County Fair Classic – Tractors Galore!

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Even though I lived the first twelve years of my life in a small farm town in Germany and later attended a college that had a rich agricultural history, I never really had much exposure to tractors and other farming machinery.  Moving to Colorado several years ago in part to get more exposed to nature and the land certainly has given me more opportunities to do that…

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This weekend we attended the Larimer County Fair here in Northern Colorado. As fairs go, it’s fairly small but very nice and well presented (and free!).  Along with the livestock exhibitions, rodeo, fairground rides and an assortment of vendors, there is also a Tractor Show.  We’ve gone for the last several years and I always find myself looking over my favorites again every year.  This year I carried a camera and took a bunch of shots – Since my tractor background is very limited I can identify the makes but will rely on you all to fill in the blanks.

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For some reason I really like the Oliver Tractors – there are two that usually attend the show.  The opening two pictures are of a 1961 Oliver 550, while the pictures immediately above and below are of a 1955 Oliver Super 99 Diesel.  Something about the styling of these really does it for me.

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Below is a Case, the only one there (besides an assortment of new ones).  The bright orange color stood out from the rest.

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And then we have a Minneapolis Moline.  This is a brand I had never heard of before – is that stub on the rear axle an attachment for another set of wheels/tires?

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I’m guessing if you asked the average non-farm person to name a tractor builder, the default answer would be John Deere.  There was no shortage of representatives from the green team on display.

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Like the Minneapolis Moline it also has that axle stub.  This one has a single wheel up front as opposed to many of the others with two wheels.  Some of the front wheels are close together and some are very far apart (same track as the rear).  I’m assuming that it has something to do with different applications or maybe it’s more to do with the era that the tractor was built in.  I’m sure someone will enlighten me below.

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This is a 1953 John Deere 40u.  As you can see it is currently for sale.

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It has kind of a Kermit the Frog vibe to it with the headlights where they are and obviously the color.

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Seems comfortable enough to plow the back 40 or whatever the acreage may be…

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Here is a 1952 Massey-Harris “44” Standard.  Most of the tractors at the show really were in top-notch condition.  I have no idea if this tractor is the Camaro of Tractors or more of a Plymouth Valiant of its day.  This is probably how my wife feels when I take her to a car show – The colors are pretty and they all look nice, but not sure of the differences between them!

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This is the same tractor from the other side.  Is it still easy to get parts for something like this or do tractors eventually succumb to NLA parts difficulties?

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Here we have a nice little Ford, it sort of looks like a Hot Rod.  It is a 1952 Ford 8n, this one apparently has bored cylinders with flathead V8 pistons and an estimated 24hp.  Drive is through a 4speed with Sherman overdrive auxiliary transmission giving it 8 forward gears and 2 reverse gears.  Top speed is 20mph.  The paint is apparently non-standard gray paint.  The picture is a little washed out, it’s a nice light gray, not as white as the picture appears.

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I believe this is also a Minneapolis Moline but a completely different color scheme than the yellow one above.  It is a 1936 “ZTU” model. I wish I had taken a picture of the spec sheet this one had.  It looks like a crank starter, no?

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Here is another 1952 Ford 8n, and this one really is a Hot Rod.  It sports a Flathead V8 with racing cam and headers for an estimated 125hp and a top speed of 45mph.  45mph in something like this sounds terrifying!  In this case it has 12 forward gears and 3 reverse gears  I can’t imagine up-shifting in reverse…Very nicely presented.

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This is a closeup of the engine of the Ford 8n above.  Looks great.

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Here is a Massey-Ferguson Diesel.  That’s all the detail I have on it but it sounded good and looked capable.

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This one is a 1953 Massey-Harris “333”.  Do the numbers represent anything in particular or just a model designation?

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And this is what I suppose is its bigger brother, a Massey-Harris “444”.  It looks identical to the 333 above except for the front wheels.  (To my untrained eyes anyway…)

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This one is just for Paul – I think this mighty little Montgomery-Ward would complement your magnesium deck M-W lawnmower very nicely.  Although it looks too nice to actually use for anything besides looking pretty on the lawn.  I love that little exhaust stack with the flapper on top.

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To wrap things up, we have this pristine Massey-Ferguson riding mower with electric start!  I have no idea of the age of this but it looked impeccable.

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Here’s a shot from the other side…

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…as well as one from the cockpit.

That’s the show, folks, I hope you all had a good time at the Fair!  Come on back next year, lots of fun!