Yes, we are here!

In times like these our hobbies become lifesavers. At GAS ENGINE MAGAZINE and FARM COLLECTOR, we have been tracking down the most interesting and rare vintage farm machines and collections for more than 80 years combined! That includes researching and sourcing the best books on collectibles available anywhere. Our online store is open and we are here to answer any questions you might have. Our customer service staff is available Monday through Friday from 8a.m.-5p.m. CDT. We can be reached at 1-800-888-9098 or by email. Stay safe!

Build 'em Yourself

Vision, Skill and Ingenuity Come Together in the Making of Mini-Tractors

| June/July 2003

  • John Deere Model

  • Allis-Chalmers WC

  • John Deere Model
  • Allis-Chalmers WC

I make theses tractors out of parts I col-lect over time, and it can some times take a couple of years to pull together everything I need. On the two tractors here, for instance, I collected, among other things; various Volkswagon parts, Plymouth wheels, skid loader tires, lawn tractor wheels, fence posts, well pipe, 5-inch gas pipe, 30-caliber machine gun box, a Briggs & Stratton single-cylinder engine, a two-cylinder Wisconsin engine and an old Dodge starter.

There are no plans or drawings for anything I build, but I do spend a considerable amount of time sitting on a bucket trying to figure everything out. The frame on the John Deere Model A is 4-inch channel iron, while the steering post is a piece of well pipe. The steering gear itself is from a Volkswagon, and the gas tank started life as a fire extinguisher. The homemade engine is for looks, and a starter from a Dodge Omni hooks into the side of the tractor and spins the hidden Briggs & Stratton. Modifying the manifold of the Briggs engine made it sound like a popping Johnny - that's when you can really turn heads.

Al's mini John Deere Model is a classic examples of the fabricator's art, skillfully crafted from salvaged automotive, lawn tractor and industrial parts.

Allis-Chalmers WC is a classic examples of the fabricator's art, skillfully crafted from salvaged automotive, lawn tractor and industrial parts.

The 1937 Allis-Chalmers WC uses an even-fire two-cylinder Wisconsin electric-start engine for power, a Cub Cadet hydrostatic drive and skid loader tires. It is a beautiful running machine that drives well, and it uses many of the same parts I pulled together for the John Deere. I made the Allis in memory of my father and the farm we worked on before going off to fight in World War II.

There are two seats on both machines, a feature we are well known for as my wife, Betty, goes with me to the shows. It's nice to have a good partner.


Gas Engine Magazine A_M 16Gas Engine Magazine is your best source for tractor and stationary gas engine information.  Subscribe and connect with more than 23,000 other gas engine collectors and build your knowledge, share your passion and search for parts, in the publication written by and for gas engine enthusiasts! Gas Engine Magazine brings you: restoration stories, company histories, and technical advice. Plus our Flywheel Forum column helps answer your engine inquiries!

Facebook YouTube


click me