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This 40S belong to my mom's father. It is the only tractor I ever remember my Grandaddy having. I remember going with him to get it when he bought it.
I asked my dad about it when Mrs. Jim and I were in the process of buying our farm, Grandpa's place and dad's homeplace, in 1978. My uncle had it, and dad told me to forget about it.

My Grandaddy did everything with it from plowing, cutting and working land to cultivating gardens, tobacco, and hauling hay, firewood, and water for tobacco plantbeds and planting.

My Grandaddy died suddenly in 1967, and my uncle and a tenant farmer used it some, but it was used very little for 20 years plus before I got it.

My uncle had passed away, and his daughter,my cousin had it. Still it remained it its traditional parking place under the shed where I had stacked many bales of hay while growing up helping my grandaddy.

In the early 2000s, my cousin's husband casually asked me if I would like to have it. I wasn't sure if he was talking about the 40, so I had to make sure because my uncle had anotherr tractor. My answer was, well it depends what she wants for it. I knew it had sat for many years but did not know its condition. "She wants you to have it cuz she knows you will use it" was the answer.

A good friend and I went to get it. We had had some windy and stormy weather and a couple of pine trees had fell on the shed. We had to cut away some framing 2x4s and 2x6s to get it out, The building was not down against the tractor. We pulled it on the trailer and I hauled it home. I worked with it a bit, and drove it off the trailer, on one cylinder.

After further investigation I discovered an exhaust valve that was not sealing. I was told buy a local JD guy to fix the valve only and see what it would do. That is all I needed to do. I worked the dickens outta that tractor over the winter. I plowed my tobacco ground and cut and hauled firewood without any problems. In March when the weather began to warm, I cleaned it up, put some new rubber on it and have relegated it to hayrides, tractor shows, and helping out at charity events at the local elementary school. This is one that I am gonna keep purdy :!: :D
 

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Betty, the 40 was a real workhorse for its size. Thw worst feature about it iss that I believe it is the hardest tractor to get on and off that I have ever operated. If the cultivators are on it, there are 2 bars that go back to the lift from the front cultivators on both sides of the operator. It is almost like being in a cage.
 

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Yes John Deee 40s are a good tractor. Henry's was a 1953 model Pop's was a 1955 model. I had Pop when I was at the station for years and someone going thru asked what I take for it and like a fool I priced it double what it was worth and he never batted and eye and said I will take it. wish hundreds of times I had never priced it but the 40 has a sound of the 2 cyl that I love to hear.. Love your's Jim
 

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Jim that's a really good looking 40 and very pretty place you got it on. The memories you got and the rest of your family will have of it makes it priceless. I really like the picture with the tobacco seems to me it always sets a tractor off. Thanks for sharing the story and the pictures I enjoyed both.
 

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Just one quick look at the 40 and I would say that it is a beast to climb on to - but well worth the ride when you're there. Very fond memories no doubt - and you have definitely kept this one looking very pretty! So great to see people keeping their family legacies alive for their children and grandchildren to preserve and carry on. Thanks for sharing, Jim.
 

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Stephenscity said:
Thanks for the story and pics. Was that an old tobacco barn in the background?
Very observant Mike. The right side is a log tobacco barn that is VERY solid. I never remember any tobacco being cured in it though. The part on the near side with the lap siding was added and the whole barn was used as a packhouse. I added the shed on the end and back side. For those not familiar with flue-cured tobacco jargon, the packhouse is where cured tobacco was stored and stripped, sorted or graded, and tied. This must be done to get it ready to take to the market to be sold. Most of this was done after the crop was harvested and cured. The tobacco was packed on the sticks just as it came out of the curing barn until the time to "strip" it. Stripping was simply the process of readying the tobacco for the market. The tobacco curing barn here on this farm is right beside the 40 and the two trailers of tobacco. I always wanted to fix the barn back to be able to cure tobacco in it. It would have taken a winter to do it. I have used it for storage since living here, and packed up a lot of tobacco there in some years. It was probably for the best that I left it as it is.
 

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kyjohndeeregirl said:
I grew up on a John Deere 40. When I started going to tractor shows with Caseman, I asked him to find me one just like it.
I read the great story about your Deere. The 40S was and still is a very popular model and modern enuff to do lots of work.
 

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Another great story Jim! I love the picture behind the daylillies. Seems as if all the Dubuque tractors are hard to get on and off. I USED to want a John Deere "M" until I got on one...it was worse than a F-Cub Lo-boy! I know the 40's are very capable tractors and I have a renewed appreciation for them since restoring that 430W a couple years ago.
 

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Another great story about your farm. I really enjoyed the pictures of the old buildings in the background. The 40 contrasted by the day lillies makes me believe you must have a 'flair for the artistic' !! In a good way, of course. Thanks, man.
 

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Gotta put somethin' on once in a while for the "feminine" members of ATF :!: :D
 

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1955 JD 40S

I really like the top picture in your post!

Other comments--- the series that included the L & M were/are great little tractors. I have always liked them. I used to sneak on to the M crawler that was in the display at the JD implement where my uncle used to work. My Dad always ran me off from it!

I used to mow hay with a A-C WD with a "Skyline" loader on it! Even young and limber it was hard to get (into & out of) --off and on! It would not have been bad except the loader stuff in the way!

On the VAC Case I used to own; I had added bolt on steps to help.

I had made them clamp to the rear axle housing and drop down.If I remember right I had them about 8inches or so down; best to sort of see what works for you then start from there to fit to you!. They were deck plate and about 4" by 10 stciking about 2 inches away from the braket to allow foot room. I painted them orange and they looked like they had always been there!

I littl scrap diamond plate and some junk angle iron; you can dom the same! Twenty years from now you will still be glad youi did. Make sure to test them for more modification before the paint and final install!
 
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