Farmall Super A, AV, 1939 - 1954
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So my neighbor, my uncle, Boss hog, and others have said maybe I should be looking at a super A for gardening. We have clay and rocky soil. I can't really make up my mine. Also, from all the questions, looking and reading I've done on cubs I know what to look for when looking at one. Not any real idea with a Super A.
I looked at one today. was told it was a 54. I couldn't get too up close and personal with it. It was in a tight corner of a barn and I had my dress cloths on.... yeah I know, not the smartest thing I've done, but I stopped on my way home from work.
It has one new rear tire. other rear tire looks good. Front and back cultivators spring style. scratches, rear and front weights, draw bar and working hopper.
also because I was in dress clothes I didn't ask him to start it. Battery was dead. He said he's going to buy one soon. Anyhow. What type price range should I be looking at for something like this? he was asking $3000.
EDIT: pic upload worked now
Last edited by Joel on Sun Sep 16, 2012 5:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.
IMO, that price is on the higher end, but not completely out of line. Post pics as soon as you can. If it's really a '54 it could be very "interesting" and in a very good way.....
I've uploaded pictures... so this interesting thing got me curious. Is it the kerosene option? He mentioned that and showed me the whole in the hood for starter gas. He acted like he didn't think it would run on kerosene though.
When you said in your original post that it was a '54 my ears perked up. Now, don't read too much into this, but I am breathing into a paper bag right now and trying to get my heart rate to slow down. In my opinion, you have found your tractor. Not only that, what you have found is like discovering cold fusion by accident! First, that appears to be a Super A-1. That is A-ONE, not A-EYE. The wide gap under the gas tank above the hydraulic block is the give-away. It has a factory 123 cu.in. engine, water pump with thermostat, taller radiator, taller grille, etc. Check the serial number. It should be above 356000. IH made less than 2000 (IIRC closer to 1600 but I would need to look it up) Super A-1's, they're pretty darn collectable. It is sort of a cross between a Farmall 100 and a Super A--IH called them "Code 2 Super A's" in their records. Second, and this is almost as huge as being a Super A-1, it appears to be a kerosene/distillate burner. That is definately a kerosene/distillate manifold. Was the small starting tank still there, or just the hole? If it was a bona-fide kerosene/distillate burner, it is basically a hen's tooth.
I don't see the linkage for the radiator shutters. I would look to see if the control lever (looks sort of like the throttle) is still there, on the left side of the instrument panel beside the choke control. See if the shutters themselves are still on the front of the radiator, behind the grille. Missing shutters are not the end of the world.
The first thing I would do is check all the main castings. They should end in Z. (I notice your hydraulic block definately does.) Then I would look @ the serial number. Then the engine--the serial number should start with FCM. If these things all check out, and it runs good, being it has cultivators and a fertilizer distributor, nice rear tires, looks to be good paint, etc. (How is the rest of the sheet metal?) I think it is reasonably priced. If it doesn't run good I would try to negotiate on price. Regardless, if it appears bona fide I would act like it is just another Super A. Then I would calmly get back into my truck and as soon as I was out of sight DRIVE JUST AS FAST AS I COULD BACK HOME TO GET MY TRAILER!!!!!
I really hope you get this one. My theory is that almost all the Super A-1s came to NC, and although I have seen quite a few (I own #357303) I have never, ever, ever in my wildest dreams seen a kerosene one.
Yeah, Al pretty well summed it up. The first thing I noticed was the temperature gauge that was tapped into the coolant outlet elbow (which normally means water pump, suggesting a 123 engine). Then I saw the gap between the hydraulics and the fuel tank. That was enough to make me think it is a Super A1. I don't see a starting tank or extra fuel lines (kerosene and distillate engines started on gasoline). Get the chassis and engine serial numbers, complete with prefix and suffix letters. That will help us tell if it is a kerosene/distillate engine with parts missing or a gasoline engine with the wrong manifold.
In any case, from what it appears to be and the apparent condition, it is starting to look closer to worth his price.
Al, You're cracking me up.
The owner did mention it had the same engine as the 140.
Do you guys think that having the kerosene aspect or any other feature on this tractor would make it hard to find parts for?
I don't think it currently is set up for kerosene. He mentioned that the radiator had work done on it (way he said it sounded like it was related to the kerosene) Also the knob on the manifold is rusted frozen in place.
I just realized I hadn't taken any pictures of the grill. It is dented some. nothing that concerns me, but ascetically noticeable.
I wasn't expecting the price point he was asking since some I've seen in the ads some with discs, plows, fast hitchers or mowers for that price.
I wasn't prepared to drop that amount of cash specially since I'd need to pay more to get other attachments I'd need for plowing.
Does the hopper setup look complete? The fiberglass hopper and tube was in the barn. Looked to be in decent condition.
The rusted manifold control is common but since you would not be burning anything but gas, it does not matter. Most of these tractors have run regular gas for years and have probably been updated with other "gasoline" parts--fire crater pistons and so forth. The parts you will need most often are readily available and if it was a kerosene burner that will not hurt anything. My grandfather's Super A originally was set up to run it and he ran gas in it its whole life.
It looks like to me the fertilizer attachment is complete.
I know you are looking for a worker, but If the casting codes and serial numbers do check out this is a very collectable tractor. Being you are in NC, the implements you might need will be easier to find and hopefully not as expensive.
I agree with Jim. I think that's a Super A1, and in pretty darn good shape judging by the condition of the paint.
The Z code on the touch control block puts it as a '54.
What's the serial number?
Serial number should be above 356001. The tag is painted over, but unless they sprayed gobs of paint over it, the number should be readable. Thank goodness by '54 they went back to engraving the numbers deeper into the tags.
Are radiator shutters used for kerosene operation? i did a search on google images. Do they look like vertical blinds?
I've had an odd week this week with work so I've not gone back. I'm going to try and get a hold of him tomorrow to see if he's got a battery or if I get one and when we can spend some time looking at it.
Yes, they are for burning kerosene or distillate, the engine has to run very warm to propery vaporize the fuel so you could open/close the shutters to keep the engine hot based on the weather, load it was pulling, etc. Running gas they aren't really necessary. Besides a Super A-1 would have a thermostat anyway. They look like vertical blinds, the lever beside the choke rod is used to open and close them.
I think shutters from a Super C would work because they had the "tall" radiator also.
When you go, take lotsa pictures! Would really love to see this one up close, just because of the rarity of it.
Great day in the morning! What a find!!! The more I'm around those Super A's...the more I like 'em, and I REALLY like that one. Hope it finds it's way to your house...
Member IHCC Chapter 37 & 42 - North Carolina
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