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Bolens 1053 - 1970?
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all,
Last weekend I bought an Agria Bolens 1053 together with a mowing deck. Tractor and deck are in a rough shape so I have to restore it - this thread is all about.
First things first: My native language is German. That means, when I write here I write Germany, just using English vocabulary ;-)

Here is the tractor, just unloaded:
Tire Wheel Vehicle Car Automotive tire


Yesterday I gave it a closer look - OMG, a lot of work ahead!
As you can see - the left rear tire is flat. To be able to move the tractor around in my small garage I decided to start the restoration with the wheels.
Everything here in Germany is metric - so it's not so easy to replace broken or worn out screws. I have to save and restore as much aspossible.
So I was happy that all screws at the rear wheels came of fine.
Rear tires are brittle, thorn and old - have to be replace them.
Rear hubs are a bit rusty, but in a good shape to sandblast and repaint them.
Tire Wheel Vehicle Automotive tire Motor vehicle


The situation with the front tires is not as good.
The left front tire is doesn't has the original hub. But the original hub came with the tractor. It has a bend, needs to be repaired and it looks like a broken bearing:
Tire Wheel Automotive tire Motor vehicle Locking hubs
Automotive tire Wood Grey Road surface Gas


my concern is the knuckle (hope it's the right word)
Looks like the front right is modified to hold the other hub.
Automotive tire Water Road surface Tread Asphalt
Automotive lighting Automotive tire Wheel Motor vehicle Asphalt

The view is from the front - so the front left is the right picture: Original hub
The left picture shows the replacement hub.You can see the welding which was done to implement the other shaft.
In worst case I have to replace this part - which can be a bit complicated here in Germany caused by oversea shipment.

So what will be the next step:
  • remove the old tires,
  • clean up the hubs,
  • inspect the broken bearing, order replacements,
  • prepare hubs for sanding and painting.

Stay tuned....
 

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Bolens 1053 - 1970?
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
By the way...

My wife is American and we go to visit her parents in Texas.
So I am thinking to order some parts (light stuff only) so these can send to the Texas address and I can bring it home.
I know that the choke cable as well as the throttle cable don't work, neither does the light switch.
I am also interested in a refurbishing kit for the carburator, sealing kit for the gear box and the engine...

Are there any recommended suppliers or other recommendation / advised that is "nice to have", even its not the top priority at the moment?
I just want to use the chance to buy easily and take such stuff back home.

Thanks!
 

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This post may help you out.

 

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Bolens 1053 - 1970?
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Update:
Yesterday, Saturday - a typical grey and wet September fall day... Perfect to spend it in the garage! :)
I cleared the garage up getting some space todisassamble the Bolens 1053 (I guess I have to give "him" a name...)
Even the tractor seems to be in a rough shape with a lot of rust - I could easily remove / untighten every screw I came along so far.

I disassambled the rear fender and seat as well as the hood and the dashboard so far.
A lot of dirt under the rear fender - between tool box section (holding the fender) and the gear shifting levers. I am wondering why this place isn't used for a bigger tool box compartment?
However - the rear fender is still in a good shape, no rust damage, good for repaint and reuse. The taillight unfortunately didn't survived, but this isn't a big deal.

Hood was in the same condition. I was thinkingnot to repaint both, just to remove the little rusty spots and cover the patina. But while I was pressure washing the hood, some of the red color came off and I could see the original Bolens white under it. Looks like Agria (the importer) just repainted hood and fender...

The lights are blind but as far as I know there are already led-versions available, even here in Germany. But its still a long way till I can reinstall the lights.

The dashbord was a bit tough. Choke and throttlecable were stuck and rotten, as well the light switch. The ignition switch doesn't seem to be original. There was a started button and a simple switch to turn the ignition on. However, I will cross the bridge when I come to. Maybe I want to add a fuel gage, a thermometer and an engine hour indicater, using the space under the dashboard.
The wiring harness was brittle - I saved it but I will have to rebuild it completely.

Task for next week:
Take the wheels to the tire dealer to remove the old ones, so I can get the hubs sandblasted and repainted.
At one front hub one bearing is broken. I ordered it and the package is already arrived at my parents in law in Texas - will bring it home end of October.
But the restauration will be a long term task anyway...

Motor vehicle Gas Nut Electrical wiring Auto part
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the good advise! I really took this into consideration.
But there are several reasons I want to visit the tire dealer anyway:
1. I know this dealer and so far I bought all tires (cars, motorcycles...) there. He is making a good price and so I suppoprt the locals.
2. I have to buy new tires anyway. I hope he can get the original Goodyears ... and he will give me a good price for the whole package including disassambling and assambling.
3. One front hub has a little dent so I hope the tire dealer has a kind of roller machine to fix it better than I was able to.
4. I need him to assamble the new tires correctly, without ruin the repainted hubs later on (as I would probably do).
5. It's on my way back from work anyway...
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Update:
I really enjoy the time working on the tractor, even it is just the very early disassambling

Here I got some questions:
Disassambling the battery carrier I notices some other holes in the "side walls" of the rear panel
Automotive tire Wood Brick Automotive wheel system Motor vehicle
Wood Door Gas Brick Font
Brown Motor vehicle Wood Paint Font

Picture in the middle - left side: 3 holes below battery carrier
Picture at the right - right side: one hole beside the battery carrier
Doe anybody know what these holes are for?
(Or is it just something out of 50 years we will never know?

Other question:
At the left side there is a little plate sticking out of the side frame, in front of the clutch pedal.
I couldn't find it at the part list.
Is it just the stop for the clutch pedal?
Automotive tire Wood Motor vehicle Bumper Tread



Other question:
I want to remove the rear panel. To do so I have to unscrew two screws at the bottom, connecting the panel with the frame:
Wood Tradesman Helmet Automotive tire Gas

I could remove the one on the right side by using a manual punch screw driver. But the one at the picture I can't reach because of the Holder for the lever.
Do I have to remove all the bottom parts with the lever before I can reach this??

Other question:
Wood Door Automotive tire Gas Wood stain
Wood Motor vehicle Gas Metal Auto part

The rear panel seems to have some cracks at the upper part, close to the crews holding the dash board.
Are these real cracks or is it just to bend the dashboard a bit more upward?

funny part:
The tractor weights about 300kg (600pounds) But the sellermentioned it seemed to be much more!
I figured out why:
Tire Wheel Motor vehicle Automotive tire Vehicle

Every time I work on it, tons of dirt fall off...:)
 

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The cracks you see in the support panel where the dash bolts on are stress cracks. They seem common on many of the tube frame tractors. You can weld them or braze them to fix that. The bolt that holds the support panel on the right side is a bit hard to get to. You should be able to reach through the curved slot of the lift lever quadrant with a screwdriver and get to the head of the bolt. It appears to have a Phillips slotted head. You could try gripping the shank of the screwdriver with vise grip pliers to give you more twisting leverage. I believe that the bracket you see on the left frame tube is a stop for the clutch/brake pedal. In a disassembly procedure like you are doing a generous amount of penetrating oil and patience are very helpful.
 

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Here I got some questions:
Disassambling the battery carrier I notices some other holes in the "side walls" of the rear panel
Picture in the middle - left side: 3 holes below battery carrier
Picture at the right - right side: one hole beside the battery carrier
Does anybody know what these holes are for?
(Or is it just something out of 50 years we will never know?

Other question:
At the left side there is a little plate sticking out of the side frame, in front of the clutch pedal.
I couldn't find it at the part list.
Is it just the stop for the clutch pedal?



Other question:
I want to remove the rear panel. To do so I have to unscrew two screws at the bottom, connecting the panel with the frame:

I could remove the one on the right side by using a manual punch screw driver. But the one at the picture I can't reach because of the Holder for the lever.
Do I have to remove all the bottom parts with the lever before I can reach this??

Other question:

The rear panel seems to have some cracks at the upper part, close to the crews holding the dash board.
Are these real cracks or is it just to bend the dashboard a bit more upward?
The holes near the battery carrier holes may be to attach levers and brackets for some of the attachments that were offered for the Tube Frame series or may be left over from earlier models of the Tube Frames as I believe the dash support panel was used on the 1050 series as well. The one bolt hole near the drive train idler pulley was used on the 1050 series for a clamp to hold some wiring - not sure if the 1053 used a clamp there or not.

As Dave mentioned the little plate is the clutch stop and the cracks are real - the dash support piece vibrates a bit from the engine being mounted solid to the frame and the firewall.

As Dave mentioned you can usually go in through the lift arm bracket to undo the screw. You can also use a 1/4" drive socket and ratchet with a short philips head bit to go in between the lift arm bracket and the side of the dash support - a block of wood can be used as a wedge to apply side pressure to the ratchet head so the bit does not slip as you try and rotate the screw. If the screw is really stuck I have used a small pair of vise grips to clamp onto the screw head to see if it will turn.

Here is a picture from the parts list that shows the clutch stop.
White Slope Font Line Triangle
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks y'all!
Looks like I wasn't looking good enough at the drawings - thanks 29 Chev for finding it.
I don't worry abou the holes - just wondering because I am still learning about the possible attachments.
I can repair the cracks - no problem.

The screw at the side is still an issue. Yes, I can reach it through the lift arm bracket with a screw driver - but unfortunately not with my little manual punch tool (maybe impact screw driver is the better word). So I go with the advise of using patience and penetrating oil.

Update in the meantime,
Tires are off, the one front hub is straightened and all hubs are out for sandblasting and painting - good to have some"good ol' boys" connections to get it done for a favor.
There is only one week left till we go to visit my parents in law in Texas - so I think the penetrating oil will have time enough to work...

Other question:
it looks like there was a 1053-1 and a 1053-2. Reviewing the linkage for the mowing deck and the drawings - my Bolens is a 1053-2
The manuals are cover both, the versions seems to be very similar. What are the main differences?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
my impact screwdriver has a 3/8 square drive that the bit holder fits on. a 3/8 extension fits too
Looks like I need to by a better impact screwdriver which is compatible to the regular systems...

However:
Finally I won by hammering an older screw driver into the bolt and turn it with a lot of pressure, supported by a pipe wrench.
Automotive tire Motor vehicle Wheel Wood Automotive design


Next I want to take the engine off. So I took the drive belts of the engine as well as I removed the PTO and its belts.
The belt guard at the PTO seemed to have a hard time in the past ;-)
Wood Bicycle part Tool Pliers Slip joint pliers


The exhaust is terrible, I want to replace it by the original one. But to do so I have to remove the old one. Its pretty rusty, so I started the penetration oil threatment and cut off an holding iron.
I am thinking to remove the exhaust as long as the engine is still mounted on the frame so it has a much more solid stand than on the bench....
Motor vehicle Automotive tire Wood Automotive wheel system Gas
Automotive tire Wood Motor vehicle Auto part Gas


But for sure it will take some time to let the penetration oil do its job....
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Update:
I tried to disassemble the front axle. But there are two issues:
Axle pin
I can not remove the axle pivot, even I removed the little drive pins at both ends. The axle pivot is not moving back nor forth. The axle pivot is moving with the axle relative to the axle support. So the pivot is stacked in the axle...
Wood Gas Metal Door Font


Second issue:
Even I removed the screws holding the steering levers - I could not get them off!
Are they screwed to the spindle??
 

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Have you downloaded this.
I do not own such a tractor and don't choose to give up the space on my computer to the file but if I did own that tractor I would definitely download and study this.
Not having direct experience with that machine I can't give specific advice but I believe you will now have to apply lots of heat to loosen things up.
Don
 

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The pivot pin is likely stuck-rusted in the axle. Give it good application of penetrating oil. Let it soak a few days. Maybe try heating it up good and hot with a torch a couple of times. Put more penetrating oil on it and let it soak some more. Same with the steering arms. Might have to heat them. I had to use a puller on a couple of them and heat. Someone had been hammering on the end of the spindles and mushroomed them. They didn’t want to come off. The axle pivot pin might respond to being rattled on with a blunt driver in an air-chisel. If you have one that is. I had one stuck so badly that I ended up drilling it out. I hope yours isn’t stuck as bad as that!
 

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My guess would be that the grease fitting for the axle pivot pin never got greased as a lot of owners do not realize that fitting and the one at the base of the steering column are there or chose to ignore them. If you have access to a press you may be able to put some pressure on the end of the pin and at the same time use a torch to try and heat the axle area where the pin passes through it. As Dave mentioned an air chisel with a blunt driver may also help to start the pin moving. The same can be said of the steering arms and a bearing splitter plate and puller along with some heat may start them moving as well. Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Thanks for the advices!
So far all of the tractor came of relatively easy...
We have a good maintenance department in the company I work for. I hope they can give me some support.


My wife and I will travel to TX DFW-area next week. Still have to do a lot of preparations. We will visit her parents and family - looking forward to it, even it means that the Bolens project has to wait till November...
There is a tractor show in Waco at the 28th of October.
Would it be a good idea to visit it?
 
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