My 135 Journey

   / My 135 Journey #1  


Feb 26, 2021
Massey Ferguson 135 Diesel
I purchased my first tractor this past weekend, a 1966 MF135 Perkins diesel. She’s an ugly old pig but seems to be in fair shape mechanically, cranking immediately and running smoothly without smoke. In the coming weeks I plan to change all fluids, chase down and repair all of the chopped/spliced/disconnected wiring, and clean/degrease/prep for paint.

   / My 135 Journey
  • Thread Starter
Started degreasing and cleaning with the pressure washer. Then started pulling things apart, starting with the sheet metal. A 4” grinder with knotted wire wheel made some quick work of paint removal.

   / My 135 Journey #3  
It looks like your 135 is going to look factory fresh once you're done. Keep us in photos as you make progress. While the metal is off, you might want to check valve lash on the Perky.
   / My 135 Journey
  • Thread Starter
Well as factory fresh as a first time paint job shot in the driveway with a HF gun will allow. Lol The tough part is going to be prepping everything else. I don’t care to spend weeks scraping and cleaning the entire chassis.

I will look into the valve lash as suggested while it is apart. I also think the trans is topped off with water. Drove it around the yard a bit and had water all over the top of the case afterward when I stopped so I assumed it is pushing out somewhere. The tractor sat outside so water may have entered around the shifters.
   / My 135 Journey #5  
Sad how OEM wiring is always systematically destroyed and replaced with your typical Mechanics or DIYer style wiring, butt connectors and BLACK TAPE.

Good solid tractor to pursue in this used category. We almost bought one in 72. Should have, but bought a cheaper off-shore tractor that came with more options. Paid the price twenty years later on trade-in.
   / My 135 Journey
  • Thread Starter
I will take a butt connector and electrical tape over this mess any day. I am searching for the logic in using a couple of wire nuts and some smaller gauge wire to make this connection to the alternator. Oh, and lets just twist that wire together finger tight in the center...

The gas gauge doesn't work....likely because the single wire running from the sending unit is cut and draping down the side of the tank.

I've got to find a wiring diagram and chase all of this down.

   / My 135 Journey #7  
A pig?! Looks perfect to me! I've got two 135's and both of them are a hot mess in the wiring department. And both of them crank up without hesitation so Ill take it!
   / My 135 Journey
  • Thread Starter
Disassembly and cleaning continued today with the removal of the gauges and dash. The rust on the hood was a little tougher to remove and I may end up taking it somewhere to be blasted. Once I get a few more things removed, I’ll roll it out for several rounds of Purple Power, oven cleaner, and finally a phosphoric acid rust converter.

Anyone have any experience with those $40 gauge sets on eBay? I have read they can be inaccurate but how far off can they be?



   / My 135 Journey #9  
If you are like me, this is where the project would stall! Everything put in boxes until next week which then turns into ten years! lol
   / My 135 Journey
  • Thread Starter
Lol. I can’t. I need this thing back together for spring cutting. The list is getting long, paint, tires, gauges, maintenance items. Right now I have more time than money.