Just Do It

| April/May 1991

  • 1943 Oliver 60 Row Crop
    My story starts a few years ago, I don't know how many for sure. I just remember my dad pointing out this old Oliver sticking out of the weeds behind a barn a few miles from my home farm, in La Grange, Wisconsin.
  • Oliver cultivator system

  • 1943 Oliver 60 Row Crop
  • Oliver cultivator system

Rt. 2, Tamarack Road, Whitewater, Wisconsin 53190.

Years went by, and one day I saw a cute little Oliver '60', all restored, sitting at a local implement dealer. I stopped to talk with the owner and look over his handiwork. He told me his father had bought the tractor new, and he recently restored it.

A few weeks went by before I remembered the old Oliver Dad pointed out years before. In April 1989 I got around to going to see it. I knocked on the kitchen door and asked the woman if she would sell that old Oliver behind the barn. She laughed. She said her son was always going to clean up that junk, and I was welcome to take a look, and strike a deal with him. I went down to look it over and after a few phone calls and a few more weeks, I was the proud new owner of a 1943 Oliver '60' Row Crop (cultivator included).

My 85-year-old grandfather spotted me dragging it home. He wondered why I needed another cultivator. The first thing I did when I got it home was take a 'before' picture. You must do this the moment you drive in the yard. If you don't, the overwhelming urge to dismantle something will take over, and you may never get the chance for a complete 'before' picture again.

As the engine was tight, I then removed the spark plugs and filled the cylinders with Mystery oil, and parked it in the corn crib. I couldn't bear to see it sit outside any longer. Every time I passed the corn crib, I would give a little tug on the crank. Sometimes I'd even stand on the handle.

One rainy day I decided to take the cultivator off. Anyone who has dealt with the Oliver cultivator system knows it is an ingenious array of clamps and springs that made for a dandy cultivator, but was also responsible for more pinched fingers than any single source known to man.


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