Bluegrass Antique Super Pull

Steiner Tractor Parts is excited to announce we are the title sponsor of the Bluegrass Antique Super Pull in Richmond Kentucky March 20-21, 2015. If you are looking for a pull check out the long list of BoB (Battle of the Bluegrass) shows. Locations are in Kentucky and surrounding states; Indiana, Tennessee, Michigan and West Virginia and run thru October.  Check out the details at  http://www.bluegrasspulling.com/heritage-series/

 

How to Get Started in Stock Antique Tractor Pulling

IMG_1328Spring is just around the corner, and with the thaw comes one of my favorite signs of spring: the start of pulling season. I grew up spending my Saturdays at local fairgrounds and tucked-away tracks across the state, basking in the joys of loud engines and greasy fair food. Before long my dad let me take a turn behind the wheel and I snagged a few trophies of my own (thanks to my dad’s excellent mechanics, of course). I was hooked! While we don’t pull as often as we used to, not a summer goes by for my family without taking our tractors out for a spin.

Hannah
While there’s plenty of fun to be had in the long-term project of custom building a tractor specifically for pulling, you don’t need a special tractor to get started. Many tractor pulling associations offer stock classes for tractors that do not have any engine modifications. With just a few simple tricks, you can have competitive success with a well-restored antique tractor. Old iron has lots of power – here’s how to let it shine.
The first thing to take note of is your hitch. Check out the rules of your pulling association, and modify your stock drawbar accordingly. You want your hitch high off the ground and your drawbar as narrow as allowed. This puts the hitch as close as possible to your tractor’s center of gravity, keeping all four wheels on the ground.

FullSizeRenderYou want as much contact with the ground as you can, so use the biggest tires allowed. If you are allowed 15.5×38, don’t show up with 13.6! Use the widest allowed rims, too. You want as much bar tread on the ground as possible. I’ve never won a pull with little tires. Select tires with deep treads which can really dig into the track. Firestone Field and Road (the old 151s) are my favorite, but any type of hard tire will be to your advantage.
While we’re talking about tires, be sure you pay attention to your air pressure. IMG_0217Contrary to popular belief, you’ll do best with the higher air pressure. Many people believe that lower-pressure tires allow the tractor to “dig in” to the earth because more tire is in contact with the track. While this may be true, any advantage from more tire on the track is outweighed by the drop in hitch height when under-inflated tires are put under pressure. Additionally, under-inflated tires lose their gripping power. When the treads are held rigid by proper inflation, they perform much better.
Read the rules to determine the highest air pressure allowed, but don’t automatically assume that the highest allowed pressure is right for your tires and your tractor. We usually find that 13-15 pounds of pressure is just right. Use a combination of original manufacturer recommendations and your own experimentation to find the right pressure for your tires.

If you are doing things right, your tractor’s front wheels will eventually lift off the ground as you pull. When this happens, you’ll be unable to use your steering wheel. So it is important to make sure that your tractor is ready to pull straight down the track, rather than wasting power veering off in the wrong direction. You can get a nice straight pull by:
– Using a tractor with a narrowed wheel base. Don’t spread the tires as far out on the axles as possible, rather, keep the wheel base narrow.
– Have the exact same air pressure in both rear tires.- Make sure that both rear tires weigh the same. Drive one tire on the scale and weigh it. Then turn around and weigh the other side. Tractors aren’t usually built to be symmetrical – perhaps one side has the ring and pinion, the live power clutch, etc. Add weight to the lighter side so that both sides are even. The lighter your tractor is overall, the more crucial this becomes.

Of course, you can use braking techniques to “steer” your tractor when you are pulling a wheelie, but doing so is a waste of energy (why brake when you are trying to pull?!?) and can be dangerous. It’s better to use these techniques to get your tractor balanced and even so that you don’t have to resort to braking to get down the track.

Be sure your tractor is perfectly tuned. Use a dyno to test your horsepower (a local dealer or vocational school may have one you can use). This will tell you if you should fix the timing and carburetor main jet to get maximum horsepower. You can usually gain 5-6 horsepower by fine tuning, and this can be the difference between first and second place. Similarly, always start the season with fresh spark plugs, fresh gas, and a clean fuel filter.
IMG_0219Finally, get some practice in! Have a friend follow you in a 4×4 pickup connected with a chain. When your friend applies the brakes, you’ll hear the governor kick in under a load. Get used to driving with this drag so that there are no surprises in front of a crowd. Practice driving slowly, too – most associations have a strict speed limit.

With these tips, you’re ready to get started in stock tractor pulling. Spring is just a few months away – get to work tuning things up now, and your old iron will be bringing home trophies in no time.

Tractor Story – Ford 8N

This is my Ford 8N. I got it from my Grandpa. It’s been neglected for a few years to say the least. I’ve had to rebuild the steering box and now I’m working on s stuck clutch. All the sheet metal is bad so I have to replace it all. My Dad and my son have been helping on the project It’s neat for me to share this with my son cause I remember riding this tractor when I was around his age. There’s been a lot I’ve fixed on it but there’s a lot more to go also. Hopefully soon I will be able to post pictures of it finished. I just think it’s pretty cool keeping the tractor in the family.  As you can see in the pics my son is more than eager to help out. Thanks for reading.

Doug Lohrey
Gratis, Ohio

1953 Golden Jubilee – Think Pink

Matthew-LisI went to a barn sale for a farmer that was retiring. I asked his wife if they had any old tractors for sale. She said that they had an old one in the field. Her husband said he forgot about that one. We went out and looked at it. It was a 1953 Golden Jubilee. I bought the tractor right then and there. I went back the next day with my chain saw and cut it out and brought it home. I was able to get it running 3 weeks later. My wife thinks I am crazy but I always wanted one of these old tractors.

Matthew Lis
Dayton, Ohio

2015 CATALOG IS COMING SOON

2015-Cat-Arriving

The 2015 Steiner Tractor Parts catalog is finalized! The proofs have been approved and the presses are running. Your catalog is scheduled to mail on November 13, 2014*. We have added hundreds of new parts for 2015 that are easily recognized in the catalog by “NEW!” located in front of each part’s description. Be sure to take a look at our new 2015 Steiner commemorative hat on page 1. Get a H15 with your order of $150 for only 99¢!

*Please note that a catalog bulk mailing can require 2-4 weeks for delivery.

9N Ford ~ Think Pink

Pam-KirkThis was my wife’s Grandpa tractor it was in the barn 30 years after he passed away. It went to her dad and me and my son restored it for him . When he passed it went to my son . And it is still in the family he got it new in 1943.
Pam Kirk
Marengo, Ohio

Ford 8N – Think Pink

John-AlexanderMy wife and I purchased a house in Northern California with 5 acres. I suggested we needed a tractor and of course she said we didn’t, well you can tell by the look on her face that she loves it !!!!! Not only can I not get her away from it but it is now her profile picture on Facebook and the main topic of most of her posts .
John G. Alexander Jr.
Oroville, California

1941 Ford 9N

Ford_9N_1941_6_I’m retired for two years and I have always loved to refurbish old agricol equipment. Last year I refurbished a New Holland Manner spreader, model 512 and this year it was our Ford 9n 1941. It is thanks to your site and your support that I achieved the results you can see.

Ford-9N-BackMerci une fois de plus pour votre bon travail.

John Shore
Québec, Canada

Father-daughter team customizes a pair of classic Ford tractors

Rachel-Dan-1Dan Gingell has always been a tinkerer. He doesn’t like to go long without a special project in the corner of his shop, and he’s constantly dreaming up new ideas. After a couple of successful flathead V8 conversions, Dan was ready for a new challenge.

Inspiration struck after a visit to a local salvage yard. “It’s just filled with Chevy V6s,” Dan reported. “Everyone around here [near Flint, Michigan] used to work for GM, so the local junkyards are loaded with old Chevys.” Dan selected a 4.3 liter Chevy V6 from an unlikely source – a 1985 Astro Van. Dan explains that he wanted the older model to avoid a fuel-injected system. Why from an Astro Van? “They’ve got hundreds of them!” he explained. “If I took it out of the van, it was a better deal.” Dan loaded up the motor and started dreaming on his way back home.

Unlike a flatehead V8, Dan found that the V6 fit inside his 1951 8N without any structural adjustments – the hood and tie-rods remained the same. Dan upgraded to a racecar-style MSD ignition and used a 4-barrel Holley carburetor. The most difficult challenge was in the clutch. “Ford and Chevy just don’t get along!” Dan explained. With the help of his father-in-law, a skilled machinist, Dan custom-made a pilot bearing to attach the clutch.

While the gas tank was shrunk to accommodate the larger engine, the original fan and radiator remained intact. Exhaust comes straight off the engine – a real attention getter! The tractor gets hot fast, as you’d expect from a showstopper like this. All told, this 8N emerged from the shop jam-packed with around 200 horsepower under the hood.

Rachel-Dan-2Dan’s daughter, Rachel, started to get a little jealous. With the National Ford-Fordson Collectors Association Show coming up soon, Rachel started asking for a special tractor of her own to take. “I’ve wanted a pink tractor for years,” she explained. After finding a 1953 Golden Jubilee in desperate need of a paint job, Rachel knew she had the perfect opportunity – if she could just convince her dad. Eventually she got him to agree to the job, as long as Rachel promised to help along the way.

The first step was finding pink paint. When Rachel told the salesman at the local auto body shop that she wanted to buy some pink paint, he gave her a skeptical look. “This isn’t for one of your dad’s tractors, is it?” he asked. Rachel’s guilty smile prompted him to add, “Don’t answer that,” as he turned to mix the paint.

Dan and Rachel worked together to complete the paint job, using standard Ford grey alongside the custom pink paint. Even the Ford script and the lug nuts were hand-painted pink. The finishing touch, contributed by Rachel’s mother, Jennifer, was leather fringe eyelashes under the headlight beauty rings.

Both tractors were on display at Buckley’s Ford National show a couple years ago, where they were crowd favorites.

By Elizabeth McAdams

How to apply decals to your antique tractor

Decal-Placement

Watch as Rachel shows you how simple it can be to place decals on your antique tractor. A few easy tips can make your decals go on as smooth as the new paint job on your tractor. Finish your old iron restoration with this last touch to make everything tractor show ready.

www.steinertractor.com/wrenching-with-rachel