Tractor Restoration

Giving an old warrior a new life

John Deere Model A   Serial number 675861   Built in 1951

Arriving at Forest Home Farms, San Ramon, CA at the tractor repair shop. A group of diverse and talented volunteers will need to address all the tractor systems

Purchased new by Bill Toomey’s family in 1951. Donated to Forest Home Farms in December 2015.

The Challenge

There were many challenges that needed to be fixed with this tractor such as:

  • Carburetor and fuel system – complete rework necessary
  • Generator, fan and fan belt – cleaning and rewiring necessary
  • Clutch and pulley and transmission housing– clutch adjustment required
  • Distributer and ignition coil– new parts and complete rework required
  • Instrumentation and controls– transmission needed to be freed up
  • Exhaust and intake, rust and a modified hood– new pipes and hood repair needed
  • Brake, flywheel housing and steering wheel– new steering wheel and cleanup necessary
  • Roll-A-Matic front axle– cleanup and new lubricant needed
  • Instrumentation– new gages and wiring required




Power washing all parts

Rims were severely corroded but were repaired and salvaged

The underside also gets attention. Notice the repaired rims and new tires.

Oh come on, cleaning the rusted threads with a tap can not be that difficult.


Tom Sawyer was correct, painting is fun!

Gas tank

The hood, after major repair



Replacing the refurbished starter

Indexing the flywheel

Some electrical considerations

Installing the new instrumentation

A new bushing will help steering

Yep, that steering adjustment is down there somewhere, along with all that grease

Adjusting the carburetor

New wiring

All Finished

Rebuilt fueling system

Rebuilt electrical system

On the job – preparing to use the clutch pulley to start a stationary engine

All dressed up for the party and ready for the next 65 years!



Forest Home Farms Tractor Volunteers

  • Dan Foster
  • Ron Frye
  • Vern Kalepp
  • Joe Krueger
  • John Maryott
  • Bob McCoy
  • Bill Sherwood
  • Ron Simmons
  • Tom Slingerland
  • Pat Sorensen
  • Mike Storms
  • Walt Sommer

Project Duration: Mid January – August 2017

Cost to refurbish this tractor: $ 2500

The major expense was replacement of all four tires

Volunteer hours spent – Impossible to know for sure since during the 4 hour sessions twice a week duties are fragmented to satisfy other requests from farm management. A guess is 320 person-hours were donated by volunteers during the refurbishing of the John Deere Model A.