News

The little tractor that could

Few classic pieces of machinery are more worthy of rescuing from a slow death than the Ferguson tractor - especially one with the work history of this little beast.

Neville Madsen's lovingly restored 1955 Fergie looks an absolute treat, thanks in no small part to the six months of hard yakka that he put in to get it back to its former glory.

Many moons ago, before he picked the old girl up from a friend's farm in Redbank Plains, this particular tractor played a role in the post 1974 flood clean-up in Ipswich.

A few years later, Nev's friend of 40 years, Des Price, bought the Fergie from a property in One Mile, driving it home at the earth-shattering top speed of 15kmh to his property at Redbank Plains, where it would provide reliable service for the next few decades.

Mr Price put the old tractor out to pasture in 2007, when it started showing a few signs of age, and it was replaced with another Fergie.

Showing just how tough these old things are, the tractor stayed out in the weather for the next eight years, slowly rusting away before Nev finally got the itch to salvage it.

"I went to Scotland a few years ago to see my wife's cousin, and the chap next door had an old Fergie," Mr Madsen said.

"Seeing it totally reignited my passion for them - I loved them as a kid.

"I got talking to Des one day about how I was looking for one and Des mentioned the one he had sitting around on his property."

Far from being a lost cause, the old Fergie, despite looking a bit sad, was in surprisingly good nick.

The Massey-Harris-Ferguson TED 20 tractor as it was found. Mr Madsen plans to take the newly refurbished Fergie (above) on the country show circuit.
The Massey-Harris-Ferguson TED 20 tractor as it was found. Mr Madsen plans to take the newly refurbished Fergie (above) on the country show circuit. Contributed

Mr Madsen was able to complete the rebuild using almost all of the original machine, bar the new tyres, some of the ignition parts, the exhaust, the lights, and a generous lick of paint.

Fergie parts are still extremely easy to find, with many enthusiasts keeping suppliers busy.

"When I picked up the radiator the guy in the shop told me it was the third Ferguson tractor radiator they had delivered that week," Mr Madsen said.

Mr Madsen spent many hours rebuilding the tractor in his Collingwood Park garage, taking it from rusted farm wreck to a little rustic charmer that's enough to get any classic machinery lover salivating.

When it turned over first go, it gave Mr Madsen a smile ten miles wide.

"We heard him over in Redbank Plains," Mr Price said of his friend's excitement at firing up the Fergie after the rebuild.

"Now that Nev has got it looking so nice I think I want it back again."

Mr Price might have a hard time convincing his friend to part ways with the old Fergie.

"I spent about $7000 working on it but they've told me you can get about $10,000 for a fully restored one like this," Mr Madsen said.

"To me they are priceless."

Mr Madsen plans to take the Fergie on the country show circuit.

Topics:  general-seniors-news restoration


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Bangalow faces the music this weekend

WORLD-FAMOUS: Didgeridoo player and winner of the 2012 ARIA for best classical album Kulkadunga, William Barton, is part of the line up at the Bangalow Music Festival 2017.

Bangalow Music Festival will offer a number of music events

199 home sites approved in Evans Head

The Evans Head Manufactured Home Estate plans. Zoran Architecture.

Manufactured Home estate approved near aerodrome

Traditional Country music festival across the region

LINE UP: Country singer Reg Poole.

The Cedar Guitar Country Music Awards 2017

Local Partners

The simple pleasures of a Bruns photo comp

GET snapping in and around beautiful Brunswick Heads and be in the running to win the annual Simple Pleasures photo competition.

Warhol star brings satire show to Brunswick Heads

Penny Arcade is an American performance artist, actress, and playwright based in New York City.

Warhol muse Penny Arcade is coming to the area this weekend

Jungle Giants' new hits in Byron Bay

ON TOUR: The Jungle Giants are a four-piece band formed in 2011 in Brisbane, formed by of Sam Hales on vocals and guitar, Cesira Aitken on lead guitar, Andrew Dooris on bass and Keelan Bijker on drums and trombone.

Quiet ferocity is their new album.

Young people on stage at Brunswick Heads

ALMOST FAMOUS: Beth is one of the youngest members of the Brunswick Heads Youth Theatre.

They will be performing two original theatre pieces

Survivor twist bound to shock

TARA Pitt benefited from a shock twist on Australian Survivor, but will everyone be happy? She’s bracing for a viewer backlash.

The Block goes back to school with gorgeous kids rooms

Ronnie and Georgia's winning kids bedroom in a scene from The Block.

ONE magical bedroom received the first perfect score of the season.

A prince is sailing around the Whitsundays

Prince of Denmark Frederik is racing on Wild Oats in the Whitsundays.

Rumours circulating about where the princess is

What's on the small screen this week

Rob Collins and Jessica Marais in a scene from season two of The Wrong Girl.

JESSICA Marais returns in The Wrong Girl.

Playing Tom Cruise's wife was a dream for Sarah Wright

Tom Cruise and Sarah Wright in American Made.

The actress stars opposite Cruise in the action comedy

Taylor Swift wipes presence off social media

Singer Taylor Swift has deleted her social media accounts

Social media wipeout prompts rumours of a new album

Swedish TV drama turns up heat

Louise Nyvall stars in the Swedish TV series Farang.

Scandinavian crime thriller goes troppo

Airbnb, Stayz and co tipped to squeeze Coast housing market

HOLIDAY BOOM: Airbnb letting is putting a further squeeze on long-term rentals.

Councils exploring options to manage the industry

Developer tears up couple's contract for new home

Jade and Edward Roberts were stung by the sunset clause on the first day of their honeymoon.

The developer has the right to do this under the sunset clause

Reports of Ibrahim family connections to farm and food hub

John Ibrahimat Bluesfest 2012.

REPORTS circulate colourful Sydney family have investments on the NR

Stunning, heritage-listed Coast home going under the hammer

STUNNING: Buderim House, a stunning heritage-listed Queenslander estate, is going to auction.

Coast home that played host to royalty is set for auction

Internet king Kim Dotcom house-hunting

Kim Dotcom and his partner Elizabeth Donnelly have apparently been in Queenstown scoping out houses. Photo / Kim Dotcom

Dotcom tweeted pictures and video of himself and partner Elizabeth Donnelly

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!