Things I Learned The Hard Way!


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52200 Fairfield Avenue Rush City, Minnesota 55069

Growing up on the farm, I can remember Alvin Anderson sawing the neighbor's stove wood with a 6 HP IHCM saw rig mounted on a 1930s Ford car chassis.

We could hear that engine over a mile away on a crisp winter's day.

At his estate sale a few years ago, my sealed bid on the 6 HP was successful. That was the start of my affair with engines. It seems like one engine leads to the next, and at the Anderson's Rock Creek Relics Show in Eastern Minnesota was a 11/2 HP M sitting in the shop. The owner was trying to get it started so he could sell it. We made a deal and I had my work cut out for me!

The hopper was full of lime deposits and mouse nests, and the cylinder had a pit the size of a quarter that was 1/32' deep. Sure was glad to have a removable cylinder.

After a complete cleaning, a good cylinder and guidance from Howard and Wayne Olson, some parts from GEM advertisers, sandblasting and painting, I had a nice little engine. The rebuild took place at work over the winter, after hours. I had more engine parts on my bench than work in process! Thank you, Ed, for letting me work there.

Some things I learned the hard way:

1. Don't try to remove a flywheel by heating with a torch; mine warped!

2.  Be sure to remove the gas siphon tube from the gas tank before coating it with sealer. That stuff can seal up the tube also.

3. Have your valve timing right, before trying to start the engine in front of your engine friends. This can lead to a lot of ribbing, after you've worked yourself into a lather.

4. A new spark plug can save face when the one that ran fine yesterday says 'I quit,' especially when it's parade time.

Now for a cart! But I prefer to build things that are self-propelled. (Easier on the back.) The result of my head-scratching is an F 11/2 Far-mall.

The photos show my F 11/2 and F-6 Farmalls. I enjoy the double fun and pleasure of showing my engines and driving in them in the tractor parades.

When the question is frequently asked, 'When was the F 11/2 originally built?', I have to confess that although the engine is from 1931, the tractor is 1994.

Parts include rear manure spreader wheels, front McCormick-Deering grain binder truck wheels, steering wheel from a threshing machine, steering support from a cow stanchion, garden and tractor transaxle, model A Ford clutch and brake levers, and cast iron McCormick seat.

The F-6 is a 1925 IHC 6 HP M on an F-14 chassis. The drive is flat belt to the tractor belt pulley and the clutch moves the entire engine to loosen and tighten the belt. The seat is cast iron McCormick also.

Top speed of the F6 is three miles per hour, and the F 11/2 about eight miles per hour. At that speed on steel it really shakes and rattles as it rolls.

Let's see, I wonder what an F 3/4 would look like? I'm presently working on one of Seven Mountain's 1/2 scale I'll HP M kits.

Enclosed are some pictures and when I get the model finished, I'll let you see it too.