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Author Topic: FORD 860 Tractor 6V or 12V & Other tractor Questions  (Read 10008 times)

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Offline Gilman

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FORD 860 Tractor 6V or 12V & Other tractor Questions
« on: September 06, 2005, 03:48:06 PM »
I just bought a Ford 860 tractor with a rear end forklift.  It runs good but the wiring is a mess.

The fellow I bought it from said the generator most likely doesn't work.  I need to run new wires to everything, but before I do this, should I convert it to 12V's?

If it matters the winters are mild here compared to you Easterners.  We rarely get -20's and get below 0 F for less than a month.

I'm looking for about tree fifty worth of advice.  Because I aint paying mor dan tree fifty for advice.  ;D
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Offline Bro. Noble

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Re: FORD 860 Tractor 6V or 12V?
« Reply #1 on: September 06, 2005, 04:23:46 PM »
I really don't know what the advantage is supposed to be.  We have two old tractors that we still use that are 6v-----one we use almost every day to pull our edger.  I don't ever remember having much electrical problems with them.

If it were me,  I wouldn't spend the money to convert it.  Chances are brushes will fix your generator.

That makes me think,  I've always wondered why some of those old tractors were positive ground?
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Offline DouginUtah

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Re: FORD 860 Tractor 6V or 12V?
« Reply #2 on: September 06, 2005, 06:04:32 PM »
I've always wondered why some of those old tractors were positive ground?

I don't know for sure but I believe it was the way they did it in England.

I had an Austin-Healy Sprite and I will always remember that it said on the instrument panel "Positive Earth".

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Offline Tom

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Re: FORD 860 Tractor 6V or 12V?
« Reply #3 on: September 06, 2005, 06:09:58 PM »
My son, born in 1970, has a 1948 Ford F-1  pickup with a six volt, positive ground system.   It's funny that this came up because I spent a couple of hours, over at his house last night, discussing and diagnosing a bad battery cell.   Six cells didn't used to be so uncommon.  I'm sure glad that we finally settled on Negative ground though. :)
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Offline Corley5

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Re: FORD 860 Tractor 6V or 12V?
« Reply #4 on: September 06, 2005, 09:06:08 PM »
I read somewhere sometime in the past that it was believed that a positive ground system gave a "smoother" spark that was less likely to burn points.  Some of our old tractors are still on 6V and others have been converted.  An H Farmall with a 12 volt system sure starts nice ;)  We've got a B Farmall that Grandpa converted to 12V long ago.  I've driven it out of the barn in low gear with the starter ;D  Wouldn't want to go to far though ;D  If the 6V system is going to require a lot of work and dollars and you're not concerned that the Correct Police are going to come and haul you away a one wire GM alternator is the way to go.
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Offline chet

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Re: FORD 860 Tractor 6V or 12V?
« Reply #5 on: September 06, 2005, 10:22:37 PM »
Converted my little Ford tractor to 12V many moons ago. I love it, and now I even got really bright lights for plowin' dat white stuff.  8)
I am a true TREE HUGGER, if I didnt I would fall out!  chet the RETIRED arborist

Offline Gilman

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Re: FORD 860 Tractor 6V or 12V?
« Reply #6 on: September 07, 2005, 03:43:36 AM »
I didn't pick it up the day I bought it, he's going to deliver it for me.  I stopped by today and he agreed to fix the starter switch for me and it turns out he went and fixed most of it.

I think I'll buy a generator rebuild kit and start from there.  The brushes are cheap. If that doesn't work, I'll probably conver it to 12V's before buying gages.

thanks for your tree fifty,
WM LT70, WM 40 Super, WM  '89 40HD
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Offline Weekend_Sawyer

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Re: FORD 860 Tractor 6V or 12V?
« Reply #7 on: September 07, 2005, 07:59:32 AM »

 6V works real good as long as your cables are nice and thick and making good contact.
I would run it on 6V unless, like Chet, you want bright lights, or like Corley, you like to drive around on the starter ;)
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Offline Gilman

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Re: FORD 860 Tractor 6V or 12V?
« Reply #8 on: September 07, 2005, 11:09:47 AM »
I'd like to have bright lights, so I think I'll plan on converting it in the long run.  You know how that goes, "Hmmm I've been figurin to change that for a spell now."   ;D

Ask me a year from now how it's going.  ;)
WM LT70, WM 40 Super, WM  '89 40HD
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Offline Don P

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Re: FORD 860 Tractor 6V or 12V?
« Reply #9 on: September 07, 2005, 09:19:52 PM »
My neighbors ford is converted, I think its an 860, there is a resistor in the works. If I remember right its in the ignition circuit. My ol' MF is still 6v and when in good tune does just fine. In cold weather you don't get a whole lot of tries with 6v is the only trouble I've had...course my lights have been gone for years, we call that quittin time  ;D.
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Offline wiam

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Re: FORD 860 Tractor 6V or 12V?
« Reply #10 on: September 08, 2005, 08:33:47 PM »
I have found most of my older tractors with six volt start ok in below zero weather  if properly tuned and the electrical system is clean and in good order.  There are some pretty good six volt lights out there.  The twelve volt will overcome alot of issues that might need fixing anyways. ;)

Will

Offline Gilman

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Re: FORD 860 Tractor 6V or 12V?
« Reply #11 on: October 05, 2005, 01:11:44 PM »
I replaced the the worn hydraulic hoses last night at a friend's shop.  He's the forklift repairman that's working on getting the 18k forklift.

Here's a bad photo of the new hoses.  :D


This should probably be listed under Health and Safety...  This is what the rear straps looked like when I got home, in the dark, last night.


 :o :o
I have a new rule for myself, "Get the DanG flashlight out when straping down equipment at night."
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Offline Furby

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Re: FORD 860 Tractor 6V or 12V?
« Reply #12 on: October 05, 2005, 06:26:58 PM »
Ya man, good rule! ;)

Offline Corley5

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Re: FORD 860 Tractor 6V or 12V?
« Reply #13 on: October 05, 2005, 09:26:03 PM »
That's a pretty neat forklift.  Is attached to the three point ???  How much will it lift and how high ::)
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Offline RSteiner

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Re: FORD 860 Tractor 6V or 12V?
« Reply #14 on: October 06, 2005, 06:49:08 AM »
You may need a rebuilt generator or just a voltage regulator to get the charging system back in the pink.  The Ford dealer in town my brother use to work for has 8V batteries for those old 6V systems.  They give just a bit more power to the starter ands will charge fine on the original charging system.

I had a 1951 Ford 8N for 25 years during that time I don't think the charging system ever worked.  The 6V battery would be good for about 2 months of starting before needing a charge.  I don't have lights on the tractor which helped battery life.

On really cold days in the Northeast the tractor would start just fine.  You can use a 12V battery on a 6V starter, but do not crank it for more than a few seconds.  A 12V altenator can be used in place of a generator, use the kind that have the voltage regulator built in and I think you need to add a diode to 12V feed from the battery.  Then you can add 12V work lights which are easier to find.

Randy
Randy

Offline Gilman

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Re: FORD 860 Tractor 6V or 12V & Other tractor Questions
« Reply #15 on: October 28, 2005, 03:45:16 PM »
I decided to go to the 12V mostly due to lights.  Thanks for your input on this question.

A little embarassing but, I can't figure out how to put oil into the engine.  :-[  I'm going to have to read the manual.  :-[  I was chuckling to myself last night walking from one side of the engine to the other, repeatedly scratching my head. Hmmmm who would of thunk it?


Well, read the manuals and I still don't know how to get oil into the engine.  Anyone know how?

This is really really embarassing.
WM LT70, WM 40 Super, WM  '89 40HD
Cat throwing champion 1996, 1997, 1999. (retired)

Offline Furby

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Re: FORD 860 Tractor 6V or 12V & Other tractor Questions
« Reply #16 on: October 28, 2005, 05:14:24 PM »
Well I knew how to put the oil into the backhoe, just couldn't find the dipstick..... until I realized I WAS the dipstick! ::)
Have someone else look for ya. ;)

Offline wiam

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Re: FORD 860 Tractor 6V or 12V & Other tractor Questions
« Reply #17 on: October 28, 2005, 07:43:27 PM »
If there is no cap on the valve cover there should be a fill in the block somewhere.  I that does not help you could pump it up through the drain and put in the plug real quick. ::)  Or pour into a sparkplug hole real slow and wait and wait and wait. :D

Will

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Re: FORD 860 Tractor 6V or 12V & Other tractor Questions
« Reply #18 on: October 28, 2005, 08:30:56 PM »
GO 12!!!!!!!!!!!! Good choice. While your at it, check for an electronic ignition that are now widely available for the old girls. Love my tractor converted.


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There is no scarcity of opportunity to make a living at what you love to do, there is only scarcity of resolve to make it happen.- Wayne Dyer

Offline Gilman

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Re: FORD 860 Tractor 6V or 12V & Other tractor Questions
« Reply #19 on: October 29, 2005, 01:14:18 AM »
Wiam,
The plug is 3" dia.  HUGE drain, no fill.  I guess I just need to find a nice hill to roll her over on her back?

The manual was helpful in telling me to make sure the oil level is full though.
WM LT70, WM 40 Super, WM  '89 40HD
Cat throwing champion 1996, 1997, 1999. (retired)


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