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Antique Steel Wheel Tractors - Old Iron Lugs and Cleats

The Not So Happy 'Happy Farmer' - YET!


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  #1  
Old 03-27-2007, 11:03:42 PM
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Photo The Not So Happy 'Happy Farmer' - YET!

So here are some pictures of the 12-24 Model B Happy Farmer that I posted about earlier. Two of the pictures are of the day we got it home (3/25/07) and the other two are a day later after the head was taken off. All things considered it doesn’t look too bad, no cracks.

We are missing the carburetor and would really like any and all close-up pictures of every angle of this tractor, please email them, most especially the carburetor. Other than that enjoy the pictures. We are hoping to get it completed in time for our local show in September –and we know we can! Just really don’t know what year it will be when that happens – ha, ha!

If you’re wondering the guy in the white t-shirt looking at the engine is my father, Marshal.
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Old 03-28-2007, 12:03:24 AM
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Default Re: The Not So Happy 'Happy Farmer' - YET!

Randy: NEAT and the engine is loose . Have lot's of fun getting it up and running . Thanks for the photos.
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Old 03-28-2007, 06:15:46 AM
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Default Re: The Not So Happy 'Happy Farmer' - YET!

Randy,

I have a few Happy Farmer pics on my website if it is any help: http://www.steel-wheels.net/happyfarmer.html

Best wishes

David
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Old 03-28-2007, 10:03:51 AM
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Default Re: The Not So Happy 'Happy Farmer' - YET!

Randy, you've heard the old saying about the Happy Farmer tractor? The owner said it made him happy twice-the day he got it, & the day he got rid of it...looks like you're halfway there... I saw one running at a show once, & thought it was pretty cool...
Ron in CO...
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Old 03-28-2007, 12:53:17 PM
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Default Re: The Not So Happy 'Happy Farmer' - YET!

I believe its a Kingston ball carb you need. Wish father wouldn't have sold his. Its at Bump Hamiton's museum in New York state now! I'll see if I can find some pics.
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Old 03-28-2007, 07:36:03 PM
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Randy Reysen Randy Reysen is offline
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Default Re: The Not So Happy 'Happy Farmer' - YET!

Loose? I would not say that - yet. The roller bearings are TIGHT because the grease cups were taken off of it while its home was still outside. However, my dad and I did get the pistons out of the block tonight - things look ok but we will see after everything gets cleaned properly.

Thought I would include some youtube footage of the tractor. Its not real special or anything; however, it is funny what my dad says after I ask him what he thinks. At any rate enjoy - I will continue to post pictures and updates as we make progress.

Randy


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hdbMYUHFwfI
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Old 03-31-2007, 08:54:50 PM
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Photo Re: The Not So Happy 'Happy Farmer' - YET!

Just thought I would update on the progress - slow - but at least we have not broken anything yet A fine member of the Smokestak family sent me pictures of his carb on his Model F Happy Farmer and I was pleasantly surprised to find that the carb on his tractor MATCHED the carb that is still at the original owners house - we did not know if it was the right one or not. We do now!!!! So the major parts that we need to get it running have been assembled (I hope) - just have to get everything that far! Enjoy - I will keep updating unless you are bored with the Farmer already.
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Old 03-31-2007, 09:16:48 PM
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Default Re: The Not So Happy 'Happy Farmer' - YET!

Nope, no boredom here. Keep pluggin' away at it and keep us informed. Be sure to have that video recorder at hand when you fire that engine for the first time.
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Old 04-04-2007, 12:05:35 AM
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Photo Re: The Not So Happy 'Happy Farmer' - YET!

Can't give you all a long report tonight so here goes - crank, cylinders, block, pistons and cam all went out today to be boiled and light work done on them - basically honing and grinding. The Hyatt roller bearings, the governor, and a few other parts are going out to be dipped in Milwaukee to remove the rust on Wednesday 4/4/07. Aside from that we are also working on getting the frame, the front gooseneck and wheel ready to be sandblasted. After the engine is back from the shop it will be time to load the transmission up and visit our favorite moderator, Craig Anderson, so that he can work his magic and address the problems I explain in the youtube video. First picture is of the flywheel and transmission housing case, second picture is of the transmission, third and fourth picture are of the tractor; if you compare them from last week until now, it quite a bit of difference. That's all for now - not too bad for only 9 days worth of work.

Randy

YouTube Link - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Ja8LuBHILs
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Old 04-04-2007, 11:09:57 AM
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Default Re: The Not So Happy 'Happy Farmer' - YET!

Looking good so far. At the rate you're going your goal is not too unrealistic. Good luck with the project and keep us posted.
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Old 04-13-2007, 09:42:16 PM
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Default Re: The Not So Happy 'Happy Farmer' - YET!

No new pictures to post tonight – just an update.

All the parts that we needed to locate have either been found and traded for or they were borrowed and are at the foundry right now getting cast. Currently, I am searching for a new exhaust pipe/frame pipe. If you do not realize the main tractor frame is also the exhaust pipe as the exhaust is ported into the frame via a short 45-degree elbow and 8 inches of pipe. Well from all the years of sitting around there are places on it that are thin – it is still usable if push comes to shove but we would feel more confident of its structural strength if it were new. The problem is that the pipe is 7 ¾ outer diameter of well casing pipe – not the most common. But our local well driller thinks he found a distributor that can get us some, we are waiting.

A gentleman by the name of Clem Anton got me in touch with an old tin bender that has done Happy Farmer fenders in the past and still has the patterns to make more sets – so that is almost squared away. As for the decals, Kevin Labude a Happy Farmer model A owner, sent me 2 computer graphics of the decal. One is the original design from when they were still making tractors in Minnesota and the other, black and white and poorer quality and is of the one they used in La Crosse, which is the right design for this tractor.
We have a vinyl decal maker just two miles from us so I took the graphics to Randy today and he will merge the two and make one to match original. Best part is that they are on vinyl and therefore never fade or flake!

Then Dad and our friend Ron took a trip up to Craig Anderson’s shop today. The transmission shaft needs to be cut and remachined and the planetary gear needs some work. I think if I ask nice enough Craig will document (pictures!!!) the progress and post them to this thread with some updates. As for the other stuff we should have all the big parts ready to be taken to the sandblaster sometime next week.

We are still shooting for our July, Symco Tractor Show, deadline - I hope we make it!
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Old 04-15-2007, 11:19:55 AM
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Photo Re: The Not So Happy 'Happy Farmer' - YET!

I just couldn't help myself - I had to snap a few pictures last night. This is what the tractor looks like now - the frame is hanging and the other big parts are on the floor. The picture of the radiator gives me a chance to share a neat story.

This is an original Perfex radiator for this tractor – not a reproduction. How is that possible? The previous owner called the Perfex Company in Racine in the mid-1980s and asked if they could make a new, old, radiator. According to the story they still had the plans for this style. So this radiator is an original Perfex, built at the factory. Only thing is its about 90 years newer than the others. Too bad they shut down though.
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Old 04-19-2007, 09:18:34 PM
Kevin Labude Kevin Labude is offline
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Default Re: The Not So Happy 'Happy Farmer' - YET!

I can't remember when I've seen anyone attack a project with so much enthusiasm - except maybe when my dad and I were working on ours...

You'll be driving it around in no time.

Kevin
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Old 04-19-2007, 09:43:12 PM
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Default Re: The Not So Happy 'Happy Farmer' - YET!

Well........it's a LITTLE happier now.........at least I am!
At some point the belt pulley got loose on the shaft. Soooooo...........someone had the idea to cut another keyway, opposite the first, and drive a thin tapered wedge in to tighten it. We got the gib key out easily but the OTHER one was only about 3/16" thick and driven flush. We tried the welding thing but the key, not the weld, broke off........
There's NO place to attach a puller as every surface is curved and NOT even THINKING about pulling from the rim........
So we made this thing and welded it to the pulley (which is almost another story in itself as it's LOUSY iron......) and it STILL wouldn't come. Last resort.....add HEAT....and it finally came off. That lousy thin key is nearly as long as the bore.
A roller bearing which supports that end is in very good condition but we had to get an inner race off the shaft in order to remove it and TRY to save it as nothing is available in those sizes which would create more work and expense if we couldn't save it. We got a sliding gear to move freely and used that to try knocking the inner race off of the shaft........and it WORKED.........
So it's all apart now........
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Old 05-09-2007, 12:06:42 AM
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Photo Re: The Not So Happy 'Happy Farmer' - YET!

Ok so its been a while since my last update and I have too much to say so I will break it into two parts. About two weeks ago Dad and I picked up a load of parts from Restoration Specialists in Milwaukee. These guys dip metal in a hot solution and it eats the rust off! We needed this process to clean up the roller bearings and the governor parts. It worked well, unfortunately, the governor was still stuck and one bearing was too. But it was MUCH better than before. So we worked that afternoon on both parts and got them freed up. Thank goodness we were able to locate a 'parts' governor as it took both of them to make one good, but not before our friend Ron machined us a new shaft and bushed the heck out of our water pump. As for the rollers in the bearing that was stuck, they were shot so again Ron to the rescue!!! Would you believe that he had rollers same measurements as the ones we needed?!?!? That has been the easiest part of this whole process!! So we have that put together - done.

Fenders are still being worked on but that is a delicate subject. The older gentleman that is doing them has cancer - I am to understand that the treatment is helping - but nevertheless, its still the 'C' word. He said that working is what's keeping him alive and that he is happy to do this; however, I sure am not going to force the issue or even get my hopes up that they will get done. No material object is more important than a person's health - especially when your fighting this kind of battle!

Enjoy the pictures I have posted - they are just of the bearing and the water pump.

As for everything else, including the parts Dad just picked up from Craig, that is another post...
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Old 05-09-2007, 12:28:40 PM
Lee Werth Lee Werth is offline
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Talking Re: The Not So Happy 'Happy Farmer' - YET!

randy it looks like you really want one our best restored trophy i think you got a fighting chance this year progress looks good
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Old 05-22-2007, 10:20:14 PM
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Photo Re: The Not So Happy 'Happy Farmer' - YET!

I have been thinking a lot about this post and actually having a hard time putting things into words… I guess it’s because I am reporting on something that I had no part in! So our esteemed moderator will need to fill us all in on this one!

As such, I am officially assigning homework. Craig, your assignment is to post a detailed explanation regarding the work you did in disassembling the transmission shown in the four pictures below.

Your grade will be based on the following criteria:
·Accuracy of the description
·Use of vocabulary to enhance the imagery
·An exact historical account of how many times you cursed this project out loud!

Now, I know that I am taking great liberty with our moderator in assigning this homework; however, I am sure that Mr. Anderson will be up to the task. For those of you that may not know, I do hold a current Wisconsin teaching license and work as a high school Social Studies teacher, so I might not be stepping too far out of bounds. Thanks Craig!
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Old 05-22-2007, 11:56:05 PM
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Default Re: The Not So Happy 'Happy Farmer' - YET!

Randy.......the THIN key, LITERALLY (post 14), was KEY to the whole thing.........(very punny)
Once that was out and we got the pulley off the shaft it came apart fairly easily.
Boring the end in the transmission shaft didn't go so fast as it is quite hard material.....possibly even a bearing race but I couldn't tell.
The pulley bore was badly worn and the shaft had some wear too. It would have been nice if we'd been able to just bore the pulley, build up and turn the shaft to fit but we couldn't as the other components would not fit.
Building up the bore in the pulley wasn't an option either unless you wanted the pulley back in 7 pieces............
So we bored the pulley and made the thin, split, steel sleeve (3rd pic) to account for the wear in the shaft and the re-bored pulley. Making those sleeves is time con$uming but you do what you have to do.
Your dad said you could have obtained another pulley but it would still have fit poorly on the shaft.
Building up and grinding one or two gear teeth is one thing but a whole series of teeth in succession is a different story. Especially when the iron won't cooperate! NOTHING would stick except Eutectic 27, a rod which has SOME nickel content but also leaves a very hard, unmachinable, deposit.
Why didn't we braze them? Ever see what happens when you apply a great deal of heat to a concentrated area on a cast iron gear like that?
There comes a point, when you think all is going well, and there is this LOUD BANG........ .......and, if you are paying attention, you will then notice a 3" gap in the gear perimeter where there previously wasn't one.......
(Don't ask how I know this but I'll tell you....it happened on the 45 Mogul project where there was no choice other than LOTS and LOTS of heat from our big gasoline blowtorch and an LP torch in order to get the differential ass'y apart.)
So, yeah, it was an interesting project........and I thank you for putting your faith in us........
Craig

How'd I do? Did I pass?

(Oh-----the part about the cursing? Some new words MAY appear in the next Funk & Wagnalls unabridged edition)
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Old 05-23-2007, 09:55:47 AM
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Default Re: The Not So Happy 'Happy Farmer' - YET!

I could'nt emagine anything more then you saying gosh darnit, heck and fiddlesticks could I
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Old 05-23-2007, 12:44:34 PM
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Randy Reysen Randy Reysen is offline
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Default Re: The Not So Happy 'Happy Farmer' - YET!

Craig,

You did a wonderful job both in the work and the description – A+ ! I have a whole new appreciation for everything that was done! As for the new words that MAY appear in the next Funk & Wagnall’s unabridged edition, I think there may be even MORE additions necessary before this project is completed! Thanks again for the great job and post.

Randy
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