New Member from USA
I'm a new member from the USA, originally from Switzerland, I collect vintage mowers, but nothing really old. I have 16-18 (depending on the day)vintage 14-16 horsepower single cylinder hydrostatic transmission models from 1969-1979. Not to gripe about my countrymen, but what the states has never had, will never have, and makes me very frustrated living there is a sense of HISTORY, or duty to it. I was young when we moved here, but that one thing is very hard for me to get by, especially when dealing with historical artifacts or old machinery </rant mode> Alain
First of all, welcome! Please don't sell your collection short; a 1969 mower is 45 years old! Certainly worthy of being regarded as an old lawn mower in this disposable age, especially if you can keep them running.
Hello, as Joe says don't sell your mowers short, my own collection contains mowers that are 40 to 60 year age range.
You don't say where in the USA you live but I have seen plenty of evidence while visiting our son in the State of Ohio where folk seem to have the old machinery bug.
I'm from North Eastern Oklahoma, Indian Territory, most of my collection I've had to drive over 500-1000 kilometers for, a few even further. Most of my collection was built with 100 miles of Milwaukee Wisconsin. I have 4 Massey Fergusons, 4 Allis Chalmers, 2 Simplicitys, 2 Ariens, 3, Bolens, 1 CASE, and 1 Allis built Homelite, along with 3 snow blowers 5 rear tiller attachments, 6 front snow/dirt ploughs, several rear turning ploughs, cultivators, discs, and a few box blades, all factory issue, along with a very rare 540 PTO attachment that allows me to run a large light station/generator or run a auger up to a silo. All with new tires and batteries. I'm a 57 year old Army veteran/college student seeking a Master's degree in Psychology after spending 30 years in the construction business. I have never held a job that required me to work for someone else, so this will be a grand experiment.
Thank you Ray, My biggest problem is most history is viewed in monetary terms in the states, I'm not a monetary guy, the wife and I get by on less than 15,000 US a year, by growing and making much of what we consume. We have no choice,, over half of that income is from student loans, the wife has a 700.00 a month pension
Thanks for the welcome Joe, All are running, but it takes almost 50 gallons of petrol to fill them all and almost 8 gallons of oil for an oil change, couple that with lubrication, air filters, fuel filters, and transmission fluid ( one takes over 10 liters), and it gets expensive. I plough and till gardens for income and for upkeep money
It sounds as though you have an interesting collection of machines, I would guess that many of them have to earn their keep with you.
I am sure that the members in the UK would appreciate a few photo's when you are able to post them.
The reason for the quick response is not due to my insomnia but due to me being over with our son near Cincinnati at the moment so am currently on a similar time zone to yourself rather than UK time that is five hours ahead of us
I'm still digesting the photo upload from a computer tutorial, I have family that live a few hours south of Cincinnati, along the Ohio River. Would you suggest I continue with the tutorial or try to upload from an image hosting site such as Photobucket. Thank you Ray, i hadn't thought too much about the time difference, with school and working around the property I'm awake from 6am until 1 am
I believe I got through the tutorial alright, and other than adding an image description, I'm good. This is my 1976 Massey Ferguson MF-16, they were produced for 18 months and out of the 3900 or so units made, as many as a third went to Canada or overseas, Massey being a European endeavour. Massey never actually produced any garden tractors themselves, they contracted the work out. These units were built by AMF in West Des Moines Iowa and were the last of a ten year run of the MF series featuring both lawn and garden tractors of 7 to 16 horsepower, Besides the heavy duty cart and mower deck I also have a front dozer blade, hydraulic rear three point lift, and rear roto-tiller, and very rare rear wheel weights.. I restored this three years ago before my cataract surgery, my wife had to hand me tools and the during the restoration process the temperature was between 100 and 112 degrees Fahrenheit, it was an unusually hot summer.
That is a good looking tractor, you can see the likeness to the rest of the Massey Ferguson 100 series of 'Worldwide' tractors as they were known.
I see that you still have what looks like a fairly sound cutting deck fitted to it, most mowers of that age in the uk will have rotted out decks. I trust you can now see the results of your labours ok after the op's.
Yes vision is close to 20/20 now, 5 years ago it was 20/600 and 20/400 before the cataracts, which made doing anything extremely frustrating. I bought the 1976 Massey MF-16 from the original owners son, It was purchased in July of 1976 in Columbia, Missouri. The tractor in this post is a 1974 Massey Ferguson MF-14, I outfitted it in agricultural configuration with lug tires on the rear and upgraded front hub/wheel/tire combination. I buy two similar models, like the Massey Ferguson MF-16 and MF-14 or Massey Ferguson 1450 and 1650 and one is set up for mowing and the other sports work clothes in agricultural fashion. I used billet aluminum 4 bolt hubs with narrow 10 inch steel wheels and mounted 4.00-10" tri-rib F2 steer tires, with the 26"x12"-12" rear AG tires, it raises the whole tractor about three inches and provides excellent ground clearance for ploughing and gardening. The lever on right is the hydro engage for forward and reverse, the lever below the seat is for the Hi-Low. The disc is a early 1970s Brinly tandem 3 point, very hard to find, and the wheel weights are factory two piece split weights, On eBay those weights fetch 250.00-300.00 US a set. I now have those same weights on all four Massey garden tractors. I'm looking at buying an older push mower from the 1950s made by Lawn-Boy (Evinrude) , but the seller is holding out for more than I'm willing to pay. I hope you gents don't mind seeing a few American four wheel tractors, I do enjoy the pictures of your early ATCOs and Panthers, I have 20 acres, 3 acres that I mow, they would provide me much more physical activity than I'm getting now on the riders.Taking 15 hours of college this semester has my card full.
I'm puzzled by your statements about a lack of a sense of history in the USA regarding old machinery. I have come across numerous references to dedicated clubs and forums online, as well as lots of references to articles in this well known magazine:
There seems to be a particular fondness for restoring Briggs & Stratton ride-on mowers, too.
I should have made myself clear, the lack was not primarily about machinery, they do have a sense of history about that, but now days it seems to be more about what they are worth and money. The real lack of history I was referring to was familial and national history. Most people I know do not know their grandparents last name, most of the students I go to college with aren't even proficient in knowing our system of government and its offices. A large majority of US high school seniors do not know how many states there are or what their names are. Very few people know where their family is from or where their names originates from, A sense of history goes way beyond lawn mowers, and machinery, it is part of virtue, honor, and duty, something very few Americans (and maybe in other countries as well, I do not know) believe in any longer because they don't see any personal/monetary benefit in those qualities. The Dean of my college was lecturing a class and asked the class if they thought he was a success, most of the class said that depended on how much money he made, very sad.
At the risk of this thread wandering way off topic, I appreciate your point about a perceived general lack of interest in history and I think that is a problem that is not only confined to the USA, although it may be worse there than elsewhere. The cause is usually found in the education system.
When I went to school, I hated history lessons more than any other subject because the teacher (same one for 4 years!) was a bore with a monotone voice and he just read from the text book. I learned that the way to pass his exams was to short-term memorize dates and write them in red biro in my essays.
It was only when I reached my 40s that I became fascinated with the subject.
I am now heavily involved in genealogy, both the traditional paper type and the genetic type, and I communicate with many Americans who are deeply frustrated that they cannot research their ancestry outside of continental USA because of lack of documentation prior to their ancestors reaching the shores of America. (This is where advanced DNA testing promises to make breakthroughs for them.)
... but we digress from "general discussions on any theme related to old lawn mowers not covered in the other forums."
Never!, too funny, most online forums should be called "digressions" as many older people tend to hang out on them. I do the same thing. I appreciate your post and insight, I just hope to remember it. :-)
Many forums provide areas for off-topic chat with names like Clubhouse, The Lounge, etc, and those areas often have the most post activity. They can also tend to be the areas requiring closest moderation.
I don't think a small amount of digression is necessarily a bad thing, I have noticed that it creeps into most of the forums that I have followed from time to time even where chat rooms are provided and is often linked to the main thread in some way. Most times the thread gets pulled back into line fairly quickly by another posting and thing return to normality - whatever that is!