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Massey Ferguson Excavators Remembered (Top Blogs Re-Visited)

by Nick Drew  |  Wed 29 Sep 2021

Massey Ferguson Excavators Remembered (Top Blogs Re-Visited)

I was rummaging through the Digger Man Blog archives again recently and came across a large collection of old MF machinery brochures. A large number of them featured MF excavators including the 350 and 450 models. I never got a chance to spend any time on either of those models, but one of my old gangers on Southampton based J.M Smyth Civil Engineering,  Pat Smart, an ex machine operator himself, used to tell me they were brilliant bits of kit, declaring them to be, powerful, extremely fast and way ahead of their time.

The MF excavators from this era were based on Italian Beltrami machines, with MF having bought the manufacturing rights in 1968. These machines featuring classic Italian styling were built at a new factory in Aprilia, to the south of Rome. I also uncovered this rather interesting brochure featuring a retro-fit crane attachment by Rogers Engineering, which was designed to fit the MF 450S excavator. Not sure how that set up would fare in today’s health and safety culture. 


I came across this bit of amateur video footage which features a surviving 1972 model of a MF 450 which at the time of the footage was based in Quebec, Canada. Check out the throb of the 73hp Perkins 6 cylinder lump in the back. 

For the benefit of this blog post re-visit I am adding a great video of an MF 450S in action at the Welland Steam Rally, shot by those guys over at Awesome Earthmovers. 

If any older generation owners or operators of these machines would like to share experiences and photos of them, please don't hesitate to get in touch.  

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