolens Large Frame. The pic of me on the tractor using the digger was taken a few years ago at AJ’s Garden Tractor Jamboree near Oregon, IL. Although it was late Spring, somehow AJ always seems to have picked the cold, blustery weekend for that show.
- Apr 11, 2017 10:33 AM
- by LPBolens
Back on track----- I will nominate one of mine for this. My custom made david Bradley electric tractor, before you say anything this is only a show piece. I really cannot be used or anything other than to ride around on.
This started as pipe dream and a david Bradley walk behind hood that my wife picked up for me at a swap meet, I liked the look of the hood but had no idea what to use it for, after awhile and looking at a calendar with a narrow john deer I got an idea. I started with the hood and some aluminum rails I had saved from an elliptical machine. the rails were fabbed into a T for the frame with a few mods here and there for axles and bushings and so forth. all the shafts and axles were cut by me at work on their lathes, I then decided to put a 24v drive motor from an electric scooter in the center under the hood. after all the measuring and figuring was done I got to work. removed the bottom part of the hood due to bad rot and welded an new piece on there with a flat bottom to allow it to set correct.
Allot of time was spent putting this together and taking it back apart again, the steering box was salvaged from a mower deck, the steering wheel from a go cart and the rear seat, spring and fenders are from a wheel horse RJ. everything on this is made from salvaged or used stuff, even the tires, rears are dirt bike rims and the fronts are HI wheeled mower tires. when it was all said and done I couldn't go with john deer green I just couldn't bear the thought of it so I settled on oliver colors. all sprayed with automotive paint and re-assembled it was good to go.
There are few things I am going to change, I had an electric drive controller on there I am going to ditch and just put a reversing switch on there with a hand clutch and the front tires need to be pneumatic, the hard tires are really noisy on rocks or blacktop. Otherwise I am really pleased with this.
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- May 05, 2015 06:09 AM
- by petrj6
I hope you good folks have patience. I went to write the story of my Grandpa's Gravely, but the words started flowing and the memories seemed to come back all over again. George's two paragraphs have been more than surpassed.
You'll have to excuse my pictures. I took them on a whim one day and now I realize that they are the only pictures I have of the tractor. It was in its working clothes that day, it had just finished pulling two tractors into the shop. I'll get some better shots.
You can tell it has never sat outside one day in its life. It never will, either.
The last picture tells a story to me. The ol' Pepsi key fob has swung there probably since the tractor was new, and it has made its mark on the dash.
[attachment=145056:gravely_1.jpg] [attachment=145057:gravely_2.jpg] [attachment=145058:gravely_3.jpg]
I love my garden tractors, but my favorite tractor of all still remains my Gravely 5260. I have messed around with more old Gravelys than I can count, the total number of T-Heads that I have resurrected from the dead is going on 24 now. However, this Gravely is special.
It was purchased new by my grandfather. I have the original receipt, bill of sale, manuals, and a ticket for every part he had to install on it. It was purchased with the classic Gravely brush cutting deck, quick attach, and a snowblade. He bought a trailer the same week and loaded the machine up to handle his house and a rental property he owned in the summer, then purchased Gravely tire chains (for which I even have the original box) and put it to work moving snow in the winter.
Being a supervisor at a local industrial plant, he was always bothered about safety. He wanted electric lights on the tractor so he could be seen while pushing snow, so he made a bracket and installed a light and switch on top of the dash.
He was a meticulous man. Whenever the snowblade came off, he would rub grease all through the quick coupler so it wouldn't rust. Then he had a piece of vinyl tubing that went over the unicorn quick attach on the tractor. When the snowblade was on, he had little pieces of vinyl tubing that protected the two implement mounting studs.
My first memories of the Gravely was the ride he gave my sister and I. We were both tiny folks, so we were both dumped into a Red Devil wagon which he had attached to a homemade hitch on the back of his Gravely sulky. Grandpa lived in the city on about 3/4 acre of hillside. We went for a ride around the yard, visited a neighbor, and had the time of our lives. I still remember him tying the dump latch on the wagon down with wire, afraid we would get thrown out the back.
The next time I remember the Gravely was when we were helping Grandpa move leaves. Grandma had died from cancer, and he lived alone in a large house in the middle of what was essentially an oak forest. In fall, the ground was literally inches deep in leaves. The city collected leaves after the season was done, so we and all the neighbors piled them along the road. When the piles got too far into the street for Grandpa;s safety training to allow, he would come slowly down his immaculately paved driveway with the Gravely and a snowblade and push the leaf piles back in line.
In Grandpa's last two years, I mowed the yard for him, but always with a little Murray push mower. He was scared to death of me on the Gravely. Although I had driven huge farm tractors and rebuilt a bunch of Gravelys even at that point, he was sure I would kill myself with his tractor. As a result, I never even got to move his Gravely. I would mow the slopes and the front yard with the Murray, and he would tackle the flats with the Gravely, mower, and sulky. He never used the Swiftamatic high range. It was always in low. I can still see him slowly working around the yard wearing a straw hat.
The fall before Grandpa died, he asked me to come and help him change the oil on his Gravely. We went out in his garage that day. We changed the oil, and then swapped the mower for the snowblade to prepare for winter service. The tire chains stayed on year round since the turf tires were helpless on the grades pulling the sulky.
It was there that Grandpa promised to show me how to drive the Gravely next spring. Funny how I remember his plans to remove the tire chains ("You need to learn to drive it without it pulling you around") and where we would start (the only real flat area in the back yard). He said he was too old to play with the Gravely. I told him he was full of it: he would be mowing next season. He said he would rather watch me.
We flipped over the mower deck and cleaned it immaculately. Grandpa was worried that he didn't have gear oil for the deck. He wanted me to make sure and remind him to change the gear oil before we started mowing again.
Grandpa then showed me a book hanging above his workbench. It was his service record book. It told him everytime he had filled it with fuel and changed the oil. He filled out the note for the oil change.
It was his last entry in that book.
That winter, while trying to reach something on his work bench, he lost his balance and fell hard against the Gravely's handles. It broke at least two ribs, although he was too stubborn to get them checked to know for certain.
The last Saturday of April, I stopped by to show him a truck I wanted to buy. I remember walking in and finding him working at his desk in the basement. He was so excited that I wanted him to inspect the truck. He almost seemed giddy with excitement.
That Monday, I stopped by again to see him. I only had a minute. When I turned and left him, it was the last time I gave him a hug.
That Friday, he was in the hospital for shortness of breath.
That Sunday, he went down while getting out of his hospital bed for another chest x-ray. It was a massive heart attack. There was nothing the hospital could do.
Being that we were his only family, my mom was an only child, it fell to us to maintain the property until it was sold.
It was still my duty to keep the grass cut. It was a hard thing to walk into that big empty house. Just like he left it. I went out to the garage to start mowing. The old pushmower fired right up, and I got to cutting just like always. I thought if I turned my head quick enough, there Grandpa was on the side yard with that old Gravely...
I shut off the mower in the middle of the yard and walked into the garage again. The old girl was waiting there. Waiting for Grandpa to turn the key and push snow.
Then I realized something.
He never got to teach me to drive the Gravely.
I fired it up for the first time. It took right off. Of course I knew how to run it, it wasn't my first Gravely rodeo. I swapped implements and then pulled it outside to go to work. Funny how his words about removing the tire chains came to mind, and I almost did it before shaking myself. I knew what to do.
I knew the tractor was mine now. My Gravely.
The house sold late that summer. We took care of the yard all year, that old Gravely and I. We sweated together and became quite a team.
The last piece to leave the property after the furniture was gone was the old Murray mower and my Gravely. When I loaded it up on the trailer, Grandpa's trailer that he bought the same week he bought the Gravely, I knew that this time the Gravely was never coming back. Its work was done at that house.
It came home to my shop, and seems to have an easy life now. It has snow removal duty as my go to snow tractor, and it also is great at yanking down tractors around and pushing them into the shop for work. Its a Gravely, there isn't much it can't do!
Its my Gravely, but in the back of my mind its still Grandpa's Gravely. Always will be. That's even what I call it when I refer to it.
That's how my grand kids will know it, too.
- Mar 02, 2015 08:05 PM
- by superaben
This is my 1966 T75 Penn Panzer. I found this tractor in Niantic Connecticut , the gentleman I bought it from was going to restore it for his daughter but lost interest. I was able to buy it at a good price and brought it home . After soda blasting and filling here and there she was ready for primer and paint . Next on the agenda was the 7hp B&S engine after switching over to electronic ignition and buying her a drink of 89 octane she awoke from a long sleep to my surprise she ran well. Although my garden did well here in NJ. it had been harvested a few weeks ago so I won't be posting pic's of it.
- Nov 02, 2014 06:32 PM
- by HANKG
About six years ago I drove 200+ miles south to pickup this 1963(?) George Workbird after finding her on eBay for $75.00. The previous owner said she had been sitting in back of the barn when he bought the property about four years before I bought her, he helped my son and I push her onto the trailer and we brought her home.
She sat in my SIL's storage barn for about three years before I decided to try to restore her. My son and I completely disassembled her and began using Daniel's electrolysis information to start the restoration process. Due to a lack of time and motivation she is still a work in process but I hope to get her finished before spring.
[attachment=128490:George Workbird Tractor 1.jpg] [attachment=128491:George Workbird Tractor 2.jpg]
[attachment=128492:George Workbird Tractor 3.jpg] [attachment=128493:George Workbird Tractor 4.jpg]
- Oct 01, 2014 07:25 PM
- by GTTinkerer
My 4 Grandkids can't wait to see the tractors set up every year too! Last year they actually helped their Papaw Jones set up the tractors in the yard. That was a real good time for all of us. It doesn't get any better than that!
The next generation of garden tractor junkies has to be brought up to enjoy this old stuff! My Grandkids have been riding my tractors around since they were little tikes, one is now 7, one is 9 and one is 14. My oldest Grandson Dylan, has his own old garden tractor, a 1962 Bolens Model 600, just like Kate's!
The tractors pictured are 2-1960's Wheel Horse Lawn Ranger's with 2 snow blades to clear the way for Santa, 2 1962 Wheel Horse's Model # 502 with consecutive Serial Numbers! 2 square hood Wheel Horse's, a rare 1968 Model 500 Special and a 1967 Wheel Horse Model 857, 2-1990's Wheel Horse's Model Numbers 314-8's pulling a rare 1964 Wheel Horse 4 wheel dump cart, full of toys!
Thanks for considering my tractors for the month of January, I hope we get a little bit of snow this year! This is the first time I have been on this good GT site! Keep up the good work! Thank You!
Wheel Horse Collector
- Feb 05, 2013 08:57 PM
- by Hammerhead
As a kid, my job was to step on the clutch while dad cranked the engine to start it. Dad was a machinist and made a crank set up for this tractor because he got tired of getting hit in the head with the rope. At the time, I hated that tractor. It scared the daylights out of me because it was old and loud and I just didn't understand it.
As I got older, I would drive the old tractor down to my grandparents place (a mile away) and plow for them. I learned to drive on that old tractor. In the late 70's dad felt it was time to upgrade so he traded the old Pond back to his neighbor (by then a well established business) for a brand new Satoh Beaver. I hated to see that tractor leave but I was all stary eyed over the new diesel.
Well about 11 years later I was married and on my own. We rented the top floor of an old farm house in the middle of a local farm. We are allowed to have a garden so I thought I would look for my own tractor instead of using my landlord's equipment. I went to dad's neighbor and asked what they had. Well here the mechanic told me that he had dad's old tractor over at his house and he would sell it to me.
Dad and I went over to look at it and after pulling all the junk off of it and giving it some gas, it fired up on the third crank. We bought it on the spot. My dad's first tractor was now my first tractor. I used that old Pond to make a garden, clear snow and even pull tree stumps until several years ago when it retired to show duty only. That tractor is the one thing I will always have to remind me of dad when he is gone. He is 88 now and still gets a kick out of seeing the attention it gets at shows. People ask me if I will be buried with that tractor. I always tell them "no, but it may attend the funeral". Incidentally, I also now own the Satoh and use it on a regular basis.
I just added a picture of the original owner standing next to the tractor, taken summer of 2012. The Pond has a Wisconsin AEN engine with a Ford Model A transmission and rear end. I was always told that it had an Allis Chalmers clutch but I can't verify as I've never seen it!
- Jan 01, 2013 10:14 AM
- by David Brown
I spent the winter striping it competely down, sandblasting, primer and painting it. I had a new seat cover made copied from the old one. I think the only thing missing is the rear tail light and the steering wheel cap. I put ag tires on as most of its work is around the ranch. Mowing around corrals, raking and hauling feed. I set the rear tires wide as I'm on uneven ground often.
Here it is being used bring apples and pears to the press. We have manual grinder and press we use to make juice. This year we ended up with three hours of cranking the grinder and pressing for 16 gallons of juice (not counting what was drank during the pressing). Sorry It don't know how to set paragraphs. Hope this gets thing rolling as I enjoy this months "tractor of the month".
- Dec 01, 2012 09:02 AM
- by Bud
First off everything had to be sandblasted and lots of bondo. I spent at least 50 hrs sanding on her. It was painted with basecoat/clearcoat automotive paint. And the wheels were powdercoated. The motor and trans were completely rebuilt by a buddy.
Because this was my first restoration it took me about a year and a half to complete.I had to add the duals it had on it and a ploished stainless stack on it. The only thing I would change on it is to find some better wheels and some tri ribs up front. The first pic is the day I got it and how she looks now.
the day I got her(yes that wheel on the left rusted off while I was driving it you can see it laying over on the left)
my favorite view
- Jun 03, 2012 07:42 PM
- by JakeKuhn
In 2004 my brother gave me a two cylinder Wisconsin TFD engine. He had purchased it at an auction and didn't know if it ran but he knew it was too heavy to move around much and wanted it out of his way. At the time I thought it looked like half of a Case crossmotor tractor engine because of the way the exhaust manifold bolted to the side. I decided some day I would build a miniature crossmotor tractor.
2009 found me unemployed and laying around the house nursing a back injury unable to do much. I decided this project would motivate me, stimulate some brain activity, and take my mind off the pain.
Everything came off the tractor until all I had was the frame and transaxle. I positioned the engine as far back as I could and cut off the front of the frame to shorten the chassis. The engine is wider than the frame so I ran a V-belt drive down the right side to a homemade jackshaft assembly that transfers power back inside the frame for the stock Roper drive. I still have the stock hi/lo and three speed gearing for six forward and two reverse. The clutch has been converted to hand operation but uses the stock linkage from the Sears foot clutch. Release is go, half way back is clutched, and all the way back is brake.
The rear wheels are from a Case horse drawn manure spreader that a good friend unearthed while bulldozing. Its a nice touch that they have the Old Abe eagle embossed in the hubs! I cut up a pair of Simplicity two wheeler clicker hubs and nickel rod arc welded them to the wheel centers to give me the correct five lug bolt pattern. The Sears seat spring was used however I mounted it farther back on the frame where the Sears three point hitch would go and changed the angle some to give the seat the correct position. The seat is very bouncy and that is a good thing with steel wheels!
The steering box is from a Cub Cadet Original and was lengthened to get the steering wheel back far enough. The steering wheel is a V-belt pulley from a squirrel cage fan that was in an old furnace in the city dump. I heated a length of solid 5/8 inch steel rod and laid it in the belt groove so the outside of the steering wheel is rounded as it should be. When it cooled it shrank and permanetly attached itself to the pulley much like a starter ring gear on a flywheel. The fenders are one end of an old fuel oil barrel from my house furnace before I updated to propane. The rest of the barrel became a burn barrel.
The rear hitch and drawbar are also from the Case manure spreader that supplied the wheels. The radiator is an air conditioning condensor from a 1982 Chevy pickup that was scrapped. Of course the Wisconsin engine is air cooled so the radiator is just for looks. I built the hood from scrap 20 ga. sheetmetal left over from my full size Case orchard tractor. At the time I didn't know what the front axle was from. It was also found at the city dump and was complete with tie rods and drag link and was Ford blue. About a year ago there were four Jacobsen built lawn tractors on the cover of LAGT magazine and there was that axle!
The front wheels are from a depot cart I believe. A friend gave me those because they are heavy and the tractor was very light in the front. Those wheels weigh about four times as much as the wheels I had on the tractor at first. I used an oval shaped fuel tank that fit tightly under the crown of the hood and added a small external tank on the outside of the hood. The real case tractors had the small tank for starting on gasoline and once warm switched to kerosene.
Case tractors were a dark green until 1923 so I used Diamond Vogel Coat-All in hunter green with some hardener. I used to paint cars for a living. Cars are supposed to shine but tractors didn't have much shine from the factory back then so I didn't want a mirror finish. The morning after I painted the tractor I opened the garage and the shine was visable even before I turned on the lights. I took a clean cloth and lightly rubbed most of the gloss off as the paint was still tacky. This gave me the look I wanted and along with minor pitting on the rear wheels and inside the fenders where the barrel had lay on the ground for several years. It really does look like an old tractor that has been around for 90 years. I bought some decals from Jones tractor salvage in Nebraska and they worked perfect. The gal on the phone was most helpful in measuring the decals for me so I would know if they fit before ordering.
While taking the Case to its first show I had to stop for gas in my pickup and an old timer walking with a cane came over and leaned on my pickup. After giving it the once over he asked "What year is your old Case?" I said "2009! I just finished making it". Embarrassed, he quickly turned and headed for his car. I said "MR! I made it to look old and you just gave me a great complement. Thank you for your interest". He smiled and said "It sure fooled me"
Everytime I take this tractor to a show at least a few people say "I didn't know Case made a tractor that small back then. What would that have been used for?"
The rules say "completely custom or modified" and I believe this tractor fits that perfectly. It sure does not look like a Sears anymore! Thank you to all that read my entry and please vote your choice.
Picture 1 is mock-up stage, sitting on blocks. Picture 2 front axle mounted and all four wheels attached. Just after this picture the front of the frame was bobbed four inches, front axle was moved back four inches, and the engine was moved back four inches with some more modifications to the frame. Picture 3 assembly done -ready to disassemble for paint. These front wheels were replaced with heavy cast wheels as I found the front was too light.
Picture 4 shows the red "gasoline" tank for starting the engine - once warm the original tractor would switch to kerosene. The small red tank is from a two stroke Clinton engine. Picture 5 shows the modified Sears foot rests repositioned in front of the axle. There are also heavy duty strap foot rests mounted low behind the axle for tractor operation while standing. With the left hand operating the clutch/brake and the right hand steering it works very well. The steering wheel is offset to the right just like the real tractor. Picture 6 the Fabricobble with homemade car. The car body is an old one door refrigerator. The car has shine - the tractor is satin finish. Picture 7 has strange spots that are not on the tractor. ??
[attachment=30446:hmde case 02.JPG]
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[attachment=30448:hmde case 01.JPG]
- May 03, 2012 08:24 PM
- by Gtractor