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  1. #1
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    695
    Location
    Columbus, Georgia
    Tractor
    Kuborta B2400, L2900, L4330; Caterpillar D3B, John Deere 455D

    Default Old John Deere

    I have lately noticed several members sharing their old tractors. I thought you might be interested in my family's 1936 John deere D. In the attached pictures my grandson and I are playing with it on the family farm in southwest Georgia at Thanksgiving. We were looking for one to restore, but this one was so well done and at a reasonable price that we bought it.

    The D is the largest two cylinder John Deere made: 501 cubic inches. And also the longest lived: first one in 1925 (?) and last one in 1953. This one has apparently been bored out 0.125 and is several cubic inches larger. Despite the cubic inches, it only makes 45 horsepower at maximum 900 rpm because the compression is about 5.0:1; it was designed to run on distillate, which produces less power than gasoline. Distillate is a kerosene like fuel that was cheaper than gasoline in the 20's and 30's; I think because there was little demand for the diesel fuel that could have been made instead of the distillate. The D has a small one gallon tank for gasoline that is switched in to start it and when it is shut down (so the carburetor will be full of gasoline for starting the next day). At 5 gallons per hour it would not be economical on today's farm.

    It has no electrics; you start it by opening the compression releases on the cylinders and turning the flywheel on the left side. It has an impulse magneto, which makes a hot spark at even very slow speeds; so you don't have to spin the flywheel fast, just pull it past TDC when the impulse coupling on the magneto trips and gives you a hot spark. IF everything is tuned just right, and if you have not flooded it.

    It has a three speed transmission and hand clutch. Maximum speed is about 5 mph in top gear. No brakes on the rear wheels; when it is in gear there is a fairly effective brake built into the clutch. But if it is not in gear, that brake does not work; you are left with only the marginal "parking brake" that was used to hold it still when it was used to power machinery (like a threshing machine) via a flat belt on the right side clutch pulley.

    The only additional work is to install a dual exhaust manifold (they are actually available aftermarket) and a second chrome stack; hope the old girl is not embarrassed.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails -tractor4-copy-jpg   -tractor1-copy-jpg  

  2. #2
    Gold Member PossumHound's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    441
    Location
    North Carolina

    Default Re: Old John Deere

    Love that old green! Nice photos.

    PH

  3. #3
    Platinum Member ljohnson778's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    838
    Location
    Upstate NY
    Tractor
    New Holland T5070

    Default

    Very cool!
    Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.
    -
    Benjamin Franklin

    The truth is incontrovertible. Malice may attack it, ignorance may deride it, but in the end, there it is.
    -Winston Churchill

  4. #4
    Elite Member MIKE R's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    4,080
    Location
    PRINCE TWP, ONTARIO
    Tractor
    MASSEY 1020, CASE SC, FARMALL F12 and F20

    Default Re: Old John Deere

    Nice. That chrome stack just don't look right on there through.
    "If the women don't find you handsome, they should at least find you handy" - Red Green

    2013 TRACTOR CRUISE VIDEO
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  5. #5
    Elite Member Bob77064's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Posts
    3,872
    Location
    KY @ TN line
    Tractor
    2011 LS R3039

    Default Re: Old John Deere

    That is fine.

  6. #6
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    538
    Location
    Southern Utah
    Tractor
    John Deere 3120

    Default Re: Old John Deere

    Wow, what a beauty!

  7. #7
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    8,865
    Location
    somewhere usa
    Tractor
    Deere 110tlb, 4520, x749, L130

    Default Re: Old John Deere

    Nice old tractor, looks great.

  8. #8
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    695
    Location
    Columbus, Georgia
    Tractor
    Kuborta B2400, L2900, L4330; Caterpillar D3B, John Deere 455D

    Default Re: Old John Deere

    Thanks for the nice comments. Mike R, funny you should mention the chrome stack. The chrome stack was on it when we bought it, but the original black pipe came with it. I argued for replacing the chrome stack with the original, but lost to my daughter and brother (who runs the farm). Now that we are going to put a split exhaust manifold on it, we have to decide between two chrome, two black, or I guess even one of each is possible! I am inclined to buy a second black stack, but I will probably lose the vote to chrome.

    One interesting thing to me is the long, 28 year production run. In the late 1930's JD "styled" the D with an enclosed radiator, rounded hood, etc., but the mechanics did not change much. I have the parts book for the entire life span; things such as the camshaft, crankshaft, clutch plates, etc. are the same for the 1925 model as for the 1953 model. I guess JD figured if you get it right the first time, why change.

  9. #9
    Elite Member Chilly807's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    3,167
    Location
    Nova Scotia
    Tractor
    Kubota L3400DT

    Default Re: Old John Deere

    Nice machine.. really gives you a feeling for how much time has passed. I like the chrome stack myself. Must be the crow in me...

    Sean

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