New Holland in Gloucestershire !!
This particular story probably started in the early sixties,! Gloucestershire contractor and lifelong friend Barry Taylor was born into a farming family, his father ran Massey combines 780s and later 2 x Mf 400s which Barry spent many hours operating, on there 150 acre farm in Gloucestershire, however as the farm was not big enough to support 2 sons and his father Barry went to work for R O Williams a contractor based nearby at Yate, and he ran New Holland combines, Barry spent a lot of hours on these combines operating and maintaining them and now some 40 odd years later his attention has turned to collecting a few models he had spent his younger days on.
During the sixties New Holland was making some serious inroads into the harvesting market despite the market leading Massey brand and there many local dealerships, Times look certain to change with Class also another popular choice for many farmers.
Within the next decade or so with the ever increasing problems Massey faced not only here but world wide the closure of the Kilmarnock combine plant in scotland was probably the end of there dominance in the harvest fields at least, and within another decade the Closure of the huge Brantford combine plant in 1988 in Canada it signalled the end of genuine Massey Ferguson Combines for good.
Returning to Barry's combines the first one he bought was the M89 a 1968 8ft 6 cut 4 straw walker model this combine was fitted with the Ford commercial variant engine, it was working in Pembrokeshire prior to purchase in 2009 Barry gave the combine a full going over replacing several bearings and belts plus a set of reconditioned fuel injectors and replaced the badly faded paintwork the combine table underside was completely wore out and was paper thin, so Barry replaced the complete table bottom a big task when you consider the metal involved, for sure the combine had a busy life with all the wear in places you would expect, auger flights and trays,however this little gem is a pleasure to operate and I have been fortunate to spend some time on combine, it came down to somerset for our local harvest in August 2010 to run alongside our 4 Massey s and the combine certainly did him proud over the 2 days with us.
The second combine on Barry's list was the M122 Clayson a 1969 4 walker model and 10ft cut, this combine was purchased as a non runner the engine wouldn't run and the combine had sustained rear hood damage also the electrics would need some attention if this machine would ever be called upon to run again, To date this combine has received work to the fuel pump, the electrics and various attention to belts and chains to enable the combine to run and Barry is currently looking to secure a better rear hood section to complete combine before paintwork can begin failing this a new section will have to be fabricated.
Well working on his M122 during early 2011 Barry was tipped off about a mint condition Clayson 15/20 a 1976 model with 10ft cut and 4 walkers with the Ford commercial engine again, this combine was in excellent condition and Barry has restored the ageing fading paintwork but mechanically it was not in need of much work, it came down to Gloucestershire from the Shropshire area spring 2011.
Barry like ourselves use the combines every year to harvest his own small acreage, but he has regularly cut over a hundred acres for a local grower since 2010 and I am always glad to pilot either machine when asked as to return Barry's efforts in helping us out on our harvests over the years, during 2012 Barry was inundated with requests for help during the disastrous wet harvest season, the local arable growers had there own machines bogged down or reluctantly stopped cutting some steeper grounds because of damage to fields and machinery which gave Barry and ourselves a very busy season and although exceptional conditions it demonstrated these old vintage combines still had a purpose and despite all what modern technology can give us sometimes there is only a simple answer to use the machines that were designed for all situations.
What follows now is a selection of photographs of Barry's combines.
More photos will follow shortly!!
A big thank you to Barry for inviting me over to photograph his combines ,Hopefully we will have more pictures and video of all three working this coming harvest 2015!!