CHRISTIAN COUNTY, Ill. (WCIA) — Not many folks have had the opportunity to overhaul one of the most revered tractors in agriculture. But you’ll meet a pair doing that, right after this.
A John Deere 4020 that an owner thought was beyond repair, has become an FFA project for an energetic senior at Taylorville High School, as Stu Ellis reports in today’s From the Farm.
Connor Grant of Owaneco has been spending a lot of time at Sloan Implement Co in Assumption, where he is overhauling the first “muscle tractor” built by John Deere 55 years ago.
“This tractor here I knew had some mechanical issues and problems on the side of things like that. And that is when I really knew I was going to be able to do some mechanic stuff, rebuild the motor and that kind of thing, and that is when I knew I could really make an FFA project out of it and that kind of thing,” said Grant. “And that is where it has basically taken me off to work on the motor, put a new rebuild kit in it and get to do a lot of other new things that I have never learned before. You know Sloan Implement, they have been great, they have helped me out so much, you know him and Matt and them guys have taught me a whole lot here in the shop. Especially with the mechanic skills and that kind of thing.
Connor is working under the guidance of Matt Buchanan, Sloan’s overhaul specialist for classic farm tractors.
“When it came in, it was getting water in the motor oil, so the motor was trashed,” said Buchanan. “And we have overhauled the motor, new heads, we put a rebuild kit in it, fuel pump, injectors. We put the M&W turbo kit on it, M&W oil pan. We are going to put load shaft seals in it. We rebuilt the STV’s. We put new spindles on it, new steering arms on it, tie rods, front wheel bearings. We got the back wheels broke loose, we put new rims and tires on the back end. We rebuilt the water pump, M&W fan, M&W fan shroud. We’ve done a lot of work to this thing.
We still have a few more little things to do before we go into the painting process, and that is what I’m probably going to be working on this winter; is what I have left is painting to do,” said Grant.
And what will happen to the tractor? “It will stay at home on the farm, probably take it in a few parades, maybe a couple shows or two. But I don’t see it going nowhere.”
“Oh yeah. I’d put it to work. I’d take it to the field,” said Buchanan.
We’ll see summer if there is any dirt on the tires.