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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Tire Wheel Plant Vehicle Automotive tire


馃槃

Well, this is about as unplanned as it can get.

A week ago last Saturday I clicked on my nemesis 'AKA Facebook' and I happen to have a couple of notifications from fellow Bolens enthusiasts directing me towards an ad in WA for a Bolens large frame with a Johnson 14 loader for a steal of a price. Something like this doesn't come up very often in my area, and definitely not at this price point when they do. My curiosity peaked when I saw the ad was posted 41 minutes ago, however. I know how these things usually work and with that said, I was expecting the seller to say it was already sold or the price was wrong which would have been fine as I don't need another but I had to at least roll the dice. He still had it. As I scramble to type the quickest reply I can, I tell him I'm leaving first thing in the morning, I call my friend David to tell him to get ready for a road trip and I load up the trailer.

When I got there, the seller showed me on his phone 50 other people who had messaged him and were offering to pay higher prices, etc. I was second in line apparently when the first person couldn't find a way to transport it. It even came with some spare parts like a complete engine, tiller, mid mount blade, a nice original spare muffler and some odds and ends.

Not really sure what I'm going to do with it yet as I didn't know I was getting another large frame! 馃檭 It has good bones, everything works, but it is definitely a fixer upper all around any way you look at it. A friend may purchase it from me at some point. I'm going to enjoy it this winter and experiment with the Sundstrand 15 which I've always wanted to try out on a Bolens. The mid mount blade is pretty cool too.

So far I've done the following:

-Pressure wash.
-Tune up. She runs pretty good!
-Fixed some bad electrical connections. It's lost spark twice due to multiple bad connections in the wiring..
-The left side engine cover was missing but it came with a complete K482 that had the covers so I swapped one on. It turns out the "spare engine" is likely the original one for the machine..
-The battery hold down was missing so I installed one I had laying around.
It is very much a "tinkerers" tractor. Everything works so it can be used while you fix it up since there is always something you can improve on. Or, just restore the whole thing. It's obvious that it's been stored outside uncovered so everything needs a shot of PB blaster and things are stiff like the steering and brake pedal but they are starting to come around with some help and use. The sheet metal is pretty straight but has a fare share of surface rust in areas. It's hard to go back to manual steering but it brings me back to my former 1886 and it can actually be kind of rewarding and fun as it requires more involvement and planning ahead if you can look at it that way. The J14 is smooth and works well. Somebody has redone some of the lines though in a non-enthusiast manner and it would be something that could be redone to factory-like spec during a resto. Both these tractors are night and day different in how they perform and feel behind the wheel.

I'm sure there will be some more updates here and there to come. Because of the early sunset, RAIN, and time I get home, it's hard to get good pics this time of year but I have the week off between Christmas and New Years so I'll post some more then. Hoping we get some snow!!

Tire Wheel Plant Vehicle Automotive tire


Tire Wheel Plant Automotive tire Vehicle


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Wheel Tire Vehicle Plant Automotive tire
 

A Little Off Plumb
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Looks good and should prove to be a handy item for you - perhaps a pattern is beginning to form?
 

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Ahhhh, loaders. Love to have one. Nice find. And lucky to get it. If that was for sale here, same thing would happen. Sold with hours and many people looking for it.

Noel
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
With a mid-mount blade too! Perfect! I'd love to have that machine in my garage. Fix what it needs and put it to work. Doesn't look that bad.
Thanks, it's growing on me! It is a good worker.

I'm jealous.you are a very luck guy,good for you great scoop..Scott
Totally unplanned, but thanks, Scott!

Dang, 2 tractors with loaders! Have fun!
Just need to find somebody to fill the seat so I can tag team with my other. :) Thanks, Kenny!

Looks good and should prove to be a handy item for you - perhaps a pattern is beginning to form?
Hoping it can stick around for a while or at least it will be going to a friend where I will see it occasionally. Yes, a handy machine. Thanks, Stew!!

Ahhhh, loaders. Love to have one. Nice find. And lucky to get it. If that was for sale here, same thing would happen. Sold with hours and many people looking for it.

Noel
Thanks, Noel!
 

Mark J.
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Glad to hear she's running so well. Is the mid mounted blade factory or homemade?

We've had about 4" of snow total but it has been very cold.
 
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Glad to hear she's running so well. Is the mid mounted blade factory or homemade?

We've had about 4" of snow total but it has been very cold.
Thanks, Mark.
Yes, cold for our area for sure! We don't normally get snow this early in the season. I'm sure you will be getting plenty more to have some fun with.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
I've used it quite a lot this year as my primary tractor. I don't know how long I will keep it so my goal has been to use it as much as possible with a wide variety of attachments to learn what an HT18 is like and how a Sundstrand 15 performs in a Bolens. It's been a reliable machine after fixing some electrical connections, tune up and new battery earlier this year. The Sundstrand feels more like a "go kart" compared to both the Eaton models, it always gives me the indication that it wants to go fast. It pulls well but takes a very steady foot to go slow speeds like for tilling. Out of all three transmissions, the Eaton 11 is my favorite all around.


I have not spent a lot of money on it other than essentials but I did splurge on a reproduction muffler that Randy Sorensen did a run of, a very cool piece. I couldn't take the Harley muffler as it seemed to always blow fumes in my face and I did not like the look of it.


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Wheel Tire Plant Vehicle Automotive tire



Shortly after, a very kind and gracious member named Chris Hlavac contacted me after seeing pics of the new muffler and asked if I needed the support piece which I was missing. He offered to make a new one and that he did a very nice job of it.

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A Little Off Plumb
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Looks like you are enjoying the pleasure of multiple tractors - might be time to think about starting to build a new storage area as #4 is probably just an advertisement away from coming home with you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Glad to see you received the muffler support. Pretty nice setups and selection of attachments for your fleet. Your 3 point tiller is pretty cool
Thanks, Jeff!

Looks like you are enjoying the pleasure of multiple tractors - might be time to think about starting to build a new storage area as #4 is probably just an advertisement away from coming home with you.
Thanks, Stew. Boy, probably not for a while!
 

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That has been my problem, I have storage space and it's too easy to just add something else to the collection. I have to tell myself no quite often. I truthfully have more things stashed than I really need. I guess that's called hoarding?
 

Mark J.
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Good to see that you've gotten good use out of the HT18. Thanks for sharing the videos. Hopefully next year I can see it in person at the plow day.
 
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Good to see that you've gotten good use out of the HT18. Thanks for sharing the videos. Hopefully next year I can see it in person at the plow day.
You'll have to get some seat time! Man, you and I need some more opportunities for GT work days. That was too much fun last year. Yes, hopefully count on a plow day for next year. (y)
 
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