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A Little Off Plumb
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Picked up a Bolens 1053 last year and have decided I am going to try and turn it back into a useable garden tractor. Here are pictures of what it looks like right now - missing some pieces, no motor, fender pan and frame tubes have been "modified" over its years.
 

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Getting Out!
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Think I would start with something little better for all that work. I'm messing with a couple similar and would hate to have to remake half the chassis and STILL not have engine in it. Guess PO didn't like the mount engine on tube part and made his own for a bigger engine?? Once stuff is "whacked", kinda hard to get back to "mormal" original stuff.
 

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Tractorholic
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I have a vision of a spectacular started here- finished here "Tractor of the Month article in the future :thumbs:

Will be watching for the updates !
 
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Are you trying to make it look original again or just functional. Looking at your other posts I am guessing back to original. I have a 1054 here that is a bit of a hack job, but runs and ia useable. I have most of the parts here to start to put it back to at least original appearing, including the Wisconsin engine, but it won't get a full restore. These are both 1054's, the one on the left is almost all original and I got it from the original owner.

Jim
 

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A Little Off Plumb
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Are you trying to make it look original again or just functional. Looking at your other posts I am guessing back to original.

Jim
I hope to make it look very close to original - I have picked up a hood off a 1050 that has been cut up a bit and I think I can fabricate / repair most of the sheet metal pieces. I have been thinking that if I don't encounter anything wrong with the transmission and I can get it to the point where I just need an engine then I can take the Honda off of my 1050 and drop it on this tractor as I still have the original Wisconsin for the 1050.

Will see how finances and my fabrication skills go - if I can make the rest of it look half as good as the seat turned out I will be happy. I figure with the seat recovered the hard part is done and I am half way there. :dancingbanana:
 

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A Little Off Plumb
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I'll be following this post, talk about a "project" !
What's the timeline to get it done? Ready for Christmas?
No timeline really - just something to keep me out of trouble and cause me to scratch my head and question my sanity - might be ready for Christmas 2017??
 

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That looks like a parts machine to me(I've got 2 like that). Just because you can do something, doesn't mean that you should do it. Save it as parts for a better Bolens machine that you will find. Don't waste time on projects that take you away from more productive things. A good complete one will come along that needs the transmission. Then you will get alot with only a small time investment. Good Luck, Rick
 

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That sounds great. Glad you have the time to do it. I'm sure you will have fun. And the result will be great. I was wondering, the triangle piece on the rear end, with three bolts in it, is that a pto cover ? I know nothing about Bolens.

Noel
 

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Fixer of Broken junk
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I have a 1253 sitting here with Deck and hydraulic lift that I gota get around to working on.I pulled the engine apart a couple months ago and was going to rebuild.It smoked alot and had a pretty bad knock.Pulled the cam cover off and found the connecting rod has a really nasty crack in it.Caught it Just in time BUT the crank journal is hurt and the cylinder is to bad for just a fresh set of rings and a light honing.

Put it on the back burner till I could find another engine worth putting in it.

Not sure what I'll end up doing with it yet.Lacking Money to fix it correctly is what's holding me up once again.
 

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That sounds great. Glad you have the time to do it. I'm sure you will have fun. And the result will be great. I was wondering, the triangle piece on the rear end, with three bolts in it, is that a pto cover ? I know nothing about Bolens.

Noel
These have a worm drive rear-end instead of a ring and pinion. The triangle piece holds the bearing that supports the rear of the worm gear.

Jim
 

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A Little Off Plumb
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Today was take it apart day as per the pictures. I unbolted the left hand lift lever that someone had added to the tractor at some point at its life and had a good look at it but did not find any part numbers stamped into it (pictures 6 and 7). The plate that it was attached to was welded on but the actual lift lever appears to be factory made and looks like a Bolens unit - not sure what it is off of. Used the die grinder with the cut off blade to cut the plate welds where someone had welded the plate to the frame tube and the main support and the two pieces of square tubing that were welded to the two fame tubes.
 

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A Little Off Plumb
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
More pictures of things being removed. Someone had added an extra front axle support so that the PTO unit would line up with the engine I assume - they welded it to the square tubing along the sides so I used the die grinder to cut the welds. Got things pretty well apart and I hope to get the cover off of the transmission soon to have a look at the condition of the components. I used a centre punch to mark a "L" and "R" on the frame tubes where they clamp to the side of the transmission so I know which one goes where. Looks like the axle pivot pin is seized in the front axle and the brake plate and clutch pulley will need new lining - kinda what I expected so far.
 

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A Little Off Plumb
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Started working on the transmission today. Removed the top cover and with the help of two floor jacks got it mounted to the engine stand I use - it raises the transmission higher so I don't have to bend over as far and also allows me to rotate the transmission which helps when removing and installing parts. I ran a 5/16-18 tap through the bolt holes in the transmission as some of them were a little stiff coming out. The 15 tooth gear on the three gear cluster has some damage from the gears being ground while shifting and the right rear hub has the ear broken off where the locking pin goes. I was surprised that the right hub slid right off as usually they are snug from rust and gunge. The hub has a crack where the axle keyway is which is not uncommon and it looks like someone has had this apart before as the shifter forks are numbered. I use plastic dishes with the sealable lids to put the nuts, bolts and small parts in and put a piece of scrap cardboard underneath where I am working to catch the dirt and set parts on as I find it makes cleaning up the floor easier.
 

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A Little Off Plumb
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Removed the left axle nut as well and removed the left hub. The locking nut and wave washers are missing but I got parts of a 1050 transmission when I got this tractor and I think the nut is still on it. The left part of the axle appears to have hot spots where the hub turns - perhaps someone ran it with low fluid level and it stopped getting lubricated there?? Then I called it a day and put a piece of cardboard over the top to keep dirt out and rolled it off out of the way. Will have to start working on cleaning things up and ordering some parts.
 

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A Little Off Plumb
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Smart use of your engine stand !! :thumbs:

That's the first time I have seen a screw used to retain the free-wheeling pin in place, but it works. ...Would be even better if the pin had corresponding grooves to accept the screw.
Thanks for the comment on the use of the engine stand Bruce - it makes working on the transmission very easy. First time I have seen a screw used to hold the free wheeling pin as well - like you say a grove in the pin would work better. I hope to repair the tab on the hub and put it back the way it was originally with the clip to hold the pin in place.
 
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