John Deere 50

Production: 1952 - 1956  

Production

Manufacturer:John Deere
Type:Row-Crop tractor
Factory:Waterloo, Iowa, USA
Total built:32,574 (total)
29,746 (gas)
2,097 (all-fuel)
731 (LP-gas)
Original price:$2,011 (1954 )
The John Deere 50 was introduced to replace the model B. These new tractors offered a number of advancements including duplex carburetion, live Powr-Trol hydraulics, and a fully-independent PTO.

John Deere 50 Power

Plows:2
Drawbar (tested):28.11 hp 21.0 kW
Belt (tested):31.20 hp 23.3 kW

Mechanical

Chassis:4x2 2WD
Steering:manual
power*Power steering became an option in 1954.
Brakes:expanding shoe
Cab:Open operator station with padded seat.
Transmission:6-speed unsynchronized gear

Hydraulics

Type:open center
Pressure:930 psi 64.1 bar
Pump flow:8.9 gpm 33.7 lpm

Power Take-off (PTO)

Rear PTO:independent*Optional
Rear RPM:532

Serial Numbers

Location:Right side of tractor frame, ahead of belt pulley.
1952:5000001
1953:5001257
1954:5016620
1955:5021977
1956:5030600
End:5033751

Electrical

Ground:Positive
Charging system:generator
Batteries:2
Battery volts:6
Battery AH:85

Engine Detail

John Deere
gasoline
2-cylinder
liquid-cooled
Displacement:190.4 ci 3.1 L
Bore/Stroke:4.6875x5.50 inches 119 x 140 mm
Air cleaner:oil bath
Rated RPM:1250
Firing order:1-2
Starter volts:12
Coolant capacity:23 qts 21.8 L *Early, non-pressurized system.
19 qts 18.0 L

Transmission

Type:unsynchronized gear
Gears:6 forward and 1 reverse
Clutch:dry disc

Dimensions

Wheelbase:90 inches 228 cm
Length:132.75 inches 337 cm
Width:86.625 inches 220 cm
Height:59.825 inches 151 cm
Operating weight:4855 lbs 2202 kg *Gasoline tractor with cast 11-38 rear wheels.
Ballasted weight:5439 lbs 2467 kg *With fluid in rear tires.
Front tread:7.3/11.2 inches 18/28 cm
Rear tread:56 to 88 inches 142 to 223 cm

Restoring a 1956 John Deere 50 Tractor

In the world of antique tractors, the John Deere 50 holds a special place for enthusiasts and collectors. These iconic machines are not just mechanical marvels; they are symbols of nostalgia and the agricultural history of America. One such John Deere 50, a 1956 model, found its way into the hands of a father-son duo who embarked on a challenging yet rewarding restoration journey.

The Acquisition

The story begins with a father and son who share a deep passion for old tractors. They decided to take on a father-son project and purchased a 1956 John Deere 50 from a fellow enthusiast. However, the tractor had been sitting idle for a year, and it came with its fair share of challenges. The engine was seized, and they knew they had their work cut out for them.

Restoring the Heart

The first major hurdle in this restoration project was freeing the stuck engine. Fortunately, with some effort and expertise, they managed to break the engine loose. The tractor was now on the path to recovery. The engine was rebuilt, and the tractor was soon running smoothly. However, there was one persistent issue – a mysterious noise emanating from the transmission whenever the tractor was in motion, especially under a load.

The Transmission Mystery

The father and son's mechanical instincts led them on a quest to solve the transmission mystery. They ruled out engine-related issues and focused their attention on the transmission. Initially, they were advised that it might be a bearing in the clutch/pulley assembly. They disassembled it and replaced the worn bearing but were disappointed to discover that it did not resolve the problem.

They received further guidance that the noise could be coming from a bearing hidden beneath the gear reduction cover. Upon investigation, they found that the two bearings in the PTO drive gear were indeed in bad shape and noisy. These were promptly replaced, but the noise persisted.

Seeking Help from the Community

Frustration was mounting as the father-son duo found themselves striking out in their attempts to pinpoint and eliminate the noise. Feeling perplexed and eager to get the tractor back to its former glory, they turned to the vintage tractor enthusiast community for advice.

The community members shared their experiences and insights. Some suggested checking the bottom shaft in the transmission, as it might be a bad bearing causing the noise. Others warned that worn gears in the transmission might be the culprits and that, in some cases, it's nearly impossible to entirely eliminate transmission noise.

They also considered axle bearings as a possible source of the noise. However, they were reassured that axle bearings typically make different sounds like pops or grinds, not a continuous whine.

A Detailed Inspection

Determined to get to the root of the problem, the father and son decided to conduct a more in-depth inspection of the transmission. They carefully followed the guidance provided in the JD shop manual. While they knew it would be a significant task, they were ready to do whatever it took to resolve the issue.

A Valuable Bond

Throughout this journey, the father and son strengthened their bond as they tackled challenges and learned together. They persevered through countless hours of work, troubleshooting, and discussions with fellow tractor enthusiasts.

Conclusion

The restoration of the 1956 John Deere 50 tractor has been a labor of love, patience, and perseverance for this father-son team. While they haven't completely eliminated the transmission noise, their dedication to preserving this piece of agricultural history is commendable. It serves as a testament to the passion and commitment that many collectors and enthusiasts share for vintage tractors like the John Deere 50. This unique project has not only resulted in a beautifully restored tractor but also in the creation of lasting memories and a stronger familial bond.

John Deere 50 Video

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