Micks1200 at the 2008 Great Dorset Steam Fair.
This Story starts in 2008, while I was exhibiting my Just restored Massey 400 combine at the Great Dorset Steam Fair courtesy of the Friends of Ferguson celebrating 50 yrs of Massey Ferguson.
Of the many visitors and exhibitors I was fortunate
to meet one particular gentleman stood out who was exhibiting a Massey Ferguson 1200 that had been extensively restored over a two year period he was Mick Hill, who was and still is the Technical editor of this club.
Our friendship has remained to this
day and since our meeting at this show we have spoken very regularly about all things regarding this legendary company, and Micks many years involvement with this famous brand of Tractors and Machinerry.
Mick started out as a spanner man in early 1965
with the Ben Turner company who at that time had only two depots, and he had no idea how big this company would expand to in the future.
Mick worked on trials for the newly arrived Massey 750 combines from Canada and the fitment of the power flow tables
that would cope with the heavier yielding crops here in the UK.
During the seventies Mick decided to leave Ben Turner and went to work for Lister at Gloucestershire another successful Massey dealership with a move from Surrey to this Gloucestershire
depot Mick had now taken up the position of salesman, and very much enjoyed his work and he would remain at Listers until the merger of this company now known as Lister Wilder.
Mick was offered a move back to Surrey with his old company The Ben Turner
group who by now had grown considerably and had added a plant division selling all the MF industrials and other brands too.
After many years with Ben Turner Mick ended his working career with a newly formed company Sendmarsh Tractors in Surrey
and retired several years ago. Over the years Mick built up a considerable collection of Massey tractors most restored by himself and his friends and this 1200 was just another he added to his large collection.
Mick purchased the 1200 in the nineties
from a potato farm in Buckinghamshire, the tractor had only clocked up 6000 genuine hours but unfortunately it was in a non running state as the engine was seized and the gearbox was faulty also several genuine parts were missing from the tractor including
the rear light bars the engine side panels and various other cab parts that would not be easy to replace, but with perseverance and Micks many contacts in the Ferguson organizations these parts were soon sourced.
Mick spent several years bringing the
tractor back up to the original condition that it is in today, the engine was completely stripped and refurbished the turbo charger that was fitted to the engine was removed! These after market Opico units were quite popular at the time but greatly reduced
the longevity of these reliable A6 engines.
The gearbox was completely shot and was rebuilt with new bearings and several gears replaced, the multi power unit was pressure checked and found to be in good working order and was left as it was.
cab was updated at that time and the seat reupholstered, also new good year tyres were added before finally the paintwork was stripped and replaced in early 2008 just ahead of its first appearance at the Great Dorset Steam Show.
Mick for several years
used the 1200 for ploughing matches and pulling an arctic trailer to local shows with a couple of his other tractors on board! A very impressive sight.
During late 2014 Mick decided the tractor would be better in the hands of someone who could
use the tractor more and offer it some suitable undercover storage, Mick had previously stored the tractor inside but it had remained outside for 2/3 years as his collection grew, also the tractor was seldom used and with the elements taking its toll on the
tractor paintwork Micks decision to sell was made a bit easier.
At the end of April 2015 A deal was reached with Mick on the tractors future here with me in Somerset and it was purchased by myself in May and picked up from Surrey in June.
like to personally thank Mick for giving me the opportunity to take on his 1200 and keep it in the top order that he intended.
What follows are some photos of tractor being picked up and the various stages of work that was required to bring this old
lady back to her original condition.