Gauteng Smallholder December/ January 2018 - Page 43

From page 39 ances for valves etc, and torques for bolts. K If you can, work compo- nent by component rather than disassembling every- thing, because bolts etc very quickly become confusingly mixed. If your tractor restoration is a thorough job and you must pull it to pieces completely, store each separate component (eg, generator, starter motor, water pump etc) in its own box, along with the nuts and bolts used to fasten it to the tractor. K Join, or at least make yourself familiar with, the tractor clubs in your area, the members of which will be a valuable source of advice, second-hand parts etc. K Never remove the tractor's identification plate with its serial number, and if you sense that it is coming loose, rivet it firmly back into place. This adds value to the machine when you come to sell it, and will enable you to correctly identify the build- year, model etc. K Decide beforehand whether you wish to do an authentic and faithful restoration, or merely wish to build up a working tractor. This is important because there are certain components which are simply and easily replaced by more efficient modern equivalents. For example, older Vaaljapies ran on 6V electrical circuits, with the battery charged by a generator. Because these systems were unreliable, and because 6V parts are hard to come by, most old tractors have been converted during their lifetimes to 12V, and many have had their generators replaced by more efficient modern alternators. While this makes them more reliable and easier to work on, purists would argue that the value as an authentic restoration tractor has been compromised as a result. K When it comes to repainting, resist the tempta- tion to paint it in some outlandish colour “for fun”. This will greatly reduce its value when you come to sell it. And, when painting, strip the metal as bare as possible and give it a full coating of everything necessary: primer, two or three top coats etc, rather than doing a half- hearted job which will just need to be redone in a few years' time. K When sourcing parts, you will soon learn that the current dealer agents do not often have a stock of parts for such old machines. You will need to source your parts from contacts country- TRACTORS wide, who may have, for waiting to work for you, is a example, stripped down proud piece of agricultural machines of the same model heritage. for just such an eventuality. A good network of contacts is vital, and patience on the telephone a must. Finally, document everything you do with photographs. In years to come you will look back fondly and reminisce about the trials and tribulations of restoring an old machine, secure in the If the label with the serial number is loose, reaffix it firmly. It adds value knowledge that outside, to the tractor. 41