BLUE CREEK DAIRY FARM

Tractor Overhall

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Winter tractor overall.
The first thing was my annual change of the fluids as well as a round with a grease gun.
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I had developed a leak in the radiator, not to mention it was pretty beat up from the previous owner running into something (although the mangled areas didn't leak). Because I was short on time, I just ordered a new radiator (Clancy, Made in Ireland). I was nervous because of the horror stories I had heard about getting the bolts out, but miraculously, I had zero trouble getting them out, but the back ones were a bit tricky to get to.
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I think the quality of the Clancy radiator is good, and it fit perfectly. The only thing I didn't like was the neck just had a nipple to attach an overflow hose (as opposed to a overflow tube). After I put the hose on, I had to bend it pretty sharply to get it to fit in the notch in the hood. I also replaced all of the rubber hoses. I kept the old radiator, maybe someday I'll get it repaired or recored...
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I also bought a new wiring harness from Brillman's. My old one, which I'm sure was original, was pretty brittle, and the rear light didn't even work.
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I banged out the dents in the grill from the aforementioned previous owners actions, and replaced the original hardware cloth (with holes) with aluminum window screen. I chose the screen because I think it will do better at keeping chaff out.
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The rear light works!
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Head lights too!
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I also overhauled my Cub-22 mower with a 5' sickle bar. My references were of course GSS-1053, Mower Cutter Bars-All Models; Maintenance and Repair. I also found John Deere's (I know, I know...) The Operation, Care and Repair of Farm Machinery, Lynn Miller's Horse Drawn Mower Book, and Oregon State College Extension Bulletin 686 (1948) The Mower; How to Repair and Adjust quite helpful.

I ordered all of the cutter bar parts from Webb's Sickle Service, and am quite pleased with their quality, prices, and customer service. I ordered the pitman box connection plate from Roy's Red Iron, and can highly recommend him. He's never let me down.

After assembling all my parts, pieces, tools, etc on the work bench, I was ready to get to work.
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A before view, knife removed.
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First, I rebuilt the knives. I replaced damaged sections, or any smooth sections. I'm a fan of under-serrated, and one knife warranted the replacement of every section. I still use rivets. I guess I'm a traditionalist.
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I rebuilt two knives. Besides replacing sections, I make sure the knife backs are straight. In addition to these two knives, I have a third, brand new OEM knife still in the box.
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I replaced all of the wear plates, and replaced the hold downs with adjustable types. I've never used them, but am excited to try them out. It certainly made initial adjustments easier. I also had to replace one guard. All the ledgers were good.
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I replaced my pitman box connection plate. The pitman stick is home-made. Out here in the west, I used clear Douglas Fir.
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I also fabricated a wheel to attach on the ends of the sickle-bar mower, in order to cut higher, such as for clipping pastures. I used the ideas from the Farmall Cub forum, as well as some vintage illustrations in Lynn Miller's Horse Drawn Mower Book ( A sickle bar is a sickle bar... The bar on my IH #9 horse-drawn mower is the same as my Cub-22). It'll be spring before I test it out, but should serve my needs ok.
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Once spring comes, I'll mount the mower on the tractor, and finish fine tuning everything, checking the lead, etc. I should be an improvement over what I started with!