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I need Allis Chalmers Help (and lots of it)

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Ron in ND

09-09-2010 14:49:15

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I live on a small 'farm' of 11 acres and currently I have a big tractor (too big) IH856 Diesel, a project tractor 52 CoOp E4 with unknown 6cyl Buda Motor and a Cub Cadet lawnmower. No real 'medium sized' tractor.

I have the opportunity to acquire 2 WDs, whether I end up with these or not I will be working on them, because the person I will be getting them from is Dad and one of us will use them.
(1) Wide front wd45 (WFWD)

(1) narrow front WD (NFWD, not certain if it is a 45 or not)

Dad has another WD narrow front with loader that he uses for his yard tasks. (off limits)

The WFWD has a 'stuck' motor in it and is missing the gas tank and I've been told that the first gear is 'out' because the previous owner pushed a lot of snow in 'low gear'. I've never seen the NFWD but Dad assures me that it does not have a motor and that the 'tin' is there.

So I am fairly certain that I can have 1 whole tractor out of the parts from these 2.

I have a ton of questions about these tractors and am wondering if it's best to separate them all out into individual threads or just one massive one. The topcis of these threads really runs the gambit too..

1. favorite methods of unsticking a motor (leave it sealed up or open it)

2. Hydraulic system repairs and modification

3. Hydraulic system capabilities (loader/implements)

4. 3pt conversions

5. Loaders, what fits and what doesn't

6. Motor conversions, I have access to a spare Buda 6cyl gas, how much would it take to swap it onto the motorless narrow front, or if I can't get the WD45 4cyl 'free' I might need one on there.

7. If 1st gear is 'out' does that typically indicate a broke/worn gear or are there bearings/bushing/guides that wear out, and how hard is it to repair?

8. Wet Clutch repair. On Dad's working Narrow Front, the hand clutch no longer works but the foot clutch does, what would cause that? And how do you repair it?

9. Anybody ever built their own 3pt system?

10. How do I know which color stickers to use on it when it gets rebuilt? black or blue? Long A and S or does it matter?

11. I need to be able to move 1200-1300lb round bales, what is a safe operating limit for the front axle on these tractors?

12. While talking about frontends which is stronger Narrow or Front? (I have my option, see above)

13. Is narrow or wide a better overall option for me considering that I also plan on 'brush hogging' and ditch mowing with this tractor?

14. Rear tire liquid filling. The WFWD has 2 sets of weights on each rear tire, if I hang a 7ft snowblower off a 3pt will I need the additional weight of calcium chloride if move round bales?

15. How much HP/TQ can I reasonable expect to get out of the 4cyl? Stock specs look like the reside between 30 and 40 depending on belt/drawbar/pulley, can this tractor be coerced to put out closer to 50-55hp (or more) with upgrades to head/compression/cam/carb size/increase governor max speed?

16. Has anybody ever ran a belly mower on these? (what size)

17. What is the min and max width for tire/axle width on these tractors? (I saw this one day but neglected to save the information for when you have the power Z rims and spin them fully in and out)

If I had one tractor that could do the following I could retire the rest of them (not the lawnmower)

pasture dragging

Loader work

round bale moving
3pt mounted utility stuff

hole augering


mowing (finish and rotary)

Weed Spraying

Driveway Blading

What I really need are some knowledgeable Allis Chalmers people who like tractors and like to talk/type about them.

For any information that you can give me, or direction on where I can help myself, websites books I'd appreciate it.



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Ric Ks.

09-12-2010 05:28:27

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 Re: I need Allis Chalmers Help (and lots of it) in reply to Ron in ND, 09-09-2010 14:49:15  
Simple solution to your problems. trade your 856 for my gas 560 openstation. ;o)

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Ron in ND

09-12-2010 11:50:02

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 Re: I need Allis Chalmers Help (and lots of it) in reply to Ric Ks., 09-12-2010 05:28:27  
that is one option, how long would it take me to drive to your house at a top speed of 22mph? (from Fargo ND)

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Ric Ks.

09-12-2010 18:31:20

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 Re: I need Allis Chalmers Help (and lots of it) in reply to Ron in ND, 09-12-2010 11:50:02  
I wouldnt make you drive the whole way!! We could meet in Sioux Falls or some where..trade and head home the next morning.

Seriously though the AC would be nice for light stuff but none Ive seen will pick up a 1300 lb bale, and if it could it is too lite to manuver safely.

I make 4X5s around 1000lb and can barely get them off the ground with my wd. And I have to add waights to the front to steer.

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09-12-2010 19:20:00

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 Re: I need Allis Chalmers Help (and lots of it) in reply to Ric Ks., 09-12-2010 18:31:20  
You have to remember there were no hay rollers when they made the WD.(except for the old Rotobalers) Its hyd system was only intended to pick up its implements.

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Justin Scholtus

09-14-2010 18:59:15

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 Re: I need Allis Chalmers Help (and lots of it) in reply to D15DAN, 09-12-2010 19:20:00  
I have a 1953 WD that is all stock and it lifts 1500lbs+ with no problem

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Ron in ND

09-14-2010 19:13:31

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 Re: I need Allis Chalmers Help (and lots of it) in reply to Justin Scholtus, 09-14-2010 18:59:15  
Quoting Removed, click Modern View to seewhat type of loader?

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Ron in ND

09-11-2010 11:14:03

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 Re: I need Allis Chalmers Help (and lots of it) in reply to Ron in ND, 09-09-2010 14:49:15  
Dad's NFWD

third party image

the WFWD

third party image

Hopefully this works and you can view them all.

[URL=http://i689.photobucket.com/albums/vv256/phl3gm/Tractor/Dads%20Tractors/]Dad's Tractors[/URL]


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Clay in MI

09-10-2010 19:32:59

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 Re: I need Allis Chalmers Help (and lots of it) in reply to Ron in ND, 09-09-2010 14:49:15  
Wow! That's alot of questions. First off, I am partial to AC's and have 5 of them. Normally WD's and 45's don't have down pressure on the hydraulics. This limits their usefulness as loader tractors. Trip bucket loaders are OK for manure and snow but don't dig well. I've used mine on a 7' snowblower. It works OK - reverse is often too fast but you can slip the hand clutch if you need to. I bought a D17 w/cab just for blowing snow. We get about 300" per year and would not go back to open station. You can put a 6' belly mower on but it's still a fairly heavy tractor for yard use driving over drainfields, septics, etc. I prefer wide fronts but NF are more manueverable especially blowing snow on curves where the WF is out in the snowbank. WD will work for rototilling but first gear is too fast to do it well. You wouldn't need chloride with two sets of weights and the blower mounted but lifting 1300 lb round bales with the loader would be pushing its capacity. My opinion- keep the IH for heavy lifting. Remove the cab if you want it in the barn. Paint it if it's too ugly. Soak the WD45 with your favorite elixir for a month or so and it will probably free up to use for medium duties.

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Ron in ND

09-10-2010 14:21:05

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 Re: I need Allis Chalmers Help (and lots of it) in reply to Ron in ND, 09-09-2010 14:49:15  
The 856 with koyker k5 loader moves bales very nicely with a loader mounted bale spear. I have only used the 3pt on it once and that was to pull a 3pt mountable digger out of a feild (a ford 800 lost hydraulics) the 856 has only the 1000 rpm PTO and that is the only thing that is 'broke' on it right now is that the lever to engage the PTO is broken. Otherwise it is a fully functional ugly tractor. Seriously it's ugly.. red tractor with white cab and yellow/orange loader, all sort of dulled by years of use and slight rust tint to it. I really do not need any other tractor than this one.

There are 2 main problems that I have with this tractor is its size and the diesel motor. With the cab I can't park it inside, with the cab I can't see the axle stubs and I 'clip' things with them all the time. The weight of this tractor is tremendous, I spend a lot of time fixing my yard after moving things. I doubt that even without the cab it would fit in my shop due to the wide axle stubs and the 8ft snowblower, I'd continually hit things.

The motor works fantasically, just be sure to plug it in 2-3hrs before needing it when cold, it even works great at -30f temps, give it a shot of ether before firing it up and it runs like a champ, I never run it full speed, I always use higher hears with slower engine speeds, no complaints about power or reliablity, it's just that I am not a diesel fan, I don't enjoy the smell of them, the sound of them, nor do I relish the idea of changing the oil on them. This also the only thing at my house that uses diesel, I am fully prepared to pay to use more gas.

I am not in a rush to just run out and purchase anything, even if all of my tractors magically went away I would contract with my *other* neighbor to use his 4020/cab/loader/snowblower for the times that I need one. (the neighbor who isn't moving)

I considered 'downgrading' to a couple tractors that are available locally, all had loaders except..

IH 460

IH 560

IH 656 (hydro, no loader)

IH 706

JD4020 (this one is still on a list of potential swaps)

but the problem was that the *60 tractors did not have live hydraulics powering their loaders, nor did they have 3pt. The 656 had 'a miss in cylinder 1' and no loader. The 706 had a cab and loader, so the cab was still an issue and it only weighs about 2000lbs less than the 856 but it has 30 less horsepower.. all seemed like they were just additional compromises and I'd be better off just staying with what I have and 'dealing' with it. Which I am fully prepared to do while I figure out a vintage solution to my problem.

The 4020 (cab/loader/dual PTO 540/1000) is one that my neighbor is getting rid of because he is moving out of state and he offered to 'work with me' in regards to selling/trading. But it has unique characteristics that make it 'undesirable' as well. Not enough hydraulic ports, no creeper reverse gear, still won't fit inside any of my buildings. But everything is matching and it works great.

Bspauld, I noticed that you don't have any tire chains or wheel weights, how well does that unit push snow?

Not sure if any of you are picture fiends like myself.. so here's a couple of photobucket albums of the tractor pictures I've taken..

MN Steam Threshers 2009 Rollag

This year the Rollag event featured Allis Chalmers but I did not have enough time to talk to owners. I was really hoping to catch the tractor pulling so I could see them in action... maybe next year.

2010 MN Steam Threshers Reunion

I'll work on getting some more pictures of our tractors uploaded.


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09-10-2010 10:21:23

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 Re: I need Allis Chalmers Help (and lots of it) in reply to Ron in ND, 09-09-2010 14:49:15  
If read this properly, you would get two Ac's that need a lot of work and add on's to do what you want them to do. The 856 should handle moving the round bales on the rear 3pt easily with a 3pt bale spear. The WD45 with power steering and a PTO or engine mounted hydraulic pump would work for loader jobs, but probably would be overloaded for transporting large bales. If you add all these things up you may want to keep the 856 unless it has problems or sell it and use the money to buy a slightly newer tractor like a D17 stage 4 or something like that to do what you need it to do right out of the box. Or a similar Massey-Furg about 50-60 hp with a loader and you could do all you need to do. Just some things to think about it.

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09-10-2010 09:12:33

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 Re: I need Allis Chalmers Help (and lots of it) in reply to Ron in ND, 09-09-2010 14:49:15  
third party image

I will try to send a pic of my WD

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09-10-2010 09:06:45

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 Re: I need Allis Chalmers Help (and lots of it) in reply to Ron in ND, 09-09-2010 14:49:15  
I have a few old tractors,but the one I use the most is my WD, I push dirt and snow with it, I hardly ever use 1st gear,almost always 2nd,and sometimes 3rd, I have the tires loaded with chloride. I have used one for years and find it to be as good for that as any older tractor,A new 4wd would work better of course

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09-10-2010 03:29:03

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 Re: I need Allis Chalmers Help (and lots of it) in reply to Ron in ND, 09-09-2010 14:49:15  
Loader work
round bale moving
Unless they have the char lynn add on forget the WDs for any heavy loader work unless you are built like a bear

3pt mounted utility stuff
snowblowing Nope

hole augering maybe

rototilling nope

mowing (finish and rotary) maybe

Weed Spraying maybe

Driveway Blading suppose so

We have 9 acres with 7 tillable and have 2 WDs one with a loader and a 756 gas.

Before I started using the 756 I did a lot with the WD without a loader, cut hay raked hay crimped, plowed with 2-14's planted with the grain drill baled etc.

Then we started using the 756 and a whole new way of life opened up, I was able to pull a nice haybine, I could pull 4 14s to plow, power steering, a decent seat, a fast road gear if I wanted to do something at the neighbors.

If I wanted to do something with the hydraulics I didn't have to make sure the pump was set up for that job, just plug in the hoses and go.

It was like a little slice of heaven.

I bought a WD with a loader this spring, it was built as a snow mover, the bucket is no good for anything else. Get a load of manure on it and it's almost impossible to steer. And with the single acting hyds and having to use the hand clutch here and there and waiting for it to raise, loading a manure spreader in tight quarters its more of a workout than using a pitchfork.

I'd get a loader for that 856 and call it good.
This post was edited by sammydwm at 03:39:49 09/10/10.

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Ron in ND

09-10-2010 09:53:38

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 Re: I need Allis Chalmers Help (and lots of it) in reply to sammydwm, 09-10-2010 03:29:03  
The 856 has a loader and aftermarket 3pt, but it beats up my yard everytime I drive it. It has liquid filled rear tires a set of tire weights and a cab. The clay in this area just does not support it's weight very well so I don't use it very much. By reading the tractor data page it weighs around 12,000lbs. I also do not have any building tall enough for me to put it in when I have issues or want to warm it up in the winter, the cab is too tall.

In regards to my physical build, lets say I'm 'hefty'. For 3 years my only tractor was the CoOp E4 and it does not have power steering, I just got used to not trying to turn until it was moving. I used it for moving round bales and snow, one bucket load at a time. It has a DuAl 250 loader with 'wing expansion' for pushing/hauling snow. It can lift enough snow to raise the rearend off the ground, and that was the problem with the round bales, no rearend weight when moving them, and I have this small hill that leads down to the drainage ditch (coulee) in my yard and every time I'd try to come up it, I'd spin out. Which was why I bought the big heavy 856 (well that and the fact that the 856 has 3pt and I got a great deal on it)

This is only 14 round bales per year.. Once off the truck to get stacked and once off the stack to the horses. Not daily work so I am fully prepared to drive slowly keep the load close to the ground and avoid sharp turns. But not if the front end can't support the weight, it's not worth breaking stuff. I'll have to stick with plan B then.. sell the 856, build a 3pt for the CoOp for snowblowing and bale moving, get the WD/WD45 for my 'light work'.

Based on what I've read about the prices of those Char Lynn conversions I would most likely be better off converting it to an orbital ball PS setup off of a different tractor or combine and have fully hydraulic steering. I know a few old farmers with 'parts' gathering rust in their shelter belts.

The comment about not liking to blow snow and the speed 1st gear has me a little bit confused, for snowblowing I'd be more interested in reverse then 1st gear. Unless they are the same speed..

I only bought the snowblowers last fall, I borrowed the neighbors 4020 with cab/loader/blower for most of last winter, it is a decent tractor, still bigger than I really need. I break off fence posts with it also (like the with the 856) and it doesn't have a creeper reverse and I swear that I smell something like clutch burning after heavy usage, it could just be a stinky mouse nest, my sniffer ain't so good at detecting the difference of some things.

Thanks for the advice, I'll get some acetone/ATF in the cylinders nextime I go.. should I also put that combination into the block to assist with making sure the mains/rods aren't stuck?


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09-09-2010 19:16:22

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 Re: I need Allis Chalmers Help (and lots of it) in reply to Ron in ND, 09-09-2010 14:49:15  
You won't like using a snow blower on a WD, probably...the 1st gear speed is fairly high..but you can slip the hand clutch.. Grading with a rear blade is tedious, as the hydrolic lever has a pretty hard to find "Hold position"..and will creep up or down often.. The snap-coupler type 3-point conversion works very well. Not sure how much the rear hydrolics will lift, but lifting 1,200 lbs and traveling with a front loader is a gross over-load. We used to lift a good 1,100 lb of so when butchering with Grandad's WD and AC loader.. ATF mixed with acetone or kerosene and let soak for a week or two will help get the engine loose..if it is not too badly stuck.. Not that hard to overhaul that AC engine.. A WD-45 should always have rear weights or Loaded rear tires or you cannot come close to using all the available power..


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09-10-2010 19:46:31

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 Re: I need Allis Chalmers Help (and lots of it) in reply to thebigyellowtruck, 09-09-2010 19:10:10  
I can tell you don't like your 856, but a 4020 is the same size. I have a WD45 with a loader just like the one in the picture. A WD45 has a bent gear shifter. Also it shifts easier. I have run the hyd for the hitch up to the steering column with a quarter turn valve, and I have another one under the seat for the loader. I can use them both that way. I also made a 3 point conversion out of two snap coupler plows. works like factory, welded top link to horizontal bar. Also welded two truck axles to front bucket,90 deg to the ground,just trip bucket and adjust a chain to spear bales. I just move about 20 bales also. Have calcium in tires but no wheel weights. also narrow front. It will lift them easy but is tricky to drive. If have something on rear is better. WD WD45 start good in cold weather if on 12 volt. I never use the foot clutch, never put my leg up there, so hyd and pto always work. I would look and see what I had then make one good tractor with the wide front. The 45 engine has a 4.5 inch stroke like a D17, I would try to use that engine. I have put hyd steering from a combine one one, Its pretty intense, A friend has a 20 gal hyd system on his, so anything, is possible. My son has bought a new 4320JD 4X4 hydro cab quick change bucket and I match on 3 point. so don't know if I'll use the old WD this winter. change is hell.

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Ron in ND

09-11-2010 10:41:47

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 Re: I need Allis Chalmers Help (and lots of it) in reply to VicS, 09-10-2010 19:46:31  
change isn't so bad, especially this one for me. I will be restifying at least 2 of these WD's (Dad's one one for me) if I like it, I keep it, if not I sell it and try something else. We don't have a real barn, more like a 15x35 lean-to that has been fully enclosed, when we build a real barn(40x60 with 14' sides and 18' wide doors all hay will be stored inside, no more round bales, and I won't need anything large. When I bought the 856 I had also checked out a D14 for the same price. I figured bigger is better and after a few years of use I've changed my mind. We get about 130 inches of snow here annually, snow drifts are a bigger concern than snowfall.
I know the 856 and 4020 are the same size and are direct competitors from their colors. The issue is that I bought my snowblowers last fall and my PTO has never worked and I've never hooked either of them to my 856. Dad located for me a 540/1000 working PTO to put on it but that hasn't happened yet. I plan on doing a quick 'color fix' before winter to make it more presentable.

The engine questions are because both of my 3pt snowblowers are 2 stage 8 footers. My other neighbor uses one on DX55 (55hp) 2wd diesel and it works great.

The only reason I'm looking at the 4020 is because it is a proven worker.


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