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Massey Ferguson Standard Torque Data

The torque requirements are only published for some of the tractor fixings.  Where there is no published figures, then Massey Ferguson issue standard torque data.

  1.  The first figure listed in the rows below (bold type) is the nominal size in inches.
  2. The second figure is the torque in lb-ft  of non-rigid joints, limited strength nuts and standard nuts with lock washers (definitions given at end of this page).
  3. The third figure is the torque in lb-ft of bolts, nuts and cap screws used for rigid joints.


1/4 in, 5-6 lb-ft, or 8-10 lb-ft

5/16 in, 10-12 lb-ft, or 15-18 lb-ft

3/8 in, 19-22 lb-ft, or 30-35 lb-ft

7/16 in, 33-38 lb-ft, or 50-55 lb-ft

1/2 in, 47-53 lb-ft, or 76-85 lb-ft

9/16 in, 65-73 lb-ft, or 115-125 lb-ft

5/8 in, 100-125 lb-ft, or 155-170 lb-ft

3/4 in, 175-200 lb-ft, or 270-300 lb-ft


Non-Rigid Joints

Where deformity or damage would occur if higher forces were used.

Limited Strength Nuts

Maximum recommended torques for slotted nuts, weld nuts, etc.

Standard Nuts With Lock Washers

Where lock washers are used under the nut.


Ferguson FE35 Restoration

Philip has kindly sent in some photos and video of his Ferguson FE35 Goldbelly restoration.

The tractor was originally purchased new by his father in 1957 and like many dissused tractors was abandoned under a hedgerow for about 20 years.  Philip rescued it and has recently been undertaking a full strip-down and restoration.

The first photo shows the tractor in a pretty awful state.  But then we see a transformation and some video (at end of article) of the completed tractor working in the polyhouse.  Philip says the engine sounds just as he remembered it, really sweet and smooth.

Subscribers may need to visit the website to see the videos if viewing this in your email.

The tractor was in dreadful condition before the work began, having spent so much time abandoned outside.


Ferguson FE35 tractor, unrestored


But then came a lot of hard work, dedication and many hours in the workshop…


Ferguson FE35 Gearbox


FE35 engine being rebuilt


Rebuild FE35 tractor engine


MF35 or FE35 hydraulic pump, Ferguson tractor


Grey gold Ferguson during restoration


Fuel tank for FE35 tractor


FE35 chassis castings with undercoat paint


Gold paint applied to tractor


Paitwork of tractor nearing completion


FE35 gold and grey tractor


High quality tractor restoration

The smile says it all


The completed tractor

My turn to have a go!


Restored Ferguson back home to do some work

Delivered back home


Completing a quality and full restoration like this is huge task, but is one of the most satisfying feelings to see such a quality rebuild.  Well done to Philip and we hope the tractor gives him many more years of faithful service.

Many thanks to Philip for sending in these photos and videos for us all to enjoy.

The first video shows the frist starting of the engine.  Initially there was a faulty injector, but this was repaired and then the engine started up and ran really well.

The second video shows the tractor back at work in Philip’s polyhouse.  Good for another 50 years!



Improved Bracket – Hydraulic Top Cover Removal

Here at VTE we already have a simple bracket design for helping to remove the hydraulic top cover for the MF35 (the same principle would apply for many other models as well).

The top cover is a heavy component and the bracket is designed so that the cover can be removed and inverted for servicing by one person.  However, because this design of bracket uses a simple hinge action it isn’t particularly easy to remove the top cover without slightly catching the delicate levers against the transmission housing.

More Sophisticated Design

Dave has sent us some photos from his place in New South Wales, Australia, of his more complex bracket that he has designed.  Dave’s bracket differs in that it facliitates an initial straight and gentle lift of the top cover, before the bracket is then flipped over for servicing.

Here are the photographs of the design (many thanks Dave!) …


Hydraulic cover removing bracket


MF35 hydraulic servicing


Tractor hydraulic servicing tool


Massey Ferguson service tool


tractor hydraulic repair tool


Can You Recommend An Engineer Or Mechanic?

We get lots of people asking if we can recommend an engineer in various parts of the country (or indeed the world)  who is good with tractor engines.

If you use a good engineer (or mechanic) and you have been pleased with their work, then please click over to the website and leave details of the company in the comments box.

It would be a really useful resource to have recommended engineers from all areas.

Thanks, VTE.


Poor Engine Overhauls

We regularly get emails coming in from people saying the’ve overhauled their engine but it still doesn’t start or run very well.

When we dig a little deeper we begin to find out why.

It always amazes us how many people go to all the time and effort of of dismantling an engine and then only do half a job of refurbishing it.


Just Buying An Engine Kit Won’t Cut The Mustard

All too often people buy an engine kit and fit it, but fail to do a decent job of the valves or the head.  Or worse still they replace the piston rings, think that the pistons themselves are OK, maybe just use a honing tool on the cylinder liners because, well, they don’t look all so bad do they?


Worn liner

Worn liner


I know we don’t like to spend our hard earned cash unneccesarily and replace parts that are serviceable.  However, if the rings are worn, so usually are the pistons they run on and the liners they run in.


Skimmed engine block with new liners fitted

Skimmed block with new liners fitted. Note the cross hatch hone marks clearly visible.


Every so often engines develop a broken piston ring for no apparent reason, when everything else is in good condition, so that may be an exception.  But wait, are you really sure that broken ring was a one off or did something else cause it.  Occasionally things do break for no apparent reason, but more often there is a cause.


We Didn’t Bother To Re-Gring The Crankshaft

“It didn’t seem all that bad.  There were a few rough spots on it but I didn’t have a micrometer to measure it, thought it would be OK.”

Vintage Tractor Engineer’s blood is now reaching boiling point.


Grinding a crankshaft

Grinding of the crankshaft is a specialist job


Valve Seats.  I Used Some Paste And Sand Paper

Is rubbing the valve seats with a bit of paper really going to create a sufficiently good sealing surface?  OK, so yes, it will improve them.  Re-cutting will be a much better job with new valves and guides.  Sometimes a new valve seat needs to be pressed in and then cut if the old seat is too worn.


Worn valve seats.

Worn valve seats



The Head Gasket Failed And The Engine Boiled

“I replaced the head gasket.  It went OK for a while, then it started to leak again.  I’ve got to replace the gasket again now.”

Maybe you should have realised the head may have warped or cracked.  As a minimum it needs pressure testing, probably skimming.

“It was cheaper to buy a new cylinder head than have the old one serviced”.

That should tell you something about the quality of this new head.  If it’s cheap then it’s probably rubbish.  VTE would recommend having your old one skimmed in preference to one of these cheap heads.  If your existing head is beyond repair consider getting a second hand head and having it serviced.

What Else?

  • Was the camshaft OK?
  • Timing gears or chain condition
  • Injectors
  • Injector pump
  • Cleanliness is king


There’s obviously a lot more to it than this, but the point of this article is that you need attention to detail.  Stripping and rebuilding an engine can take 2-3 days, so a few extra pounds spent on the job will often be well worth it.

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