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Tractor Talk Discussion Forum

Farmall M

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Russell Dewsnup

11-08-2013 07:24:56

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I recently acquired my grandfathers 1945 Farmall M. The tractor is well used but runs. I started it and drove it on the trailer to haul home. My question is concerning whether or not to overhaul the engine. I did a compression test and had 60lbs in the front two cylinders, and 70lbs in the back two cylinders. I can see the front and rear seals are leaking and will need to be replaced. Should I overhaul the engine while I have it out of the tractor? The tractor will be used for parades and tractor shows, it will do some fun pulls at the county fair. Thanks for any and all comments.

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Super Trucker

11-08-2013 13:04:22

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 Re: Farmall M in reply to Russell Dewsnup, 11-08-2013 07:24:56  
I would do a wet and dry test like old said to determine if it's the rings or something else. It might be a valve issue to. Then you need to ask your self what am I going to do with it. Show it maybe a set of rings,Work it rebuild the head and a super kit, Pull it now were into a whole nother ball game only limited to your pocket book!. As one of the other guy's stated if it is original PLEASE KEEP IT THAT WAY!!!!!!!!!!! I will walk on past a pretty tractor all day long as to spend the day talking to the owner of a original tractor and never look at another thing. Faded paint, scratches,dents,dings and modifications all tell a story that will be lost FOREVER when they "restore" a tractor.

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11-08-2013 11:08:44

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 Re: Farmall M in reply to Russell Dewsnup, 11-08-2013 07:24:56  
First off, congrats on getting a piece of family history!
I would suggest you get things fixed up mechanically. Get it running right, safe, and make it a good usable tractor.
I would urge you to hold off on the cosmetic stuff. I dont know what kind of shape it is in (some pics would be awesome!). If you pretty it all up, repaint, restore, etc, you'll just have another M. But if you clean it up, you'll always have Grandpa's M. Scratches, dents, modifications, etc were likely all put there by your Grandpa.
So, I'd clean it up for now, and then wait on your decision to repaint/restore it. Maybe it really needs the repaint, I dunno. But, once those scratches and dents are repaired, they are gone forever. My 2 cents.

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John A.

11-08-2013 08:38:33

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 Re: Farmall M in reply to Russell Dewsnup, 11-08-2013 07:24:56  
Russell, Before I render an opinion First!
Run the old girl some if at all possible, say 20 munites or so. let cool to touch, Say go eat lunch first.
Do another compression check Dry!
them do it again! Wet! with say add a good healthy dose of 30 wt oil to each cylinder.
This will tell you more than anything! I tend to agree with "old" here. If it is as low as you say then most definitely ...Yes!
Firecrater pistons. You can put a Super kit in it to get more HP it. Thinner sleeves, bigger pistons, rotators for the valves. If you are going to get into it, this is a upgrade that is well worth it. IMO The Farmall M is a benchmark tractor, it Did! and continues to do a lot of jobs very well. Size/wt/hp ratio. Best of all this on You have a direct connection to you grandfather!
The view from the seat is the same view your Grandfather had!!! H3LL of a prospective look at the world from that Vantage Point!
NEVER, Ever, ever, sell that tractor! for if you do you may not get an opportunity to get it back!
Congratulation on owning a great piece of History!
John A.

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caterpillar guy

11-08-2013 08:17:27

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 Re: Farmall M in reply to Russell Dewsnup, 11-08-2013 07:24:56  
If all it is going to be is a trailer queen with paint and no work leave it be all it needs to do is drive on and off the trailer to park. Why spend a $1000.00. If you're going to the field to plow day in and day out or use daily on the farm then go for it.

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11-08-2013 08:04:54

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 Re: Farmall M in reply to Russell Dewsnup, 11-08-2013 07:24:56  
yup i agree on the overhaul. also, while you have the engine out, put a new seal and gasket in the belly pump if so equipped, put a new seal on the trans input shaft and the belly pump drive shaft. check the clutch, throw out bearing and pilot bearing too.

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David G

11-08-2013 07:52:35

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 Re: Farmall M in reply to Russell Dewsnup, 11-08-2013 07:24:56  
Put in some firecrater pistons while you are at it, same price, much better performance.

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Russell Dewsnup

11-08-2013 09:32:00

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 Re: Farmall M in reply to David G, 11-08-2013 07:52:35  
If I go to the Fire Crater pistons, do I need adifferent head, or can use the same one? Fire Crater will be higher compression pistons. Thanks

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David G

11-08-2013 10:07:54

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 Re: Farmall M in reply to Russell Dewsnup, 11-08-2013 09:32:00  
I believe it is the same head, others here, a.k.a. professor Jim, may know better. You will want it at 12V if you are going to use it.

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11-08-2013 07:50:29

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 Re: Farmall M in reply to Russell Dewsnup, 11-08-2013 07:24:56  
Before I would vote yes on an over haul I would want you to fill in a few blanks. #1 how long has it sat with out running??? If it sat for say 6 months or more I would do this and yes a gamble but worth it
Fill the cylinders with ATF and let it sit say 3 days. Pull the plugs and spin it over then recheck compression.

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11-08-2013 07:43:13

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 Re: Farmall M in reply to Russell Dewsnup, 11-08-2013 07:24:56  
Definitely time for an overhaul.

If you don't, wear a clown costume to your first tractor pull and have fun with it because you won't be competitive, if you can get the sled moving at all.

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Mike M

11-08-2013 07:52:14

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 Re: Farmall M in reply to mkirsch, 11-08-2013 07:43:13  
To be competitive you will have to put a ton of money into that engine because no one is running them anywhere near stock at least in Ohio. A farmall M with a TA and lots and lots of internal work can really go !

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11-08-2013 08:39:39

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 Re: Farmall M in reply to Mike M, 11-08-2013 07:52:14  
If they are not stock they cannot pull where I am at in Ohio. The overpower kit designed for field work is consered stock. Must not have any modifications to orignal drawbar and no front weights, only 2 sets of rear wheel weights. No brackets for any extra weights.

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11-08-2013 07:38:21

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 Re: Farmall M in reply to Russell Dewsnup, 11-08-2013 07:24:56  
Yes,time for a OH.Even though that engine runs well,it is 'worn out'.Time to Overhaul it.Now is a perfect time.And,you have all winter so you wont be pushed for time....Good luck!Stay in touch! Steve

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11-08-2013 07:46:52

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 Re: Farmall M in reply to DeltaRed, 11-08-2013 07:38:21  
I vote yes . You will enjoy your rebuilt M immensely. Still wish I hadn't sold mine. Miss it every day as I work on my H

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