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Antique Farm Tractors Vintage farm tractors on rubber tires with various implements. Ford, John Deere, Oliver, McCormick and more.

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Minneapolis Moline U. Love em, Hate em? Got Stories Or Pictures Of Yours ?


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Old 01-03-2017, 11:10:06 PM
Tony Thompson Tony Thompson is offline
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Default Minneapolis Moline U. Love em, Hate em? Got Stories Or Pictures Of Yours ?

I have owned several MM Us over the years.
All of them seemed to be good tractors. I have been running this 1952 LP standard for several years now and it is one of the best running hardest pulling machines I have ever had. It is a high compression 283 and burns clean with smooth idle and lots of power. Has big stones all the way 'round and weighted to bite. This tractor pulls three sixteens with ease. I usually am just dragging stuff around with it and I like the one short step to the ground and hand clutch for hooking and unhooking. Swinging the seat to one side is also handy for standing up in between jumping on and off.
Have heard old timers say things like "no one ever lived long enough to wear out a U". Have seen them bored and stroked to extremes for pullers that really ROAR down the track and the stock trannys and final drives seem to take the pounding pretty well!
Only thing I can bitch about is these tractors have no sale value. I am keeping this one because it is an amazing old brute, but is virtually worthless on the market with no 3 point and power steering
Other colors of this vintage are good machines with low value these days too.
I suppose they are very affordable toys for memory sake or budget buys. Good entry level tractors to get folks into the hobby and that is good.
I was hoping to have some of you folks weigh in on this marque with your opinions good or bad and better yet, who has good pictures and stories surrounding the prairie gold workhorses.
Tony
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Old 01-04-2017, 04:20:53 AM
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Brothers Clemens Brothers Clemens is offline
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Thumbs up Re: Minneapolis Moline U. Love em, Hate em? Got Stories Or Pictures Of Yours ?

Tony we also have for more then 20 years MM in our collection.

They are great and wonderful tractors and fit in the line next to Oliver an Cockshutt direction Bradford and Charles City.

The value of them is because they where to good made and this is why to much dit survived.
This is the same with Case also to good made.


Looking at the last auction prices here in Europe they wil not soon go up.

On the other hand times wil change.

Last week there was writen overhere that the Cuckoo clocks are coming back.....

For more then 40 years nobody had intrest in them and now suddenly they are hot and in items......

We have an large collection of them and we always have liked them.

This wil be happening with MM someday in the future aswel.


Keep posting your wonderful tractors and storys.

Keep in touch,

Chris,
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Old 01-04-2017, 04:43:28 AM
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Thumbs up Re: Minneapolis Moline U. Love em, Hate em? Got Stories Or Pictures Of Yours ?

Tony post some pictures to the last subject........


Picture 1 and 2 the Cuckoo Clocks........




Picture 3 one of our MM’s


We bought and found this MM 20 years ago on the small Island Texel in the north west of Holland.




Next to the MM you see wonderul fenders that wil be fit on the MM in the future.
We have the fenders from an very nice and good friend .......


Keep in touch,

Chris
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Old 01-04-2017, 10:49:44 AM
53 Super M 53 Super M is offline
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Default Re: Minneapolis Moline U. Love em, Hate em? Got Stories Or Pictures Of Yours ?

Tony,
Around here the Moline U and G series have a good reputation,especially as antique pullers. Myself I want either a U or UB for dual purpose use,namely use here on the farm and pulling plow class at shows. Don't complain about low sale value,that's what keeps them affordable to us. Learned to get along without 3pt equipment a long time ago.
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Old 01-04-2017, 12:39:06 PM
Molinegb Molinegb is offline
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Default Re: Minneapolis Moline U. Love em, Hate em? Got Stories Or Pictures Of Yours ?

Over the total production of the U (1937-1958) 250.000 made. Probably the most reliable tractor ever made. Know of a U diesel that had over a thousand hours a year was used for years and years. Every second farm had a U gas or diesel and all were standard models. Of all MM's ever made 331,481 almost 80,000 were U models. Next closest was the R at 40,000 U gas priced at 2505$ in 1951 and Tony's LP was an additional 265$ option.

My dad had a U diesel in the 50's. It was traded in for M5 in mid 60's. U was missed around the farm in winter(probably because the M5 was diesel) so a 1947 UTS gas was purchased. It is still used every year to this day. Only ever had a set of rings in early 70's and mag converted to distributor (12V).It was used to pull a 3 botton IH plow. When we were kids we plowed everything. Also had a Massey 555 pulling 4 bottom JD. Old U would go all day on tank of gas and never miss a beat. It had the 38" tires not the useless 30" ones.

U would go through any snow like nothing else. . It was used in winter to chop grain for the hogs. Was excellent on belt pulley. It would just sit there and bark when a bag of whole barley was dumped into crusher. Would start in winter like nothing else. You had to engage clutch in neutral for a few minutes before you would move in -30 weather. Had to thin out that 180 weight oil!

Probably because of the old U I spent hours on is why I started collecting MM's. If every tractor was made like a U we wouldn't ever needed new ones.
Ever heard of a clutch going out on a U? Rear end like Tony said? Bad crank? No. Old U also appeared in a few local pulls and did well.

Someday hope to have every year of U made. Missing a couple years in wartime and later ones when production was low. Not sure how many I have.

They don't and probably never will be a high valued tractor due to high numbers and reliability. To me they are worth their weight in PRAIRIE GOLD!

Picture of my favorite which hopefully will get painted this year.


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Old 01-04-2017, 08:20:05 PM
Pete Mandt Pete Mandt is offline
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Default Re: Minneapolis Moline U. Love em, Hate em? Got Stories Or Pictures Of Yours ?

Dad and I have had some U's over the years. I bought one in 1983 for $5, Dad was given one in 1992, I was given one in 1998. Very dependable old tractors. Dad did buy one in 1999 or 2000 that got a little spendy!

My Grandpa died in 1956 when my Dad was 14 years old. Dad always told the story about when they tried out a U Diesel on the farm. They did not buy it but Dad got to drive it back to town after they tried it out. He always talked about what a neat tractor it was and would like to have one. He got his chance about 16 years ago. There was a U Diesel he had known about for years coming up on auction in our hometown. He told me what he was willing to pay and went to the auction. He went over what he said he would pay but he had it and it ran. Once we tore it down we discovered how tough these old girls were, how worn out they could be and still function. I won't bore you with the trials and tribulations of fixing this thing up but it was unbelievable how bad it was when we dug into it. It was worn out from the radiator to the end of the drawbar! Bad!! He always told me that when Mom asked how much he had spent I was to play dumb.

I have attached a picture of Dad and his U Diesel in 2002 on the first startup and drive out of the shop.

Pete
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Old 01-04-2017, 11:07:17 PM
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Default Re: Minneapolis Moline U. Love em, Hate em? Got Stories Or Pictures Of Yours ?

Great thread Tony!! In '49 and '50 my Grandfather traded a DC & L Case in on two Propane U's a wide front and a narrow front and two 4x14 MM plows. My Dad said that you had to plow one gear slower with the wide front end one and it never had as much power. The dealer and someone from MM looked at the tractor and they could never figure it out. The wide front end one was traded in '57 for a JD 720 diesel and the narrow front one was traded in '62 for a JD 4010. So we have a soft spot for propane U's, nothing else sounds like one especially with the bullet mufflers. We don't have one but we do have this 1941 UTS.
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Old 01-05-2017, 04:22:52 PM
Dan thomas Dan thomas is offline
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Default Re: Minneapolis Moline U. Love em, Hate em? Got Stories Or Pictures Of Yours ?

Tony thanks for starting this thread
My grandfather started off with cross motor MM.he was the local Thrasher in Southeast West Virginia and also had his own saw mills. he then moved up to two UTI Minneapolis tractors. He like these heavier industrial tractors because of coming down the hills of West Virginia the threshing machine would not push them down the hill so easily. Over the years of course they got sold off but just a few years ago one of them was relocated and my uncle purchased it . I went with my uncle and hauled the UTI back to central Ohio where he done enough to get it running and put a little bit of paint on it ,some new tires and showed it at our local show for a couple years . He then gave it to my sister. "REALLY" me and brothers collect tractors and he gives it to one of our sisters. That's been ten years and I still don't understand it. Oh well l guess it's still in the family. Dan
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Old 01-05-2017, 05:33:22 PM
Molinegb Molinegb is offline
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Default Re: Minneapolis Moline U. Love em, Hate em? Got Stories Or Pictures Of Yours ?

A few variations of the basic U. First is 1938 UTS (159 th made) Made prior to UDLX and shares serial number sequences. Second is one of the last U's ever made in 1958. Know of 1 later. UTSD-M. 1948 UTC (cane) and UTE(extendable) only 265 made total.











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Old 01-05-2017, 08:01:40 PM
Roy V Roy V is offline
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Default Re: Minneapolis Moline U. Love em, Hate em? Got Stories Or Pictures Of Yours ?

That slow long stroke 283 under load is just music to the ears from kt up to ub
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Old 01-06-2017, 05:18:35 PM
Tony Thompson Tony Thompson is offline
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Default Re: Minneapolis Moline U. Love em, Hate em? Got Stories Or Pictures Of Yours ?

Here is a link that shows my U in in the field plowing.
Go to post # 53.
Tony


https://www.smokstak.com/forum/showthread.php?t=111835
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Old 01-06-2017, 07:16:21 PM
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Default Re: Minneapolis Moline U. Love em, Hate em? Got Stories Or Pictures Of Yours ?

I watched a pretty good U sell for 475.00 at the local consignment sale, started and ran, tires were iffy, worn paint, looked like a survivor.
Years ago a friend bout 4 U's off the same farm, two he drove home and 2 he hauled home, 150 bucks apiece.
They are one of the least appreciated tractors in the hobby and one of the best performers.
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Old 01-06-2017, 08:21:47 PM
Jeff Blaney Jeff Blaney is offline
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Default Re: Minneapolis Moline U. Love em, Hate em? Got Stories Or Pictures Of Yours ?

I have never particularly cared for the U-series tractors, despite them being reliable workhorses and no doubt the flagship of the 1940-50's MM product line. My reasons simply boil down to their looks and collectibility. The styling just doesn't speak to me and their numbers are a deterrent. This of course is just my opinion.
I have a KTA in my collection, the predecessor of the U and I love it. These tractors have a more primitive look and are quite a bit rarer in my parts. More of a "conversation piece" if you will..

---------- Post added at 07:21:47 PM ---------- Previous post was at 07:18:52 PM ----------

I have never personally seen a Hi-Crop or a U equipped with the "Sand Duals", but those variants seem pretty cool!
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Old 01-06-2017, 09:40:08 PM
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Default Re: Minneapolis Moline U. Love em, Hate em? Got Stories Or Pictures Of Yours ?

Never been around a U much, there weren't many of them around here, but my buddy that was a John Deere guy all his farming life, bought & restored a Z Moline when he started collecting tractors. He said his Dad had a Z for a while when he started out, & just always liked it...at his show, the Z always ran the compressor that ran the big steam engine. Just a nice-running ol' tractor...
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Old 01-07-2017, 02:31:29 PM
1206SWMO 1206SWMO is offline
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Default Re: Minneapolis Moline U. Love em, Hate em? Got Stories Or Pictures Of Yours ?


In 2016 I had fun pulling my 1947 U MM....Here it is winning the 6500 lb 5 MPH class at West Mineral,KS...

Heres my 1947 U winning the 5500 Open class at Bronson,KS....I was running 3rd gear..



Heres my 1940 U MM pulling the 4500-5500 1st gear class at Adrian,MO..After 8 tractors had pulled I was in the lead but the last 2 tractors got by me...The winner was a U MM....Mine is totally stock and I ran it out of power..

The U MM's had a great reputation in my area in the 1950's as good dependable farming tractors..
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Old 01-07-2017, 09:47:10 PM
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Default Re: Minneapolis Moline U. Love em, Hate em? Got Stories Or Pictures Of Yours ?

My dad told me about the the U his neighbor had when he was a teenager, said he would pull 3/16 plow in 3rd gear with no problem. Loaned tractor and new plow to other neighbor, the borrower was easing along in 2nd gear about half throttle in fear of hooking a big stone , which their were known to be many in that field when the owner of the tractor showed up and said they were going to slow he'd take over and show yhem how it was done. The property owner warned him of the big stones and the possibility of damage to the plow. The tractor owner stated the plow was warrantied. He took over and went down and on his way back there was abig commotion, when h e got back to the othr end of field the 3rd bottom stuck ri h ht up out of the ground. He found one of those big stones and it took all summer to g r t replacement parts for the plow. Jim
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Old 01-08-2017, 11:13:43 AM
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Default Re: Minneapolis Moline U. Love em, Hate em? Got Stories Or Pictures Of Yours ?

Here are two old industrial Us that have been sitting around my place for awhile. The first one is a 1947 UTI that spent it's life pulling around a rubber tire roller. The neighbor had worked for the construction company in the Twin City area that had bought it new. When he bought the company the tractor came with it.
The second one is a 1949 UTIL that came out of a rock quarry in southeast Wisconsin. I used it to move large round bales around the farm back when I had cattle.

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Old 01-12-2017, 12:19:31 AM
Mike in CA Mike in CA is offline
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Default Re: Minneapolis Moline U. Love em, Hate em? Got Stories Or Pictures Of Yours ?

In the central valley of California you can't throw a rock without hitting a Farmall (mostly Farmall M's) but you see a Moline every once in awhile. One day I was talking with several old timers looking at my dad's restored Farmall M and they told me "that's a nice looking tractor but a Moline U can plow circles around it!". One of the guys told me that he had seen a Moline U lap a Farmall M in the field while plowing.
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Old 01-14-2017, 09:19:06 AM
53 Super M 53 Super M is offline
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Default Re: Minneapolis Moline U. Love em, Hate em? Got Stories Or Pictures Of Yours ?

Well this thread has gotten me into seriously thinking about getting a U. So I got on the computer and found 2 of them although I'm leery of the one that days needs a head gasket. Other one is decent with a Schwartz wide front Obama engineered under it,price is reasonable,although have to put a narrow front back under it. My favorite used equipment dealer has 3 back in the parts yard,2 of the split block Us and 1 with the 1 pc blockhead. The 1 split block U is only missing both rear wheels and the carbon,motor stuck but the exhaust is covered. How hard is it to find motor parts for one of these as I don't mind a project.
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Old 01-14-2017, 02:57:10 PM
Mark Schneider Mark Schneider is offline
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Default Re: Minneapolis Moline U. Love em, Hate em? Got Stories Or Pictures Of Yours ?

Here is a MM U you don't see every day. I'm not knowledgeable enough on U's to know if this is factory steel or not. This tractor along with it's rubber tired brother is currently for sale on Bisman.

https://www.bismanonline.com/pair_of...stMemberCenter
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