Donation preserves tractors | river herald

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Hal Walton, the founder of Hal Walton’s Tractor Museum in WA, is delighted to have received a donation of 400 gallon John Deere coolant. Photo by Paul McGovern

John Deere is donating 400 liters of coolant to help preserve a collection of historic tractors that embody the evolution of Australian agricultural machinery.

The coolant will go to more than 112 tractors housed at Hal Walton’s Tractor Museum in Carnamah, Western Australia.

Over the past 18 years, the museum has built up one of the best collections of tractors in the country.

The collection was started by former Carnamah Chamberlain dealership owner Hal Walton long before the museum opened in 2004.

The Hal dealer merged to become the Chamberlain John Deere dealer in 1970 after John Deere acquired a 49% stake in the Australian-owned machinery manufacturer.

“John Deere was founded in 1837 and Chamberlain operated from 1949 to 1987, so the history of this equipment is long,” Hal said.

“The machinery is stocked with coolant as it protects the cooling system from rust and corrosion, and with this donation we can afford to replace all the coolant which will last around 10-12 years.

“We are extremely grateful for John Deere’s support, as this contribution helps our goal of saving the history of Chamberlain tractors built in Western Australia and John Deere equipment imported into Australia.”

Luke Chandler, managing director of John Deere Australia and New Zealand, said it was an honor to support the museum which played a vital role in chronicling the pioneering history of Australian agriculture.

“The team at Hal Walton’s Tractor Museum has shown incredible dedication to repairing, restoring and maintaining a remarkable and fascinating fleet of machines,” said Luke.

“Each of the machines in the museum served as a stepping stone to the current fleet of efficient and highly technical tractors powering modern primary production across the country.

“Australian agriculture would not exist without its machinery, so it is vital that the history of these workhorses is remembered for years to come.”

Wayne Barry, AFGRI Equipment Carnamah Branch Manager, said it was an honor to support Hal and the museum’s dedicated team.

“From time to time we have loaned out equipment and labor when needed,” Wayne said.

“We are big fans of what Hal and the museum team have put in place for the community.

“I strongly believe that the past must be preserved, especially around Carnamah, where machinery, like what is on display in the museum, was really what built and established the area into what it is today’ today.”

Wayne said the museum is well-loved by the Carnamah community.

“It’s a great talking point and something the community can be proud of,” he said.

“It’s a big attraction that draws visitors from across the state. Visitors from all walks of life are interested in learning about the machines and what they mean to the local community and other communities like ours throughout the Western Australia region.

Hal said the most popular machine with tourists was the imported 15.98 horsepower 1917 Waterloo Boy, which was the last tractor produced by Deere and Company before the company adopted the John Deere brand with its Model D. .

“Most machines of that era were melted down for their metal during the war effort, but this Waterloo Boy escaped that duty and sat in a farmer’s shed until a doctor in California buys it, and we were able to get it for him later.” he said.

On average, between 100 and 150 hours were spent restoring each piece of equipment, and upgrade work could cost between $15,000 and $25,000.

“For all of us here, we get a real buzz when we see people walking through our museum who are amazed at the collection of tractors that have been restored and painted to look sparkling new – the machines just look like they’ve just come out of the factory” , Hal said.

The maintenance program also includes starting each tractor twice a year for a drive around the museum grounds and lubricating the bearings and bushings.

“Then we clean and polish them, then polish and clean them, then clean and polish them again,” Hal said.

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