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richellis

Heller
Ferguson TE20 FF30 Tractor - 1:24 Heller

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Ferguson TE20 FF30 Tractor

1:24  Heller

 

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The Ferguson TE20 ( Tractor England 20 Horsepower) was a very successful agricultural tractor designed by Harry Ferguson with a production run lasting from 1946 till 1956. Part of the ‘Little Grey Fergie’s’ success came from its 3-point linkage that allowed the Fergie to carry out a variety of tasks around the farm using different tools and trailers that fitted to this linkage.  The TE20 was imported to France, and was so popular a production line was set up in  Saint-Denis, France in 1953 using imported British parts, the number of French parts increased until 1957 when the tractor was built using 100% French parts and became known as the FF30. Outwardly the TE20 and the FF30 looked the same, save some slight differences and FF30 having a red chassis and engine. Not surprisingly, Heller have tooled this kit so it can be built as a British TE20, or a French FF30 with its different seat, steering wheel and front tyres.

 

The TE20 was such a popular tractor many have been restored and a walk around any steam or vintage rally you will pass one or two at least (oddly this is a gap in the walkaround section that needs filling!).

 

The kit comes in a big box with a photo of a very clean example on the lid, the box has an opening lid but the box is thin and flimsy, the box is far too big and there is a lot of fresh air inside.

 

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the kit comes on 4 small grey sprues with some black rubber tyres. All the parts are very crisply cast and there is no flash on the review sample.

 

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The TE20 doesn’t have a chassis, the backbone of the design is the engine, transmission and back axle, everything else hangs off this assembly. The model follows this sequence with the engine transmission being the first parts to meet the glue. This is cast in 2 parts split down the length and has some good surface detail. If you want a tow hook you need to drill 2 holes in the bottom of the rear axle. The head is added next, with transmission and axle covers following. Being a petrol engine there are some spark plugs and a distributor included but no leads so some thin wire can be added, have a look at some photos online as the sides of the engine are open so some detail could look good here. The fan and radiator are attached to the front of the engine block, along with the front axle. The fuel tank goes on top of the engine with the final few ancillary parts. This is a simple engine, reliable and simple to maintain with the kit being well detailed to the original. The back axle is next with the axle tubes complete with half shafts inside, and the independent rear brakes that allowed the driver to make tight turns, another innovation on this tractor. There are some delicate parts including the rods and foot pedals that will need a lot of care to remove from the sprues and clean up.

 

The big rear wheels are made from 2 parts, with the soft rubber tyre sandwiched between. Make sure you get these tyres the right way around as they are handed left and right sides.

 

The front axle is next on the build, this looks a complex sequence from the instructions, I’ll let you know how this goes when I get the glue out, if anyone has started/ building this any experience let me know! All the drop arms and drag links are next attaching between the wheels and the steering box behind the engine block. The front wheels are in 2 parts, inner and outer, with the rubber sandwiched between. There is a choice of tyres, slick and ribbed so check your reference photos before committing to glue. The wheels have a centre hub to add before clipping them onto the front axle, take care not to break the axle as it looks delicate.

 

You now get to fit the sprung seat, the TE20 uses parts B3 and B7, and the FF30 uses B31 and B9, a more comfortable coil sprung set up over the British bent metal bar spring! The steering wheel is also different between the British and French versions. Finally, you add the rear mudguards, and the bonnet and grill, here you have some options to choose, some TE20 and FF30s came with lights and you need to drill some holes marked on the rear of the parts, and choose your exhaust type, straight up or low out pipe. The famous 3-point linkage is the final bits to make up and fit completing your build.

Conclusion

A nice little kit form Heller, I’m glad they have made a 1:24 of this iconic little tractor that changed farming. The real TE20 was modified by enterprising farmers, and was also used by Edmund Hillary on the 1955-8 Commonwealth Trans-Antarctic Expedition. This will be a good build for the detailers and the weathering experts as a tractor is rarely clean!

 

Very well moulded with nice detail. Look forward to building this one.

 

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Review sample courtesy of

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I had difficulty with the front axle as the stub units (which could be bolted on in a variety of in/out locations) seem to be mounted at least one notch or hole too far in, as shown in the instructions and implied by the nut and bolt locations, and foul the central pivot. I've had to disassemble mine and redo it with the bolt heads cut off and relocated to match front and back. (This may not mean much but will be very obvious when one looks at the kit!)

Edited by Lothian man

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Looks like a nice kit.

I'll be doing a Ford grille for this one I think.

If it comes out good I may make a mold.

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