CASE 448 Garden Tractor - Continued - Page 3!

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The tractor is together and running ! Short of blowing up one of the return lines out in the middle of the street and dumping a gallon and a half of Rotella in a split second, everything has been rather trouble free. Low range is adequate in speed, while high range is flat out fast ! I can actually get the rear end to drift in the corners on gravel. I would prefer slightly more speed in low range and less speed in high, but I guess I will live with what I have.

I connected the lift plate to the rockshaft so I could lift the rear sleeve hitch. I really dislike that plate, and its intentions. After laying underneath for a while, it looks like there is plenty of room to mount a hydraulic cylinder under/behind the right side footrest to engage directly with the sleeve hitch lift arm. That cylinder will be tied in with one more travel valve I am going to put somewhere on the back of this tractor next spring. I have other plans for lifting any front attachment that used the plate.

The hood is close to what I want it to look like when done. Note that I took the original hood hinge off of the bottom of the hood, then slid it back and welded its edge directly to the edge of the hood. This moved the hood about 1.5" forward on the tractor, and I also moved the cooler forward one set of bolt holes. So with the 3.5" frame stretch, the hood stretch is about 5". This gained a little more space under the hood without really sacrificing anything.

 

Below is the view of the front. I still have plenty of work to do to get the hood the way I really want it. I want to make the side extensions just wide enough to get some yellow flash/discharge lamps in the recessed areas. I will leave this one the way it is, but find two new donor hoods to build up a new hood exactly the way I would like it.

Below: AG tires are sure going to look good ! Notice that the rear fenders are a little wider now (about 1.5"). Before I widened them, the tractor really looked narrow in the back. I hope I can take a look at what this has done to the fitting of my cab this weekend.

Because of the frame stretch, it still looks narrow in the back, so, I will be making some wheel spacers to go under the rims, but they will serve a few purposes. One, they will add a bit to the width of the tractor. Two, they will add some weight because they will have welded to them and protruding out flush with the edge of the rim, a solid 3" chunk of steel roundstock. This will resemble a full size tractor with its axles hanging out. The reason for those is to provide a place to hang wheel weights in the winter that will not mangle up the paint on the rims. After one paints the rims to a super shine, there is nothing worse than scratching them up by bolting wheel weights to them !

The Mule is from my front blade. It was all oogled up, so while repairing it, I modified it so it can be used in the future with a bunch of different attachments. Regarding turning radius, I did pull off the spindles one day and cut exactly one width of a cut off wheel off of the stops that limit turning. I then had to center the quadrant gear, but what a difference ! I still need to take the new dimensions, but I think I just might be back close to the stock turning radius. I think I can pick up a little more if I grind two more new teeth in the quadrant gear.

With the tractor running, I turned my attention to getting a grader blade made for underneath. I felt the Case snowblade is way too tall anyhow, so I lopped off 5" from the top edge and used that to make the top portion of my new grader blade. In all of these photos, I still have to add a 3" wide cutting edge to the bottom before I use it.

The original Snow Blade will still be plenty high, but will need to be tipped forward a little. I like the ability to adjust the lean of the blade for different scraping action. Sometimes you need to scrape... sometimes you need to scoop and get under stuff. My blade will have a removeable bucket system (sides and bottom) controlled by hydraulics. If I do it right, I will be able to use that same cylinder to adjust theforward lean angle whether the bucket parts are on it or not.

With my last tractor, I could do an incredible amount of work with my grader blade. I would really like to have a hydraulic side shift on the grader blade, but that will be something for down the road. I will keep an eye out for just the right parts to make that happen. It is real handy to be grading up to a post or pole, slide the blade left or right to get around it, then continue.

Below: I will have to angle it manually for now, but someday.......... Those two new hydraulic controls on the right side of the tower run the additional travel valve. they will be dedicated to front lift, and front auxiliary or angle operations.

All that empty space along side the frame rail got me to thinking about putting a lift cylinder there. What I will do is drill holes thru the front frame rails, just above the quick attach pins and just in front of the axle. I will run a 1" diameter shaft across from side to side. Properly designed "lift arms" will go onto that shaft and protrude slightly out the front of the tractor. They will offer about 5" of travel between setting down on the quick attach pin brackets and stopping short of hitting the hood. My hydro cylinder will work that shaft from this side, snug up to the frame rail.

Below: By using the Snowplows Mule, I am able to use both the front blade and the grader at the same time, or at least I will be able to when Iget my seperate front lift mechanism built. When I get my blower converted to hydraulic drive, I want to eliminate the use of the original blower Mule, then just make it that I can "drive into" the blower with the snow blades swing frame. It will make for quicker changes, and eliminates all the extra bracket variables. Really, I often wonder why designers couldn't have thought further ahead when it comes to making attachments and attachment methods. The case is not bad, but they could have made an interchangable mule that worked with many things, rather than a different one for each thing.

Below: Linkage for lifting the Grader Blade. The top hole in the vertical links set the depth at level, whereas the bottom holes will let me cut exactly 1" under grade. I am not sure how it will react using one high and one low hole. It probably will need to "slop out" a bit as all the pin holes are currently to size. That "A" frame underneath was once a Simplicity front blade A frame.

I did work on the blower a little. Here is a shot of the wiper motor I put on to rotate the chute. It's a motor I had laying around and is only 80 rpm. Seems a bit slow for me taking 15 seconds to make a full sweep. But at least now with the bracket in place, I will be able to put on any typical right angle gear motor down the road that could work better. I am waiting for a small linear actuator that I picked up on ebay to be delivered. I am going to use that for chute height control.

 

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