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What Am I for Saturday 8/13/11
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By Jeff Lakaszcyck - Friday, August 12, 2011 2:35 PM
This truck has an interesting heritage. Emblems removed. Photo from Dan Souday.
By ray88 - Friday, August 12, 2011 2:59 PM
Well I wasnt aware of them building a truck, but that front end sure looks like a Fordson tractor.  I'm not clear on the Ford, Fordson, Ferguson pedigree so I'll settle on Fordson for my guess.      ray
By Park Olson - Friday, August 12, 2011 3:11 PM
YUP,,Fordson derived,
By clyde318 - Friday, August 12, 2011 3:17 PM
My first impression usually gets me a wrong answer. That's OK with me. Fordson.
By Bill White - Friday, August 12, 2011 3:17 PM
Toppins Tractor Truck Co 1923 Fordson power
By Don MacKenzie - Friday, August 12, 2011 3:22 PM
Bill White strikes again.  TOPPINS TRUCK with FORDSON TRACTOR Power Plant.  Built by the TOPPINS TRACTOR TRUCK C0. of Milwaukee Wisconsin.
By John Dameron - Friday, August 12, 2011 3:45 PM
Sitting in a motel room in Abingdon, VA tonight (headed to the AACA car show at Bristol tomorrow) with high speed internet so I will chime in here.  When Henry Ford decided to start building farm tractors some other tractor builder had decided to make use of the Ford name so Henry Ford could not build Ford Tractors.  Thus he setled on the Fordson name.  That effort ceased (I think about 1932) and for a few years no tractors were built by Ford Motor Co.  Then Henry decided to make another entry into the tractor business using the 3-point hitch system designed by Harry Ferguson, thus the Ford-Ferguson.  Then about 1947 Henry (or Henry II) decided he didn't need Ferguson any longer and the Ford 8N made its debut in 1948.  Shortly after that Harry began building Ferguson tractors.  I have a 1952 Ferguson T 30.  I think there was maybe some 1951 models.  Ferguson's next move was to hook up with Massey Harris which resulted in the Massey-Ferguson and I think that took place in the late fifties.  
By Gordon_M - Friday, August 12, 2011 10:11 PM
John Dameron (8/12/2011)
  ... about 1947 Henry (or Henry II) decided he didn't need Ferguson any longer and the Ford 8N made its debut in 1948.  Shortly after that Harry began building Ferguson tractors.    

I can remember that was an interesting story from a British perspective.  It is always told here that Ford allied with Ferguson till they had a tractor design, then cut Ferguson out and just produced them as Fords.

Ferguson went to court and took back all his patent stuff, like the three-point hitch, effectively stopping the sale of Ford units this side of the pond, and then Ferguson went into production on his own.

The UK is full of broken Fordson Major tractors, because they used a cast-iron sump, and the main pivot point for the front axle is mounted in the middle of that casting.  Run into something hard with a front weehl and you are chin down in the dirt with oil everywhere.
By Bill White - Saturday, August 13, 2011 12:41 AM
Ford-Ferguson information

An immediate success, the 9N's configuration became an industry standard, which was followed by other tractor manufacturers for fifteen years. Henry Ford passed leadership of his company to grandson Henry Ford II in 1945. By 1946, the younger Ford discovered that, despite its success, the Model N lost Ford Motor Company over $25 million dollars in six years. He reacted by forming Dearborn Motors in November 1946, which took over tractor distribution from Ferguson. Ford informed Ferguson that after July 1947 they would no longer supply tractors to his company. Ferguson sued Henry Ford II, Dearborn Motors and Ford Motor Company and others for $251 million in damages on the basis of patent infringements and conspiracy to monopolize the farm tractor business. Ford Motor Company claimed the patents had already expired by the time of Dearborn Motors' incorporation. Ferguson won the lawsuit.

By Gordon_M - Saturday, August 13, 2011 7:42 AM
Thanks Bill

That would be when $251 million was worth a lot more than it is now ....
By Jeff Lakaszcyck - Saturday, August 13, 2011 5:46 PM
Ray88 was on the right track, but Bill White had the name we were looking for. The Toppins Tractor Truck company was formed in Milwaukee in 1923 to build trucks based on the Fordson Tractor. According to John Montville in "the American Car Since 1775" the Toppins truck never got beyond the prototype stage. Thanks to Dan Souday for the Toppins ad.
By Brocky - Monday, August 15, 2011 4:38 AM
I believe that the 9N was introduced in 1939 as the Ford-Ferguson and then a slightly improved 2N in 1942. The 8N came out as a Ford in 1948 and Ford sold, and made a profit on, enough of them before Ferguson won the patent infringement lawsuit so that $251 million was just operating expense!!

In 1953 the larger NAA was introduced as the "Golden Jubilee" model for Ford's 50th anniversery. I am not sure of the details of Ford merging with New Holland machinery of New Holland PA, but today they are marketed as New Holland Agriculture.
By Bill White - Monday, August 15, 2011 5:08 AM

The 9N was first demonstrated in Dearborn, Michigan on June 29, 1939

The 9N would have been an even greater success in terms of sales were it not for the outbreak of the Second World War and American participation in 1941, a development which made raw materials for production of the Ford farm tractors difficult to acquire. Because of this, in 1942, Ford was forced to cease production of the 9N in favor of the 2N, a revised version of the tractor designed to use materials that were not as scarce. The 2N was basically the same as the 9N in terms of specifications, but featured steel wheels and replaced the generator and battery with a magneto.

The 9N was revised a number of times, until being relaunched as the 2N in late 1941

Ford 2N (a.k.a. Ford-Ferguson 2N)
Featured steel wheels
Generator and battery of 9N replaced by magneto
All other specifications similar to Ford 9N
Produced from 1942-1947 at Dearborn, Michigan

Official production of the 8N tractor began in 1947

The Ford 8N represented a refinement of the 9N / 2N line. One of the most important developments in the new line was the four speed transmission that made the tractor a good deal more productive and flexible. The Position Control system was also useful in that it allowed implements to remain at the same height relative to the tractor, as opposed to the automatic depth control on the original Ferguson system that had allowed the depth to vary. The Ford 8N still basically used the same Ferguson System that had been incorporated in the 9N / 2N line, and this unauthorized use of the Ferguson patents was one of the main contentions in the Ferguson lawsuit. The lawsuit, filed by Harry Ferguson after the termination of the handshake agreement, claimed damages for loss of sales because of the ending of the marketing agreement and because of the infringement of his patents, and went on to be one of the most lengthy and costly suits of its kind. The Ford 8N would have had a longer and still more successful run were it not for fierce competition from the Ferguson TO-30, and the lawsuit, which eventually forced Ford to have to use a new hydraulic control system and make other changes to avoid using patents that were held by Ferguson. These changes were incorporated in the new Ford NAA, often called the Jubilee. This Golden Jubilee logo was used to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the founding of Ford at the time of the NAA launch in 1953.

Ford bought Sperry New Holland and formed Ford New Holland Inc.

Fiat, purchased an 80 per cent interest in Ford New Holland and the full integration process was completed at the official launch of New Holland at there worldwide convention in 1994

By Brocky - Monday, August 15, 2011 7:15 AM

Thanks for the details in the history lesson. I had never known that much info as how the line evolved and grew.

Thanks again
By Bill White - Monday, August 15, 2011 5:49 PM
You are more than welcome Brocky,

By Richard - Tuesday, August 16, 2011 2:22 PM
Couple of more improvements in the tractors --hope I remember this correctly  as I've had a coujple of them.  First off, the series number, ie 9 in  9N is the year it was introduced, like 1939N, 1942N, 1948N.  The 8N introcuced the side mount distributer, rather than the one in front of the engine.  Also,I think the 8N introduced 2 brake pedals on the right side, which  then allowed left , right , or both brakes to be applied and still left your left foot free to operate the clultch. IF my memory is off, i'm certain somebody will correct me --too many other makes of tractors since the Fords.
By Bill White - Tuesday, August 16, 2011 2:36 PM

Official production of the 8N tractor began in 1947. Equipped with a 4-speed transmission, this model was destined to become the top-selling individual tractor of all time in North America. The most noticeable differences between the 8N and its predecessors was the inclusion of a 4-speed transmission instead of a 3-speed in the 9N and 2N, and an increase in both PTO and drawbar horsepower. The other big change on the 8N was the addition of a 'Position-control' setting for the hydraulics. This change was made partially to improve flexibility in varying soil conditions, and partially to evade Harry Ferguson's patent on the hydraulic system, since Ferguson's production agreement with Ford had been terminated at the end of the war. The original automatic draft control on the Ferguson system would allow the depth of the implement to vary based on soil conditions, which did not work well for some implements. The new Position Control setting bypassed the draft control and allowed the implement to remain at a consistent position relative to the position of the Touch Control lever. A continued drawback to this series of tractor, was the safety need for an overrunning clutch at the end of the PTO shaft. This was addressed with the advent of the PTO overunning coupler.
The 8N was equipped with running boards and was painted gray on the sheetmetal and red on the body. It was the first Ford tractor to feature a clutch on the left side and independent brakes on the right. The wide-spaced front wheel design of the 9N and 2N was retained. In 1950 the 8N design changed to feature a side-mounted distributor, as well a Proofmeter located on the lower right portion of the dash.