Farmall Super M Specs

by John Gregory
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International Harvester manufactured the Farmall Super M tractor from 1952 to 1954. With the introduction of the Super M, orders were of such volume that Illinois-based IH utilized a second factory in Louisville, Ken., to satisfy demand. This means, because IH upgraded this model throughout its production period, particular specifications vary depending on the date of completion. Most features, however, are common to all 57,092 tractors to roll off the assembly lines.


IH produced its own engines for the Super M: the vertical I-head and the C264 vertical I-head, which run on liquid petroleum and gasoline respectively. The manufacturer also developed an identical Super MD, which runs on diesel fuel. All engines operate on four cylinders, with a bore of four inches and a stroke of 5.25 inches, yielding a total engine displacement of 264 cubic inches. With a cylinder firing order of 1-3-4-2, the engine couldreach 1,450 maximum revolutions per minute. Testing the drawbar demonstrated this model can generate up to 44 horsepower.


The Super M possessed a sliding gear transmission, where the input shaft ran constantly unless the clutch was engaged. With five forward gears and one for reverse, this vehicle had a larger drive clutch than its predecessors. The second, third and fourth gears also yielded higher speeds. When the torque amplifier transmission was added in 1954, the configuration changed to 10 forward and two reverse gears -- the operator gained increased control in the lower gears. Those tractors with this variation were dubbed Super MTAs. All transmissions held 52 quarts of oil.


The Super M measured 134.6 inches long, 84.5 inches wide and 79 inches tall. It also weighed 5,603 pounds. Its wheelbase -- axle to axle -- was 89.25 inches long. While its frame cleard the ground at 15.5 inches, the rear axle clearance stood at 26.25 inches. Front tires were six inches wide and 16 inches in diameter; rear tires were 12 inches wide and 38 inches in diameter.


Like the M, the Super M was able to accommodate larger and more diverse attachments. Among its optimal implements were four-row planters and cultivators, 14- and 16-inch bottom plows and two-row mounted corn-pickers. The hydraulic system on the Super M was driven by the engine, not the transmission. Accordingly the operator did not have to engage and disengage the clutch repeatedly when using attachments. Furthermore, engine-based hydraulics allowed for the processing of heavier loads, thereby increasing productivity.

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