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Hey all,

I recently purchased a well-maintained 1956 Ford 860 for my farm.

I have worked on motorcycles and old cars, but tractors are a new machine to me. I had a few questions for you guys, sorry if these are stupidly basic:

  • Does this thing take a specific octane gasoline, or is regular 87 okay?
  • Do I need to turn the fuel valve off on the tank everytime I am going to leave it for a week or so?
  • Is the ignition "hot wired"? No matter how I turn the key, left, right or center, I can still crank the engine over.
I appreciate any responses, and tips for maintaining it. I downloaded the Owner's Manual and have it for references.

Thanks in advance, some pics too:




 

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I burn 87 in mine. some guys like to burn higher octane. I believe regular leaded gasoline was 89.
I would definitely turn the fuel valve off every time I was done with the tractor for the day. Turn it
off and let the tractor run the carb dry if not going to use it for like a few months.
As far as it turning over with the key off, does it start up with the key off, or just crank over?
Some I have seen are wired to where the key will kill the tractors engine, but not kill the starter.
We have a farmall H thats wired that way. you can crank it all day long, but if the switch is not in the on position, it will not run. Nice looking tractor. Thanks for the pictures.
 

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Hello and welcome That's a sweet old Ford you've got. 860s are great little tractors in my opinion.
Your first two questions are subjective, you will get differing opinions.

Yes it will run ok with any gas, but I like use conventional gas (no alcohol) in my old tractors.
That's what was available when they were built, and like R.J. says regular was 89 octane at that time.

The only reason one should need to shut off the fuel is if the carburetor float or needle lets it leak.
I never turn off the fuel on my tractors unless I have a problem, and they sit for months at times.

Older Fords that have the starter switch on the transmission case would crank the engine without the ignition turned on.

Follow the owners manual for maintenance guidelines. That's the best source for information.

Thanks for the photos. Have fun with your tractor.
 

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Definitely a nice tractor! I always try to turn off the gas when I park mine. If it is gonna be a long time between uses, I will run it to grain the carb. My old machines like 87 octane just fine.
 

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Welcome! Vey nice ford tractor. I use cheap gas, it loves it. I do not turn the fuel off. On most of my Allis tractors I turn the fuel off. They will tell you if that have a flooding issue. My Jubilee has a neutral safety switch which is a good safety feature. Be very carefull to only start it when you are seated on the tractor.
Regards,
Chris
 
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