David Brown started building their 50D tractor, a 50 hp six cylinder diesel, developed from the TAD 50 crawler. These were built from January 1953 until June 1958. The model number is consistent with older models, the VAD6, Cropmaster 50. V for Vehicle, A for Agricultural, D for diesel, and the 6 represents the 6 cylinder.
By the time it was put into production, so many changes had been made that they renamed it the 50D. The David Brown 50D was a large tractor for its day, really too large for the requirements of British farmers. This tractor has no hydraulics, and so is suited to towing and PTO work. The PTO has four speeds, which is unusual, and it has a side mounted belt pulley instead of the more usual rear mounted drive, making it ideal for thrashing. The 50D was the first David Brown tractor only available as a diesel.
David Brown found more of a market abroad, in countries needing larger tractors such as South Africa, Australia, and South America. Production stopped after only 1260 were made, making them one of the rarest and most sought after David Brown tractors of all. It would be interesting to know just how many David Brown 50D tractors are actually left.
How the serial numbers work:
V.A.D/1 (Vehicle, Agricultural, Diesel)
10001 - Jan 1953
10125 - Nov 1953
10150 - March 1954
10400 - Jan 1956
10800 - March 1956
11260 - Jan 1958