Ford 5400? Year?

   / Ford 5400? Year? #1  

urbantech

New member
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Nov 15, 2019
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10
Tractor
Ingersoll 4020
Hi all.

I bought an industrial loader/backhoe from a local meat packer last week that was advertised and sold as a 1980s Ford 755 for $4500. It didn't take me long to figure out with a 3 cylinder diesel it's not a 755. It took me days to understand where people were saying the ID numbers are, but I found them yesterday, and I'm attaching a photo. Having a hard time deciphering just what the numbers mean. If it's a 4500, what year was it made? The model number seems to indicate it's a gas model, though it has the diesel engine in it.

The tractor ran pretty good when I tested it in their field, although it backfired constantly when opened up, there's hardly a neutral position on the power reverse shifter, so hard to get in and out of neutral and shift gears, and there's some leakage in a couple hydraulic cylinders. I drove it home about 14 miles, and right off the RPMs were going up and down quite a ways running about 2/3 throttle. The temperature was getting toward the top of the meter, around 200, so I shut it down a couple times to cool down, although I see now the temp meter shows 160 when it's cold, so a new meter is in order. I got about 3 miles from home and stopped for a minute, but when I restarted at idle throttle in gear to avoid gear grinding it wouldn't move. I observed liquid bubbling up from the boot of the shift lever. I had to leave it set til the next morning and it moved fine then. After getting it home and playing a little, it seems to be slipping terribly in reverse, can't get it to move at all in reverse without increasing RPMs significantly. I took off the trans fluid cap and the fluid is milky and was at the bottom of the gear. I put universal hyd/trans fluid in to cover the gear. I don't see a level window or dipstick. There's a lot of play in the forward/reverse lever, which I haven't looked at yet.

The hydraulic fluid in the front reservoir was low, too, and I brought it up to level. That seems to be clear, but the loader stutters from 2/3 up to the top. I'm changing oil and putting anti-stiction additive in to clean it out.

What do you think? It's obviously an older tractor than I thought I was buying. Should I go return it to them? Looking at available loaders and backhoes it seems I may not get a comparable running unit of any kind at this price. I don't need any more power than this will supply. It's actually above the range I was looking for.
 

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   / Ford 5400? Year? #2  
6C17
March 17,1966
 
   / Ford 5400? Year?
  • Thread Starter
#3  
Thanks. So I'm right in it being a 5400?
 
   / Ford 5400? Year? #4  
"45021F" will be a 4500. IIRC, the backhoe is a 752, but don't hold me to it.
 
   / Ford 5400? Year? #5  
Looking at the pics I agree looks to be a 1966-1967 4500 The hood louvers were dropped in the 1968 models.

But I think the backhoe is a model 755

The crowd cylinder and lift cylinder pin spacing on the boom is wider on the 755. The 752 is the side shift model with rotary swing.

The 750 ,753 and 755 are center mount

750 and 753 were used on the 3500 model.

Not certain, but the 4500 may have been available with any of them depending on how it was ordered.

750 was a 10 foot, 753 called a 13 foot, and the 755 was the 15 foot version.

I recently bought a working but rough 1977 Ford 550 TLB with the 755 and from what I can gather the 4500 is the predecessor.

Congrats on the new TLB
 
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   / Ford 5400? Year?
  • Thread Starter
#6  
Thanks!

Ah, so the description from the seller was the backhoe model, not the tractor, and the 755 tractor was made from 79 to 84. He was sure it was an 80s model tractor, but he's just an employee and was probably tasked with getting rid of it. He had to ask the general manager if he could take $4500 for it. I'll have to look at the engine numbers to see if it was swapped from a gas model and is newer than the tractor, because if I'm not mistaken, that fourth number, 2, means it's a gas tractor.

You can see from my photo names that I thought it was a 535, by looking at photos on the tractor sites and picking out the placement of the Ford logo on the front and the shape of everything. Now I can spend fifty bucks on a service manual and know I have the right one.

Does anybody have an idea what numbers on the engine identify when it was manufactured? This makes me leery about getting the right parts for that, too, since some of the same displacement engines had different diameter cylinders and such.The tag on the fuel pump is unreadable, even with the paint dissolved off.
 
   / Ford 5400? Year? #7  
I paid a bit more at $8000 but the main thing I was looking out for was a non leaking torque converter seal and that the trans had to have good pushing power.
Mine has lots of broken parts that have been re welded and other leaks and electrical problems.

Check out a couple vids on working on the power reverser transmission

If the deal isn't a Done deal yet. -Not trying to scare you off. but if you can not get the trans to work reliably in reverse- It could be the seals or friction discs a problem that requires splitting the tractor and that requires front engine cover removal as well as front axle and engine to get to the torque converter, pump and clutch packs. Reverser valve body can be accessed from under the fuel tank without engine removal if it is like the 550-555.

I have had bad luck with transmissions in everything from cars to trucks to skid steers. so hopefully this one keeps working, but even if it does I have plenty of other things to fix up on the 550.

That said Still happy with my purchase, and have already done a Lot of work with the 550. These mid sized backhoes have some weight and hydraulic power that will sure move some dirt.
 
   / Ford 5400? Year? #8  
Thanks!

Ah, so the description from the seller was the backhoe model, not the tractor, and the 755 tractor was made from 79 to 84. He was sure it was an 80s model tractor, but he's just an employee and was probably tasked with getting rid of it. He had to ask the general manager if he could take $4500 for it. I'll have to look at the engine numbers to see if it was swapped from a gas model and is newer than the tractor, because if I'm not mistaken, that fourth number, 2, means it's a gas tractor.

You can see from my photo names that I thought it was a 535, by looking at photos on the tractor sites and picking out the placement of the Ford logo on the front and the shape of everything. Now I can spend fifty bucks on a service manual and know I have the right one.

Does anybody have an idea what numbers on the engine identify when it was manufactured? This makes me leery about getting the right parts for that, too, since some of the same displacement engines had different diameter cylinders and such.The tag on the fuel pump is unreadable, even with the paint dissolved off.
The giveaway for it being a 4500 is the "hard nose" square radiator shell. The other models had a sheet metal nose like an ag tractor.
The engine can be identified by this chart I made up by matching the S/N located at the bottom, RH center of the block OR RH front bottom boss of the engine. The S/N is what identified the original engine (it could have been rebuilt and bored out to the larger size) and the date code will be located in the same area that identifies the original build date. It should have a 333 engine in it. The 333H didn't come out until the 80's. My chart is only for diesel engines
 

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   / Ford 5400? Year?
  • Thread Starter
#9  
Thanks for the chart. I'll look at the engine when it's light and stops raining.
 
   / Ford 5400? Year? #10  
Thanks for the chart. I'll look at the engine when it's light and stops raining.
Thanks!

Ah, so the description from the seller was the backhoe model, not the tractor, and the 755 tractor was made from 79 to 84. He was sure it was an 80s model tractor, but he's just an employee and was probably tasked with getting rid of it. He had to ask the general manager if he could take $4500 for it. I'll have to look at the engine numbers to see if it was swapped from a gas model and is newer than the tractor, because if I'm not mistaken, that fourth number, 2, means it's a gas tractor.

You can see from my photo names that I thought it was a 535, by looking at photos on the tractor sites and picking out the placement of the Ford logo on the front and the shape of everything. Now I can spend fifty bucks on a service manual and know I have the right one.
How is it Going on the 4500? I ended up doing the same in ordering a full Paper original service manual.
The seller blue toothed a digital version to my phone and it evaporated somehow... Really like these old Ford tractors.
 
 
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