was too rich for my wallet and I decided to build my own.
So, starting with some plans found on the 'net for a Gerlinger version:
I set about acquiring some "bits" to get me started with a cheap 1/43 Fordson tractor.
The remnants of the tread plate from the Holt build.
Some brass tubing and coil springs found in the bits box.
Some deep U section styrene which was bent round the handle of a craft knife into a set of U shapes with a hair dryer.
And some 18.5mm double spoked wheels from Langley Models.
The last three of which items made up into running wheels and suspension legs.
Having measured and scaled the drawings,
the tread plate was cut out to form the main chassis panel,
and the now dismantled tractor power plant test fitted.
Again, using the drawings as a guide
(nothing I make is a true copy so any researched information is literally just a guide!)
the rest of the chassis frame was built up from styrene strip and mouldings,
and overlaid with Archers Rivets.
Additional springs and collets were added to the suspension legs,
domestic O rings added to the wheels as tyres,
threaded brass rod was added to represent the screw lifting mechanism for the lumber carrying "jaws",
and the tractor's original steering wheel was fitted to a new styrene steering column.
A driver's seat was made from a cut down Model T car seat and some styrene rod,
to fit on top of the tractor's differential cover and the tread plate.
And the steering mechanism was made up from styrene strip, rod, sewing pins,
and odd gears from the bits box.
More styrene rod, various now defunct Bachmann rail truck gears and old guitar string end knobs,
were then used to make a representation of the drive to the lumber lifting mechanism.
Various plastic gears from China were then built onto the rear suspension legs and the tractor primary drive shaft,
using Crow River Products bearing pillow blocks and onto the inner face of the rear main wheels,
whilst smaller gears were used to represent chain tensioners.
The whole contraption was then given a spray of Halfords red primer as a top coat,
and some light weathering with Artitec weathering powders.
As far as the chain drive is concerned, I've picked up a reasonably priced length of fusee clock chain,
which I reckon I can get to fit round the drive gears.
I can see that the chain tensioner gear will need to be raised a little.
However, before I can do that,
I need to work out how to separate links without causing too much collateral damage,
so that I can split the chain into useable lengths.
In the absence of any real advice from the watch and clock fraternity,
my present thinking is to try to use a gear puller to push the pins out of their mounts,
and for that I'm waiting on delivery of a 0.7mm thimble for the puller.