Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Refurbishing a Tractor Part 2

This is the second in a three-part series where I attempt to "blogify" the process of refurbishing an old tractor.  If you missed part one, check it out here.  I want to take a moment to thank my friend Wallace for suggesting this blog topic.  I was  having a bout of writers block and this series has been excellent for getting me back on track.  Thanks Wallace!

At this point we are starting to give the old Ford a good cleaning in preparation for painting.  I did want to quickly touch on the problem we had with the throttle linkage.  When we rebuilt the carburetor we put everything back together just like it came off.  We thought it looked odd that the linkages from the throttle to the carb were all bent up and binding.  Having never restored a Ford, we put it back like it came apart.  When we cranked it the throttle would not work properly. The tractor ran fine and the carb worked fine but the throttle linkages kept hanging up and binding.  After a few hours of racking our brains my Dad encouraged me to let it go.  He said that, "sometimes it's better to step away and come back another day."  Good advice, so that's just what we did.  We came back a little over 24 hours later and looked at it again.  That's when we solved the mystery.  Whoever rebuilt the carburetor last put the throttle body in backwards.  Instead of fixing it they bent the throttle linkages to get it to work.  I swear........ I don't know how this thing is even still running!

Once we got that buttoned up and had the mechanics all proper, we hit it with the degreaser and pressure washer again.  Then the fun part..... cleaning the cracks and crevices.  There isn't an easy way to do this.  It's all about getting dirty and getting it done.  Preferred tools for this part of the process are things like wire brushes, paint scrapers, putty knives and screwdrivers.  One of the best tools for getting into tight places is a can of engine starting fluid also known as ether.  The little straw on the tip and the pressurized can are a really big help in some of those hard to get places.

After the fine cleaning it was one more blast with the pressure washer to rinse away the loose dust, goop and gack.  Here she sits ready for some mild body work and a coat of primer.  That will be part three.

Y'all take it easy,



  1. What a great project. Can't wait to see the finished job!