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Discussion Starter · #81 ·
Decided that it would be wise to create two new heavy duty 5/16" flat washers for the two bolts that will hold the gear case at the bottom of the bracket. Since these holes are slotted I was concerned that regular 5/16" flat washers might tend to bend a bit in the slot area as I had seen in the past. Cut two pieces of 1/8" x 1" flat steel 1" long and marked the center of them with a center punch where the 5/16" hole would be drilled. I also used a 1/2" washer clamped to the pieces to scribe a line around on the corners that needed to be removed to create round shaped washers. Then I drilled the center hole out to 5/16".
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Here is what the two washers looked like after I sanded them - would have worked but I was not happy with the way they looked.
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So they got mounted on a 5/16" bolt and the outside was turned down in the metal lathe. Lost a little bit of physical size as they now measure about 7/8" on the outside but still should do a very nice job of clamping the gear case bracket in place. They will get painted once I have some other items ready to paint.
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Discussion Starter · #82 ·
Decided to drill out the threads in the chute control and then added a 1/4" UNC nut to the top and welded it on the sides and rear. This will serve the same purpose as the original threads did but if a bolt strips or breaks off again like the brass one did the nut can be easily cut / ground off and a new one added in its place again rather than having to remove the shaft and try and save the threads in the chute control housing. Still thinking about how I want to make what wedges against the shaft spring loaded so that the wedging action is more consistent and requiring less adjustment than the bolt wearing against the shaft provides.
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Discussion Starter · #83 ·
Finally got a bit of time to work on this again - dug out the rotor bearing flanges and the one spacer that is shown in the parts list on the sprocket side. The parts list shows a quantity of two and I am assuming that the other one has been misplaced or damaged at some point in the snow casters life. I replaced the bearings a few years ago and there was only one spacer when I took things apart but the old bearings were very tight on the rotor shaft. When I installed the new bearings they were not quite as tight but still seem to be in good shape and there is no evidence of them turning on the shaft. I did notice that the end of the rotor has worn a bit of a groove in the one flange face (nothing too serious) but this would indicate that a second spacer at the other end would be a good idea. I also found out when I replaced the bearings that one of the flanges is larger where the bearing presses in - at the time I used a shim made out of sheet metal which seems to doing a good job. Since the casting numbers on the flanges are identical somebody at some point bored one flange out to accommodate a different bearing they had on hand or was less expensive - not sure?? Here are pictures of the one spacer and the two flanges.
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To make a second spacer I cut off a short piece of pipe that was very close to the ID and OD of the original spacer and faced the two edges in the lathe.
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Unfortunately I got a little greedy with my last cut and the spacer was about .005" less in width than the original so I got to do it all over again and make a second one. This time I stopped about .010" short and then used the sander and the file to remove material until the new one was at .261". The original measured between .261" and .264" in width depending on where it was measured - the OD measured 1.001" and the ID measured .882". Since it goes over a .750" shaft it is not designed to be a press fit but merely to keep the rotor from moving back and forth much. Took a picture of the new spacer beside the original one and then set it on the bearing - the new spacer was a bit larger. It probably would have worked ok but I wanted it to be a bit closer fit to the inner race size the way the original spacer fits in the last picture.
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Discussion Starter · #84 ·
Used the die grinder with the cut off blade to slit the spacer and then grind a taper on the ends. Used a pair of vise grips to squeeze the spacer together and tried it against the bearing race and made sure it still slipped over the rotor shaft ok. Things looked good so I welded the spacer ends together.
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Cleaned up the weld and then tried the spacer over the rotor shaft and also set it in top of the bearing race. Not a perfect match but should work fine and a lot less work than turning a new spacer out of a piece of 1" round stock.
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Gave the spacers a coat of paint and also did a drawing of the original spacer that may help someone if they are missing one or both. Looking at the parts list the newer version just used 4 flat washers at each end (probably machinery bushings). Could have used machinery bushings but this way I can only drop one spacer (instead of 4 washers) at each end when things go back together.
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Discussion Starter · #85 ·
Decided I am going to try and make a new rotor bearing flange to have as a back up. Found a piece of 1/2" thick steel that should work to make it out of - will have to add some metal with the welder where the bearing area is as the old flange is thicker there. Got the piece marked out and did one cut with the hacksaw and then got lazy and dug out the chop saw to do the other two cuts. Did the cuts close to the scribe marks and then used the sander to remove the little bit of metal that was left and made sure the edges were reasonably straight and square to the surface so it should chuck up ok in the 4 jaw chuck.
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Figured out the center of the piece and marked the location with a center punch and then drilled a pilot hole in the piece. Used the drill press and eventually enlarged the hole to 7/8" diameter which will serve as a surface to use the dial gauge on to center the metal in the lathe. Then I can use the lathe to mark out the bolt circle and index the four bolt hole locations as well as mark the piece where the metal will need to be welded so it is thicker at the bearing hole to match the original flange.
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Discussion Starter · #87 ·
I admire your creativity and ambition! I’d probably have tried to get one from one of parts vendor / suppliers.
Not sure if it is creativity and ambition or stubbornness and stupidity?? That would be the logical way to go but the Canadian dollar isn't worth much these days so figuring the exchange rate and shipping it will cost less to make one if I don't figure in my time. The nice thing about making it out of steel is that it should be easier to repair than the cast ones if something happens to it.
 

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Not sure if it is creativity and ambition or stubbornness and stupidity?? That would be the logical way to go but the Canadian dollar isn't worth much these days so figuring the exchange rate and shipping it will cost less to make one if I don't figure in my time. The nice thing about making it out of steel is that it should be easier to repair than the cast ones if something happens to it.
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Discussion Starter · #90 ·
Got one side of the steel faced in the lathe and then flipped it over and centered it using the dial indicator. Then I used the tool bit as a scribe to mark out the bolt circle diameter where the bolt holes should go. Then I used the 60 hole index on the bull gear to mark out four hole locations so the holes should be very close to being equal distant from each other the same as the original flange appears to be.
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Removed the bearing in the original flange so I could determine the inside diameter of the bearing hole - this was used to mark two other circles on the piece of steel as these will be where the steel needs to be built up with weld so that it will be about 5/8" thick in this location.
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With the piece of steel removed I used a center punch to mark the four bolt hole locations and also marked around the two circles as these will be easier to see when I start welding to build the area up. Started 4 pilot holes at the center punch locations and then verified them with the housing bolt holes. I got one hole off slightly so had to reestablish its location with the center punch and then started it at its proper location. The bolt circle looked good but the hole locations are not perfect but should work fine as the housing holes are slightly oversize.
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After studying the original flange closely there appears to be a bit of variation in the thickness of the flange along the edge - mine must have been built on a Monday or Friday or maybe they just figured the cast flanges once milled and bored would be close enough where the metal cleaned up?? Drilled the four bolt holes through and out to 1/4" diameter , checked them with the housing and should align ok and then I called it a day.

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Discussion Starter · #91 · (Edited)
Got the holes enlarged to 5/16" diameter and then tapped them with a 3/8 - UNC tap to match the original flange. Tried bolting it to the housing and found out three holes aligned ok and the bolts started easy but the fourth bolt would not start as it was off slightly. Thought about enlarging the one housing hole slightly with a file but decided that was the lazy mans way out and that I should correct the situation properly. Since I had verified that the bolt circle diameter was correct I must have indexed the one hole off slightly - lesson learned - verify the marks align with the final mounting spot before drilling rather than think they will be close enough.

Since trying to fill in a 1/2" deep 5/16" hole with weld from the top and bottom and do a good job is beyond my talents I enlarged the hole - first to 1/2" and then to 3/4". This allowed me to then cut off the flange corner with the hack saw which I did creating a "U" opening that I could weld in from the bottom deepest area first and work my way to the outside corner. Took a bit of time as I had to let things cool occasionally but got that done creating a very toasty piece of metal.
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Let it cool for about half an hour and then used the sander to make the corner look respectable again.
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The flange was then bolted to the housing with the three bolts and then a scribe was used to mark where the fourth hole should be. The center of the mark was then center punched and drilled with a 1/8" pilot hole and then enlarged to 5/16". Then the new hole got tapped with the 3/8" UNC tap to match the other three.
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Then the flange got test fitted to the housing and this time all four bolts threaded in fine - why couldn't I have done that the first time??
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Discussion Starter · #92 ·
The flange was then put back in the lathe and a few more facing cuts were done to level the flange surface where I had welded the hole in. There is a smidge at the very outer edge that is just a bit low but won't hurt anything and the flange will now fit flat against the housing.
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Then I started building up the area around the bearing hole location with weld so it will match the original flange. The center punch marks were much easier to view when welding that the scribe lines so glad I took the time to do them. The flange once more got very toasty so I let it cool and called it a day - Should be able to clean up the weld a bit and then put it back in the lathe.
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Discussion Starter · #93 ·
Only had a bit of time to work on the flange today but got a bit more accomplished. Wire brushed the flange where it was welded and also used a round file to clean out any weld splatter inside the hole. Mounted it back in the lathe and used the dial gauge to center the hole again. Got the end of the welded area faced and also faced the flange at the bolt hole locations but found it needed a bit more building up in a few spots with the mig welder. At least now it is starting to resemble the original flange.
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Did some more welding and then let the flange cool while I did some other things. Hopefully that is the last welding that I need to do to it.
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With the right thickness of material you could reproduce the mowing deck spindle flanges too. I'm currently using one that I had to "set" the bearings in the housing with LocTite retaining compound. You know that thicker green colored compound. Different from the blue color thread locker product. There was just enough wear/ corrosion that the bearings just dropped right in the bores and had a couple thousandths of wiggle room. Lacking any good spares at that time I simply "glued" the bearings in. Been mowing with it for several years now. Probably just jinxed myself! :unsure:
 

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Discussion Starter · #96 ·
You're well on your way with this. Looks good to me. What thickness of plate would you have had to start with to avoid the build up with weld? 3/4"?
Yes I would suggest a piece of metal 3/4" thick to avoid the welding. Unfortunately the closest I had on hand was 1/2" so I had to make it grow in spots. Measuring the old flange one might sneak by with 5/8" thick but 3/4" would give a bit of extra material to allow for a few facing cuts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #97 ·
With the right thickness of material you could reproduce the mowing deck spindle flanges too. I'm currently using one that I had to "set" the bearings in the housing with LocTite retaining compound. You know that thicker green colored compound. Different from the blue color thread locker product. There was just enough wear/ corrosion that the bearings just dropped right in the bores and had a couple thousandths of wiggle room. Lacking any good spares at that time I simply "glued" the bearings in. Been mowing with it for several years now. Probably just jinxed myself! :unsure:
Would take a pretty thick piece to create the mower deck flanges - probably around 1-3/4" so might not be easy to come by. Could weld a few pieces together maybe but that would be a last resort in my opinion. Would be easier to do as you did using the green Loctite. Other options to consider might be to drill 4 or 6 holes for 1/4" set screws through the hubs to grab the bearings, use a piece of shim stock between the bearing and the housing bore, some center punch marks and a few coats of paint in the bore, etc. For those with a lathe could make up a sleeve from a piece of exhaust pipe and then bore the flange hole so the exhaust pipe sleeve is a press fit and then turn it back to the appropriate bore size so the bearings fit tight again. I have one flange that the bearings are not overly tight in and used the paint trick to make them a tad snugger. Never had a problem with the bearings turning in the housing as I think the belt tension does a good job of keeping enough side pressure on the shaft and bearing so they don't try to turn. I doubt if you jinxed yourself but sometimes it requires a bit of heat to melt the Loctite to remove the bearing when you need to replace it next time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #98 ·
One of the drawbacks of having a smaller lathe is the cuts are many and light but still much better than no lathe at all. Got the welds faced on the outside and the end and they cleaned up nice. Then I removed the tool post and got ready to start boring the bearing hole larger - like I said lots of light cuts so it takes some time.
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This is what the bearing hole in the original flange measures - approximately 1.775" and here is as far as I got enlarging the hole today - about 1.525"
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At least things are progressing in what appears to be the right direction and I have the weld area of the bore cleaned up now as well. I radiused the outer corner surface slightly to match the original flange and make it less likely to cut some skin if it gets near it.
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Discussion Starter · #100 ·
Thanks for the kind words.

Enlarged the bearing hole to match the original flange - came within about .0005" so did pretty good I think.
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Then I cleaned out the threads with a tap and installed the bearing out of the original flange in the new flange -seemed to fit ok.
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Flipped the old flange over and remembered I forgot to add a bevel on the back side to match the original. I assume this bevel was so that people installed the bearing so the edge of the bearing aligned with the outer flange face.
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Removed the bearing and installed the 3 jaw chuck on the lathe, mounted the flange and added the taper on the back side of the hole to match the original.
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Once done I set the flanges side by side - one way they are about the same height but the other way the original flange is a tad shy - shows the discrepancy that I mention earlier in the original flanges thickness. Now I have an extra flange that I can set aside with a new bearing as hopefully I can repair the worn area on the one flange and come up with a better method than the sheet metal spacer for the other bearing hole to make it the correct size again.

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