Recent refurbishment; good tyres; lights; in recent use; ex-East Kent Girl Guides
Possibly the best-known and best-loved tractor of all time, the Ferguson TE20 was launched in 1946 and was the culmination of 30 years’ work by its inventor, Harry Ferguson, to integrate the tractor and its plough into an engineering whole.
At the heart of ‘The Ferguson System’ lay an ingenious three-point linkage which transferred the ‘pull’ of the plough into ‘downforce’ using hydraulic controls to vary the depth of ploughing. This allowed the little grey Fergie to do the job of machines weighing five times as much and proved such a worldwide success that it literally revolutionised farming, making Harry a multi-millionaire along the way!
Produced under licence at the vast Standard Motor Company ‘shadow factory’ in Coventry (used to make aero engines in the war years), the TE20 employed Standard’s new 1,850cc wet-liner four-cylinder engine, a version of which would also be used in Standard’s road cars.
The first tractors ran on petrol but from 1949 the TED20 version could also run on TVO (tractor vapourising oil – paraffin, more or less) and over half-a-million were sold before production finally came to an end in 1956.
This 1952 model was used for light duties, mowing a paddock for the East Kent Girl Guides and has shrugged off these light duties with ease. The vendor gave it a good going over when he acquired it a few years ago, including a new water pump, head gasket, coil/dizzy cap/leads and condenser; fuel tank, manifold cover and rear crank seal. As this last job included 'splitting' the tractor, a new clutch thrust bearing was fitted for good measure along with a gearbox input shaft seal for good measure.
The rear hub seals were replaced and new rear brake shoes fitted due to oil contamination and new tyres front and rear.
As you can see, it also sports front and rear lights.
We suspect it has ingested rather too much TVO from cold as it isn't running smoothly, a common problem for the uninitiated and current adivce is to dispense with TVO altogether as it tends to condense in the sump unless the engine is working really hard and costs pretty much the same as petrol anyway.
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