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Hay Sweep

Some years back was talking with a fellow of like years to myself. As a teen he had worked summers for a farmer notorious for keeping equipment in use long past retirement age, like he was himself. The job for the day was to finish pushing the hay windrows together, or running a hay sweep. The guy let him off at the top of a hill, pointing down into the valley, 'the sweeps down there', and left. It was a homebrew haysweep made from a very early Chevy truck, a four cylinder, with the steering and controls backwards on the chassis, as so many hundreds were. Climbing into the seat, he switched it on, and pushed down the starter button, the starter gave a single groan and quit. Clamboring around to the front, he found the crank was still in place, but couldn't swing it due to the iron bracing welded to the frame, at best he could only give it a half turn. So he walks back to the buildings, and found the farmer. 'The battery is dead, couldn't start it'. Driving back to the field, the farmer apologized for not telling him the secret combination. The old guy climbed through the bracing, grabbed the crank, and pulled it up to compression, then moved quickly to the seat, switched on, and jerked the ignition advance lever on the steering column, the engine coughed once and was running! Seems he had been starting it that way for years rather than buy a new battery. The engine was loose enough that all it took was one cylinder to fire. Once it warmed up, he swept the windrows with no further problems. home brew mechanicing! John in Nebraska

John, Ne, entered 2002-08-05
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Today's Featured Article - Tractors and Winter - by Staff. Unfortunately, tractors and winter don't mix well. It seems that I can start out with my tractors in great running condition but sometime during the long cold dark winter they quickly revert to the lawn-art category. The lack of running, cold weather, and admitted neglect all take their toll on a machine. If you are lucky enough to not need your tractors during the winter months you can perform a few simple maintenance items to winterize and come spring have them going by reversing the process. If you need your tractor in ready-to-run condition (like that ... [Read Article]

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