By now the rally season should be in full swing, our diaries filled with dates of shows and events,
but sadly this is not the case and the remainder of this year's calendar looks to be far from certain.
Although the vaccination programme has been going well there is still over half the population to be vaccinated and, once they have had the first dose, there is up to twelve weeks to the second, followed
by a further twenty-one days before that is effective, so it will quite a while to completion.
Event organisers will understandably question whether either the paying public or exhibitors will wish
to attend in sufficient numbers to justify the costs involved to stage the shows, given the social
distancing and other regulations that will be in force. Let alone how they are to manage the logistics
needed to meet the enhanced marshalling, nor how to safely provide the basic facilities that new
guidance will require, and should anything go wrong, as someone is always deemed to be at fault these
days, of being sued. Not an easy choice!
DfT: (Department for Transport): On 1st February tyres that are over ten years old are banned from
use on steering axles on HGV's and PSV (Heavy Goods and Public Service Vehicles), and, although
the regulations are now in force, the FBHVC are working to further clarify the regulations. Of most
interest to members is probably how VHIs (Vehicles of historic interest) are affected by this regulation. Frankly, as with many government edicts the regulations are not easy to understand so I asked Lindsey Irvine who is the Legislation Director for the FBHVC for guidance. The Federation is extremely active
on our behalf and I am indebted to have received this comprehensive and helpful reply from Lindsey
which is reproduced in full below.
Vehicles of Historic interest.
I am sorry that my articles on the new tyre requirement still left some area for doubt. I have to confess
I still have to consult my crib sheet to ensure the subtleties of the testing legislation and tyre
requirements are distinguished. There is some more updated guidance here on the FBHVC website : https://www.fbhvc.co.uk/commerical-vehicle-tyres-age
The decision to ban tyres 10 years or older on the front steering axles of HGVs, buses, coaches, and
trailers has been enacted into law by amendments to the Construction and Use Regulations. Firstly,
they apply to HGVs (i.e. goods vehicle with a maximum gross weight exceeding 3,500 kg) less than
40 years old. Secondly, they do not apply to vehicles of historic interest (VHI) unless that vehicle is
used for commercial purposes.
A "vehicle of historical interest" in this context means a vehicle which is considered to be of historical interest to Great Britain and:
a.which was manufactured or registered for the first time at least 40 years ago;
b.is of a type no longer in production (as defined in EU Regulations); and
c.has been historically preserved or maintained in its original state and has not undergone substantial changes in the technical characteristics of its main components.
As my column sought to explain, this means that HGVs older than 40 years but registered after 1960
(and not substantially changed) will not have to comply by law with the new tyre date requirements. However, there is no change to the requirement that they are still subject to MOT testing whether
or not used commercially.
"Commercial use" in the context of HGVs (i.e. over 3.5 tonnes) is best defined as carriage for hire or
reward, or in connection with any trade or business carried on as set out in the Goods vehicle
(Licensing of Operators) Act 1995. If the VHI, as defined above, is carrying a tractor for hire or reward
it will be a business or commercial use and have to comply with the tyre regulations; if post 1960,
the HGV will have to be tested in any event. If the post 1960 HGV is not carrying the tractor for
hire or reward (e.g. it is the tractor owner's own vehicle) it will need testing but not have to comply
with the 10 year old tyre rule. (Although as you recognise and as the FBHVC website states, the
tyres need to be regularly checked.)
Older VHI and Testing
If the transporter is a pre-1960 HGV it is normally exempt from MOT. However, it will be subject to a
test even if undertaking this for free or is the owner's own vehicle. Again it will not be subject to
the tyre rule unless carrying the tractor under a commercial arrangement.
Though you have not referred to Vehicle Excise Duty in the context of your question, I should also set
out a reminder that any commercial use of an historic vehicle affects its nil band historic VED
 The Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) (Amendment) Regulations 2020
2 HGV Inspection Manual https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/
3 (The Goods Vehicle (Plating and Testing Regulations) 1988 Schedule 2 para 30 requires the vehicle
and trailer to be unladen in order to be exempt from testing))
Following a 'Zoom' meeting of your Committee and encouraging news of a gradual return to events,
we hope the Newark Vintage Tractor and Heritage Show will go ahead in November. If it does, we
plan to hold our delayed AGM at the show; further details will follow as soon as available.
Whilst ratification of our accounts is required at the AGM, a summary can be found on our website.
This confirms an increase in membership and an encouraging level of merchandise sales, though the
only show attended during the year was at Malvern in February.
With the exception of stationery/postage and insurance costs, all expenditure was reduced considerably
and provided us with a positive excess of income over expenditure of £5,672.
Your continued support during lockdown has been wonderful and the influx of new memberships quite surprising - a total of 62 - all of which has provided a solid basis for the future of the Association.
IMPORTANT INFORMATION - FFA Membership/Subscription Renewal
You will only be a member of the Association and receive the Ford and Fordson Tractors magazine,
if you renew your subscription through the Club. If you subscribe VIA KELSEY PUBLISHING, you will
not be a member of the association, although you will receive the magazine.
We are ambitious to maintain and increase our membership level and will always remind you via email
or letter that your renewal is due, immediately after you have received the last issue of your current subscription.
Your prompt reply is appreciated as we often have 150-200 renewals for an issue of the magazine,
and it is quite a task to ensure we sign everyone up for a further twelve months.
We are delighted to say we now have a card facility for payment purposes, a welcome addition to our payment options. The direct debit arrangement with GoCardless remains popular, as do bank transfers
and cheque payments, but it is entirely your choice
We look forward to your continuing support. Keith and Jane Broomhall
Welcome to John Maiden, the FFA's new representative for Dorset
John lives in Wimborne and his occupations include signwriting and deer
management; he is also a Dorset magistrate so please make sure your tractors
His love of tractors is well known in his local area where he started and helps to
run the "East Dorset Trac Pack", a group of 160 members with a mixture of
and grey vintage tractors, who would usually meet bi-weekly at a local pub.
The group is popular within the community and, despite lockdown, they were
to arrange three tractor runs in Wimborne and the surrounding villages during
A favourite with the Trac Pack is the annual Christmas parade in favour of Save
the Children and they often attend events organised by other associations.
John is a big Ford fan, since changing tractors two years ago, and enjoys the
friendly rivalry between the various makes within the Club; he owns a 1966 Ford Pre-force 3000. He says he particularly loves the Ford styling, simple engineering,
and parts availability. Also, that if Ford tractor underpants were made, he
would probably wear them! A believer of 'if it's not blue, she'll not do! A new product for
our range of merchandise perhaps?
As with all vintage tractor enthusiasts, John cannot wait for shows and events to recommence.
Martin Carley reports on the progress Miguel Davis is making with his Dexta in France: I am gradually
moving on with my Dexta. You will probably realise that 'originality' is not where I am coming from,
but I have made a start on the electrical side and am pleased to say the tractor now starts. I have
added a battery isolator for safety and changed the polarity so that the Dexta now has a negative
earth which is necessary because I will do away with the dynamo and fit a new alternator that is on
order. I shall be starting the wiring for the instruments next weekend and I'm waiting more parts from Agriline; hopefully they will arrive soon.
Roy Cowgill's Ford 5610 Narrow:
I first laid eyes on this quite rare Ford 5610 narrow tractor when attending the Newark Tractor Show
in November 2019, when it was up for auction on the sale field, but decided against buying it due to
too many other projects which were on the go at that time.
A few weeks later when speaking to the owner the subject of the 5610 came up and we did a deal
for the tractor to come home to Ayrshire, much to the dismay of my family. First impressions were
the cab had to come off, it was a bit rough and had no head room and while looking quite sturdy was
only sittting on the wings and the footplates so not very secure. So off it came and after a short
test run the list of tasks required was collated:-
1. Repairing the seized handbrake.
2. Moving the exhaust outlet from just under the near side footstep (which did a great job of keeping the midgies away but was not so good for the driver). So I moved this to the more
usual 5610 position at the front of the left hand bonnet.
3. Next was to sort the steering which required 8 turns lock to lock and was not helped by the
very worn track rod ends.
4. The rear link arms had been broken and rewelded and were rattling about at every
connection point with the tractor.
5. Electrical wiring had been fabricated using domestic electrical cord and was shorting in
So on to the handbrake repair which required the rear wheels to be removed - and a note of caution - always check the rear wheels are not full of water as these were, some 450kg in each so this had
to be removed first so the wheel could be handled safely. Once the wheel was removed the brake
linkage, which is completely different to a normal Ford, was removed and the shafts freed off and
lubricated before refitting. Moving the exhaust was easier with a manifold change and an additional
hole cut in the bonnet to bring the exhaust to the vertical position in line with standard 5610's.
The steering arm from the steering box had been shortened, so by fitting a s/h arm bought from Neills Tractor Spares the number of turns was back to normal and the replacement of the track rod ends gave
a positive steering once again. When working on the axle the pivot bearings on each king pin were also replaced.
The rear link arms were removed and a new pair were bought but the only ones available were straight
so I had to take them to an industrial press to have them bent to match the angles of the originals.
All the pivot points were rebushed, the lift links were freed off and a new bearing fitted to the levelling
box. When I was working on the linkage no drawbar was fitted to the tractor so I decided to fit a
10 series pick up hitch / swinging drawbar which became quite a challenge as the lift arms coming
off the cross shaft are straight and so are closer into the centre of the tractor than a standard tractor,
this required the cantillver brackets to be changed to allow everything to clear as is shown in the
photgraph. The hydraulic hoses and couplings had to be changed from a horizontal layout to a vertical position again for clearance.
The electrical wiring was so bad nothing could be saved so it was easier to start from scratch. The wiring harness is in three bits:-
1st the front section from the multi plug in the front of the tank, forward to the lights, horn, air cleaner
valve, alternator and starter.
2nd section everything around the instrument panel ;- instruments , switches, indicators, fuses,
connectors to the front and the rear harnesses.
3rd rear loom to each wing , trailer socket, brakelight switch , and number plate light.
Section 2 the instrument section I found a brand new original from 3275roberts on Ebay. With
this in place it was a fairly simple task to joint at the multi plug and fit the 1st.front section to it
using a spare ford 5000 loom converted to an alternator lay out.The section 3 the rear loom was
nearly all there and only required some repairs to get it all working.
While I had intended to keep the paintwork original it was not possible due to the damage to the wings
and the instrument /tank cowal because of the cab movements. With the cowlling and the wiring etc removed the opportunity was taken to respray the whole unit. As everyone knows, when undertaking a project like this, the list of tasks continues to grow all the way through. The safety isolator switch failure. The position control lever had a missing knob which, on investigation, was down to the lever being
made out of half a ring spanner!. I still have a couple of jobs to do, one of which the sharp eyed
readers will have seen, the two bars sticking up from the top of the steering arm on each wheel which
I believe were used to fit font mud guards, I have left them on for now and may fit some new ones
later to reduce the spray during road runs. A new set of tyres is also on the pending list, but not
now as these are in good enough condition.
Martin Carley asks if anyone knows the fate of the Pinewood Dexta's:
As part of my duties as a newly appointed 'Scene man' whilst at the BBC in 1964, I would go to
pinewood studios to collect scenery that BBC designers had ordered to be built into their sets.
My job was to collect and then once the programme was finished, to make sure that the hired scenery
was safely returned.
Whilst at the pinewood scene dock I saw several Delta's; they were used to tow trailers around the
various stages. These tractors were very basic, and were as far as I can recollect, without hydraulics. What I would like to know is, what happened to these tractors? Where did they go and does anyone
know if any of them still exist?
Graham Farmer's labour of love during lockdown:
Graham, who hails from Somerset, has spent lockdown hard at work transforming his latest projects
and has added five more tractors to his ever-growing collection. The condition of the tractors varied considerably but all were stripped, shot blasted, resprayed and reassembled with new parts, panels and tyres.
First a New Performance Super Dexta arrived in December 2019 from Matt Young
in Tavistock. Followed in January by a Pre-Force Ford 5000, purchased unseen on-line from Mid Wales.
Next was a Pre-Force Ford 4000 requiring a lot of TLC. after a phone call from Leonard Bartlett of
Honiton who was selling his ex-yard scraper tractor, seen here as received and transformed.
Graham's search for a Pre-Force Ford 3000 was a brief one, thanks to George French and within a
couple of days a deal was done. Most recently a Pre-Force Ford 2000 followed with its original seat! Speaking with Jim Farrant, Graham mentioned his quest to find a 2000. Coincidentally his partner Sue had seen one advertised on Facebook at Redditch. Graham bought it over the phone and two weeks later
they went together to fetch the tractor. His Pre-Force collection is now complete.
Lastly, Graham decided to give his 1957 Fordson Major Diesel a birthday treat; the tractor was
purchased from a friend around twenty years ago, the established restoration formula was followed.
All parts were primarily sourced from Colin Perryman of Cornwall and Sparex.
Possible forthcoming events:
The future is uncertain but the first events being planned to early July include;
Whitwell Steam & Country Fair: 26 - 7 July
Flyde Vintage Steam & Farm Show: 3 - 4 July. Do check with the organisers
Pink Ladies Ride Again 4th July
Fordson Super Major Combine D.T.61: from a brochure kindly sent to me by Brian Dye. I have no idea
how successful it was but it really does look the business. Translating the brochure with considerable
help from Google, it claims to be well equipped, for its time, the cutter bar had a conventional auger
and hydraulic controls for both the height of cut and for the pickup real. The drum was fitted with
five rasp bars and had a concave with 'sliding' dehorning plate and stone trap.
Cleaning was by three straw walkers mounted on crank shafts, a frogmouth sieve with an
interchangeable one below and a returns system with rubber flap , roller chain conveyor. Interestingly
it had full electrics and makes great point of saying that there are no crossed belts, and that it is a standard tractor. However the claim that two men could mount it on the tractor in a day, given
France's love of long lunch breaks sounds a little farfetched to me. It would be interesting to know
if any survive and how well they performed.