It's fathers day and that gets me to thinking of dad and his tractors. One of the last Massey Harris tractors he owned was a sweet running 44-6. It was the only Massey I didn't have in my collection, wasn't having a lot of luck finding one.
I sat down and wrote a story for Wild Harvest a Massey collectors club news letter or a small magazine how ever you want to call it. I wrote a lot of stories for them back then. In this story I mentioned how I wanted a 44-6 so I could complete the Massey’s in my collection My daddy owned.
Was about 6 months latter I get a letter in the mail forwarded from Keith in Iowa from a fellow in Saginaw Michigan. He said he had read my stories and liked them a lot. Then he asked If I had found a 44-6 yet and if I hadn’t to give him a call at the number in the letter.
It took several calls and messages left on both our parts, me working all night and him working days and farming every spare minute. Finally we made contact maybe it rained that day or I had the night off don't remember.
He tells me he isn't a Massey man but a Allis guy. He had picked up the 44-6 several years ago from a fellow in Lowell Michigan who lived next door to his dad. It sat under the roof of a double corn crib but still didn't have a bunch of protection from the weather.
One day while visiting his dad he walked over to the neighbors place and asked if they wanted to sell the Massey he had need of a tractor about that size. A deal was struck, he trucked the tractor to his Saginaw farm and used it that summer and for the beet harvest that fall. He decided to over haul the engine that winter, Ran it all the next summer then when spring came and he was going to plant his beets with it wouldn't start. Being planting time he didn't have time to fool with it as by then he had several Allis in his collection. It had sat in a far dark corner of his machine shed for 3 years when he read my story in a friends copy of Wild Harvest who was a Massey Harris nut of the tipples, 333,444, and the 555.
We made arrangements for me to go look at it about a week latter. It turned over free and seemed to be tight. Oil checked good and there was anti freeze in the radiator. tires were OK but the rear rims were not so hot the bead of one pushing the up turn of the rim out enough you could see the tube, but they held air.
We struck a deal and made arrangements for me to get it and bring it home. Since it wasn't running I borrowed a friends trailer that sat lower than mine to get it. We pulled it out of the shed with his near mint 37 WC. Once we got it to the rear of the trailer we used his 185 with the front loader to push it up on the trailer.
Once I got it home I hooked the battery charger up to it and turned it over a few times. after putting some gas in the tank.
I pulled a couple of plugs and they were wet, getting fuel. Tested to see if I had juice at the coil and that checked OK. But there was no spark from the coil to the rotor. Changed the coil on it and We had fire. I used it and the Model 27 plow to plow the pasture for my neighbor then I used a old unknown set of disk to work it up. I did use the 44 standard to pull the Massey grain drill and plant the pasture mix though.
I must say My favorite tractor is the 101R with the Chrysler 6 but the second is the 44-6. both are sweet sounding and running tractors.
Happy fathers day Dad and all you other dads out there.