Cropmaster Diesel, new user questions

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oju
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Joined: Tue May 31, 2016 12:12 pm
Location: Finland

Cropmaster Diesel, new user questions

Post by oju » Tue Jul 05, 2016 12:57 pm

Hi all,

As a new guy here, both in the club and the forum, I thought I could write a small introduction.

I live in Finland. At some point in my life I thought buying an old tractor would be a great idea(!) since they are more versatile than ATVs/quads and relatively cheap. I was looking for a low budget solutions since I don't think the amount of intended use could justify spending a lot of money on that. Renting things proved to be difficult since many of the companies are reluctant to rent large equipment for short periods.

It didn't take long before I was offered a David Brown from 1965. As it turned out the documentation begun at 1965, apparently due to mandatory registration (and taxes!) that year, but the tractor was way older. It was so ugly that it was almost cute, I just had to have it. It is an Cropmaster Diesel with a serial number starting with PD125xx. Can you help to determine the exact year of production?

The 'modern' safety cabin is most likely made in Finland. The Finnish law required a safety cabin to be installed on new tractors since 1969. The question in this case is that why would someone install one on a 20 years old tractor? One explanation could be that the owner at the time had some bad experience of tractors rolling over. The cabin is not heated but it's better than nothing, so another explanation could be that the tractor was used for forest work during the winter.

The front wheels are equipped with original hubs but the rest is from a bus. Maybe it is the same bus that left two seats inside the cabin. The air filter is of the new model. At least the bracket has been cut and welded with the new one.

The alternator doesn't do anything but the electric system seems to be re-wired with grounded chassis.

The gearbox will collect rain water if not protected. Is it only the gear lever seals that let in water or is there something else to consider?

The funny thing is that the tractor was registered as an DB 25D, which made me get the wrong instruction book in the beginning. Obviously I blamed myself for not reading the chrome text with 'Cropmaster Diesel' on the side. When looking on the internet you can sometimes see something labeled 'Cropmaster 25D'. Has the 'Cropmaster' name been used with later models in some areas or is the confusion coming from the visual similarity of the models?

There are not many Cropmasters or D25s in Finland with the original engine block since they were prone to crack when freezing. Can I somehow see if the engine is original? Another thing that makes David Browns hard to restore over here is that the importer changed several times during the decades and the old stocks of spares have been lost. That's why I joined your club.

--
Mika
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ollek
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RE: Cropmaster Diesel, new user questions

Post by ollek » Tue Jul 05, 2016 2:34 pm

The Cropmaster saw daylight in 1947 and the diesel engine was first fitted to the Cropmaster in 1949. The cab on your tractor is well made but "home made". There was never a cab available from the manufacturer or the importer in Finland for Cropmaster tractors. If I can remember right, then there was a few small manufacturers in Finland that offered cabs for retrofitting to different tractors. If you click on "DB Tractor Range" in the left hand column you will find some pictures and details for the tractor. The tractor had originally a seat for two persons and there was also a protection in front of the drivers knees. The production of Cropmaster ended in 1953 and the tractor was superseded with the 25. Water will get into the transmission only via damaged gear lever boots. There was not a tractor called Cropmaster 25 D, the model designation is Cropmaster or 25D. These are in many aspects different tractors.

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oju
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Location: Finland

RE: Cropmaster Diesel, new user questions

Post by oju » Tue Jul 05, 2016 10:14 pm

Thanks.

I am wondering if it would be possible to pinpoint if this is a -49 or -50? It is difficult to know without any knowledge on how the manufacturing was spread over the years. The numbering does apparently start from 10 000, not 0, so we are very close to the first years.

I got a crash course on the differences between the Cropmaster and the 25D, when I tried to change the gear box oil with the information from the 25D manual. The picture just didn't look right ;-) On the other hand, some parts are from later models, which is natural with something as old as this.

The hydraulic pump has also been replaced at some point.

Some of the solutions on the cabin are so clever that I think it is based on small scale production, at least I would focus on totally different things if I would make just one for myself. Later repairs makes it look worse than it is. It would still be interesting to know when it was made.

The front lights are of H4-type with low/high beam, which means that they are much later upgrades.

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oju
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RE: Cropmaster Diesel, new user questions

Post by oju » Tue Jul 05, 2016 10:34 pm

The cabin looks right with the windows tilting inwards and the good fit on the wheel arches. I would still say that the person responsible for the cabin didn't own the tractor since he blocked all access to the fuel filters on the left hand side.

The cabin is bolted onto the tractor, so you can remove it, if needed.

broadsword
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Joined: Thu Jun 12, 2008 9:17 pm
Location: Holmfirth, Huddersfield

Post by broadsword » Tue Jul 05, 2016 11:00 pm

The serial number PD12500 will date the tractor to approximately Feb/March 1951. The engine number is stamped on the side of the block (on the side opposite the fuel pump) and should be probably number 2500 to 2700, the engine numbers were slightly out from the chassis numbers. The engine number should also be on the chassis plate attached to the dash and in theory should match unless its had a replacement block / engine fitted.
Hope this helps.

Andy

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oju
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Post by oju » Wed Jul 06, 2016 9:03 am

Thanks, I'll check the numbers.

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dexta
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Location: Haverfordwest, West Wales

Post by dexta » Wed Jul 06, 2016 8:05 pm

as broadsword said, pd12500 would be around feb/march 1951, I like the look of your tractor. I too own a db cropmaster diesel, its quite early in the production run, its chassis number is PD100**
Cheers

Dex

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oju
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Location: Finland

Post by oju » Thu Jul 07, 2016 8:52 am

DBTC list of serial numbers indicate that the numbers PD 10001 - PD 18000 (?) were used. How many of these were built, if 8000 is not the right amount?

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erkki
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Post by erkki » Thu Jul 07, 2016 12:05 pm

Cropmaster -series including all variations consists of about 60 000 units.

W.B.R erkki

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ollek
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Location: South West Finland

Post by ollek » Thu Jul 07, 2016 1:44 pm

It is important to know that the Cropmaster series of tractors were discontinued when the 25C, 25D, 30C and 30D went into production in 1953(4). The Cropmaster had a single speed pto and no tcu function in the hydraulics. These two features were standard fitment in 25 and 30.

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dexta
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Location: Haverfordwest, West Wales

Post by dexta » Thu Jul 07, 2016 7:09 pm

the cropmaster had 2 speed pto and belt pulley.
Cheers

Dex

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oju
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Location: Finland

Post by oju » Fri Jul 08, 2016 12:39 pm

Yes, there should be some kind of covers for the PTO and/or belt pulley to cover the other when you use one of them. Does anybody have good pictures of those?

The total amount of Cropmasters is surprisingly large, but how many Cropmaster Diesels were made?

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oju
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Re: Cropmaster Diesel, new user questions

Post by oju » Thu Mar 30, 2017 9:50 am

Starting the tractor below 5 degC seems to be hard. A feature also mentioned in the Finnish Government Agricultural Machinery Test Facility report from February 1952, so this is not necessarily depending on the age of the tractor. I installed a heater on the engine cooling hose and after two hours of heating starting was very easy, even in subzero temperatures. Usually the start involves a lot of rotating and smoke, now only a few cranks resulted in a clean start. I decided to use heating even in the summer! The engine is running in the picture, without any visible smoke.

There are some generators offered on ebay as alternatives for the original dynamo. Is any of them an easy fit? I already have negative ground but the bracket for the dynamo is made of thick steel and lacks adjustment possibilities, so I would prefer a 'bolt on' solution. The big question is if the pulley will remain in the original position or whether the bracket has to be adjusted.

I raised the new roof so that I fit inside without tilting my head. The shape is not perfect but it does not collect water anymore.
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db2d
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Re: Cropmaster Diesel, new user questions

Post by db2d » Thu Mar 30, 2017 12:06 pm

The original CAV dynamo sat in a cradle and was held in position with clamping bands. Replacement Lucas type dynamos will fit but new clamps may be required.
What is wrong with the original? These can easily be refurbished and are by far, a better dynamo than any modern replacement.
Back in the nineteen fifties there was an alternative smaller diameter pulley and drive belt available to increase the output at lower RPM.

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oju
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Location: Finland

Re: Cropmaster Diesel, new user questions

Post by oju » Thu May 04, 2017 12:33 pm

Hi, yes, re-furbishing the original dynamo might be a good way go.

On another topic, I tried to adjust the oil pressure on the oil pump and could not find the adjustment screw described in the maintenance manual. How do I Increase the oil pressure? Picture of the pump with the filter removed, I understood one should now be able to access the adjustment screw.

I finally found the numbering on the engine block, it says:
MC (or MC?) 17315A-1
F30156
Apparently the engine is newer, from an DB25D? Can anyone share a bit more light onto that based on the numbers?
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