Madison-Kipp Lubricator

Madison Kipp 11 feed Lubricator

The Madison-Kipp force feed oiling system is the backbone of the tractor. If the oiler doesn't work your tractor is going to be shortlived. Anyone who has asked me about restoring Hart-Parr tractors built in the 1920's, I make sure to tell them to make sure the oiler is working first, and if it is stuck not to force it to turn. Parts for these Madison-Kipp oilers are getting hard to find, and if you try and force them to turn by cranking on the hand crank, you can end out with pieces breaking inside.

The Oil is pumped to the top of the pistons, to the connecting rods, Oiling system and to the main bearings, via copper lines that lead to the lubricator box. Fresh oil is forced to these areas under pressure, except to the connecting rod bearings, which is dripped through the top of the crankcase and oil catchers on top of the connecting rods funnel the oil into the bearings. There is no crankcase reservoir to hold the oil. The oil is used once and then it is either routed to lubricate the final drives in the rear wheels or allowed to drip on the ground. One bad thing about using the oil to lube the final drives is that it collects dust and usually caused wear problems because of the build up of dirt and grit in the gears, especially on the open gear models. A little oil to all the bearings all the time. Was the famous phrase Hart-Parr used for their lubricating system. Other brands of tractors used this sytem also.

Two Sizes of lubricators were used on the 1920's vintage Hart-Parr tractors. The Old style oiler 6 feed was used on all two cylinder tractors and the 11 feed was used on the four cylinder models. The oiler used on the New Hart-Parr used a flat bottom 6 feed as picture here. (Note: the negative used to produce the original manual must of gotten reversed and shows it backward.) From then on all the oilers had two legs or pedestals as pictured in the photo at the top of this page. On lubricators built up to about 1926 used a metal frame over the top of isenglas material for the hood, the hood is on top of the box and you can look through it to see if the individual pumps are working properly. From 1926 on, the hood was made out of glass and was prone to breakage. I can still get new hoods but they are made out of clear plastic and care should be taken to keep gasoline away from them, and they will cloud over eventually because of the petroleum fumes. If anyone is interested in a new hood email me at

As for the settings, the manual states that for the 12-24 and 28-50 it is two drops to the main bearings, three drops to the connecting rods, and four drops to the pistons. And for the 18-36 it is three drops to the main bearings, four drops to the connecting rods, and five drops to the pistons. These settings are for each time the oil appears in the sight feed tube on top of the oiler. As the tractor is running the oiler is pumping out oil in a sequence from one side of the oiler to the other and then starts over again. If the tractor is used just for parading you may want to cut back the number of drips to the pistons by one drop, but if you plan to work your tractor make sure they are dripping the recommended amount of oil. Other model of tractors would be similar settings. The manual recommends #50 non-detergent oil. When taking an oiler apart just be careful and keep track of all the parts, and be sure to keep each plunger with the pump unit it came out of as they are all individually fitted. For Maintainence and Operation Guide click HERE. You must have a copy of Acrobat Reader installed on your computer to open it.

Pumping unit

Any comments, questions, or corrections, e-mail me at: Hart-Parr Tractors

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