An Overview of N-Complete Tractor Parts
By Tom Seest
At ClassicTractorNews, we help classic tractor lovers keep up with the latest news for classic and vintage tractors.
N-Complete Tractor Parts recently expanded their facility to offer remanufacture of antique Ford tractors. They take several old tractors, upgrade them with modern equipment and then sell these at market.
Experienced Staff – When searching for parts specialists for your tractor, experience is key in ensuring that you purchase the appropriate components.
Table Of Contents
One of the key components of any tractor is its engine. As its centerpiece, this vital component provides power for everything from lights and brakes to hydraulics and electrical systems. Many original tractors built during the 1950s or 1960s still run today as sources of pride and nostalgia for their owners, often passing down through generations as each owner makes modifications or enhancements along the way.
Some enthusiasts take their tractors a step further by entering pulling competitions. Here, even small details become significant – especially for high horsepower heavyweight classes where every detail counts. Winning requires plenty of low-end torque from its engine to move the sled forward; thus requiring extensive research and planning by builders in order to have success at pulling competitions. Some top competitors add roller rockers, aftermarket camshafts, or custom cylinder heads in order to increase horsepower while simultaneously decreasing RPM for better acceleration.
Antique enthusiasts may also be fascinated with stationary engines used on early farms and ranches to pump water, grind feed, power electrical plants, and even grandma’s washing machine. These engines were typically powered by belts from large pulleys on either side of them – not self-powered – which were usually towed from farmstead to farmstead during harvest seasons to aid with tasks such as threshing grain (oats, wheat or barley) in one day.
Some members will use hot fire from a forge and hammers to manipulate iron into intricate forms, such as gate hooks, steak turners, coat hooks or even reshaped plowshares. This form of art is known as blacksmithing and requires highly skilled practitioners; those at the forefront in this hobby typically spend considerable time perfecting their craft before offering repair services for old equipment.
Old tractors were built with engines integrated directly into their frames, which made them very heavy. Maintenance costs were high and repairs often had to be repaired or rebuilt; these tractors were often used for plowing, driving mowers, and powering attachments such as aerators and sprayers. Today’s versions, seen on television shows or agricultural expos, tend to be larger and more powerful machines with either full suspension seats or leather ones, air-conditioned cabins, comfortable driver seating arrangements, and air conditioning for comfort when driving them.
Most antique tractors utilized some form of sliding gear transmission. This was designed specifically to meet their task requirements and did not contain synchronized gears, requiring you to stop, switch gears and then start up again if you attempted to shift on-the-fly.
Recently manufactured tractors feature intelligent transmissions that make driving them much simpler, enabling on-the-fly gear changes and power shifts without needing a clutch. While this makes driving simpler, its downsides include taking longer to accelerate fully and possibly more risks of slipperiness in gear changes which could cause damage.
These transmissions feature oil-soaked gears hydraulically actuated for smooth control. Some tractors use hydrostatic transmissions; these operate similarly to CVTs but use fluid connections rather than mechanical ones, which may reduce heat build-up more efficiently.
Some individuals have converted modern trucks and cars into antique tractors as an experiment in curiosity, though this practice can prove costly for farmers. There are a few companies that specialize in remanufacturing older tractors for agricultural use; N-Complete Tractor Parts specializes in rebuilding Ford N Series tractors among others as well as selling parts to other remanufacturers nationwide and worldwide.
Hydraulic systems offer an easy way to perform mechanical work at the push of a button. Hydraulic systems can lift heavy loads or power implements that do the work instead of the tractor operator, using hydraulic oil fluid as the medium to convert pressure and flow into force and motion.
The system consists of three elements: hydraulic oil, a pump, and valves to direct where hydraulic fluid flows. Hydraulic oil serves to cool the system and remove contaminants while also transmitting energy; while its pump converts mechanical energy into hydraulic pressure that’s then transferred via hoses to cylinders. Furthermore, valves play an integral part of this system by controlling where the hydraulic fluid goes – either manually or electronically.
Tractor hydraulic systems consist of one master cylinder connected to numerous slave cylinders by pipes of different lengths and shapes, connected by pistons with piston-to-piston connections. When pressurized with hydraulic pressure from a pump, oil from between these pistons squeezes out, creating transmitted pressure that causes these smaller slave cylinders to move – turning wheels of tractors, operating PTO blades or lifting implements are among their many uses.
RICHARD JOB: Tractor hydraulics are an incredible technology. Back when I started farming in the ’50s, they mainly consisted of something to raise and lower your three-point hitch and possibly one remote cylinder to lift your hay rake or plow. Nowadays, however, tractor hydraulics have advanced significantly; now running air planters simultaneously with seed application as well as fertilizer application simultaneously and even driving the back axle of tractors are just some of their capabilities.
Hydraulic systems must always be treated as hazardous materials and therefore require special safety precautions when in use, including the use of an energy isolating device that prevents the physical release of energy as well as making sure all pressure has been released before beginning work on equipment. Furthermore, anyone working on hydraulics must familiarize themselves with lockout/tagout procedures and requirements in order to complete such work safely.
Not just tractor hydraulics are ubiquitous; we rely on them daily! Hydraulics are found everywhere from fairground rides, lifting equipment (e.g. passenger elevators, forklifts, and dentist chairs) and elevators to ship winches, commercial vehicle tail lifts, security gates & barriers, and aircraft (such as Concorde). Many may take for granted how dependent we all are on hydraulics!
Antique tractors can be equipped with an assortment of equipment designed to fulfill various functions, including front-end loaders, belly mowers, row crop cultivators, corn pickers, and pipe tractors for cleaning sewer pipes and sanding down fire hydrants. Other tractors used for harvesting timber and transporting logs possess special features to prevent any unnecessary damage to trees and other plants they carry. These may include features such as lower overall profiles; reduced tree-branch-snagging risk (via spark arrestors on exhaust pipes and large sheet metal cowlings that allow branches to deflect off rather than catch); special snagging rods or devices; and, oftentimes, wire cages to safeguard operator.
Antique tractors can often be remanufactured using their original parts and with meticulous care and attention paid to detail, recreating them exactly as when they left the factory. Tractor remanufacturing companies such as N-Complete specialize in stripping down old tractors to their core, replacing worn-out parts with aftermarket versions, and repainting them back to their original colors; other remanufacturers use parts purchased from tractor parts dealers and then carefully reassemble the machine using meticulous processes.
Restoration projects for tractors are a labor of love that can become quite costly. After one has been completely restored, issues may still arise that need fixing; owners then have two choices in such instances: either work around it with compromise to efficiency; or search for parts that might either be hard or very expensive to find.
Repairing or replacing older tractor parts may be costly and time-consuming, but antique tractors are an enjoyable drive and are prized for their beauty, nostalgia, and history. But for anyone just getting into antique tractors for the first time, Les Gitts, owner of a 1939 Allis-Chalmers Model B featured in Antique Power’s May/June issue suggests doing your research first before making a purchase decision. Gitts advises examining one’s intentions when considering which model would make an excellent fit – whether that be nostalgic childhood memories or displaying craftsmanship and engineering that went into building an old model.
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