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My New 61 DB Suburban

david bradley suburban

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#1 ocbinva OFFLINE  


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Posted August 17, 2015 - 03:39 PM

I have been searching high and low for a few years but I finally was able to find a 61 DB suburban.   A guy had it setting in the woods so for $200 I got the tractor, two disc plows (1 x DB, 1 Sears), one DB spade plow and some other misc. plow accessories.  It looks rough but everything turns freely.  It seems to be the electric start version.  It is missing the starter and seat but it does have the belt cover.  It has fenders which I have never seen on a 61 before.  There is gold paint under the bolts so I believe it to be original.  The engine looks like a 143302 but someone removed the ID Plate.  There is gold on the motor so I am also assuming it is the original.  Fuel tank is in great shape and just needs cleaning.  The engine seems to have compression but point’s condenser and cover are completely missing.  Like with any project I will get it fully functional before I teardown to refinish.  My main concern is a one inch hole in the hood for someone’s attempt for an exhaust.  They cut it half on hood and half on cast iron front so some welding will need to be done.  Not sure if I will do it or if I will hire it out.  I have never welded cast metal before.  Also someone welded washers over the front accessory mount but I hope I can just grind them off. Anyways I thought I would share in preparation for my request for assistance when I get stuck.

Attached Thumbnails

  • 61 On Trailer.jpg
  • Front of Engine.jpg
  • Hole in Hood.jpg
  • Left Side of Engine.jpg

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#2 case442 OFFLINE  


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Posted August 17, 2015 - 04:48 PM



What a great find. Cant wait to see the progress. If you get a chance maybe some pics of the attachments.



#3 jabelman OFFLINE  

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Posted August 17, 2015 - 04:48 PM

Nice find. A few of us restored some this year. Look under before and after david bradley suburban to see mine.
Did you get the air filter offset?

Your points and condenser are under the flywheel.

as for welding cast. I am no professional welder but I have done it a few times on my mig on the lowest slowest setting just tacking and going sslow. It makes really scary sounds but so far I had luck.
Another tip is to drill and dowel with nails or thin steel rods and weld. And make sure you drill without cutting oil.
Good luck

#4 Lauber1 OFFLINE  


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Posted August 17, 2015 - 05:29 PM

if its a 61 factory el start, then the model number of 917.60617 should be on the tag at the left side of the gear case. Cant see much of the motor, but a real sub engine has a tube screwed into the block up front with a dip stick in it. Looks like you got a pretty good deal.

#5 boyscout862 ONLINE  

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Posted August 17, 2015 - 07:55 PM

Welcome to GTT. We are glad to have you join us. That is a nice treasure you picked up. Relax and enjoy the site. Good Luck, Rick

#6 ocbinva OFFLINE  


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Posted August 19, 2015 - 08:52 AM

Yes the tractor is 917.60617 with serial number 12651.  I do have the filter offset but it is missing the oil bath air cleaner so the search will begin.   The exhaust pipe is homemade so I need to get one.  My intentions like with most projects is to get it running before I restore it.  I will use my electrolysis setup to derust front wheels so easier to get apart and replace those tires so I at least have a rolling project.  It is also missing the gen/starter so I will get one of those also.  I trashed by back so I am doing nothing for a bit.  Plus I have a deck to finish and a 1980 Z28 that I needs front end put back on it.  The tractor might be a bit more of a winter project.


The ID plate is missing on the motor itself.  It looks like a 143302 but I believe the 143307 was the electric start version?  I can do a reproduction but I hate to do that if I don’t know the model and serial numbers for sure.


He is one of my smaller electrolysis setups.  I made the video for my Dad who is in Oregon.









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Posted August 20, 2015 - 06:07 AM

You have the charging system fuse holder, but I don't see the bulge in the flywheel cover for the charging system? Nice that you have the outer started cover, VHTF!

#8 ocbinva OFFLINE  


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Posted August 20, 2015 - 02:08 PM

Well I hope to get it running soon.  I just wish the ID plate off the engine was not missing.  I know what the engine is but I like the original stuff to be intact.  After everything is running it will be time for paint in the Spring.  I just have learn how to use a paint gun.  I see some people rattle can them but I want it to be as durable as I can make it.  Rick


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Posted August 22, 2015 - 02:24 PM

A very nice find! I like the fenders on the 61'

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