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1980 484 restore - a extended project

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I am new on here. Been lurking a while and need to start of my first post. I have a 1980 484 that I bought partly because I got it very cheap and also because I have wanted a tractor project for some time. I grew up through my teen years adjacent to my grandfathers farm and had always visited and spent summers there on a century farm in Oregon. Our neighbors had mostly green tractors..including one "the right green" Oliver 1650 that I spent many hours on and developed a sentimental attachment to the brand. My parents raised christmas trees which didn't require much of a tractor. My grandparents/uncles farm mostly had Massey equipment geared toward orchard work though we did raise wheat, oats, hay, clover and some other field crops for a while before it all became hazelnuts and walnuts. I don't currently have land worthy of a tractor but I own one and hopefully the land business is soon to change.

Last year I bought a 484 out of Texas from a co-worker at the time for about $800. He said it would probably run and when it did run it ran fairly well. I got a few pictures and for the price I didn't see how I could really go wrong. It was intact and mostly complete and "would run" with a little work.


The last owner had it a few years and did hay with it and then upgraded to a newer tractor. Goats not included.

So after a few months I was able to arrange shipping of it which cost quite a bit more then the tractor did but still had me under the going price for just about any tractor about this size and diesel powered in NW Washington where I live.

Got it home and without really all that much tinkering I was able to get it started. Figured out the new to me and somewhat hokey shifting system. First thing was the power steering was really noisy. After some more tinkering I decided to check the hydraulic fluid. Didn't show on the stick at all. I added a couple gallons and then it showed some really nasty milky fluid. Still had lots of noise. Decided to dig into the filter system. That was the problem, it was full of gunk and the white milky fluid. New filter, topped off the fluid and ran it a while and got it fully up to temp. Fluid looked a lot better, everything now worked like it should. I have another filter and all new fluid for when we get settled from our impending move.

Wiring was and is.. somewhat dorked up yet. I rewired almost all of the wiring to do with the starting system and made new battery cables. Fresh ignition switch. The battery is charging and occasionally some of the warning lights in the panel work. None of the guages work at the moment but I did have the tach going for a while but have had problems with the tach drive system.


I took panels off and cleaned as much of the leafy grassy trash, grease, gunk and filth I could get off it without a toothbrush and for the moment a huge improvement.

It wasn't long after that I discovered when running that oil was coming up out the dipstick while idling... I feared the worst. I was glad I wasn't seeing chocolate milk shake coming out of it but it was close. I had fuel getting into the oil in a pretty big way. It was possibly an injector issue or more likely a pump issue. When I saw a pump was close to what I paid for the tractor if I was lucky and more then likely more then I paid for it.. it didn't look good. I am on one of the Facebook IH pages and asked there for advice. They led me to a guy who sold the injection pump seals. I pulled the pump and changed out the seal and that fixed it. I was out about $20 if I recall. Local Case/IH dealer didn't seem to think you could get just the seal and would send the pump to a shop for rebuild - needing it or not.

Along the way I picked up my first implement. A Rears Mfg flail mower. Growing up around orchards, the flail is what people use, not rotaries. They are definitely more expensive but I scored one off Craigslist up here for a bargain and it came with about $700 in new knives in a box. It is a 72" unit and while a little beat up and needing some work, it works like it is supposed to and isn't out of balance. The gearbox might need a seal or 2 soon but all the shafts seem good. Probably could change some more knives.

After I got through my initial fixing up of the mechanicals and dealing with the early glaring issues, I mowed several acres of briar patch, brush and grass for a friend. Once it got hot and working it hardly smokes and seems to have about the power I would expect from it but I don't really have another machine around to compare it with. It will shred through 4 feet of blackberry briars pretty well and through fairly tall wet green grass without really bogging down if you don't go too fast. Engine seems reasonably healthy.


My goals are for a full cosmetic restoration and also to rebuild things as I go along. Would like to add hyraulic remote or 2 to it if I can find the parts inexpensively enough. The tach drive cap either falls off or the whole thing backs out and falls out. I have a pipe plug in there at the moment to keep the oil in. Lots of slop in moving parts. Both of the tie rod end links are shot, the 3 point I have replaced a few things but the arms themselves need replacing or at least the joints need it. Needs tires and new front wheels. Rears need blasting and painting. I did replace all the cooling hoses and flushed and put in fresh coolant. Boy did it need it. I think the hoses were original. This tractor appears that it might have been a county rig or something and was used for mowing. I think it spent its entire life outdoors. I intend to change that when I get it to it's next home. Hopefully I can keep coming back to this thread to update progress on things. It seems the enthusiasts are a bit harder to find here in the Pacific Northwest, at least those selling stuff. The midwesterners seem to get all the good deals.

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First off, Welcome. It sounds like you have a good plan on what to do and have already done quite a bit of work. Feel free to join right in and make yourself at home.

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Welcome to the forum, and thanks for sharing.

Nice tractor you got

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That's a nice tractor, the 84 series are one of IH's best. Looks like most of what you need is cosmetic, I'm sure you will have her fixed up and looking great! Good thing the goats weren't included........

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We have a 464 that we have invested time and $ into that is used in a commercial mowing operation. Owned it since 2008.

After overhauling the D179 and and doing other must do repairs it has been a good running and operating machine. Still needs more paint and some rear tires, tire man said to run them until the fell apart and then buy some more, as long as they hold air for mowing they are fine.

Based on my investigation the 464 to 484 mods were all mostly cosmetic. Basically they raised the hood, and added the rops.

The D179 is really a fine running engine, with a group 31 battery and 2-0 cables it starts up without juice in any normal Texas winter weather.

Good luck with your project, I think you will be happy with the small utility series.

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Very cool. Welcome, where you at in the PNW? There are 4 or 5 of us 'out here' in the remote trading post. Cant see any hills in the back ground so I am lost! Trust me you'll like the shifter. I prefer it on our 464g over our H pattern 684. Never gets stuck between gears. No remotes? That seems kinda normal for 3+4x4 models. Friend has a 384 and it is that way too along with few other ones I know of. Here they were bought for scrape tractors on our dairies. SIMPLE and cheap was the motto. Looks like it's all there so that's good. Nyssa tractor is the only wrecker I know of with IH stuff fyi. Down in OR on the ID border.

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  • 4 weeks later...
  • 1 year later...

Been a long time since I updated this thread.  The 484 hasn't had any cosmetic work done but I have had to deal with a few issues.  We moved a year ago from NW Washington to SW Washington - east of Woodland, WA.  Have some acreage now.  I bought a set of forklift forks for the 3pt and built a wooden platform to haul brush on it.  Even just the forks, I have hauled some pretty respectable loads of brush and stuff as we clean up the property.  Kept getting water into the hydraulics.  Traced it to the seat draining into broken vent under the seat.  I installed a semi truck fuel tank vent and hose where the old plastic vent was.  They seem to do a similar function but also have a elbow and with a couple feet of hose, rainwater won't just drain into the transmisssion.  I think I may need a new starter ring at some point when I do finally get it into the shop.  She needs lots of work but has proven very useful the past year. 


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You sgould get a service manual online for her.  Good to hear she is working out.  I assume you have flushed watery oil out good.  I love my 684 but..if under 55 needs to be plugged in.  Since new been like that.  Brand new battery and daily starting may fix that but only does bedding in stalls so 1x a week is all it runs.

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