~ Antique John Deere Tractor Information ~
The predecessor of Waterloo Boy came about in 1892. It was made by thresherman John Froelich. It is called the Froelich tractor. Scale Models of Dyersville, Iowa made a 1/16 scale toy tractor of this tractor. In March 1918 Deere & Company decided to continue its foray into the tractor business by purchasing the Waterloo Gasoline Engine Company which manufactured the popular Waterloo Boy Tractor at its facilities in Waterloo, Iowa.
Deere & Company continued to sell tractors under the Waterloo Boy name until 1923.
John Deere Model D (Spoker D)
Despite a rather severe farm economy depression at the time, Deere management decided to build a Model D prototype in 1923, designed by Muir L. Frey (father of Ford Mustang designer Donald N. Frey). The Deere Model D was produced from March 1, 1923 to July 3, 1953, the longest production span of all the two-cylinder John Deere tractors. Over 160,000 were made.
The first Model D rode on steel wheels with a 6.5 × 7 in (170 × 180 mm) (later 6.75 × 7 in (171 × 180 mm)) two-cylinder hand-cranked engine rated 15–27 hp (11–20 kW). It was not, however, the first tractor to bear the Deere name - as a number of Deere experimental tractors, and the John Deere Dain "All Wheel Drive" tractor (of which approximately 100 were produced during 1918 and 1919) had all carried the Deere name before the D.
By 1925, the company realized the standard Model D did not meet customers' needs for industrial applications. Steel wheels were not suitable for hard surfaces, and the gearing was too slow for safe road speeds. Solid rubber tires were added, and engineers fitted a 28 tooth sprocket to the final drive, giving a road speed of 4 mph. The company replaced the 465 cu in (7.62 l) 2-cylinder engine with a 501 cu in (8.21 l). In 1926, Deere advertised the model the "John Deere Industrial Tractor" with 40 × b inch rear wheels and 24 × 3.5 in (610 × 89 mm) fronts with solid tires. This would become known as the DI. Options also included wheel weights.
Following the D, John Deere initially introduced a new model known as the C. The C tractor came with a 312 cubic inch engine which produced 20 HP along with a 3-speed transmission. The model C was made during the years 1927 and 1928, with a serial number range of 200111 to 200211.
On June 20, 1928, the model designation was changed from "C" to "GP" to avoid confusion with the "D" when dealers were phoning in orders to the factory. "GP" stands for General Purpose. This new model GP had the same horsepower, engine displacement, weight and 3-speed transmission as the model C. The GP's first serial number was 200211 . In 1930, the GP was updated with a 25-horsepower, 339 cubic inch engine.
The John Deere model GP continued in production, and was built in five distinct versions through the course of its production:
- The standard-front GP, or John Deere Standard, built from March 1928 to February 1935.
- The John Deere two-wheel tricycle-front GP, or GP-Tricycle, of which twenty-three units were built between August 1928 and April 1929
- The John Deere GP Wide-Tread, or GPWT, built from November 1929 to November 1933
- The John Deere GP Wide-Tread Series P, a GPWT with narrowed rear tread width designed to suit potato rows, built between January and August 1930.
- The John Deere General Purpose Orchard tractor, or "GPO", from April 1931 to April 1935. This tractor had specialized shielding for groves and orchards and around low-hanging branches. Some GPOs were fitted with crawler undercarriages from the Lindeman Brothers in Yakima, Washington. These are commonly known as "GPO Lindemans".
The much larger G model arrived in 1937. It was fitted with a 36-horsepower, 425 cubic inch engine and a 4-speed transmission. John Deere publicized the G as a 3-plow tractor and was built until 1941 when the GM came along (GM stands for G, Modernized). The GM model was made from 1942 to 1947. The power was increased to 38 horsepower and a new 6-speed transmission was also added. The G model got a restyled front at this point as did the other John Deere tractors models. The GM had electric starting and lighting added to it options. During its production time the G tractor was available as a hi-crop, single front wheel and styled.
Unstyled Row Crop TractorsDeere made their first unstyled rowcrop tractor in 1929 to compete with the Farmall. It was a modified GP tractor with adjustable rear wheels and a narrow front end. In 1933 Deere started experimenting with what would come to be known as the model A. The new model A went into production in 1934. The A launched Deere into the rowcrop farming maket. The A was by far the most popular two cylinder tractor that Deere produced. The next year the model B was introduced. It was one third smaller than the A which made it ideal for smaller farms. A few years later, the Model G was introduced in 1938. It remained unstyled for several more years than the A and B. The Unstyled tractors launched Deere into the rowcrop farming market which they are still a major part of today.
Streamlined lookIn 1938 John Deere hired well known designer Henry Dreyfuss from New York City to re-style Deere's agricultural equipment, especially its tractors. The first two letter series tractors (the A and B) were the first to receive the new modern styling, and other models were added later. The Dreyfuss styling was intended to help John Deere compete with the forthcoming Farmall Letter series of tractors, which along with Ford-Ferguson, were John Deere's largest competition at this time.
The 1930s and 1940s saw a large number of different John Deere models emerge, as small farmers emerging from their Depression troubles increasingly turned from horses to tractors. John Deere's GM model was introduced in 1942, and was made until 1947. Power was increased to 38-HP and a new 6-speed transmission was also added. The G model got a restyled front at this point as did the other John Deere tractors models. The GM had electric start and lights added to its options. During its production time the G tractor was available in hi-crop and single front wheel versions. The G was restyled in 1941 but did not start to roll off the assembly line until early 1942. Like the smaller A/B tractors the G model also had the 6-speed transmission added to it. In 1946, the 1946 model "D" had a 501 cubic inch engine, which was enormous for the day. Two new additions to the tractor line, namely the M and R models were also added.
After the Models A and B got new styling, both tractors were given a 6-speed transmission in late 1940. The A was 29-HP out of a 321 CID engine while the smaller B was both 18 and 23-HP reflecting the earlier and later updates between 1938 and 46. The 14.84 model H was given the Dreyfuss look from the time it was introduced in 1938. The H broke a fuel economy record when it was tested in Nebraska. This tractor also had 3 variations that came out in 1940-41. The H tractor was 14.84 horsepower out of a 90 CID engine and had a 3-speed transmission.
In 1939, the restyled model D appeared. The D was a 42-HP tractor, and weighed 5,300 pounds. Options available on this tractor included electric lighting and starting. In August 1940 John Deere introduced the new model LA which was followed by the model LI. The LA had a 77 CID engine with 14 belt horsepower. The John Deere G tractor was restyled in 1941 but did not start to roll off the assembly line until early 1942. Like the smaller A/B tractors the G model also had the 6-speed transmission, but also featured electric lights and electric start.
In 1947, John Deere opened a new tractor factory in Dubuque, Iowa, built to produce the John Deere M. The M was created to address the increasing demand for small tractors and compete with the increasingly popular Ford and the smaller Farmall tractor models. The M was the first Deere tractor to use a vertical 2-cylinder engine, with a square bore and stroke of 4.0 × 4.0 inches.with a high row crop.