Multi Power master class

David Bowers visits Trevor Chippendale's fine collection to examine his latest newly finished creation, a Massey Ferguson 135 Multi-Power.

eaders may recall the article in the April 2006 edition concerning Trevor I Chippendale's fine collection of Massey Ferguson 500 range tractors, which were a most impressive line-up when photographed in the grounds of his smallholding outside Great Eccleston near Preston, Lanes. So after seeing his next restoration at the local Riverside show in April last year, I made a second trip to Trevor's home on the flatlands of the Fylde to examine his latest newly finished creation, which goes back a bit further down the Massey Ferguson time-line with an MF 135 Multi-Power. A master class job, I might add in terms of the overall finish that's been achieved and Trevor's adherence to only using genuine Massey Ferguson parts!

Trevor said: "There's a place for reproduction parts in the restored tractor world, but for a much more professional job, I insist on only using genuine parts for my show tractors." To which he added without any trace of rancour or ill-feeling that he always feels rather miffed when other MF tractors fitted with non-standard parts then outdo his more genuine example when it comes to receiving awards at shows. What could be more understandable when you consider how much effort went into making the MF 135 just so in each and every detail. Any show judges reading this, please take note...!

However, he can seek solace in that this must surely be one of the very best MF 135s to be seen anywhere, particularly as this is the more highly sought after Multi-Power version, which also has the less common distinction of having a set of optional Power Adjustable Variable Track rear wheels installed.

"You don't see this type of rear wheels on most MF 135s," said Trevor. "The track's then easily adjusted by slackening off the retaining bolts, then driving the tractor backwards or forwards as required to extend or reduce the track, as required, before tightening up the bolts again. A task that only takes a few minutes in comparison to removing the rear wheels and turning them round. These wheels added a cost of about £100 more than was paid for a tractor which came with normal wheels. And with farmers being farmers, many new owners couldn't justify the additional cost."


Trevor bought the wheels in Leominster, which came as a job lot installed on an MF 35, so it was all of nothing, and the tractor was sold after removing the wheels and adding an ordinary substitute pair.

Work was already in progress on the MF135, a tractor of which Trevor knows little history other than that it was registered as KHD 174D on 8 December 1966 and subsequently spent the last six years working on a chicken farm near Bolton before he bought it in 2004 and commenced what turned out to be a three-year rebuild before he was satisfied with the end result.

Trevor remarked: "I could see that this tractor had lots of potential, even though it didn't look too good with a set of odd-sized wheels, 28 on one side, 32 on the other! But it ran and drove well, and it still had the original tinwork and


Transmission: Clutch:

Differential lock: Brakes:


Track adjustment: Hydraulics:


Turning circle (unbraked):

Optional features: Source:

Perkins AD3.152 diesel, three-cylinder, 3.6in x 5in bore and stroke, 18.5:1 compression ratio, Thermostart starter, [email protected], 119lb/ft torque 1300rpm

12 forward, 4 reverse gears

Dual type, llin primary and 9in secondary

Standard Drum 14in x 2in

Proportional to engine or ground speed, 540 @ 1684 engines revs

Front 48in-80in, rear48in-76in Draft, response and position control, Cat 1 linkage 28501b lift capacity, 4 gallons per minute delivery. Auxiliary delivery system on Multi-power models - high capacity with oil cooler serving external services 32001b

19ft 3in

Cab, 1 and 2 spool valves, combining valve, pressure control hitch, front and rear weights and front weight frame, belt pulley, swinging drawbar, dual rear wheels, dual Cat 1 and Cat 2 linkage, foot throttle, Power Adjustable Variable Track rear wheels

Massey-Ferguson Publicity Material - 1965

Find Mf135 Multipower

The steering wheel and the gear knobs were repainted.

The second 1977 MF135 complete with cab.

'Trevor's way of thinking says that you can't call it a restored tractor unless its benefited from a full engine rebuild."

front grille which were in restorable condition, although I recognised the rear mudguards would need replacing. This was achieved with a replacement second-hand set supplied by Sam Neil from Northern Ireland, which I re-plated where necessary!"

The steering wheel and the gear knobs were repainted.

The second 1977 MF135 complete with cab.


So this tractor ran well enough, and what's hidden away from view deep in the engine block may well be enough to satisfy any show judges, although this wasn't at all to Trevor's way of thinking, as he says that you can't call it a restored tractor unless it's benefited from a full engine rebuild. Consequently, his next step was to order a Perkins engine kit from Dobsons of Levens after stripping the tractor down and giving it a thorough clean up with a power hose. "I took my time building up the engine with all pistons, bearings, gaskets and seals, etc, as this was the only way to go for me," said Trevor. "What you can't see does matter in terms of reliability and it says a lot that I can leave this tractor standing for any amount of time knowing full well there'll be no oil stains left on the tarmac." O


The Old 135s Tractors

Full strip down was essential even though the tractor was a runner. Row crop rear wheels later swapped for PAVT wheels.

If supplied new with CAV filters, then that's the way it had to be! Seat also brand new although the mudguards are second-hand refurbished items.

Attention to detail was also Trevor's motto when it came to the paintwork, with particular care being taken to avoid any pit marks or rust craters.


Full strip down was essential even though the tractor was a runner. Row crop rear wheels later swapped for PAVT wheels.

If supplied new with CAV filters, then that's the way it had to be! Seat also brand new although the mudguards are second-hand refurbished items.

Attention to detail was also Trevor's motto when it came to the paintwork, with particular care being taken to avoid any pit marks or rust craters.

In addition to fitting new internal parts, the valves were re-cut, and the pump and injectors benefited from reconditioning by a local firm, SJ Wilkinson of Longridge. "They took the original pump and then put in a new set of new rings and seals," said Trevor. "I took the main hydraulic pump and the auxiliary pump for Multi-Power to JC Hall of Inskip. Early pumps such as this one aren't that easy to get parts for, although they last well, as any wear is minimal, not much pressure is required to operate the Multi-Power pumping system. Taking the tractor on road runs was a good reason for choosing a Multi-Power Massey Ferguson. With six forward speeds by way of Multi-Power, this a fast tractor - the only drawback being, there's no engine braking in the low gear options, not that using a low gear would be required for any road use."

Trevor also arranged for the dynamo to be refurbished, and when choosing a new wiring loom, originality dictated that this had to be the cloth covered variety with the correct wire colouring code.

Exhibiting at shows usually implies a two-pack paint finish, and this was done both in-house and professionally so as to achieve the best possible result while keeping a grip on the cost. Trevor added: "The wheels and the skid were sandblasted and paint stripper was used on the tinwork to bring it back to bare metal. Preparation and painting are jobs you should never rush. To avoid ending up with any unsightly pit marks or rust craters, I sprayed on two coats of red-oxide paint, followed by applying skim filler material where this was needed. I then flattened down the surfaces for a smooth finish, ready for two coats of grey primer followed by further rubbing down before the top coats were applied. Lots of care was also needed to attach the decals. Not so bad on a 135, after lying the bonnet on one side, the straight shape of the panels makes this fairly easy. Apply the decals slowly, all the while keeping them good and taut is the only way to do the job!"

In addition, the steering wheel and the gear knobs were professionally repainted, and reflecting the tractor's 'now' rather than 'then' condition which was slowly coming to fruition, a brand new tacho with zero hours on it was another must have!

New front tyres were fitted and a pair of second-hand rear tyres that were in good condition came from an MF 30 seed drill - all Goodyears as per the original spec, although Dunlops and also Firestones were also fitted at the factory from time to time. Finding a set of original aluminium grab handles for the mudguards added another original touch, and visiting an auction provided a wing mirror of the correct type which was then mounted on the offside of the bonnet. A stroke of good fortune, although Trevor is still undecided about what to do with the bucketful of other old tractor mirrors that came with this coveted item as a job lot sale! Trevor commented: "Coming across the mirror was a good period accessory, a very lucky find!"


Trevor explained why buying an MF 135 was an important divergence from the previously established 500 Series theme: "I was brought up on these tractors at the nearby Myerscough agricultural college, as both of my parents worked here at the time. As a tractor collector, I always wanted to buy an excellent compact tractor that I could use for haytiming all day long, although this one's now turned out to be a show piece that won't see any active use."

In addition to this Multi-Power example, Trevor has also bought a standard MF 135, which was in amazingly unworn condition, the reason being, it appears to have been only used for log splitting and running a saw bench over many years, as further suggested by the state of the clutch pedal upper surface, which is in virtually unworn condition. This 1977 tractor came with a Quick Detach and only 3652 hours on the clock, and most of the refurbishments concerned improvements to rusty cab, plus a full repaint job.

Trevor finished off by adding that there was a bit of a coincidence in that his Multi-Power tractor just so happened to have been first registered on the date his wife Lorraine was born, a chance remark that could have certain implications should she read this article, as in view of all the attention that he has lavished on this tractor, there better not be any lack of attention when her next birthday comes round! ■

Pavt Wheels
Power Adjustable Variable Track rear wheels an uncommon sight on MF 135s.

Was this article helpful?

+1 0
Guide to Alternative Fuels

Guide to Alternative Fuels

Your Alternative Fuel Solution for Saving Money, Reducing Oil Dependency, and Helping the Planet. Ethanol is an alternative to gasoline. The use of ethanol has been demonstrated to reduce greenhouse emissions slightly as compared to gasoline. Through this ebook, you are going to learn what you will need to know why choosing an alternative fuel may benefit you and your future.

Get My Free Ebook


  • elen
    How do you put a mf135 into multipower?
    7 years ago
  • yusef
    How to lock multipower in low and retain engine braking?
    7 years ago
  • theodore
    When did massey ferguson 135 come with multipower?
    7 years ago
  • veli-matti
    How to adjust brakes on 1966 massey ferguson 135?
    7 years ago
  • Velia
    How to replace the clutch pedal on a 135 mf?
    5 years ago
  • Nina
    What rear wings fit a 1977 massey ferguson 135?
    5 years ago

Post a comment