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Discussion Starter #1
I have a 1954 Massey Ferguson TO30 and it was running fine and then all of a sudden it started spitting and spuddering. I loosened the bolt on the bottom of the carb and drained the gas out, I cleaned out the sediment bowl and also replaced the in-line fuel filter. The tractor starts right up on the first try and it will run and I can run my cultivator through about 2 rows and then it starts trying to cut off.

I put it in neutral and pull the choke and it will run for a few seconds and when I try to pull off it starts doing it again. Does anybody know what this could sound like and maybe a few things that I can check? Could the spark plugs cause this? Thanks for any input and/or advise.

Jonathan
 

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Try it without the inline filter, the sediment bowl is all ya need
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Okay thanks! I just had someone else tell me also to add some lead to my gas. I'm also going to try to change the points and condensor. I'm hoping this would help and any other advise or comments are welcomed. Thanks

Jonathan
 

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It cain't hurt to change points and condenser and service the air filter, also check that the hose from air filter ain't perished and collapsing, my money is stiil on that inline filter;)
 

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Jesus Saves
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Although new to this forum, I too have had this problem but my situation stemmed from trash in the tank settling around the sediment bowl screen in the tank. As long as the governor is not pulling fuel faster than it can gravity flow thru the clogged up screen in the tank then your ok. When you are plowing and the demand for fuel seems to be higher then your tractor is starving for fuel. When you let it rest it will slowly fill the bowl in the carb and you can run well until the supply get less than demand once again.

Check your tank for rust trash etc... You may want to consider a tank coating after a good tank cleaning. You can buy a kit to do just this.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Okay, I was looking at my fuel tank after reading the post from smoky and when I checked the sediment bowl it had a thick layer of rust colored material in the bottom. I pulled the tank off and removed the gas and it came out an orangish (don't know if that's a word lol) color which looked like rust. So I was going to throw some nuts and bolts in the tank and shake it up to try and remove some of the rust but upon inspection, there is a rectangle shaped plate that seems to be loose in the tank which I just don't feel it should be that way. Does anyone know what this could be?

I called a guy here in my area and he has two TO30 tanks that he's willing to sell for $50.00 and should I take my chances on them as well or is the loose plate inside of my tank normal?

Once I either attempt to clean my tank or replace it with another I'm going to go ahead and have the carb cleaned for good measure since I don't know the last time it was serviced before I bought it. I also replaced the plugs and I have a set of new points to put in this week. Thank you for your suggestions, I really appreciate it. Thanks JJ for your reply, I'm also going to remove the fuel filter when intalling the tank back on the tractor.

Jonathan
 

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Junk collector
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Check your coil, plug wires, and distributor cap terminals for corrosion. I recently had nearly the same problem with my TO-35, the culprit turned out to be heavy corrosion inside the distributor high tension terminal.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Do you know how to tell if I currently have a 6V coil or a 12V? Of course the tractor was a
6V and the guy converted it over to 12, but I would have thought he would have changed everything over but what would happen if he didn't change the coil to a 12V? Would it even run at all? Many thanks from a newbie!
 

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Retired - Veteran Mod
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I'd say that you've found your culprit (the rust in the bottom of the tank).

I've successfully used POR15 (this is NOT an advertisement for the product... it's just the only similar product that I've personally used) to coat the inside of a cleaned gas tank (Ford 8N, Ford 860 and MF TO-35). In the meantime (until you can get to coating the tank) make sure that all 3 of your screens are clean (they should be the same as for an 8N Ford)... and get rid of the inline filter... and servicing your oil bath air cleaner is a wise choice... if you've never done it... it's WAY past due.
 

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When you change from 6V to 12V you must install a 12V coil or install a ballast resistor in the primary coil circuit. The tractor will still run with the 6V coil and no resistor but you will have about twice as much current going through the coil and points, shortening their life. My tractor was converted to 12V before I got it and I installed a BWD E40Z coil. This is a 12V coil which requires no external resistor.
 

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Do you know how to tell if I currently have a 6V coil or a 12V?
To be technical, there is no such thing as a "6 volt" or "12 volt" coil. Coils are parts of designed systems with matched parts that work together.

A tractor with a 12 volt battery and charging system starts on 9 volt and runs on 13-14 volts. No 12 in there at all. For good starting, you need a coil that can make 30,000 volts minimum with 9 volts fed to it.

In your case, main issue is . . . does your coil need a resistor and bypass for starting.

Put an ohm-meter across the two small primary terminals and check resistance. If 2.5 ohms or lower, you need a ballast resistor. If higher, e.g. up around 3 ohms or higher, it has an internal resistor and you do not need an external resistor.

As far as lead additive, or other things mentioned. None make sense as to your problem, but the rust in the tank certainly does. You need to install a vertical screen up into the tank bottom. This way you get lots of surface area and the fuel inlet won't plug from debris. If it gets real bad, coat the inside the tank like other have mentioned. I've been using Kreem for 40 years, but there are other brands that probably work just as well.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Okay, thanks everyone for your advise. Here's what I did:

I found a guy not from me who had two tanks that were identical to mine and I found the best one of the two and bought it for $50.00. The inside looks like it's brand new, not a sign of dirt or rust anywhere. I installed the new tank, filled with new gas, re-installed the oil bath air filter, replaced points and condensor, replaced the plugs and removed the drain plug on the carb to let anything out before starting. Started it up and it started on the first crank as usual.

I let it idle for a few minutes and then I started making a few passes with my cultivator, I was just waiting to hear it start spitting and sputtering but it ran like a top for approx 15 minutes. I didn't have a lot of time last night because a storm was moving in so I couldn't run it any longer. I'm hoping that this takes care of my problem and I think it has, but I still may have my local guy remove and clean my carb just to ensure I don't have any problems this winter. Thank you all again and I appreciate everything.

Jonathan
 
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