Items for a Smooth Tractor Salvage Operation

Tractor salvage operations are made easier with a bit of preparation

| September 2011

  • McCormick-Deering 10-20 crawler
    Rescuing old tractors, like this McCormick-Deering 10-20 crawler, can be smooth sailing if you come prepared.

  • McCormick-Deering 10-20 crawler

Heading out on a tractor salvage operation? A bit of planning saves time and trouble. 

Keep this checklist in mind:

Fuel. All really old vehicles run on gasoline; five gallons is plenty. We carry gasoline in sturdy five-gallon military cans. Gas cans made of tin and plastic are unsafe to be transported in a vehicle. Even a major fender bender can cause them to rupture.

Engine lubrication. Engine oil and gear oil can be transported without concern. A case of 20-weight engine oil is easy to carry along and proves adequate both in volume and viscosity (at least for temporary running) for any engine being salvaged.

Two five-gallon cans of water. You’ll almost never need that much but sometimes a vehicle’s cooling system is so compromised that water doesn’t stay in it very long. Take plenty, and you’ll be able to add more as needed.

Batteries (6- or 12-volt). If the vehicle you’re working on is a crank-start with magneto, you can ignore this. But if the retrieval vehicle was originally battery equipped, take a good battery of proper voltage and good jumper cables. Take a modern 12-volt battery jumper box even if you have a good 12-volt battery for a 12-volt vehicle. Extended difficulty in starting a long dormant engine often saps more than one electrical source before you get the engine running.

Tow strap. Essential for getting wheeled vehicles running. Often a tow works when a starter fails to get things running.


Farm Collector April 16Farm Collector is a monthly magazine focusing on antique tractors and all kinds of antique farm equipment. If it's old and from the farm, we're interested in it!

Save Even More Money with our SQUARE-DEAL Plan!

Pay now with a credit card and take advantage of our SQUARE-DEAL automatic renewal savings plan. You'll get 12 issues of Farm Collector for only $29.95 (USA only).

Or, Bill Me Later and send me one year of Farm Collector for just $34.95.

Facebook Pinterest YouTube