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Ford Tractors Discussion Forum
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Newbie Super Dexta owner - Any advice appreciated

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Harry Dexta

04-28-2014 13:52:07

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Hi everyone. I"m sure you must get a ton of these post, so sorry if this is against the etiquette of the site. I"m just looking for someone to point me in the right direction.
Here goes anyway. I have bought a 1963 Fordson Super Dexta with a 3-cylinder Perkins diesel engine two days ago. I spent a long time looking for a tractor that was in my price range (the low end of the market) We recently moved to a house that has approx 3 acres of grass/pasture and long term we want to run a smallholding. In the short term I need to have a topper to cut the grass (the tractor came with a topper).
The guy I bought it from showed me the tractor driving and used the topper to cut a little patch of grass, it didn"t seem to smoke much when he drove it, the hydraulics worked to raise the hitch so i figured how bad can it be, and I went ahead and bought it.
I"m excited by the idea of slowly renovating the tractor and bringing it back to life (it"s really rusty, and has some problems with the gear box I think) but the more I look the more i realise I just don"t know what I"m doing. I don"t want to try to use it and end up damaging the tractor because I haven"t figured out what needs fixing professionally and what I can ignore or fix myself at a later date.
I have a few specific questions:
1. the gear lever(s) have two bolts missing from the plate that holds the base of the levers onto the tractor - is this bad, or should I not worry? the levers wobble around a bit but it does seem to go into gear. I"ve not tried them all, (also as I was taking it away the guy said that actually he couldn"t get it to go into reverse)
2. When he engaged the PTO it made a very bad sounding grinding gears noise until he got the PTO going, I asked about that and he said that it did that but it was okay. the PTO does work but that seems bad, is it?
3. I tried to drive it in 1 and 2 in low gear and the throttle lever by the steering wheel kept slipping backwards (so that the engine slowed down) I had to hold the throttle forwards for it to drive - am I doing it wrong?
4. when I had a go at driving it I"m told that it produced lots of black smoke (by my wife), I was so busy trying to remember what knobs to pull and twist that I wasn"t looking.
5. there has actually been quite a bit of work done by an engineer I"m told, the top of the engine has had the gaskets replaced and the hoses are new, it does seem a bit oil spattered in side and the bottom of the engine has a bit of oil collected on it, but it"s not pouring out; how much oil leakages is normal, do I need to fix it straight away?
the back half is really rusty and the PTO looks really filthy, will dirt be getting into the shaft or should I just leave the old gunky oil there; will removing make it more likely to get dirt inside.
6. Should I look to get it serviced? just to put mu mind at ease that I"m not going to damage it by using it, bearing in mind that I don"t have a huge budget.
7. when I drove it; briefly, in a low gear, the engine temp went into the red (slightly) is that because I need to top up the water in radiator, or cause for more worry.
Sorry for all the questions.
Really appreciate anyone who can give me some advice.

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04-30-2014 19:33:23

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 Re: Newbie Super Dexta owner - Any advice appreciated in reply to Harry Dexta, 04-28-2014 13:52:07  
Looking at the pix on flickr, I see your tractor has the parking brake lever on left side. I assume you/it is a British/non U.S. model. Overall it looks good for its age. A few seals will need looking at sometime in the future depending on your needs/demands such as the wheel bearing seals all show some signs of wear/grime/leaks. The most urgent leak I see is what looks like a fuel leak(clear looking) that is accumulating on bottom of eng. We had a'64 model the hood opened from the right side, the battery swung out, and at times the starter lever sometimes would require you to stand on it to engage the starter. You have some kind of extra lift apparatus on the rear that I have never seen. The grime around the pto looks normal for the age of the tractor. The exhaust spots under the hood are probably from slobber, a diesel will do this if not worked frequently. I would install the muffler soon to preserve my hearing. Looks like a good score. Manuals would be well advised.

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05-01-2014 14:12:45

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 Re: Newbie Super Dexta owner - Any advice appreciated in reply to dbnga, 04-30-2014 19:33:23  
your tractor came with a cold start aid that will feed fuel to the manifold. this can leak and dibble fuel into the engine and make it smoke and leak... My superdexta had a valve to cut off fuel to the cold start line. Make sure your cold start line is cut off and not leaking. Need muffler. need to cover exhaust and muffler so it does not rain into the exhaust. You could have a leak on the injectors, especially the rubber or cloth covered return lines. You could have a leaky valve cover.

These are great tractors in everyway except for no power steering.. Clean it up and take care of it. and as said, change oil in engine and also the injector pump.

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04-28-2014 20:01:16

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 Re: Newbie Super Dexta owner - Any advice appreciated in reply to Harry Dexta, 04-28-2014 13:52:07  
To use the pto effectively, the clutch rod clevis pin needs to be put in the second hole. This will raise the pedal upward about 1.5 inches or so. This will allow the pto to be "live". Live is being able to stop forward motion of tractor without losing power to pto...very nice feature. When you now press the clutch you will feel a hard spot but pedal is not on floor, press to floor and see if pto lever engages without grinding, if still grinding a clutch replacement/repair is in your future. This is important when using high energy attachments such as a bush hog, I think you are calling a topper. Dirt/grime is unsightly but not necessarily a hot item. Oil accumulating on a hot engine is a hot item(no pun). Check coolant level and check/test/change thermostat to see if high eng temp can be cured. Don't run it with temp in red zone. Post back your results.

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Harry Dexta

04-29-2014 13:21:17

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 Re: Newbie Super Dexta owner - Any advice appreciated in reply to dbnga, 04-28-2014 20:01:16  

I've taken a load of pictures and put them on Flickr.
I have uploaded a few here, I found the clevis pin and it is currently on the end hole so I plan to move it back when i have a bit of time at the weekend.
The temp gauge seems to be stuck in the red (tractor has been cold for a few days now!)
I took some pictures of the area where the oil seems to be leaking from collecting on the bottom of the engine block, not sure if they are particularly easy to interpet photos as they are all a bit close-up. let me know how bad you think it is if you get a chance to look. Thanks.

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Harry Dexta

04-29-2014 02:53:51

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 Re: Newbie Super Dexta owner - Any advice appreciated in reply to dbnga, 04-28-2014 20:01:16  
Thanks dbnga, I'll check on the tractor when I get home, I'll try and upload some pictures too. The Topper is a rotary grass mower, I've never heard of a bush hog!

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Shetland Sheepdog

04-28-2014 16:00:54

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 Re: Newbie Super Dexta owner - Any advice appreciated in reply to Harry Dexta, 04-28-2014 13:52:07  
Just a suggestion if I may.

You may get quite a bit of help here, but you might get even more on the Fordson forum below.

HTH, Dave

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Harry Dexta

04-29-2014 02:57:45

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 Re: Newbie Super Dexta owner - Any advice appreciated in reply to Shetland Sheepdog, 04-28-2014 16:00:54  
Dave, Thanks, I didn't see a link to a Fordson forum at the top of the page, but I've figured out that I can edit the URL and get there. I'll try and get a Mod to move this to the Fordson discussion group.

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04-28-2014 14:27:04

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 Re: Newbie Super Dexta owner - Any advice appreciated in reply to Harry Dexta, 04-28-2014 13:52:07  
Those Supers were great tractors. I had mine for 48 yrs. and had over 10,000 hrs on it when I sold it. VERY IMPORTANT , make sure to change the oil in the injection pump at the same time you change the motor oil (100hrs) That's an often overlooked area for new owners.
Injection pump has two plugs (1 on the side of the pump (oil level plug) and 1 on the bottom (drain plug) Both plugs use a 1/2" wrench). On top of the pump is the filler plug (15/16" wrench)

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Harry Dexta

04-28-2014 14:43:46

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 Re: Newbie Super Dexta owner - Any advice appreciated in reply to jimont, 04-28-2014 14:27:04  
Thanks Jimont, I'm still trying to figure out where all the differnt parts are and what they do! I'll go and look up where those are in the manual. appreciate the advice. Maybe I should change the oil now as I don't know when it was last changed.

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04-28-2014 15:10:32

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 Re: Newbie Super Dexta owner - Any advice appreciated in reply to Harry Dexta, 04-28-2014 14:43:46  
Yes,I would change it now. It might be prudent to check the level between changes as sometimes diesel fuel will leak into the pump and dilute the oil.

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