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Below are pictures of a late 1920’s McCormick-Deering 4-bar side delivery rake. It was given to me a few years ago when I objected to a friend’s intent to cut the wheels off and scrap it. In the winter of 2020-2021, I started working on it. My goal was to make it operational so I could use it as a spare. I freed the bearings, cleaned and refreshed the gear box, and straightened and rebuilt the hitch and the repaired the bent reel guards. After I had the unit in operational condition, I sanded it down and painted it.

Historically, the red is nearly the right color, and the cream is also close. However, to be accurate, the reel (teeth and bars) were originally dark blue. As I started out to make a spare rake, I did not go to the effort of buying blue paint (should've gotten blue). Another incorrect detail is that I added the implement seat. The factory horse-drawn versions had a different hitch, according to the manual.

From a financial perspective, the rake was given to me, and the primer and paint were old material I cleaned up from work. My costs included some wire brush wheels, some welding rod, and a lot of hours. The purpose of this is to provide pictures of an obscure project. It is often difficult to find good pictures of these old machines. I wish to encourage others to find and restore these. History aside, there is another benefit not always realized. I was going thru a life-event at the time, and this project provided a lot of comfort.

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Great job! With this restoration and the Disc harrow you completed, it is giving me inspiration to tackle some of my own implements!
 

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Very nice and well executed job. Too bad you don't live close, I'd give you another one, a rubber tired JD side delivery rake to restore for free. I have one sitting out back that I never use anymore. Side delivery rakes tend to 'rope the forage' and increase dry down time. I switched some years back to a Giehl 450 rotary and subsequently sold that and bought a new Kuhn Master drive rotary which is what I use now. The produce a nice fluffy windrow that the air can move freely through so drydown is much quicker. The rotary saves me at least a day when harvesting. Around here, getting the crop bailed always seems to be under the gun. Always an impending rain event coming... I'd have purchased a twin rotor (wider raked swath) but my fields are odd shaped so the single rotor works better.

Time to get into that tractor now...

Again, nice job.
 

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