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March 2010 Archive for Your Favorite Tractor

RSS By: Your Favorite Tractor, Farm Journal

Here’s your chance to share a photo of your favorite tractor.

A Hollywood Steam Engine

Mar 31, 2010

In this episode of Tractor Tales, we're off to the Golden State to check out an old steam engine that worked its way into Hollywood.

This semi-famous engine is owned by the Antique Gas and Steam Engine Museum in Vista, California. The museum's annual show will be held in June.


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Classic John Deere on Parade

Mar 30, 2010

Terry Johnston on his 1972 4020, pulling a 1935 John Deere B and 2-bottom plow.


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A Lucky Find: Mist Green 1959 Oliver 880

Mar 19, 2010

This tractor was featured for the month of March in the 2010 Classic Farm Tractor Calendar.


This is one of those ultra-happy stories that makes history so dramatic. Grandfather Ashenbrenner bough this rare Oliver new in 1959. It was traded in 10 years later, was lost, but was re-discovered in 2003–and it was returned to its first home by Grandson Kent Ashenbrenner.


Its color marks it as one of only 249 models painted Mist Green in January 1959. Farmers didn’t care much for the “pea green” hue so in March Oliver officials returned to their Oliver Meadow Green, such as the finish on the Oliver 770 in the background. The unique Mist Green was to herald Oliver’s helical-cut gear transmission. Paint didn’t change the power of the 880s. Their 265 cu. in. 6-cyl. engine put out more than 60-belt-hp.  














Owner: Kent and Lisa Ashenbrenner

Dysart, Iowa


They were tickled pink, so to speak, when the Mist Green Oliver granddad once had was tracked down with ads, telephone calls, e-mails and a little luck. It joined a collection of six other Olivers… guess which one is the favorite


The world-famous Classic Farm Tractor Calendar from Classic Tractor Fever is in its 21st year of publication with the 2010 calendar available now. They have calendars, videos, books, and much, much, more. Click here to visit their online shop.


Second Oldest Known Allis Chalmers Tractor

Mar 17, 2010

Cover Tractor of the Month, Fastline Iowa Edition

1914 Allis Chalmers Model 10-18: Owned and restored by Royal Bierbaum, Griswold, Iowa


The model 10-18 was the first tractor built by Allis Chalmers. This is the second oldest 10-18 known to exist. M.R. Zimmer of Dodge City, Kan. purchased it new. It spent its entire life there until Royal bought it in 2007.

To see the online eFastline edition, click here.


Vintage Case Iron

Mar 12, 2010

During a recent visit to the rolling hills of western Pennsylvania, we caught up with a unique collector with a classic Case. He shows off his vintage iron in this episode of Tractor Tales. The Case Company began in 1842, manufacturing threshing machines.

For more Tractor Tales, visit


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Tractor Trendsetters: Caterpillar Rubber-Track Tractors

Mar 10, 2010

Written by Larry Gay

During the mid-1980s, there were rumors that Caterpillar was developing a 4-wheel-drive tractor for the agricultural market. In the summer of 1986, Caterpillar introduced a unique tractor equipped with rubber tracks which was designed to compete with 4-wheel-drive tractors. Caterpillar had started by building experimental 4-wheel-drive tractors, but switched to the rubber-track concept during the development program. Production of the Caterpillar Challenger 65 started in early 1987 at Caterpillar’s Davenport, Iowa, factory.

The rubber tracks were 24.5-inches wide and were reinforced with steel cables bonded into the rubber. There were 36 sets of lugs on each track to provide traction. The rubber tracks reduced slippage, increased flotation, and enabled the tractor to travel on roads at speeds up to 18 mph. The Challenger 65 was powered by a 6-cylinder, 638-cubic-inch Caterpillar diesel engine which was turbocharged and intercooled. It was rated at 270 engine horsepower and produced 232 PTO horsepower. The full powershift transmission provided ten forward speeds.

The Caterpillar Challenger line was expanded to two models for the 1991 model year and to four models with engines ranging from 285 to 335 horsepower for the 1994 model year. Production moved from Davenport to Aurora, Illinois, and then in 1996 to DeKalb, Illinois.

New for the 1995 model year were the Challenger 35 and 45 models, rated at 175 and 200 PTO horsepower, respectively. These two rubber-track tractors with large diameter track drive wheels provided clearance for row-crop work and the adjustable undercarriages could be set from 60- to 88-inch tread widths. The rubber track widths ranged from 16 to 32 inches. The Challenger 35 and 45 were built with a turbocharged and intercooled Caterpillar 403-cubic-inch diesel engine and a 16-speed full powershift transmission. A third row-crop model, the Challenger 55 with 225 PTO horsepower, was added for the 1996 model year. The 35, 45, and 55 were first manufactured in the New Holland factory in Winnipeg, Manitoba, with the Ford Genesis tractor transmission, cab, and 3-point hitch. In 1999 production was moved to the DeKalb factory.

During 2001 Caterpillar completed the new Lexion combine factory near Omaha, added a line of tillage tools, and introduced a new series of row-crop tractors. Then in December 2001, Caterpillar surprised the industry by announcing it was selling its line of Challenger rubber-track tractors and its DeKalb factory to AGCO. Today the Challenger rubber-track tractors are built in AGCO’s factory in Jackson, Minnesota, but are still sold by the Caterpillar dealers.

Larry Gay is the author of four farm tractor books, including Farm Tractors 1975-1995 and Farm Tractors 1995-2005. These books may be obtained from ASABE at 800-695-2723 or, click publications, click history books, and see tractors.  

1951 Ferguson TO-20

Mar 08, 2010

Cover Tractor of the month, Fastline Wisconsin Edition.


Owned by Richard and Colleen Kinnard, Brussels, Wisc.


This 1951 Ferguson TO-20 was restored by Richard and his brother, Mike. Richard has owned this tractor since 1988. His grandparents, Henry and Hattie Jeanquart were the original owners.


To see the online eFastline edition, click here.


1949 Minneapolis Moline U

Mar 03, 2010

Cover Tractor of the month, Fastline Dakota Edition


Owned by Joshua Peterson, Alamo ND

Restored by Joshua Peterson, his father Arlon Peterson and his grandfather Bill Thomas


At a young age, Arlon Peterson used this classic tractor to haul bales. After the clutch fork went out, it was parked in the weeds for awhile. When the trio of restorers tore the engine apart, the only thing that wasn’t stuck was the oil pump! The tractor was totally disassembled, and all of the old paint was removed before repainting. Pictured is Joshua’s youngest brother, Caleb Peterson.


To see the entire eFastline Edition, click here

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