Today I was in the mood to do some polishing. So I dug out the '73 110 and decide to see what I could do to make it look better. This tractor was bought a few years ago from a fellow co-worker that is also a farmer, and frankly, he doesn't take care of anything. Anyway, the motor had a slight knock to it, so after he found out the price to rebuild the motor, he decided to sell it to me. I knew the transmission was good, so I felt $150.00 would be a good place to set an offer. Needless to say, the offer was accepted and the tractor is now mine. The so called knock in the motor, turned out to be a connecting rod bolt backing out. Easy fix! Anyway, here are pictures of right side of the tractor before I started polishing. As you can see, pretty dull and drab. No shine to the finish what so ever.
Well, after a few hours of applying rubbing compound, polishing compound, and a couple coats of wax, this is how the tractor finish is turning out. Due to shadows in the garage, it was hard to get pictures of the shine and reflections, but I think you can see it turned out pretty nice for a dull original finish.
Here is a side-by-side comparison of the fiberglass hood. On the right, unfinished dull finish. On the left, one application of rubbing compound, one application of polishing compound, and three coats of wax.
So, after the 110 was done, I still didn't feel content, so I looked around to see what else I could experience on, and found the '73 70. Here is a before, side-by-side comparison, and a picture of trying to show you the reflection I got. The big white thing you see in the reflection is my right sneaker.
Still not content, I thought I'd see what I could do on the '54 50 farm tractor before it leaves. Not as good results as the 110 and the 70, but was still able to get some shine out of it. Again, the white thing in the reflection is my right sneaker.
Ok, so why did I post all of this? Bragging rights? No, not at all. It was to prove that you can have good results in restoring the original finish if you're willing to put in a little time and effort. I see so many collectors buy nice original tractors, and then tear them down for restoration just because they think the finish is dull. Don't get me wrong, if you want a collection of all restored tractors, go for it, and please don't think I mean disrespect. But for collectors out there that like to see nice original tractors in their work clothes, and don't have the money for a full blown restoration, then this may be just what you're looking for. The 110 above will be my work tractor, and will most likely never get restored or participate in a tractor show. It wasn't bought for that, and I need to have something to work with. If you take the tractor apart and clean each piece like I did above, just imagine how nice your tractor will look in the end. You can still say that it's original, and you just saved yourself money from buying primer and paint. It's up to you. Either tear down a tractor, and spend lots of money and time doing a complete restoration, or tear down only what needs to be done, and spend just a few hours, or maybe a weekend, polishing the natural beauty of your recent investment.