Sunday, February 19, 2012

Getting Hard To Find.....

I've found out recently, that some things are getting hard to find - not EXPENSIVE, really, just hard to find. It seems that just about everything I work on, I run into SOMETHING that isn't made anymore - mainly do to "lack of demand".

Basically - my tractor is the only one in the world that that certain part has failed.....

Sometimes, it's due to "outside influences", such as the price of scrap. It used to be, you'd drive down country roads, and see the fence lines full of old machinery. Not so now. Scrap prices have "encouraged" a lot of farmers to clean up around the place.

I, on the other hand, am still fond of bringing stuff ONTO the place, rather then see it cut up, and shipped to China....

Mr Jones runs and HIDES when he sees my place! When someone asks - on that RARE occasion - I tell them that I am "Doing my part to lower property taxes".

When a friend gave me my 1928 McCormick-Deering 10-20 last month, there were a few parts that were "damaged".....ok BROKEN. One being the water manifold that connects to the head, and the radiator. One of the "ears" on the mounting flange was broken off. Luckily, he save the pieces.

Since he also is a pretty good welder and fabricator, I handed the whole thing back to him for welding before I lost the broken piece. A couple days ago, He brought it back - all brazed up nice.

10-20 Water Manifold Face
10-20 Water Manifold Rear

All that was left for me to do, was to clean it up, and blend out his brazing bead.

10-20 Water Manifold Blended Face
10-20 Water Manifold Back Blended

It's actually a pretty easy process - you start with an Angle grinder (with a wheel made for non-ferrous material when you are working on non-ferrous materials...), to cut the rough spots down, then use a Dremel tool, or die grinder, or file, or even sand paper to finish blending it out. I also use a sanding disc on my drill to help. On the "face" a good belt sander will flatten it out nice.

I haven't done it to this yet, but I will take a good metal Scribe, and "burnish" the out side. This just uses friction heat to do a final "polishing".

Now, at first, I wasn't going to use this manifold on my tractor - it would have hung around as a "spare", because I KNEW I could find another one pretty easy. I also knew I had another 10-20 heading my way. Unfortunately - that tractor was missing the manifold.

Scratch one idea.

So, I tried sending out a few "feelers" to see if anyone had one. I got a few "just sold the extra one I had", and even one guy who told me he "I wish I knew you needed one, I just took a load of scrap to the junkyard, and I KNOW there was a good one on it...."


Oh well, at least I know!

Unless that part is so far gone, it would be pretty darn near impossible to fix, I try to keep it for spares. You never know - even the "common" parts now, might not be so easy to find next year....

1 comment:

  1. Yep! Looks pretty good! Brazing was actually easier than welding with nickle rod. You don't have to keep it near as hot.



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