Self-help engine repair and maintenance tapes and DVDs

Learn by example

| October/November 2004

Self-help books and tapes are nothing new. Wander into any major book outlet, and you'll find a dizzying array of titles claiming to help you with just about any imaginable aspect of your life. From dealing with your spouse to working with your boss, there's a book - and often a videocassette tape - to help you along.

Not surprisingly, there are also a host of tapes designed to help the aspiring mechanic. After all, just because someone's interested in old gas engines and tractors, doesn't necessarily mean they know how to work on them.

I've been wanting to watch some of these self-help videos to assess their worth, so with that thought in mind, I picked out a couple of titles and gave them a run.

The Tractor Tape
When it comes to self-help videos for the tractor enthusiast, a good selection of titles are available. Most of those titles seem to come from one source: J&D Productions out of Metamora, Mich. With 30 different videos covering tractors ranging from the Allis-Chalmers WD 45 to Oliver-Cockshutts of varying stripe, J&D has established itself as a major how-to resource for tractor enthusiasts.

Above: J&D Production's 'Engine Rebuild for Oliver and Cockshutt Gas Tractors' is one of 30 titles available from the Michigan-based company. J&D also has tapes on painting, general tune-up and hydraulic repair. Tapes are $24.95, plus shipping and handling. For more information, contact J&D Productions Inc., P.O. Box 38, Metamora, Ml 48455; (810) 678-3960.

Given my weak spot for Oliver-Cockshutts, I decided to watch J&D's 'Engine Rebuild for Oliver and Cockshutt Gas Tractors.' Covering the Waukesha-powered Oliver-Cockshutt models produced after Oliver's purchase of Cockshutt in 1962, this tape guides viewers through the basics of an engine overhaul.