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Discussion Forum
Show Parts for Model:

Progress report - Ford 961

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Will Gumbert

10-15-2012 10:34:24
108.22.206.129



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I believe that some of you are aware that last April I bought a Ford 961 from the classified ads on this site. After some work, and some helpful advice from the experts on this forum, it has turned out to be a good tractor. I thought I would tell you a little about my experience, maybe someone will find it helpful or interesting.

First, I bought the tractor sight-unseen, which can be dangerous. But, the seller was basically honest, and after looking at some photos and talking to him, I went ahead. When the tractor arrived, it started, but barely and ran poorly with black smoke, but gradually smoothed out. It smelled of old gas. After leaving it parked overnight, it was dripping fuel from the choke shaft. Pulling the dipstick, it also had a strong smell of fuel. After cleaning and drying out the intake, it started OK and had good oil pressure so I quickly drove the 200 yards or so to the shed and did not run it again until the whole fuel system was sorted out. The crankcase was full of fuel mixed with oil. I also noticed calcium leaking from the left rear stem. These were the two worst problems as it turned out. So, here is what it took to end up with a good tractor:

- Completely rebuilding the carburetor, the leaking was mainly due to a problem with the main nozzle, not the needle and seat.

- Removing the fuel tank, having it boiled out and de-fumed, a leaky drain plug removed and welded over, and then painting the outside with silver engine enamel.

- Removing and cleaning the crankcase pan and valve cover
- Replacing the fuel tap, fuel line, and intake/exhaust manifold and gaskets

- Fixing small problems and adjustments with the throttle and governor linkages

- Draining the liquid from the rear tires, removing the tires (this was an ordeal, I couldnít remove them myself even when using my loader bucket to smash the tires down flat the beads would not give, so I took them to a tire shop and they removed them but the tires were shot)

- Cleaning, sandblasting the rear rims Ė in the process holes were knocked in the rims, which needed cut and pieces welded in. The welder, a friend, did such an expert job that after sanding, priming and painting itís impossible to see or feel the welds. The rims look like new, and the work was free!

- Installing new Goodyear (Titan) rear tires and tubes. Yes, a little more money, but nice.

- Completely rebuilding the Rest-O-Ride seat, with new bushings, rubber torsion springs and welding and repairing seat pan and hinge.

- Having the generator rebuilt, replacing the voltage regulator and warning light.
- Replaced the battery pan, new battery, made homemade hold-down bracket, new connectors

- Drained coolant, installed new hoses, fresh fill of 50/50. Also topped off all fluids, grease, etc.

- Painted numerous parts and touched up all paint. Applied tire paint to front tires, fixed headlight wiring, added left rear tail light

- New spark plugs, checked timing. Engine running and starting good at this point, smooth running, no smoke and no leaks.

After this, driving it around showed that everything is working correctly, including two-stage clutch, lift, PTO, power steering, and 5-speed tranny (does not pop out of 3rd gear when suddenly closing throttle going down hill).

So, Iím happy with the result. Also would like to thank those on this forum like Tony Jacobs, soundguy, Ultradog, and others who offered helpful info and suggestions.

I took the tractor to the 15th annual Autumn Glory festival car and tractor show in my hometown of Oakland, MD yesterday and was proud to park my little red and gray 961 in front of a sea of John Deere green machines.
Fords forever! -Will

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Royse

10-16-2012 08:44:43
68.77.236.5



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 Re: Progress report - Ford 961 in reply to soundguy, 10-15-2012 10:34:24  
Quoting Removed, click Modern View to see

Do you have a source for those hold down locks?

I'm missing one on each wheel, so I've been patiently searching through

the farm auctions but haven't found any yet.



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Will Gumbert

10-16-2012 12:05:13
108.22.206.129



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 Re: Progress report - Ford 961 in reply to Royse, 10-16-2012 08:44:43  
No, sorry I don't.

One person you could try is a guy named Dave that puts in a lot of classified ads for Ford parts. He is located in Indiana, PA and can be reached at 724-
349-2015. It's worth a try.



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soundguy

10-16-2012 06:08:08
184.246.120.224



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 Re: Progress report - Ford 961 in reply to Will Gumbert, 10-15-2012 10:34:24  
did the pa rims give you any trouble?

what size rears ya got?



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Will Gumbert

10-16-2012 06:56:00
108.22.206.129



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 Re: Progress report - Ford 961 in reply to soundguy, 10-16-2012 06:08:08  
Yes, as mentioned above, the rims were damaged by calcium and had to be repaired. I wanted to save the power adjust rims and was able to do that but without help from an experienced welder they would have been toast.
The rear tires are 14.9x28 which work OK even though the rims are only 11 inch. I originally wanted to get 13.6's but they don't make them in the Goodyear Duratorque. The 14.9's look pretty good, tractor sits more level. No liquid balast now. -Will

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soundguy

10-16-2012 08:00:02
184.246.120.224



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 Re: Progress report - Ford 961 in reply to Will Gumbert, 10-16-2012 06:56:00  
i thought they looked big.

funny. i have a set of 14.9-28 on pa rims on my 950.

they too needed work.

took me an entire winter to repair them rims afer someone welde dthe centers in then los a couple of the hold down locks.



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Will Gumbert

10-16-2012 08:09:46
108.22.206.129



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 Re: Progress report - Ford 961 in reply to soundguy, 10-16-2012 08:00:02  
Yes, they can be a lot of work. Worth saving, though.
In my case, we did the repairs without removing the centers, and were able to leave the locks in place.

The tires are a bit big, but the Titan 13.6's were actually more money. They were long bar/short bar types also.



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soundguy

10-16-2012 08:17:49
184.246.120.224



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 Re: Progress report - Ford 961 in reply to Will Gumbert, 10-16-2012 08:09:46  
on mine, I HAD to remove the centers as soom goofball welded them in place!! no need to either.. the rims were otherwise in decent condition!



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Will Gumbert

10-16-2012 13:51:37
108.22.206.129



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 Re: Progress report - Ford 961 in reply to soundguy, 10-16-2012 08:17:49  
BTW, soundguy, don't you have a real nice 4000 wide front row crop like my 961 or am I confusing you with someone else?



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soundguy

10-16-2012 15:36:09
173.107.180.162



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 Re: Progress report - Ford 961 in reply to Will Gumbert, 10-16-2012 13:51:37  

not sure about real nice.. but I do like it.

63 4000 rc, 4spd with sherman combo.

racing slicks on the front cuz tires are too spendy to change on my farm if they still hold air.. ;)



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Will Gumbert

10-16-2012 16:18:57
108.22.206.129



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 Re: Progress report - Ford 961 in reply to soundguy, 10-16-2012 15:36:09  
Yeah, that's the one! Looks real nice to me. How do you keep a working tractor so clean?

Those meats on the back look pretty big too, and the pa rims are in nice shape. Hope you have rim guard in 'em, not that nasty salt.



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soundguy

10-16-2012 17:06:47
173.107.180.162



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 Re: Progress report - Ford 961 in reply to Will Gumbert, 10-16-2012 16:18:57  
those are some nearly new 13.6-28 I stumbled upon.. still have whiskers on them. and yeah.. I got lucky.. those PA rims were next to perfect. just had to wire wheel surface rust off and replace a lil bit of hardware.

laoded with water and eco safe antifreeze.

I think I only have 1 machine left with calcium in it... i usually swap them out to water and eco safe antifreeze when I do tire work.

she has been dirty. earlier this year I had to rebuild the top end after my pushrods stuck , bent.. etc.

she's a great mowing tractor..

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Ultradog MN

10-16-2012 04:54:03
184.100.106.5



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 Re: Progress report - Ford 961 in reply to Will Gumbert, 10-15-2012 10:34:24  
Looks great Will.
Makes me think I'd like to have one.



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Fordfarmer

10-16-2012 15:01:34
184.158.22.162



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 Re: Progress report - Ford 961 in reply to Ultradog MN, 10-16-2012 04:54:03  
I could set you up with a nice original looking 960 n/f that needs a little mechanical TLC.



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RBnSC

10-16-2012 03:52:42
76.73.221.117



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 Re: Progress report - Ford 961 in reply to Will Gumbert, 10-15-2012 10:34:24  
That's one nice looking tractor.
Ron



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mgriff543

10-16-2012 01:56:08
69.95.74.132



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 Re: Progress report - Ford 961 in reply to Will Gumbert, 10-15-2012 10:34:24  
Nicely Done!



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Royse

10-15-2012 18:22:43
69.36.49.151



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 Re: Progress report - Ford 961 in reply to anthony pawlowski, 10-15-2012 10:34:24  
Beautiful work Will.

Glad it worked out so well for you!



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Gene Sage

10-15-2012 15:51:14
174.253.130.130



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 Re: Progress report - Ford 961 in reply to Will Gumbert, 10-15-2012 10:34:24  
Always good to see quality work. Not cobbled up el cheapo work.



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Will Gumbert

10-15-2012 16:51:30
108.22.206.129



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 Re: Progress report - Ford 961 in reply to Gene Sage, 10-15-2012 15:51:14  
Yes, thanks.
The big expense of course was the tires. At that time, I still didn't know if the major parts of the tractor were OK. I had a serious talk with my wife and she said go ahead, and as it turned out there were no other big problems with it, thank God.



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soundguy

10-15-2012 11:14:54
173.105.128.123



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 Re: Progress report - Ford 961 in reply to Will Gumbert, 10-15-2012 10:34:24  
looks awesome.

I love the rowcrops.. wide and narrow.

you've put plenty of effort into that one and have a fine piece ready for work or show!



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Will Gumbert

10-15-2012 11:57:59
108.22.206.129



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 Re: Progress report - Ford 961 in reply to soundguy, 10-15-2012 11:14:54  
Thanks for the kind words.

BTW, I forgot to thank Feron Dalton who gave me some help on several questions. -Will



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MarkWV

10-15-2012 11:12:08
75.111.166.227



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 Re: Progress report - Ford 961 in reply to Will Gumbert, 10-15-2012 10:34:24  
Very nice work, something to be proud of!!



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