Earl, the Farmall 450

1999 Temple Early Day Tractor & Gas engine Show Parade

Saga Of My Ongoing Search For a Tractor

I found this tractor in Florence, TX. A man named Guy has a lot of old tractors and also sells new farm equipment. I went down to look based on some ads he ran in the Thrifty Nickel. I was actually about to buy the 450 when we figured out it wouldn't go on my trailer because of the rear wheel tread width. Then I realized another person was only asking a couple hundred more for a Farmall 560 diesel I had looked at last fall. I told Guy I'd get back to him regarding the 450 and drove back home. When I called the other fellow about the 560 diesel he had found so much work to do with it that he'd decided not to sell

7/22/99 The Saginaw 3 point hitch arrived. It cost $90.00 to ship down from Michigan, but I really think I bought the right aftermarket 3 point hitch. I removed the old drawbar and got the axle clamps turned upside down when Micah arrived about 9 PM. The hitch had been shipped wired down to pallet, and the semi driver backed in and dropped it right in front of my shop. I had backed the 450 right up to the pallet and set up lights. When Micah arrived we shined the truck lights from the other direction. There are four bolts that protrude from the axle brackets. The top two pointed straight back, but the bottom ones swiveled down. Somehow, Micah and I were able to lift the whole hitch assembly up and hang it on the top two bolts.

9/30/99 The starter would only turn Earl over very slowly. Even adding jumper cables from the Jeep didn't make it spin any faster. I figured the brushes or something must have gone bad in the starter. Three bolts removed it and it was placed in the back of Jeep. When I hadn't taken it to the starter shop to be looked at by Thursday the 30th and the Temple Tractor Show was comming up, I decided to take the day off from work. When I gathered up enough extension cord to put the battery charger on, it showed the battery already had a pretty good charge.

Wheels had to be moved in to get him on the trailer for the Temple '99 show.

Coco, the CyberChicken got to attend the Temple '99 Show

4/10/00 Earl now has 4 new tires

Earl did crush a couple of cinder blocks waiting for his new tires

Ready in time to haul to the 2000 Troy Funfest

6/02/00 Earl gets a workout. The new pasture got baled right before the Memorial Day weekend. On Friday night, we found ourselves with 102 new large round bales sitting all over the field. Saturday morning it was doing some raining, so I figured I'd better use Aunt Bea, the International 1486 to move the bales. Figured I'd stay dry in the cab. When I attempted to air up the right front tire, air came out from around the valve stem as fast as I could put it in. The neighbor's 50 ton railroad jack is just perfect for Aunt Bea. Throwing the wheel into the back of the Jeep for a quick trip to Evan Tire, the tube took four patches. I don't think the person who repaired the tire before had been very good about getting all the thorns sticking through the tire. I had the tire shop add a couple squirts of the sealing compound as well. When the tire was re-mounted, I returned the neighbors tools and began to hitch up his hay moving forks. It took weight to get Aunt Bea to let her hitch down, and then it would just rise back up on it's own. I figured air got in the system from the complete trans and rear rebuild. I later figured it may have also have had to do with where the "Draft Control" lever was set. Taking up the top link as much as I could, the forks on the neighbor's hay mover still pointed down. I could lift up a bale, but they fell off very easily when I tried to move them. I decided to try the hay fork on Earl and got a ride back home to get him. They worked a bit better on Earl, but still pointed down a bit. Finally I just drove over to where the neighbor had a little generic 3-point spear sitting and swapped it for the one I had been trying to use. This one was able to be adjusted properly with the top link I have and it worked pretty well. Earl would pull great wheelies when starting out with a bale raised up on the rear. When I tried to move last year's bales, some of them were too heavy for Earl to move at all. One bale at a time the bales were brought back and stacked in areas that could be fenced off from the rest of the pasture. All the hydraulics had been scrubbed clean so I could see where the leaks were coming from. The whole middle of the tractor is covered in HyTran again from moving all the bales. Seemed to use/leak about 1 quart of motor oil for each 5 hour running period. At the end of the second session of bale moving, I noticed the rim was wobbling on the wheel. The clamps had worked loose, and one even lost the bolt and clamps. Earl was parked and I decided it was time to buy my own bale moving equipment.

8/26/00 Earl has not been having such a great time lately. I took all last week off from work just to get things done around the The CyberRanch. Originally I was planning to go to the Portland show, but I bought a digital camera with the money I would have spent on the airfare alone.
The first day I got to do a little box blading, Earl's whole front pedastyle fell off. Luckily I was in reverse and on some some soft, piled top soil. The front end really plopped down. When goodwench looked out, she thought I'd dropped the front end into a soft spot and gotten stuck. All four of the bolts attaching the pedastyle to the bottom of the bolster were either broken off or had their threads stripped away. Going to Chester and Esther as parts donors, I found one of the bolts has a crown on it's head to serve as a steering stop. A call to my local Case/IH dealer told me that bolt was still available for about $25.00. I decided to wait on that and just got some 3/4" fine thread bolts, nuts, and lockwashers. Earl was jacked up with a HandyMan jack on either side frame rail. I had help getting the pedastyle back in place and held with a couple loaner bolts from Esther the '41 M. I could get three of the new ones in, but the fourth seemed to have the head rub and not drop down into place. I figured a really good cleaning would probably allow enough room for the head to drop down into place. I was anxious to get to some box blading for my great Drainage Project. After just a couple scrapes, I saw what looked like antifreeze blowing out from a leak in the exhaust manifold gasket. I quickly drove over to my Live Oak Shade Tree Tractor Garage and shut her down. I had a bad feeling, but didn't investigate any farther until this morning. I dumped a five gallon can of gas into the tank, and then pulled the dipstick to check the oil. For the first time, the level wasn't low. It was quite high and the oil had that sickening tan look of having water mixed into it. Now I'm hoping it's a blown head gasket, cause I sure don't need another cracked block, like on Teddy, the '57 Ford 641. I guess I better hit it with the pressure washer today, cause it looks like it's time for the big split...


Collecting, Restoring, Painting

E-mail me at goodwrench@cyberranch.org
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This page was last updated August 26, 2000

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