-As Annie and I go down the road we get lots of waves and ppl even stop us and comment about her and ask a few questions. They always say she looks nice but the other comment which I never had before until her is “she runs great”. She does too….. this old tractor does run great but I can;t take any credit for that. That credit goes to the J.I. Case company for a great design. After all, Annie ran darn good when I bought her and at that time she had a leaky gas line, crushed carb floats, 2 burnt valves, a cracked head and 3 broken valve springs and shot spark plug wires…. That she ran is amazing in itself, but that she ran good enough to drive 6 miles home is … well.. beyond description.
I almost gave up on Annie for I hadn;t planned on the cracked head. But, for some reason I stuck with her and now as I go down the road with her giving her throaty bellowy sound I smile for I love to hear her run. Obviously others do too and I get a lot of compliments on how good she runs…. I don;t mind saying I am proud of this tractor. But, not for what I did to her, but for she is.. well .. one great quality tractor that was designed well. The amount of neglect and abuse she took and kept running was just unspeakable…. no machine should be treated that way. But, she spends her days here at the Meadow now in semi-reitirement, ready to go back to work when I get a plow set-up for her in the next couple of years…… When she does pull something the sound that comes from her motor is beautiful…. reminds me of a old car with that deep sounding growl and just exudes power.
ONe really neat thing I learned lately and have now taken action to get is that the Case IH company has on record all the Build Cards for the tractors made by Case. A build card was tied to the tractor when they started buidling it and along the way it was checked for passing each step or it was listed what was wrong and that it was fixed. They tell you the date it was built, any special options it had, the rpm’s it maxed out at, the rpm’s the governor kicked in at, the dyno test where they tell you the horsepower it put on the drawbar and belt drive and other bits of info such as what dealer it was sold to and if it was already sold the name of that person also. This is a dream come true for a collector like myself. I plan on hanging the photocopy of the build card over Annie’s parking space…. Old tractors are great mysteries for who knows who had them, what they went through or where they had been. Unlike my Old Allis most tractors are a mystery and we collectors always lament we wish they could talk. Well, a build card takes us back to their movement of “birth” on the assembly line and we can trace it till it leaves the factory. Annie left Racine, WI in 1949… now I at least will know what date she was built and when she was shipped and where too…….if the implement or tractor dealer still exists I probably then will be able to get her sales slip copy signed by the original owner…. and the address of where that farm was…. if I have any luck perhaps the same family will still own that farm……. if not at least I can drive by and take pics… and stand there and imagine Annie going across the surrounding fields…..
Yes, I almost gave up on Annie…. for a while I wish I had.. then when I started her the first time I fell in love…. While Old Allis is still my first tractor and the apple of my eye… Annie has turned me into a Case guy….. I like Allis Chalmers,,, I always will…. but from now on… the garage will be filling up with more tractors from the J.I. Case company…. with one exception… a Oliver…..but that is another story in itself…..
In closing, we will get back to collies tomorrow…. but today I thought we could take a moment to share about the tractor that captured my heart because when I realize how badly she was neglected and then heard her run after restoring I knew I had a treasure… she has heart and she wants to run….. Roger Welsch wrote “We love old tractors for old tractors have souls.” Yeah….. they are machines… but somehow, in someway they have some sort of a soul….. and that is why I cherish my Annie………