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John Deere B and Dad

John Deere B and Dad
I have this 1942 John Deere B, that has been on the farm longer that I have. My father bought it at a farm sale about 18 miles west of us. He was fresh back from the city, in 1948, and just starting farming. His father-in-law, my Grandpa, and he drove to the sale in Grandpas 1946 Ford V8 pickup. Dad was high bidder of the B. Since it was getting dark and nearly chore time, they decided to pull the tractor home. Agreeing to keep it no faster than 30 Grandpa takes off. The first mile things are okay. A little faster, the B starts fishtailing on the gravel. Going down the hills, and there were lots of them, Dad said he rode the brakes hard to keep the log chain from wrapping around the front wheels! After a few miles of this, and granpa sipping a little beer, he would feel the truck slow and downshift to second gear. Faster and faster, close to 50 mph! It seems Grandpa had more than just beer in the cab, and had rather forgot about his new son in law back behind him steering for all he was worth! They made it home in good time, the brakes were burnt out on the John Deere, lots of words were said, to say the least. Dad always wondered how he ever made that trip alive. The JohnDeere was used until 1975 when it was parked, when I left farming. In 1985, I towed over to my house, and commenced to make it run again. The mag was dead, the carb bowl was cracked, exhaust rotted away. Oh yeah, and the engine was stuck too. There was just a little rust in one cylinder, and I cleaned that up easily, and did a valve job. With the 4th of July parade coming up I worked round the clock, and left for the parade with still damp paint. It made the parade, and several times after that. I pulled the back tires, and derusted and painted the rims. I use it around the place, mow with a no. 5 JD mower. and have the plow and disc and rake. I also have used it on the belt on the buzz saw. Have painted it the second time since 1985. It is the non-electric model, with a 6-speed, and 1938 vintage round spoke wheels. My mother gets misty eyed when I mow her driveway, so I'll be keeping it as long as I'm able to keep it running.

John K, from Ne, entered 2000-12-03

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