Saturday, July 30, 2005, 01:09 PM
It's been a while. Well, I got the oil and hydraulic fluid changed. The oil was dark but okay, but the hydraulic fluid was very thick and yellow. I think water got in there through the gear shift boot,or maybe even the fill cap.

The blade won't go on the back. It would have to face backward anyway. Oh well. The added bar on the front of the loader is there to accommodate the blade.

As for the loader, I figured out why the reservoir is there. The loader I have is meant for a NAA which is longer than an 8n, so they shortened the frame to fit. With a few careful welds it should hold fluid again.

I was demonstrating it for my Dad, picking up and dumping gravel, and he noticed that the governor never kicked in. I'm going to take it off and give it an inspection and cleaning but I haven't had a chance yet.

I ordered some new parts (gear shift knob and boot, proofmeter, oil gauge, radiator cap, and some other stuff) and put most of it on. The proofmeter isn't working. The cable appears to be okay though I haven't taken it off yet to make sure. I'm wondering if there's more wrong with the governor than just being mucked up or something. Maybe it's not turning at all and therefore not turning the proofmeter. I'm probably going back out tonight to work on it so I'll find out for sure.

I also drove it from Paul's land to ours! That was a blast. She really flies in 4th gear! I was a little nervous about the first big hill but it didn't bother the old 8n.

I did a little scraping with the bucket on our road and it did a fantastic job of taking off the top level of weedy sod and flattening the crown just a bit. I can't wait to fix up the blade and give it a try.

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More fun
Thursday, July 21, 2005, 09:41 PM
These evening we went out to try to mount the blade. We never did get it on due to a missing pin, but Emily got to drive it for the first time. Paul needed to lift the tongue of his trailer off the ground (it was filled with dirt and he couldn't lift it) and I was able to do it by sliding the bucket under it and lifting it up! I'm also able to just barely clear the top of the dumptruck with the bucket so we're going to try to use it to fill the truck to transport some gravel up to our road. I lifted it with an empty bucket though and I'm a little nervous that it won't be able to lift a full bucket that high, but we'll see. After we were done with that I parked it and started draining the oil. Tomorrow I'm going to put the new oil in and replace the tranny fluid as well, and then maybe drive it to our land.

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First workout!
Sunday, July 17, 2005, 10:24 PM
Yesterday I actually did some work with it for the first time! I drove down to the end of the road with Delia on my lap and installed the bucket and drove back. I then spent a few minutes picking up loads of gravel and dumping it. It worked pretty well but I need a little more practice. The rear wheels spun once so I'm thinking more of filling them. I didn't have a lot of time since the little girl was with me, so I quit after I gave it a short workout. The loader worked though it strained a little with a full bucket. Low on fluid? Bad seals maybe? Before I parked it I saw a pile of medium sized rocks and some other debris in the road so I put the bucket down low and drove through it and sure enough - it picked it all up.

All in all it was very satisfying!

I even made a movie of it:
First Workout Movie

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Friday, July 15, 2005, 01:56 AM
Well, I chickened out. But only because a really good opportunity presented itself.

My friend Paul has been renting a Bobcat to do his road (his property is near ours). He rented it today and said I could use the trailer to haul the tractor. It just made good sense so I took him up on it.

I went out around Noon and put the tank and hood back on, hooked up the battery, put some gas in it, and got her ready to move. I came back into town to get Paul's truck, went out to Mud Creek Rd to get Paul and the trailer, and then we went to the tractor. I was a little nervous about driving it up the ramp but it went very smoothly. We got the blade, bucket, fenders, and chains too. We made it back to Mud Creek Rd and I backed it off onto Paul's road. I'm leaving it there for a while since he has lots of nice gravel piles to play with. While I was driving it, I saw that the oil pressure gauge was about 2/3 filled with oil. I decided to shut it off until I determine how serious a problem that is. I can't wait to do actual useful work with my tractor!

I rode back with him to drop off the Bobcat at the house of the people who own the hardware store in town. On the way in I saw a gorgeous 8N sitting there. We asked the store owner's son about it and it turns out it's his!

Oh, today must have been tractor day because in addition to that 8n, I saw a newer Ford tractor doing road work, a nice JD 70 using a sickle mower, a really nice Allis plowing a field, and two older medium sized JD industrial tractors also doing road work.

When I came home tonight after working out there, Delia said to me "Gack-gur. VOOOM! VOOM!"

Big thanks to Paul for all the help!

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Tank more or less clean
Tuesday, July 12, 2005, 11:34 PM
I worked on cleaning out the tank today. Last night I put some vinegar in there with some roofing nails and shook it around a bunch. That helped get some of the big stuff out but it was still plenty rusty inside. This morning I went out to work on it and saw about 5" of crud in the bottom of 7" of gas and vinegar in the 5 gallon bucket I'd been draining it in. That's a lot of rust! I took it to the car wash and sprayed it for a while with the pressure washer. That got a lot of crud out of it and it actually started to look shiny in a few places inside. I put some gas in there to wash out the water, sloshed it around, and then it came out pretty clean, so I knew it was getting better inside. I then got "The Works" toilet bowl cleaner and sloshed that around for a while. I wsn't overly impressed with the results, but I guess it did help a little. After that I went back to the car wash and then rinsed it with gas a final time. It looks pretty good inside now. I MAY try to get some muratic acid, but I think I'm just going to use it as-is for now, since I want to get it out of the seller's yard.

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Tuesday, July 12, 2005, 11:27 PM
I got her running!

I got a new battery, hooked it up, and tried to start it on the off chance that it would fire. Nope. Checked for spark and nothing. Since the seller said he took the distributor out and messed up the timing, I found a procedure online for setting it. Emily and I went over there and spent a while trying to find TDC and all that and finally gave up, still with no spark. Not knowing much about distributors, I talked to my Dad and Grandpa for advice. The next day I went back over armed with my new knowledge to try to set the timing. I hit the starter button to turn the engine over to where I could see the timing marks and nothing happened. Then I noticed that I'd left the ignition switch on overnight. Oops! I took the battery out, along with the distributor, and went home to charge it. I was about to hook my charger up to it when I remembered I was dealing with a 6 volt battery, and my charger is only 12 volts. It's always something, isn't it? I went out and got a 6 volt charger, charged it, and that evening I looked through the distributor to make sure everything was in order. I sanded the points a little and gapped them properly and checked a few things with my continuity tester. The next day turned out to be the hottest day of the summer so far. I'm not a fan of warm weather. However, when you're working on a tractor, it keeps the mind off the heat and the bugs. I got the distributor installed to where I thought it was correct, got the battery hooked back up and hit the starter button, and still nothing! No cranking at all. Right when I was ready to give up, Dennis, the fella I'm buying it from, came out to see what I was up to. I couldn't figure out what could have happened in 24 hours to mess up the electrical system. The first thing he did was the first thing I should have done - jump over the starter relay. That made the starter kick, so we knew that it and the battery were good. There's one wire going to the starter button which had to be the culprit, but again, how could that switch or wire have gone bad overnight? Dennis took the mounting screw off and as soon as he did, the wire connector fell off the wire. I guess maybe I pulled it when I was messing with the battery. We put a new connector on and we were back in business. I pulled a plug wire off and held it near a head bolt and eureka! Spark! After a few minutes of cranking and trying various amounts of choke and throttle, and slightly adjusting the distributor settings, she fired up! What a feeling. It was short lived, however, After about 30 seconds, she sputtered and died. We took the fuel line off and found that no gas was getting to the carb. I noticed that the fuel level in the sediment bowl was right up to the top of the glass and no higher. The in-tank fuel filter was clogged. We took off the sediment bowl assembly and cleaned it and finally got gas flowing to the carb. When we took it out and the gas drained out of the tank, though, I was concerned by how rusty it looked, and I had just put fresh gas in the day before. I had forgotten to tighten the distributor adjusting screw, so I guess it rotated a bit and we couldn't get it started again. I decided to start over from scratch to make sure everything was correct so I pulled the whole thing out and reset it according to the manual. After I did that, it took about half a second of cranking and she started right up again! I was pretty proud of myself for nailing the timing right off the bat. With it idling I tried adjusting it and found that my original position was the best. "Well," I said, "should I take her for a spin?" The loader was resting on a wood block, so we tried to lift it up to remove the block but it wouldn't go. After we added some more hydraulic fluid the loader worked perfectly - up and down, fast and strong. I hopped on, put it in gear, and took off! I drove a lap around their garden and just before I got to where I wanted to park it, it sputtered and died. Fuel line clogged again! That problem definitely needs to be addressed. We drained it, and again, the gas looked really rusty. We pulled the hood off and got the tank off and I brought it home to clean it out. I've been researching ways to clean a rusty tank and found a bunch of methods. The one I settled on was a combination of things I read about. I put a gallon or so of vinegar in there along with some roofing nails and I'm letting it soak and shaking the nails around. I already poured out some of the vinegar and it looks more like hot chocolate now. The problem with this method is you have to really shake it a lot, and I don't have the time or especially the endurance to do it. You're actually supposed to strap it to a tractor and plow the field for a day or two, or put it in the back of your truck for a month or two to let the nails shake around and do their thing, but I don't have time for that so I'll have to try another method. I read about using some toilet cleaner called "The Works" to remove rust so I think I'll try that tomorrow after I take it to the car wash and use the pressure sprayer to try to knock off any loose stuff. Then I need to find a way to seal it.

So that's where she stands now. The engine runs, but the tank needs to be cleaned and I'll need to change the oil and that sort of thing before I try to drive it home. Did I mention my plans to drive it all the way home? Why not, right? It makes a better story that way. Especially if I break down. :)

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Tuesday, July 12, 2005, 11:25 PM
Just before noon I asked Delia if she wanted to take a ride. "No. Home." I said "You don't want to take a ride?" She said "Home." Then I said "Do you want to go see the tractor?" "Gack-gur!!" "You want to take a ride to see the tractor?" "GACK-GUR!!!"

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Tuesday, July 12, 2005, 11:22 PM
She's mine now!

It doesn't run, however, the guy said nothing happened to it other than he just stopped using it and it sat. He took off the distributor to clean and when he put it back he messed up the timing. First thing I'll do is to get a battery and see if I can get it to pop. The sheet metal is relatively straight. Shouldn't be too hard to pound it out a little. The front grille is missing but that's it. The biggest problem is someone painted it yellow! The tires look new.

I also snagged a Ferguson to go along with it! When I pulled in I saw it sitting in the brush and asked about it. I thought it was another 8n but it's a Ferguson. It was in a garage that burned down and they pulled it out and it's sat there ever since. It's quite rusty and all the rubber is gone, but the sheet metal is actually pretty good (no grille though). I asked him if he'd sell it too and he said I could just have it if I can manage to pull it out of there. He gave me a new set of tires that will fit the rims off the Ferguson that I can then put on the 8n.

Now I have to find a trailer to get it out to our land. If it ran I'd just drive it, but that still wouldn't get the Ferguson home.

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Tuesday, July 12, 2005, 11:20 PM
There's a nice looking unrestored Jubilee parked in town in a parking lot. It's got a loader though the bucket isn't there. No blade, but there's some sort of accessory on the back. I stopped in at the three businesses that are right near there and none of them know who it belongs too. There's also a really cool Jeep pickup truck next to it, so apparently someone is selling them or at least temporarily storing his toys there. The guy I bought my Indy from, Trader Craig, has a show on the radio every morning where he reads free ads for people, so I figured maybe he had an ad for it. I missed the show this morning so I stopped in at his store. He wasn't there but I asked his wife about it and she called him for me. He said something about a '52 8n with a loader and blade. I knew that wasn't this one, but I asked the price. "$1500 and it supposedly needs a little work." Whoa! Forget the Jubilee! I figured that had to be wrong though since every Ford I've heard of around here has been $2300 or more. Anyway, he said to stop in at the radio station and look through his pile of ads, which I did. "1952 Ford 8n with front loader, back blade, and tire chains. Needs minor work. $1500. Call after 5."

So now I'm sitting here trying to get work done while visions of tractors dance in my head, waiting for 5:00 to roll around. The lady at the radio station (who we know) said she thinks the ad has been on for a while, so hopefully I can haggle a little.

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