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Tractor Drive Test for Water Pump

Bret Weikert was heading out on the Tractor Relay Across Nebraska but before he left he needed a new water pump for his Farmall M. Bret spoke with our tech Dennis and he sold  him on our newly designed IHS189. After completing the 9 day, 500 mile drive Bret emailed us with his story and pictures.

Just a recap I purchased one of your newly redesigned water pumps for a Farmall M. It has worked flawlessly with no leaks or issues. It was very easy to install even with the radiator still in place. Took my dad and I around 45 minutes. No complaints here and I may have even sold a few other guys on our tractor drive on purchasing them from you too.

The ride I went on was the Tractor Relay Across Nebraska. It was 9 days and somewhere between 400-500 miles long. Steiner was a sponsor for part of the ride and I thank you for that sponsorship. We also raise money for Operation Comfort Warriors along our trip and that is something the relay has been doing for 4 or 5 years now.

For more information you can check out the club’s Facebook page.

From the 7th Floor to the Farm Field

This tractor is a 1943 Minneapolis Moline ZTU. It was sold new by the owner of Coleman Equipment in Bonner Springs, KS. Of course, new tractors were very scarce during the war but the story I was told was that the dealership learned of this new tractor being stored on the seventh floor of a warehouse in Kansas City and was able to obtain the tractor to sell to a farmer. Approximately 40 years later that same tractor was traded back to Coleman Equipment by the original farmer. At that time the original dealership owner decided to restore the tractor and keep it as part of his collection. I was very fortunate to be able to purchase this tractor in 2015 and I look forward to enjoying it for many years and preserving its history.

Dale Larson
Shawnee, Kansas

On the Road with Rachel: Michigan’s Largest Tractor Show

Over the weekend I visited the Mid-Michigan Old Gas Tractor Association’s show in Oakley, Michigan. This show is the largest tractor show in Michigan.

All colors of tractors are welcome. Hundreds of tractors were on display. Here are a few highlights:

Everyone can appreciate a nice row of John Deere tractors–Dubuque built tractors as well as new generation tractors.


I think I saw more pulling tractors at this show than any other tractor show I’ve been to! I wish I could have seen more of them pull but due to my schedule I could only see a handful actually pull.


I can’t think of a single tractor brand that I didn’t see. Here are a few pictures of the less common brands:
Silver King

Eagle and Huber (commonly recognized Case and JD tractors between)


John Blue

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Chamberlain (a first for me)

A few people were droolling over this perfectly restored Farmall 400:


I had to chuckle at the exhaust on this tractor


and the ingenuity of the cab on this tractor.



It’s always fun to see harvesters like this mounted New Idea corn picker


and this combine in great original condition.


Shows are a great opportunity to also see the really old tractors operating, like this Rumley:



Below are a few more tractor pictures to enjoy:

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If you’re looking for a new show to attend, be sure to add this show to your list next August!

1957 Minneapolis Moline


“The story behind the tractor: it is a 1957 Minneapolis Moline 445 it was purchased jointly by my father and grandfather in 1988 (I was 2 years old) from a used equipment dealer in St. Cloud Minnesota. Not much was known about its former life however when I did the restoration I found that the seat had been replaced with a John Deere seat and the top gauge panel cover was heavily bonded together which lead us to believe that a large tree branch fell on it at some point in its previous life. From 1988 forward it spent its life as a work horse for the Determan family grading our ¼ mile drive way in the Summer and moving snow in the Winter along with many other jobs until the late 1990’s when water got in to the exhaust and froze up the #2 cylinder and that is how it sat for years until March of 2015 when I decided to restore it. I dedicated it to my Grandfather Walter and it has jump started a great hobby that my entire family is getting involved in and it’s bringing us closer together.”

Ed Determan

Minneapolis-Moline G1000 Tractors

“As the pace and size of farming grows, so grows the need for power… Power that can wheel wide, acre-covering gangs of implements. Power that can do two jobs in the time it would take to do one.” These lines are from an original 1967 advertisement for one of my favorite Moline tractors: the big MM G1000.


I love this advertisement so much that I made it a part of my personal literature collection. The G1000 is a classic for a reason – but have you heard of some of these collectible models?

When I was the Mecum auction in Davenport, IA in April, this rare G1000 Vista Diesel with FWA was offered for sale. The casting number located under the platform confirmed that it was a FWA model from the factory.


The tractor belonged to a farmer and collector from Sulley, Iowa. He purchased it in Canada in 2007 but had a 4-month struggle with customs while attempting to bring it across the border. After getting a lawyer involved, it was finally released from customs and put to work on his 6,000 acres of corn and soybeans.

The Vista models sit higher than the standard G1000, providing extra visibility and dust protection. They also separate the driver a little bit more from the heat from the engine. A shifter on the side is also more comfortable for the driver.


Vista models are neat, but when combined with the FWA option they become even more special. According to the seller, this tractor was one of 52 FWA models originally made, but Moline collectors only know of about 25 remaining. The FWA option was offered from the factory for two years, 1968 and 1969.


This combination is rare enough to be very valuable. The gavel fell at the Mecum auction this past April at $44,000. Auction results from Machinery Pete show that a similar model in running, original condition sold for $32,000 back in November of 2015.

This wasn’t the only interesting G1000 for sale at the Mecum auction this past April, either. The very first retail G1000 Row Crop LP also crossed the auction block, although the seller’s reserve was not met.


The G1000 was also offered in a Wheatland version. Here’s a picture of one offered for sale at the Polk auction this past March.

Moline called themselves the World’s Finest Tractors. What a slogan! These G1000s are sure persuasive.

Tractor Quiz Answers

Earlier this week I challenged you to a quiz: can you recognize these tractors (make and model) without their color or decal?

Here are the answers. Kudos to Ryan Foster for being the first person to get nearly all of them correct!
Tractor #1: Ford 5000.Tractor1

Tractor #2: Cockshutt 20.Tractor2

Tractor #3: Ford 871 (give yourself a pat on the back if you got the select-o-speed or the gold color correct too!)


Tractor #4: Massey Harris 44 (with bonus points if you were able to tell / guess that it’s a special!)


Tractor #5: Moline 4 Star.


Tractor #6: John Deere 730 DieselTractor6

Tractor #7: Farmall MV.


Tractor #8: Case VAC. Tractor8

Tractor #9: Oliver Super 99 GM.Tractor9

Tractor # 10: Massey Ferguson 180


Tractor Quiz

Can you recognize these tractors (make and model) without their color or decal?


Give your answers in the comments below – and come back on Thursday for the results!
Tractor #1:

tractor 1


Tractor #2:

tractor 2


Tractor #3:

tractor 3


Tractor #4:

tractor 4


Tractor #5:

tractor 5


Tractor #6:

tractor 6


Tractor #7:

Tractor 7


Tractor #8:

Tractor 8


Tractor #9:

Tractor 9


Tractor #10:

Tractor 10

Do You Really Need a Manual?

It’s a common question: “Do I really need to own a manual for my tractor?” After all, manuals aren’t free (most cost around $20), and with all the information available online these days it seems a little old-school to buy one. Besides, who wants to read the directions! It seems like a lot more fun to dive in and figure things out along the way.

You’ve probably heard these arguments against manuals before – you might even say these things yourself! If so, I hope to convince you otherwise. You really do need a manual (or three) to go along with your tractor.


First, let me explain the three different types of manuals – then I’ll (hopefully!) convince you to buy one.

A shop manual (also known as a service manual) is made for mechanics. Each dealer’s service department would have a copy of the shop manual, which gave the mechanics the details they need to make repairs. If you are doing a major repair or restoration project, get one of these! It’s where you’ll find all the specifications you need to prevent a costly mistake and keep your tractor running perfectly. If you can only buy one manual, get this one.

An owner’s manual (also known as an operator’s manual) was given to each original buyer with their tractor. This is the basic manual, not unlike the manual you probably keep in the glovebox of your car. It’s where you’ll find information about how to make basic adjustments and regular maintenance on your tractor.

A parts manual is really fun to look at! It shows how all the parts in your tractor fit together, and gives the original part numbers for every piece in your tractor. Not only will using a parts manual make you a pro at ordering replacement parts for your tractor, it’s a real help if you disassemble something and can’t quite remember how to put it back together.

So, do you really need to buy one? Well, here are three reasons why:

  1. It’s hard to get this information somewhere else. I’m a huge fan of the internet, but not everything you read online is accurate and trustworthy – and some information just isn’t out there.
  2. It’s faster to own a manual. Consider the amount of time it can take to search for and find the answers you need (either online or by calling the Steiner tech department). Save yourself the time and frustration by putting the answers right at your fingertips.
  3. Mistakes can be costly. An incorrect guess on specs can be devastating to your tractor. Common mistake: over- or under-torquing a rod and having it pop through the side of your block.

My dad is an expert mechanic, and he has a whole wall of manuals. If our barn catches fire, that wall is what we’re running in to save (metaphorically speaking! Don’t run into a burning building, especially not one filled with gas and oil!) It’s the most important part of our shop.

If you are doing a repair on your tractor, lots of help is available for free on the internet (like my video tutorials). You can get even more help from the in-depth repair videos that my Dad makes. But nothing can replace the good old-fashioned manual

Sale Superlatives

These are the firsts, the best, the top sellers, and the most exciting tractors that crossed the auction block this past weekend at the Mecum Gone Farmin’ auction in Davenport, IA.

Top Seller:

Quite a few first or only tractors were sold, but this Little Giant tractor was one of the biggest show-stoppers. According to Mecum’s researchers, it’s the first Model B that was sold and the oldest Little Giant in existence. Want to take a guess at the sale price? It’s listed at the bottom of this article.

little giant

First in its Model:

I love this 1935 John Deere D Industrial. It’s the first of 91 Model D Industrial tractors built. The special pneumatic tires are really eye-catching. It was consigned from the Cass and Hyler John Deere Collection, and like others from this collection the restoration was really pristine. It sold for $80,000.

john deere d industrial

Boldest Paint Job

The unusual (and accurate) color combination of this Lamborghini 1R really stands out! It’s extremely rare and very cool! Sale price: $29,000.


The Oddest:

Okay, this is pretty subjective – but the tractor that seemed the oddest to me was this Graham-Bradley 103. I love the long, sleek design. I’ve only seen a handful in person, even though they were manufactured in Detroit (near my hometown). I’ve never seen one that was restored this well – it’s a really beautiful piece of machinery!


The Lowest Serial Number:

This Minneapolis-Moline G1000 LP has the lowest serial number, being the first of this model that was manufactured. It’s been well maintained and overhauled, but it’s still in its work clothes. I have a real soft spot in my heart for Molines, but you don’t even have to be a Moline lover like I am to appreciate this gem! The gavel fell at $10,000, which was less than the owner’s reserve.


The Best Pedal Tractor:

Okay, this one is subjective – but I LOVE this pedal tractor! I had a Moline pedal tractor as a kid, but it was a different model – this Z was custom built. I would have loved to have this as a kid in order to match my Grandpa’s MM Z. It sold for $900. That’s (almost) too much to let your kid play on. It wasn’t the highest selling pedal tractor (two others sold for $1,000 each), but this is the one I would have taken home if I could.


The Most Steiner Parts Catalogs Given Away:

So many friends stopped by the Steiner table at the Mecum auction that we ran out of catalogs! Wow! Thanks to everyone who came by. It was so fun to see old friends and meet new ones.

Oh, and that Little Giant? It sold for $90,000.

Thanks, Mecum Gone Farmin’ (Little Giant and JD D Industrial) and Harley Ann Schlichenmeyer (Z Pedal) for the pictures.

On the Road with Rachel: New Paris, Indiana Auction

I visited the Polk auction this past Thursday, March 17. My sister Hannah and I had a great day meeting fans, visiting with old friends, and seeing all the show-stopping tractors. In case you missed the sale, here are some highlights!
Let’s start with the John Deere tractors – the Polk Auction folks really know their John Deere tractors, and their auctions have a big following among JD enthusiasts. There was a huge variety of green and yellow tractors. Here’s a great line-up of New Generation tractors:

IMG_1568 (2)

Did I mention that the sale was on St. Patrick’s Day? Anyone who forgot to wear green to the sale could just hop on one of these – there were plenty to go around! Check out this great lineup of  20-Series tractors.

IMG_1583 (2)

This Cockshutt 1550 Diesel Standard was beautifully restored, and only had 5,000 hours.

IMG_1552 (2)

We don’t have too many Massey Harris tractors in our area, so I was sure to snap a picture of this MH 22.

IMG_1599 (2)

My dad used to own a Massey Ferguson dealer, so any Massey Ferguson tractor will catch my eye, including this sharp-looking Model 65 Diesel.


I love to see tractors with their implements. While this is common to see at shows, it’s uncommon at an auction since the tractors and implements are usually sold seperately. This Allis Chalmers WD-45 paired perfectly with the three bottom plow:


Also, this Ford 2000 with cultivators was a great pair:

IMG_1554 (2)

This 1650 Oliver 4WD diesel was an attention-getter at the sale.


I noticed two Case VAH tractors on the property–here’s a snapshot of one of them.


This McCormick-Deering WA-40 (gas) was consigned from Missouri. It didn’t run but still sold for $6700.


There were a few Minneapolis-Moline tractors on the grounds, but this G1000 Wheatland was my favorite.


This Crawler had people “crawling” over it all day–it definitely stole the show.  It’s a JD GPO that was converted to a crawler, meant to resemble the Lindeman crawlers.


Of all of the tractors at the auction, my all-time favorite was this Farmall HV. While definitely not the most expensive (It sold for $10,000), it would be the one I’d pick to follow me home if I could have.

IMG_1632 (2)


The next auction I will attend is the Mecum Gone Farmin’ Auction in Davenport, Iowa. I hope to see some of you there!