Earlier this month I took a trip to Village Power in hopes of getting a few parts for my C-20 Plow. As you know, Village Power is closing its doors after a long time selling IH parts. As luck would have it, I found just what I was looking for and I left with a feeling of success. I did find a few other things that I can use; a grass board for the C-21 mower and a share and shin for my plows. I also bought a left hand share for my Cub plow. I thought if I ever broke the one I have, it is best to have a spare.
It was with some sadness as I left, this being probably that last time I would go to Village Power. Charley said he will be gone by September. Given that so many of these former dealerships have closed, it is sad to me that one more is gone. Thanks, Charley
I have been working on my IH mower recently. My mower is a C-21 or so I thought. I ordered a owner's manual for it as I did not have one and I thought it is a good idea to have one. I have rebuilt the cutter bar and painted it. I have learned a few things in this effort. One, the pitman stick is painted harvester cream (refer to the post below for more on cream paint) that is, all of the stick is painted cream. When I cleaned mine up, it was cream. I had thought the metal parts were painted blue, but this one all cream. So, I am painting it cream. I thought the model number was C-21, but as you can see in the first image, the manual covers two mowers; 2C-F21 amd the 34-F21. IH added the tractor model to the related implements from the early days until the mid 1950's or so. In this case the 2 indicates that it is for a 200 tractor, the C is for the Super C tractor the F means Fast Hitch and the 21 is the model of the mower. The other mower covered 34-F21 means there was a mower model for the 300 & 400 tractors. Again the F means Fast Hitch. So the basic mower was the same and IH used the small point Fast Hitch tongs for the 2C-F21 and the large Fast Hitch tongs for the 300 & 400. There are some other differences, but the main idea is that the same basic mower can be installed on ore than one tractor.
The second image is the back of the manual showing that the manual does cover both mowers. You can see that there differences in the mowers. At the bottom of the image is the publishing date 7-25-55. I am guessing that this must be one of the last manuals for implements that carry tractor model information in the model number as I believe that IH did away with this practice in the 1950's. Looking at this manual is a trip down memory lane for me, Just the way things used to be.
I wanted to update this blog to keep the members apprised. I have communicated with Mark Walker regarding the Chapter #18 picnic in July. Rooster suggested that the event be cancelled. I had to agree. While New Hampshire has lifted most of their restrictions, there would still be issues. The serving of food for one. It really would not be a picnic is everyone had to bring their own food and not be able to share. Also, mask would really have to be worn for safety's sake. I have updated the Chapter Calendar as you can see. Since most shows have been cancelled, it is unclear when or if the Chapter can gather this year. The plan is still to hold the banquet in October, but we will have to see what happens.
On Saturday, 5/23/2020, the Chapter #18 plow day happened as planned. I had debated if this event should occur or not for some time. Most of the chapter events up to this point had been cancelled due to the pandemic, but since a plow day could be held (at least in my mind) within the rules of social distancing I felt the need to have the event proceed. In the end, I was glad that it happened. Not only did the participants all seem to have a good time, there were some spectators who seemed happy to share in the fun. Having fun is what Chapter 18 is all about and the ability to use our toys just adds to the fun. There were 8-10 tractors, 3 horse teams and a mule team at the event. I plowed from 9:00am until 6:00pm with only a break for lunch. Since there were fewer tractors with generally smaller plows on the field, it took longer to plow the fields. But, we came close. I was able to finish the day without any issues. I came close to running out of gas once, but I did not have to walk back to get more.
Pictures of the event are in the Pictures section of this web site.
It is spring even if the weather is not cooperating here in New England. Every year as the days get longer and the sun shines, I feel the need to drive a tractor. The later in the year it gets the more I feel the need. I need to get out there and work the machines. This year, with the restrictions we have in place, it is harder to feel like it is really spring. It is impossible to plan any activity so we are left with at feeling of insecurity. This is why I have not cancelled the plow day in Litchfield, NH yet. I feel that I just need to get out there and do some dirt! I suspect that you feel much the same. The plow day will be different given the restrictions, but I still feel that it is the right decision to go ahead and have the event. Enjoy life as much as you can.
As I mentioned in my earlier post. I thought it was a good idea to chase the threads in the Farmall 200 manifold. I ordered a 1 1/2 inch tap and cleaned up the threads. The results are not as dramatic as I had hoped but I was happy that I did it. As you can see, there are not a lot of threads in the manifold and the new pipe does not extend all that far beyond the hood, but it will work just fine. I can use the tap on other tractors as some point.
For as long as I have owned my Farmall 200, the muffler has not fit tightly on the exhaust pipe. The problem is that the exhaust pipe is too small, it has rusted away over the years and decreased the size enough that the muffler can't be tightened enough to fit. This is a common problem with IH tractors and I am sure a lot of you have faced the same issue. In some ways it was handy, when I had to remove the muffler for one reason or another all I needed were gloves, but I wanted to fix it. As I looked at the pipe, it looked to be rusted solidly in place and I had my doubts that I could remove it. I bought a replacement pipe years ago, but I was hesitant to work on it. I knew that the plan B would be to buy a replacement manifold which is a scary proposition too. I finally decided that it was time to try. I took my offset grinder and cut the old pipe off and notched the remaining pipe. Then I used a punch and chisel to knock out the section that I had notched. To my surprise, the remaining pipe then turned out by using a pipe wrench on it. Eventually, I was able to turn it with my fingers.
It took only a few minutes to remove the old pipe. I was shocked. Looking at the threads in the manifold they were in very good shape.
So, I screwed in the replacement pipe and tightened it down as much as I could using a pipe wrench. As you can see, the muffler now fits tight and no longer sits on the hood. I did buy a 1 1/2 inch tap on ebay and my plan is to remove the pipe and clean up the manifold threads so that the pipe will screw in further.
I wanted to share this with the Membership. I have been asked a couple of time this week about the correct paint color for IH Cream. IH used this off white color on their equipment from the 1920's until sometime in the 1950's. It was replaced by IH White which was used on the 50 series tractors (130, 230, 350 450 & 650) so it may be the time that Cream was discontinued. I asked the IH Archivist years ago if there was a paint chip and she replied there was not. I have seen a lot of variations of the color over the years and yellow was a common color used. I have see basically Massey Harris yellow used, which is not very close. Then Nick Brett told me that he had copied the color from his hay loader. He found a section of the hay loader that was in good condition and had the color copied at a True Value hardware store. He gave me a can of the paint and here is the color mix code on the can:
In my opinion it is not a very pretty color and IH White looks much better on vintage IH equipment, but if you want to be correct, you can use this paint color. You should be able to get it matched at any True Value store.
I wanted to add this blog to our site for a place for communication with the members. It is very hard to try to think about the show season right now. Even harder to plan an event given the unknowns we live with. As you know the plow day in April was cancelled due to concern over the Corona virus. The membership meeting at Foskett's has been postponed for the same reason. The plan is to have the meeting in May or June. I feel it is important to have the meeting. Right now the Litchfield, NH plow day is still on. Attendees will have to follow social distancing guidelines and wear masks when needed. This should be doable "out in the field." I want to try to have a "normal" show season, but time will tell what is possible.