Chocolate Moose in the Oil pan of a '47 M

Tue Apr 08, 2014 4:45 pm

The title describes what my "M" had in it about 15 years ago. One moment she was running .. then next she sputtered and Low and behold that was the problem.
A house, wife and small kids made me put the project on hold.

Now flash forward.. Most of the kiddies are on their own and I tore apart that "M" engine thinking whatever was the problem was obvious. Well...its not. I assume I had a blown gasket or a crack in the block or head. Upon taking the head off I couldn't see anything unusual. I had managed to purchase a Head and block was back when ... after the incident. However I had given the block to a neighbor farmer who's "M" through a "Rod". I figured my problem was cracked head and I didn't need the block. (wish I had it back now)

My question is this. Were cracks more common in heads or block on "M"'s I can get the head magna fluxed (I have the original and the used one I purchased way back when). However the only Block I have is the Suspect one. I plan onto doing a total rebuild on whatever I end up with I just don't know if I have to (or should) shop for a new block. I guess If I had the head magna fluxed and it was ok it would then point to the block being the problem. If the Head was the issue then I would be in business as I could just use my replacement head and work with the existing block.

Wonder if there are any thoughts on what my problem may be. My Cub is about done.. now I'm ready to work on the big guns!

Andover, NJ

Re: Chocolate Moose in the Oil pan of a '47 M

Tue Apr 08, 2014 6:19 pm

Pull the cylinder sleeves and see if there is anything obvious.

Re: Chocolate Moose in the Oil pan of a '47 M

Tue Apr 08, 2014 9:10 pm

According to a recent post on another site, cracks in M heads are common.

Re: Chocolate Moose in the Oil pan of a '47 M

Tue Apr 08, 2014 10:10 pm

That's what I am thinking.. its the head. I think I will have the head that came off of it magnafluxed... if its cracked that would be my prime suspect.

Re: Chocolate Moose in the Oil pan of a '47 M

Thu Apr 10, 2014 1:19 pm

Cracks in M DIESEL heads are common. Gas heads, not so much. It's not unheard of, just not common.

I'm not following the story though... It stopped running and... What?

A little water in the oil pan wouldn't stop the tractor from running. How exactly did you come to the conclusion that the engine needed to be torn down?

For all we know, the milky engine oil could have been due to moisture gathered while sitting for many years.

One thing you could have done with the head on was remove the oil pan, and place a sheet of clean dry cardboard under the cavity. The cardboard would catch and indicate any water getting into the crankcase cavity. You could also have put a few PSI of pressure to the radiator to encourage any leaks to show themselves.

Re: Chocolate Moose in the Oil pan of a '47 M

Thu Apr 10, 2014 3:06 pm

Matt.. Tractor was in use. I had used it to disc about 3 acres and I think I was using a cultivator at the time when she just died. Mind you this was about 15 years ago. I started to strip it apart.. and got to the point of the Engine just bolted up on the rear end. Wife, House, Kids, work.. kinda took over so my "Toy" had to be put away. I knew one day I would get back to it.

Here I am 15+ years later. Rear half has been in my garage for 10 years (We moved) and engine in a shed out back).
As I recall I had water oil mixture oozing from either the oil fill port or some other orifice. I really can't remember. all I know is that it was brown and looked like moose in consistency.. I want to rebuild but I'm trying to figure which half is toast on my machine. I'm sure I had done a compression test.. but I don't recall the results nor can I find any notes I may have had.

I'm just curious as to which Piece I should send off to a machinist to have checked first.. The head or the block. I have a replacement head but no block. If someone was to say that "M"'s have an issue with the #1 cylinder developing cracks or something like that.. I figured that would be at least SOME starting point or a clue.

I removed the head a month ago and I really don't see any thing out of the ordinary on the head, Gasket or block. Again mind you the event was 15+ years ago.
Basically.. I'm looking for a "Statistically... these engines fail this way....."
I have no idea how much magnafluxing head or block is going to cost. I have no issue taking the head to a shop down the street but the block Is a bit of a pain! Curious to know if anyone has had such an experience and if so what it was (If they knew).


Re: Chocolate Moose in the Oil pan of a '47 M

Tue Apr 22, 2014 9:47 am

Unfortunately, without information from diagnostic testing done BEFORE you tore the tractor apart, there is not much to say.

It's a crapshoot whether it's the head or the block or neither at this point. You've got a 50/50 chance.

Ask the shop down the street what magnafluxing will cost. If they're that close they can come look at the block and head and give you an estimate.

Fact of the matter is, I'm still not clear on the failure. From your story, it stopped running one day, so you tore it apart! That's like cutting down a tree because one leaf fell off.

Can you provide more details about why you felt that it needed to be torn apart?