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  1. #1
    New Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2010

    Default looking for advice on a 1965 MF 205 industrial tractor

    Hey all,

    I'm a new property owner looking to turn my 30 acres into a small farm. I've been looking for a moderately sized diesel tractor with wide front end and a loader that I could run various implements, post hole digger, brushhog, etc.

    I have a lot of mechanical experience with cars and trucks, some with tractors, and I don't have a lot of money. Because of this I've been looking for a fixer-upper, the type of machine that needs a lot of labor but not much in parts.

    I thought I found one, here's the link:
    1961 Massey Ferguson 205 Industrial Tractor w/loader&backhoe

    I've talked with the seller and he said he loaned it to a friend who ran it low on oil and when it was returned to him it had a low end knock. He took off the oil pan and the rod bearing on #1 fell out with it. He said the crank looks to be in good shape but the rod itself is slightly galled. I figure to rebuild the engine, buy a new rod or two, and possibly hone the crank would not be too difficult, I've rebuilt engines before with much success. He has also told me he's willing to go as low as $1,650.

    I am obviously wary about buying a tractor I haven't heard run, or been able to test hydraulics, etc., but the price sure is right. On top of that, the backhoe would be awful handy, I have a lot of drainage issues I need to deal with, a stream to reroute, a pond to dredge and a garden to till and if I had to rent equipment it could get pricey quick.

    But here's the real rub, and my biggest question: This tractor has no PTO. The seller told me it has an access plate where the PTO would have been. I called the dealership and they said that fitting a PTO to it would be difficult, and that it's likely there are internal parts missing, etc. I asked about whether a transmission swap would be terribly difficult and they said "why would you want to do that, just buy a tractor with a PTO."

    So, does anyone have experience adding a PTO to a tranny without one? Can anyone tell me what type of tranny I could swap in that would drive me around and have a PTO, ans also what models I might find that tranny on?

    Thanks in advance,

  2. #2
    Elite Member dex3361's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    N. of Charleston WV
    Kubota L4400-1 HST,FEL, 3x3 remotes, TNT. BX1500 54 mmm

    Default Re: looking for advice on a 1965 MF 205 industrial tractor

    Welcome to TBN Nick. I like old iron but that machine looks beat to death and a machine that old is going to be hard to find parts for. Its not like its a 135 or 35 MF that a lot were made so I would check on parts availability before taking another step. Not having a PTO would be a deal breaker for me. I doubt that you will be able to find the parts to retro fit. You would be rolling the dice on this machine. In my opinion.

    1Timothy Chapter 2:
    3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour;
    4 Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.
    5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.
    From: The HOLY BIBLE

  3. #3
    New Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2010

    Default Re: looking for advice on a 1965 MF 205 industrial tractor

    I agree that it looks rough, and I bet it needs a fair amount of work, but ugly doesn't mean useless. At this point I have a lot of time and not much money, so a tractor that needs paint and a lot of TLC is not out of the question.

    I understand that the industrial MFs were based on agricultural MFs. Is it possible that the major parts (engine, tranny, axles, etc) might be interchangeable with an Ag model of a similar vintage?

  4. #4
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Riverside, CA
    Massey Ferguson GC2410

    Default Re: looking for advice on a 1965 MF 205 industrial tractor

    Hi Nick,

    I don't think your time and effort would be best spent fixing somebody else's problems. The engine needs work and you can't tell if anything else is in good working condition. Even if you got it for $ 1650.00 I bet it will cost about that much to get the engine back together. What about the clutch and all the other systems that might not work. I actually think your odds are worse than a throw of the dice.

    You did not say what part of the country you are located but I would be willing to bet you could find something in a good used machine for about what you would end up paying to get the engine fixed on the industrial you found. Also, ever hour you spend fixing a clunker is an hour you could have been in the seat of a working tractor.

    I will give you another option to think about....Buy a new Massey and use it for a few years then sell it after you have cleared the land etc. With the current financing it is hard to argue with under $ 300 a month for 72 months. I am only paying $ 241.00 for my GC2410 Tractor loader backhoe and it works pretty good. One of the 1500 or 1600 series would be great for you and the resale value is very high. You could use it for a few years and sell it for at least what you owe on the tractor. This would also give you time to find a GOOD used tractor.


  5. #5
    New Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2010

    Default Re: looking for advice on a 1965 MF 205 industrial tractor

    I am in upstate NY, Lisle specifically.

    Bruce, I'd prefer not to buy new, I'm in enough debt as it is through student loans and the mortgage and getting out of it is the number 1 priority, hence the spendthrift cockamamey schemes for tractors. I really don't need a tractor for the next year, it'd be handy but not imperative.

    I understand what you're saying, if I was restoring this tractor as a labor of love it'd be one thing but if all I need is a functioning tractor of any sort then it's stupid. If it was just the engine I'd probably still do it, I appreciate a time consuming repair on a new-to-me vehicle because I'd get to learn a lot about it in the process. However, unless I can come up with a straight forward way to rectify the PTO situation then I'll pass.

  6. #6
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    North Cackelacky...FINALLY.
    None right now...

    Default Re: looking for advice on a 1965 MF 205 industrial tractor

    You could probably find something running at least for what it would cost you to rebuild the engine.

    We paid $4000 for a MF40 industrial,new tires,FEL and shuttle shift.Also came with a 6' box blade.

    This was last summer,prices have probably come down some as people are REALLY needing money nowadays with things how they are.

    The backhoe would be cool...but might be able to be picked up later,maybe from this guy....

    No PTO makes this tractor even more of a pain....

    This is our tractor that we bought.

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