History of My Tractor

By Staff
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603 Loon Lake Road, Bigfork, Montana 599II

I am a new subscriber to your Gas Engine Magazine and really
enjoy reading other people’s stories of their engines and

I am getting some great help from John W. Boyens of Bettendorf,
Iowa on my 1 HP McCormick Deering.

In the December 1992 issue, I read about a tractor find in New
Hampshire concerning a Model A Ford tractor adapter kit. I have one
of those tractors, restored and running. The only difference is my
kit was sold by Montgomery Ward, not Sears and Roebuck.

I bought the tractor in 1963 for $15.00. It was brought to me
for that price.

The clutch was rusted, so I pulled the engine, freed the clutch
and had it running that day. I tried breaking the clutch loose by
backing into a tree but it didn’t work, just killed the

Well, I parked it until 1981, when there was a tractor pulling
show. I dug ‘Henry’ out, got him on the trailer, and
entered the ‘pull.’ I only got 50 some feet, because by
then I was doing a ‘wheelie’ and spun out. In 1983, another
year and another pull. By then I made a lower drawbar, experienced
no wheelie, but spun out just past the 75 foot mark. No winner,
again. That was the last time I ran ‘Henry.’ He’s
parked in a covered shed now. I put oil in the plug holes and crank
him once in a while. No more tractor shows around here.

A few years ago, I thought I’d better find out where
‘he’ came from. That wasn’t hard to do. A visit to
Leonard Smith told me everything:

His father-in-law farmed with horses for years, wanted a change
and something he didn’t have to feed 365 days a year. Mr. Smith
had a 1929 Model A sedan (wrecked), so he bought the tractor kit
from the 1937 Montgomery Ward Spring and Summer Catalog. The
tractor was used for many years, plowing, mowing, hauling,
skidding, cultivating and whatever else.

My tractor has the lugs instead of cleats. As you can see, the
lugs are really worn down from spinning on our rocky soil.

The engine was rebuilt many times in its life. Right now it has
an engine rebuilt in Chadron, Nebraska.

To get three speed-a-head the rear end was taken apart and the
ring gear was mounted on the opposite side. It can be done easily
to a Ford rear end.

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