A Conscientious Restoration

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This topic contains 19 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  kmacaoidh 4 months, 3 weeks ago.

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  • #36305

    kmacaoidh
    Participant

    20/20 vision was often thrown around as a catchphrase and headline that’s time had come at the very start of this year. There were so many things, that go without saying, that emerged during this year that none of us could have fully foreseen.

    One of the less weightier matters that, though it seems like it weighs a tonne, is that I ended up the year having bought a Trusty Tractor! I wasn’t particularly looking for one. I knew of them, but only slightly, and in passing. I was really looking for a 2nd hand plough for my other tractors.

    But, browse the for sale pages at your peril. We’ll down the listing, at that point when your scrolling increasingly faster, an assortment of rusted metal caught my eye. The photo wasn’t so much of a Trusty Tractor, more the jumble of dust covered metal, we’re you knew you were looking at more than one piece of equipment. But what we’re they? Turned out they were drill ploughs mounted on the Trusty, disc harrows pushed in on top of them. No plough.

    To cut a long story short, I bought them, unseen, due to Covid travel restrictions and organised to get them collected and delivered by courier/freight movers. And by damn, when the machinery was pulled out of it dry resting corner of ten years or more, ready for the courier, what was there but a Greyhound plough! Meant to be, or a consolation prize for what I had taken upon myself.

    The full story is more winding than that, but here we are.

    Now what to do, savely parked in the garage with all its attachments around about it, Geoff Ravenhalls words, on sering photos of the tractor, ring true ‘you’ve taken on a lot there’, and so it seems.

    If any words are to follow these few here, they will almost all be random questions that the ownership of this tractor have thrown up on a dayly, almost hourly, basis!

    What will the extent of this restoration be? Are there different types of approachs to restoring these old Survivors? Apart from bad restorations and good ones? These are the parting questions started this year, to be continued long into the year, and years to come.

    I may need all your thoughts, answers, questions and inspiration.

    #36308

    charlie
    Keymaster

    A full, good as new restoration with all new paint etc will be the most time consuming.
    The minimum would be to repair and replace whatever is needed to get the Trusty running and working again. Which you choose will depend on what you plan to do with the Trusty eg use it as a working machine or a show only machine. I have to confess most of the machines in my collection are in working order but retain their original paint.

    #36319

    kmacaoidh
    Participant

    Sound advice Charlie, thanks for that. I think it will be more of the later, get it running, get it working with any luck. Geoff has my machine down as a 1946 Trusty, I’ll post photos when I get a chance, but it’s well worn and has seen plenty of work and wear in those years.

    I have noted with admiration your profile, tractor, image. Original paint, but weathered. I love the look of those tractors you see in competitions, a bit rustic, but great tick and engine sound of them, and when they get going you can see how well they run, and are up for the ploughing or work in hand

    #36327

    charlie
    Keymaster

    Over recent years I have noticed there is, or appears to be, a growing trend towards keeping machines original rather than the better than new restorations some seem to go for. As I remember someone saying to me, ‘its only original once’.

    #36328

    kmacaoidh
    Participant

    The better than new restorations look wonderful as well, and we can only admire the expertise and attention to detail to get machines back to that atate of repair. I clean up and repaired a Massey Ferguson 35 a few years ago, but the new paint spray was something you do in the hope it keeps things rust free, clean and better for longer? It’s almost a subconscious hope or belief the paint, oxide, will stop the ageing! And I suppose it does help. It’s getting the balance

    What’s the tractor in your profile image anyway? An Anzani maybe? In working order?

    #36329

    trusty220
    Keymaster

    I’m glad to see that you’ve taken the plunge, Kevin.

    The rule of thumb that I use for restoring machinery is that if there is no original paint left on it then I’m not ruining anything by doing a complete repaint. Quite a few years ago I bought a 3-speed Trusty which had still got original paint and transfers on it; not pristine, but you could see where the factory had oversprayed the blue JAP 6 engine with green paint in places so I decided to clean it up and rub it with linseed oil to preserve it. That did work for a few years but eventually all of the original paint has now worn off, so when I move house and set up a new workshop that Trusty will be one of the first in the queue to be given a complete rebuild.

    As Charlie says, these things are only original once and I still think it worthwhile to keep something original that has lasted this long.

    Happy New Year to everyone from a snowy Redditch!

    #36331

    kmacaoidh
    Participant

    Happy New Year to you Geoff, and to all the other vhgmc members as well, let’s hope its a good year for all. I think this Trusty will be getting a coat of paint, of which I will gladly receive advice later on, there is very little paint at all on this machine. More a consistent light dusting of surface rust! No real bubbles of penetrating rush, that I can see? But the general texture of dry rust all over. Under the Jap hood has more little flecks and evidence of a green or blueish haze. Just that, not really a coat of paint.

    So, when I learn and decide how best to go about cleaning that rust, it will more than likely, eventually, be getting a coat or two for paint.

    Maybe I need to delve in deeper to The Trusty Repair forum, has Geoff detailed the preparation and spraying details? Undercoats, best for the job? Colour matching original factory finish?

    On the premise that is best to know what’s the right way, before doing it the wrong way. Causing more damage than good!?

    #36333

    charlie
    Keymaster

    What’s the tractor in your profile image anyway? An Anzani maybe? In working order?
    It is a Swiss made SIMAR rototiller. An ongoing project, the engine has had new crank seals (it is a 2 stroke) and a new big end roller bearing made, new cone clutch lining, magneto rebuilt and various other jobs. All paint and tin work are still original. It has run once but was a pig to get started so timing and fuel delivery need checking.

    #36334

    charlie
    Keymaster

    What’s the tractor in your profile image anyway? An Anzani maybe? In working order?
    It is a Swiss made SIMAR rototiller. An ongoing project, the engine has had new crank seals (it is a 2 stroke) and a new big end roller bearing made, new cone clutch lining, magneto rebuilt and various other jobs. All paint and tin work are still original. It has run once but was a pig to get started so timing and fuel delivery need checking.

    #36336

    kmacaoidh
    Participant

    A SIMAR, ah yes, I read and seen them mentioned on the site or in The Cultivator. As well as the interest in original v renewed state of repair, I’m really curious about the crossover points between between, let’s say, British, European, Asian tractor designs and developments? I have a newer Asian-type 8hp tractor, does a lot of work, but when I see it sitting beside a 1946 Trusty I can’t help seeing similarities and differences? But mainly I think to myself, this is a modified copy 70+ years on!?

    Where does the history take us? Where did these walking tractor, iron horses, originate? But then that might be a big debate. Either way I love the way they seem to have cross pollinated over the years, a little bit from here, a little bit from there, and a little bit of our own.

    Projects like your SIMAR and Geoff’s Early Trusty Rebuild, and others on the Forums, give me hope I might get this old machine I have running again. Some day!

    #36337

    kmacaoidh
    Participant

    A few pictures of the 1946, I’m told, Trusty Tractor of London that I’ve recently purchased.

    #36338

    kmacaoidh
    Participant

    Sorry, think those files were far too big?!

    Attachments:
    #36340

    kmacaoidh
    Participant

    These might be a bit better?

    Attachments:
    #36350

    kmacaoidh
    Participant

    Even I can see that this is not the best arrangement for a good spark!

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    #36369

    kmacaoidh
    Participant

    My archaeological dig around the old Trusty keeps revealing old relics, badges, unknown letters and numbers. Keeps me engaged when I can’t really get started on doing any clean-up or work on the the tractor.

    Back to the day job today, horticultural work in glasshouses. Preparation for the salad and veg growing season ahead.

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