Power Steering and Wheels

The used power steering pump and cylinders had to be thoroughly cleaned.  They looked as if they had been leaking and operating in a very dusty environment as they were covered with grit and grime.  The bracket that holds the pump to the engine had broken at some point and been welded.  The bracket failure must have caused the pulley to break, too, as it was also welded in several places.  The pump that I found with my tractor was certainly not original, but the bracket was, and it was in perfect condition.  To trade them out I needed to pull the pulley from each pump.  The welded pulley had evidently been weakened during the process of welding as it broke as if it were made of pot metal when I put some pressure using my gear puller.  I finally managed to free it, but now I had a broken pulley.  Upon inquiry, I discovered that new pulleys were available – for $135.


In my search for a used replacement pulley, I found that the shaft on these pumps is of a non-standard diameter and finding a pulley that would fit was not going to be easy.  My friend, Ron Kingland, told me that he had heard that the power steering pumps used on the 1960 – 61 Ford F-150s, Lincolns and Thunderbirds were the same as the ones for these tractors.  An on-line search located several, but no one had a picture of their pump and I was unwilling to send off good money without at least seeing what the used pump looked like.  Calls to local “used parts dealers” were unproductive as none of them retained junked cars older than early 80’s.


I finally located a pulley that would fit the shaft at Sellers Starter & Alternater, the company that had re-built my starter.  Who knows what this pulley had been on, but it was approximately the same diameter and the shaft size was exact.  It lacked a keyway, but this was easily remedied by my son, a physics graduate student at UT-Austin who had access to a University machine shop.


The front tires and wheels were next on my list[8].  Using my new compressor, I first inflated the front tires to their recommended pressure.  I could immediately hear a leak in one of them and found it around the valve stem.  Figuring that both tires would need new tubes, I began calling around to see who might service tractor tires in Fort Worth.  Surprisingly, neither of the “farm stores” did.  One, however, referred me to a shop on the near north side of Fort Worth, Hart’s Garage.  They did in fact carry the right sized tubes and could order the tires if needed.  I took the tires to them.  After the tires and tubes were removed, I decided to clean up the rims and paint them before having the new tubes installed. 


The interior of the rims were major rusty – big chunky rusty.  It took me the better part of an afternoon to clean them up, chiseling away the bigger chunks and power wire brushing the rest.  Fortunately nowhere had the rust eaten completely through the metal.  After cleaning up as best I could and polishing the rough edges on the inside of the rim, I first painted each wheel completely with a rust-preventive primer finishing with the Ford tan/gray on the exterior and a silver paint on the inside of the rim.  I let this all dry thoroughly for 3 – 4 days before returning to Hart’s Garage to have the new tubes and the old tires remounted.  Luckily, the old tires were in pretty good shape with no cracking.  I expect them to last for many more years.
The big sections of the tractor were next.

[8] The process of tractor restoration is hardly linear, especially since this was my first major restoration and it seemed like every piece of this tractor needed work.  Problems encountered would often be left for me to ponder while I moved on to another area.  I often found that solutions would come to me if I left a problem and worked on another part.  I would regularly read and re-read my shop and parts manuals until I understood how to address each issue.

Subpages (1): Beginning Re-assembly