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  1. #1
    New Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2010

    Default 1978 Ford 555???? To Buy or Not to Buy

    Hello Everyone,

    I am new to posting here. I have done a lot of looking around and reading, but have never posted. I have found a 1978 Ford 555 tlb locally and the guy wants 7k for it. I tried talking him down from that, but he is firm on that number. I have checked the hoe out and other than a few leaky cylinder's everthing seems to be sound. The front loader seems to be tight. The rear hoe is very loose. I would guess that all bushings and pins would have to be replaced at some point. The hydraulic lines seem ok, some are dry rotten and would have to be replaced, but for the most part they seem to be fine. The shuttle shift seems to work ok. My main question here is $7k fair for a backhoe that old. Oh, and it does not have an hour meter, but most that old wouldn't work any way, so I don't really think that matters.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2006

    Default Re: 1978 Ford 555???? To Buy or Not to Buy

    I have a 1979 john deere 310a backhoe for sale. My bottom dollar is 7,000. Has cab and pallet forks, runs real good and digs good. No leaks, ready to go to work.

  3. #3
    Veteran Member kf4uda's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Middle TN
    NH TD5030, 861 Ford Powermaster, 555A Ford Backhoe, S150x SnapperPro ZTR, Polaris Ranger XP800

    Default Re: 1978 Ford 555???? To Buy or Not to Buy

    I am not sure if I can answer your question without seeing the machine but I can give you a reference. I bought an '85 555 TLB 4 years ago and paid $10K for it. It was and still is in good shape. I have put several hours on it and so far only had to replace a couple of pins and hoses.

    You need to inspect the boom close as they are famous for cracking. Mine suffered from that but was patched correctly so I gambled on it and it has not been a problem.

    Hope this helps


  4. #4
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Nova Scotia, Canada
    Kubota L3240 HST

    Default Re: 1978 Ford 555???? To Buy or Not to Buy

    That seems high for that year and some of the cosmetic things you pointed out leads me to think there is more lurking inside.
    At a high idle how long does it take to go from forward to backward engagement on the shuttle shifter. Or, does it have one or is it a clutch type. 78 is pretty long in the tooth.
    The big ticket wear item is the clutch pack in the power reverser which usually goes south around 7,000 - 10,000 hrs if well maintained and not constantly loading trucks. You need to remove the cab and split the tractor

    Loose pins and bushings are a !#$@@! to replace if left too long because you will have to line bore them and fit them with over-sized bushings. $$$$$$$$$$$$

    IMHO, you could do better if you added another 3K to your budget and get a better machine.
    GL3240 HST, 724 FEL, Loaded R4s, Squealer 160 Bush Hog, 72" Box Blade, and more everyday.
    Ford 655 TLB
    Cat D6B Dozer with root rake
    Chev C70 Dump truck
    Just having fun in the dirt.... Well it started out that way.

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