Obtaining and Restoring A Ransome Crawler
Howard Cooney Auto Sales Inc. 101 Front Street Belleville,
Ontario, Canada K8N 2Y6
Being in the automobile business and naturally interested in
machines you can imagine my interest when I first saw this little
crawler tractor at the summer home of Dr. and Mrs. Tom Morley,
friends of my wife.
The tractor is a 1949 Model MG5 Ransome Garden Tractor, Serial
#4504, complete with Ransome Trailed Plough Model #TS42A.
The tractor had been purchased new in England by Mrs.
Morley's father and was used in his garden. Unfortunately he
rolled it over on himself and his family discouraged him from using
it and it was then shipped to Canada to be used by Dr. Morley,
primarily for digging furrows for tree re-forestation. It arrived
in a wooden crate which for many years served as its own
You can also imagine my pleasure when Dr. Morley, seeing my
interest in the tractor, explained that he no longer had use for it
and that I could have the tractor subject to caring for it and
hopefully someday restoring it to its original condition.
The restoration was helped on by the coming of the 1986
International Plowing Match near our home in Stirling, Ontario, as
we wanted to have it ready and displayed there. Our work was
worthwhile as it created much interest with many favourable
comments as to its uniqueness and quality of the restoration.
Fortunately, Dr. Morley, realizing when he obtained the tractor
that someday parts would be obsolete, or at least difficult to
find, had written away to Ransome's in the 1960's and
obtained new rings, gaskets, valves, etc. in case they might ever
be needed. Needless to say the engine rebuild was straightforward
I was also fortunate to receive with the tractor several
original advertising brochures and service manuals which are rather
amusing to read in the 'quaint English manner.' For
instance, in their detailed description of driving a new machine
they tell the driver 'he can take his place on the seat once
the engine is ticking over and by moving the gear to the forward
position, he can then move off.'
These manuals were very helpful in our restoration as we
dismantled the machine down to the very last nut and bolt,
sandblasted all body parts and repainted it to the original bright
red and blue. The Ransome Company was also helpful as they looked
through their records to obtain original paint codes and sent them
from England along with a Coat of Arms transfer decal that was used
on the MG5.