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Farmall & IHC Tractors Discussion Forum

tractormeter replacement

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04-16-2018 09:46:35

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I have had a 300 u for about 5-6 years... the tachometer never worked from when I bought it... I just assumed from stuff I had seen that the cable was broke... well, I tore into it the other day and the cable is not broke... I decided that the tach didn't work anyway, so I might as well tear it apart and see if there is anything I could do .

Well let me tell you, that little baby is a piece of work . Eddy currents, worm gears, and all.
It ended up that there is a shaft connected to the indicator needle that is broke... It's about 1/16" in diameter and it is turned down to about half that on the end that connects the needle. It broke right at the shoulder where it is turned down
I tore it apart to see if I could fix it... I think that there is not going to be anything I can do, but I haven't quit on it altogether ... not yet. I have an old clock with small shafts and couplings that I might look into
Anyway, I have found replacement "tractormeters" in a number of web sites, at a number of prices from 20 bucks in India to over 100 in other places, and about every other price in between

Something kinda bugs me that they may all be from the same place. I don't want to pay 100 bucks for the same meter I could get for 20, and as far as that goes ... how would I know that any of them would be any good ... I cannot imagine how anyone could make a thing like I tore apart, and sell it for anything less than a couple hundred bucks. Friend of mine said the tractor probably would have sold originally for $12.95 without the tractormeter... hahaha

None of the gauges in my tractor look too hot, and I can get a complete set for 40 bucks... I think from the same place that sells them from India, but they claim to be a warehouse in New York. Could be both, I guess. I would certainly like to get a NOS tractormeter for cheap, but i doubt that's going to happen. I would expect that if someone was selling something like that, they would make that fact very obvious in the ad ... since it is not made obvious, I suspect they might all be coming from India.

Does anyone have any experience with this sort of thing and advice ... or trustworthy sources?


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04-19-2018 05:44:02

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 Re: tractormeter replacement in reply to realolman, 04-16-2018 09:46:35  
thanks to everyone who replied.

I think I'm going to be able to fix this thing by making a small coupling to re-connect the broken shaft... we'll see.

But another interesting ( to me anyway ) twist has come up ...
The term "proof meter " has come up, and I have discovered in working on this thing that in order to get the "hour meter" back in the assembly, there were little metal clips that stuck out between each roll of digits that appeared to need to be lined up and slipped onto a flat piece of metal...

The only way the clips could be lined up and slipped onto the flat, was if the hour digits were aligned to exactly what they were when I took the thing apart.... 2201 hours... I thought that was kinda amazing.
I am assuming this is some sorta mechanism to prevent "rolling back the hourmeter" ... if so, I am even more amazed by all the engineering and "cleverness" in this tractormeter.
In the process of trying to fix this thing I chucked a drill onto it to see if the needle would move.. I don't know if it's indicating correctly or not, and it wobbled around so much that it was hard to tell much of anything, but I have a sneaking suspicion that this thing will not "count" backwards, and even if it did, since it would have to run at 1750 RPM to count hours, I don't think there would be much point in trying to run it backwards...

I guess I am, one more time, very respectful of the intelligence and capability of the people who made this stuff.

thanks again to everyone who replied.

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04-17-2018 10:57:48

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 Re: tractormeter replacement in reply to realolman, 04-16-2018 09:46:35  
I've bought the cheap ebay sets for my 240 and they work. I haven't done the tach, but replaced oil and amp and they're just fine. They aren't quite like the original (mine have added lights inside). For $20 bucks how could you go wrong? I think we all know how they can do it... near slave labor and limited environmental regs. But since no one in the US is making them, and the near slave labor folks are glad not to be unemployed....

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The tractor vet

04-17-2018 09:07:37

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 Re: tractormeter replacement in reply to realolman, 04-16-2018 09:46:35  
YEa you can get LOOK A LIKES and how well they work i have no idea . Will they work like the ORg .Probably not . If you could find a old CLOCK maker he might be able to make that shaft and any other pieces . Many years ago we had a place that rebuilt tach's and speedometer and would certifie them ..But like all OLD places that use to do this or that they are now gone .

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04-16-2018 19:51:01

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 Re: tractormeter replacement in reply to realolman, 04-16-2018 09:46:35  
I asked this question couple years ago and was told there was not anyone who made these in the usa anymore. If you go to a parts store and read the labels you will see a lot of this stuff is made in china, india, etc. I ordered a set for my 404. They all worked fine. The proofmeter looked just like the old one. I think it was around 30 shipped from india. So I guess its just a gamble either way you go. good luck.

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Jim Becker

04-16-2018 19:14:54

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 Re: tractormeter replacement in reply to realolman, 04-16-2018 09:46:35  
For all practical purposes, it is an automotive speedometer. See if you can find a speedometer shop that can still fix mechanical speedometers.

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04-16-2018 17:09:52

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 Re: tractormeter replacement in reply to realolman, 04-16-2018 09:46:35  
One or two years ago I looked for an NOS tachometer for a Farmall. I found one in IA for $500 and chose to get mine fixed in FL instead. He has an ad in Red Power magazine and has fast turn around, about two weeks as I recall. There is a repair man in WI that I would be inclined to try too. My satisfaction with an OH shop was less than satisfactory. Personally I would not waste my time or money on one from India. A google search will result in shops that deal with car tachometers but they may be pricey.

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George 3

04-16-2018 12:51:11

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 Re: tractormeter replacement in reply to realolman, 04-16-2018 09:46:35  
Quoting Removed, click Modern View to see


I was checking out some parts and I noticed your thread, so I for the fun of it decided to check it out. I found the following for part number 363829R91 Tachometer 300 utility:

1. there are no cheap tachs anywhere

2. Steiner is $99.95

3. Precision Tractor Parts are $97.50

4. Pilot Knob is $98.00

5. For a Reman original US made tachometer from Bates it is $225.00

The units Steiner, Pilot Knob, and Precision sell are probably made in Taiwan. They are NOT US made. On top of that there will be shipping unless you live close to one of these suppliers.

The cheapest is if you live close to Bates in Bourbon, IN is to go in and get them rebuild yours. I had a 656 tach done there a few years ago for about $75.00. There are also other shops across the USA that rebuild tachs also. There is also one that advertises in Red Power Magazine down in Florida.

Hope this helps

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