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Sunday, March 12, 2023

I try to repair warning lights on 2-155 and set things on fire...

 I have spent the winter working on the White 2-155 Series Three tractor. This is a true Series Three with the new style cab and semi digital dash. The cab is much quieter and the floor is easier to remove but it has idiot lights instead of gauges for the three speed and hydraulics. 

So far I have changed the clutch and partially rebuilt the three-speed and I now have the engine and transmission installed.

I cheated on the engine installation. The forklift started running out of propane as I finished the installation and I did not want to pull the engine again. The problem was with the shims that level the engine. What I needed to do was put a dial indicator on the three-speed housing and a jack underneath and make sure the junction point between powershilt and main transmission had proper clearance. The assembly slid together quite easily but the shims under the right rear motor mount were loose. 

So I got a big bar and talked my wife into sliding an extra shim under the mount while I leaned on the bar to lift the engine. I have been using knife shims for New Holland balers as they come in several thicknesses and you can slide them in with the motor mount bolts installed.

It doesn't leak, so far.


After getting the tractor started I found an oil leak on top of the transmission. To fix this I had to wedge myself between the door and the dash console. I started to smell electrical smoke. By the time I got myself out and the battery unhooked there were small flames.

The main power wire to the cab was melted like a cheese sandwich.

Down the rabbit hole I went.

The wiring is a mess. I found some 8 guage multi-strand wire and set to work. Much of this involves contortionism as the cab is tight. 

I finally got it all together and wires neatly sorted yesterday. (I even took most of Thursday off, but then feel asleep on the couch for two house after starting the fire so I guess that doesn't count.)

I then discovered the warning lights did not work. No power to the sensors and when I flip the lamp test switch on the dash it trips a circuit breaker and the warning light square block goes dead.

After an inordinate amount to time spent tracing ground wires I discovered that I also had no engine RPM. So I wiggled the bulkhead connector at the cab. I had rpm and hydraulic temperature. However, hydraulic temp comes from the OTHER bulkhead connector.

It would help if I could read the wiring diagram

After more wiggling of wires and breaking out a voltmeter I got all the lights to work except the 3-spd low pressure light. I am suspicious that buggery has been committed to this circuit. I have been surprised by the crude repairs of the former owners. The ground wire from the sensor has all the insulation melted off.

The series three warning light system uses a switch on the clutch lever. When you depress the clutch lever the switch bypasses the warning sensor for low pressure on the 3-spd. This is because the 3-spd has its own pump and when you have the clutch pushed in the 3-speed stops turning which would activate the alarm. Upon testing the broken connector at the clutch I found 12v on both sides of the switch.  I am not sure it should have 12 volts, although it does activate the cab buzzer alarm. 

The problem I have now is two fold. I have traced all the wires but the warning wires down the right side of the steering column. I can't get the bolts out and there is no room between the window to used a hammer screw driver thing to break the Phillips screws loose. I am having a hard time getting the plastic warning box apart to see what is up with the bulbs.

I may give up. I really need a new wiring harness as there are multiple wire breaks. Oh well...

I have had one success.

The ground speed section of the digital dash has never worked. A new sensor is like $450 from AGCO. I found one with the correct thread and the correct connector for $26 on the auction site. And it works! Small successes. I won't say how many hours I spent in the greenhouse at my other job trying to find this sensor.


  1. Budd, my email is

  2. Oh man, those electrical gremlins just make my head spin. Good luck with it.

  3. I worked on it again in the afternoon. It is impossible. Doesnt make sense! I am not a good mechanic!


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