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Project Journal - MF 165 Restoration
Handle: bmanka  
Project Name: MF 165 Restoration  
Tractor: 1968 MF165  
Started: 15:50 04/14/15  
Updated: 10:03 10/10/16  
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16:04 04/14/15

 16:04 04/14/15  In the beginning
I recently began the restoration of my Massey Ferguson 165 tractor. This tractor was purchased by my grandfather used in the early 1970's and was used on his farm up until the late 90's. My father relocated the tractor to his place some time around 2007 and it sat in an open field unused since.

I had contemplated restoring it for many years but other projects and priorities took precedence and my father considered selling it, even entertaining one potential buyer who almost bought it. Fortunately for me he didn't and I finally decided to dedicate the time and effort early this year.

This project journal is dedicated to the restoration.

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16:24 04/14/15

 16:24 04/14/15  1st Start in 8 Yrs
Getting the 165 ready for its first start in almost a decade. The engine is seized so after watching a a number of different videos on YouTube, I , To begin, i head off to the local Tractor Supply to purchase a new battery and positive battery cable. I have the feeling ill be coming back here frequently.

New battery and cable installed, I drain the fuel tank and fill it with fresh diesel. I decide to try the starter to see if the engine will free up. First try, nothing but a click. Several tries later, still the same thing. I decide to let the engine sit awhile and contemplate removing the diesel injectors to soak the cylinders in some penetrating oil.. After 15 min, I decide to give it a few more tries. After a few attempts, there is movement in the pistons! A few more tries later, and the engine sputters to life!

The picture below is faint but shows me and my father checking over the machine which is running surprisingly well. Oh, one other thing. As it turns out the fuel shutoff cable is also seized and can't be used to shut off the engine! I loosen the cable end at the fuel pump and shut off the fuel manually. Whew! Glad I watched a YouTube video on the fuel pump!
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17:21 04/14/15

 17:21 04/14/15  Fluids, Filters and Fuel
I pulled the oil and fuel filters off, found replacements and installed them. Followe that up with an oil change and topped off the power steering reservoir with hydraulic fluid. Fired the tractor up and found a major leak in one of the hydraulic lines for the power steering.

I decided to pull both the pressure and return lines off from the power steering to be rebuilt. Fortunately, my local shop turned them around in 1 day, cost, about $100. Installed the new lines, refilled the reservoir and fired up the tractor. Discovered a major leak in the power steering cylinder...dang! I wasn't expecting to have to rebuild that! To make matters worse, disassembly of the cylinder revealed old damage to the cylinder that is probably more trouble that it's worth unless I can't find a replacement. Fortunately, I was able to locate a replacement, cost, about $200.
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17:33 04/14/15

 17:33 04/14/15  More work on power steering
I installed the new power steering cylinder and a filter for the power steering pump. Then, I refilled the reservoir with hydraulic fluid and fired the tractor up. To bleed the system of any air bubbles, you turn the steering wheel left and right which I did only to discover another leak! This time, it in the hydraulic line fitting where it meets the power steering pump. A trip to Ace Hardware for replacement o-rings does the trick. Problem solved...kind of. Discovered yet another leak, this time in the power steering reservoir o-ring. This o-ring is pretty large, 4 1/8" x 1/8" thick. To my surprise, Ace Hardware has a 4" x 1/8" that works just fine! Problem solved. Time to take the Massey for a test drive!
 17:54 04/14/15  Electrical system
Decided to rewire the complete electrical system. I scanned a copy of the wiring diagram from my shop manual, and reprinted it on 11x14" paper. This definitely helps! Rewired the system and fired up the tractor to check the systems. Not good.

Alternator is shot so time to buy a new one. After a few days, the new alternator arrives and is installed. Still no luck. A test of the voltage regulator shows its gone bad and needs replacement. If the meantime, I created and installed a jumper wire to go from the positive terminal to the field input. Restart the tractor and voila! We have a charge and he ammeter shows a reading...but it's -13.5 volts. That can't be right...a quick swap of the wires corrects this and it now reads 13.5 volts.

I ordered a Delco Remy voltage regulator on Amazon, receive that and get it installed. One thing I didn't mention before, before I rebuilt the harness, there were a few dangling wires. A check of the wiring diagram shows one going to and one from the oil pressure switch. The only problem is, there is no oil pressure switch on this tractor. He oil pressure switch is used like a light switch. When the engine is off, it disconnects the voltage regulator from the battery to prevent a discharge from lights and accessories. When the engine is running, power to the regulator is switched on, thereby enabling the other circuits. After a little research, I determine that at some point in this tractor's past, the pressure switch had been removed from behind the oil pressure gauge and the fitting changed to show a pressure reading only. I place an order for the switch and replacement fittings. More to come!
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10:03 10/10/16

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10:03 10/10/16

 10:03 10/10/16  Moving Day
After a long break, I'm getting back to the tractor restoration and decided to move it from my father's farm to my house so I can dedicate more time consistently to the project. A dead battery forced me to delay the effort by a day but a quick trip to Tractor Supply yielded a free warranty replacement. To my surprise, she started up instantly as if I had been using the tractor daily. Very impressed with these engines!
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What are Project Journals?

Project Journals are a place where YT Community members can document their tractor and farm projects. Each journal created, can have many photos and accompanying text entries. You can also enable comments to allow other members of the YT Community to comment on your journal. If you do enable comments, it is up to you to moderate what people enter in your journal according to the site policy of Yesterdays Tractors. Journals may also be used as photo posting area, to post your photos of your farm, tractors and related photo topics. If you would like to create a journal, just be sure you are logged in to the Classic View of the forums, and a link will appear to do so when you next come to this page.

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