The Little Grey Fergie

Along the way, to be able to cut grass and spread the odd bag of nitrogen to rejuvenate the grass in the paddocks I bought a Ferguson TE-20 tractor - the Little Grey Fergie - it was a TVO model (that is, it ran on Tractor Vaporising Oil ... which was paraffin with a dash of petrol added for some oomph)  

The machine had the same engine as a 1940/1950s Standard Vanguard - the real difference was that it had two fuel tanks - a small one for petrol and a large one for TVO - you started the engine with petrol and when it was warm, switched over to the TVO tank for normal running (you also had to remember to switch back before you stopped the engine so that the carburettor had petrol in for the next cold-start)

With its gear lever between your legs and a hand lever accelerator it was interesting to drive - I managed to get it re-registered and was thus able to drive it on the road (I think the distance I could go from home was limited, but I could drive the 3 or 4 miles to the garage to fill it up)

The Fergie was useful on our mini-farm with its 6-foot wide mower, transport box, spreader etc ... as well as giving two of my children some initial driving experience (at the ages of 7 and 9)

The grand plan to restore the tractor stalled through lack of time ... and the onset of cycling so it was sold to an enthusiast who did do the restoration and now takes it to agricultural shows as an exhibit.


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