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 My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build

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98svtcobra
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Mon Mar 09, 2015 1:36 pm

....I meant to post this last week. For anyone who might be curious, this is how we did our clutch/brake linkage. Worked out nicely for us.

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redlinemotorsportts
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Mon Mar 09, 2015 7:47 pm

Lots of progress. Sounds like you guys can tear a Murray down and throw it back together in record time now. Gotta love it when everything works together nicely.
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98svtcobra
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Mon Mar 09, 2015 8:21 pm

redlinemotorsportts wrote:
Lots of progress. Sounds like you guys can tear a Murray down and throw it back together in record time now. Gotta love it when everything works together nicely.

Thanks dude. Yeah, we have learned a lot about these Murray wide body's and it has been fun to learn on. The first tear down and rebuild definitely took a lot longer than this last time. Looking forward to being able to enjoy it and romp it around soon off the street.

We are also excited to start learning about the Craftsman chassis soon as well.
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Mon Mar 16, 2015 3:00 pm

Hello everyone! More build progress this past weekend!

The weekend started off with some of the tweaks we mentioned.

  • sorted out the issue with the 1 idler pulley that kept dropping the belt. We made a different belt keeper up and it and it worked out perfect.
  • we installed the missing cooling tins to our oppy
  • we tweaked the gas pedal to get it to respond/work better
  • fabricated and installed custom front bumper
  • installed hood after fabricating hood mounts to work with new front bumper

Overall things went really well. We got everything done that we wanted and it all came out really nicely.






Here is this weeks installment of our build progress pics on IMGUR: http://imgur.com/a/UaDj1


You might notice the absence of any test or romping videos. in this post. Well that's because our 20.5 hp oppy unfortunately was short lived. During some testing after fixing the idler pulley on saturday, we noticed something was not right with the 20.5 oppy. It just didn't feel as powerful as it did during our initial testing. We only were able to hit about 27 mph and we felt it just wasn't revving and pulling as hard as the previous weekend.

As we were on the way back to the garage to look it over, we heard the motor start to knock......we shut it off right away. That's pretty much all she wrote. We tried to start it once more and there definitely is a knock/metal on metal banging of sorts, we didn't want to cause more damage so off she's has stayed.

It's possible a connecting rod broke, maybe spun bearing, maybe it's a valve that popped, maybe the oil slinger.... We can't tell at the moment. We weren't even testing it very hard that day, mostly low RPM stuff, hadn't been running long. All cooling shrouds were on. The only thing that we could find that seemed off to us about it, was that the engine oil was really dirty....black... even though it was brand new oil with less than 30 min of run time on it. Oil level was good, etc.It's going to have to be torn down completely to find out what went wrong and what needs to be repaired.

So now we have an awesome machine that is ready to romp, with no engine yet again. Honestly, we are not feeling the opposed twin love at this point. Since day one most of the issues we have had with this build has been with getting these oppys running right. It's like we have some sort of oppy curse on us or something. Since at this point we have pretty much 2 of everything for the 20.5/21hp oppys, we are going to save this motor and rebuild it one day, to be used in another project....but not the Murray Select Mudder.

Since we have invested so much time and effort into this build we have decided to invest in a much newer and more reliable engine. I've mentioned before but, this has been our first adventure in the mower/tractor off roading world. We have learned a lot and we think have done a pretty bang up job. I personally plan on keeping the Murray Select Mudder indefinitely. It was my first "new" lawn tractor at the time, and now my first off road all terrain lawn tractor, and we are very proud of it.

That being said, a new engine is on the way! We are keeping it a surprise as to what it is, but it will be BRAND NEW and will be well taken care of with the hopes that the Murray Select Mudder will have a long life of reliable modding, mudding, romping and fun!

Stay tuned!!! Once we get the new engine we will be working on the install along with any other fab work that will be needed to get it working in the Murray Select Mudder.

Thanks for reading and following along!

-Brad and Joe (BJ Garage)
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Mon Mar 16, 2015 8:10 pm

Bumper looks sweet, you should skin it with sheet metal for more if a pre runner look.

Imgur link doesn't work. Embarassed

What in the heck are you guys doing to your poor engines! That's impressive, killing two big cube oppys. Hopefully you get better luck on the next ones.
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Tue Mar 17, 2015 9:46 am

redlinemotorsportts wrote:
Bumper looks sweet, you should skin it with sheet metal for more if a pre runner look.

Imgur link doesn't work. Embarassed

What in the heck are you guys doing to your poor engines! That's impressive, killing two big cube oppys. Hopefully you get better luck on the next ones.

Thanks dude. We are going to eventually add skid plates/belly pans and will be skinning at least part of the front bumper as part of that.

The imgur link should work now. Their website has been getting hit hard from Reddit the past few days.

I have no idea what is going on with our oppys! Either the opposed twin gods just don't want us to run one, we have a bad case of oppy bad luck or we are doing something wrong. The only thing we could think of is that mmmaayyyyybeeee we are giving them a bit too much high RPM love. We had our gas pedal hooked to the governor linkage, we could pull against the governor but the governor could also pull back on the pedal to not allow itself to over rev. We tried to keep it at about 4000rpm max, but perhaps the oppys just want to run at lower RPM. We won't know for sure till we tear that 20.5 oppy down, which won't be for a while....we have bigger fish to fry. I'm not giving up on the oppys though. I do plan to rebuild it and if I can get high performance connecting rods and a flywheel, maybe we can give it the revs that we want and not break stuff.

This new engine we are only hooking up by the factory throttle control and 3600rpm is all it will see for a while. lol.
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Tue Mar 17, 2015 2:49 pm

Great progress, I always liked that goofy looking hood that Murray used. The 2 stage clutch/brake pedal is a good idea, but I prefer them separate. I also don't feel the love for oppys, I had one for 2 years that never ran right and always had a issue. I prefer a V twin. Cool that your motor is gonna be brand new, I wouldn't turn up the gov at all if it has a warranty. Good luck.
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Tue Mar 17, 2015 4:39 pm

802 Customs wrote:
Great progress, I always liked that goofy looking hood that Murray used. The 2 stage clutch/brake pedal is a good idea, but I prefer them separate. I also don't feel the love for oppys, I had one for 2 years that never ran right and always had a issue. I prefer a V twin. Cool that your motor is gonna be brand new, I wouldn't turn up the gov at all if it has a warranty. Good luck.

Thank you. The goofy "grasshopper" look of the Murray has always appealed to me for some reason. Glad to hear we are not the only ones with a lot of issues with opposed twins. The governor on the new engine will be untouched or modified. It has a warranty, but either way I would just prefer to keep it around for a while.
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Tue Mar 17, 2015 6:19 pm

I guess it is a new briggs single around 17 hp
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Wed Mar 18, 2015 2:19 pm

1997 Murray wrote:
I guess it is a new briggs single around 17 hp

I guess we'll have to wait and see! :-)
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Wed Mar 25, 2015 1:59 pm

Hey everyone! This past weekend my brother-in-law Joe and I were busy gitting er' done on the Murray build. We made some huge progress! Check out the short list. I'll post more details below:


  • We fabricated the rear bumper/hitch. It's really more of a hitch than a bumper, but I guess it can work as both. Goal here was to be able to install the ATC hitch adapter so we had a good towing point and could use a 2 inch receiver.
  • We removed the 20.5 Oppy to make room for our new powerplant.
  • We installed our new powerplant, made everything work and did some test romping!


After fabricating our front bumper last weekend we decided to fabricate a rear bumper while we waited for our new power plant. I am using the term "bumper" here lightly. We didn't design this to actually be a bumper to protect from impacts or we would have made it larger. The main goal of it was that we wanted to get this 2 inch ATV hitch adapter installed and strengthen the existing bumper/hitch area to make it stronger for towing. We wanted to be able to have a good strong tow point in the rear as well as be able to tow some stuff around the property if needed. With the ATV hitch adapter and our revised bumper/hitch section, we can now do this. We built everything from 1 inch flat stock and 1 inch square tubing.

We are pleased with how it turned out:



Of course we made sure the ATV hitch adapter is removable! as is the entire hitch/rear bumper.

After we got the rear hitch/bumper completed, we decided to do a small clean up of the garage and pull the blown 20.5 oppy to make room for the new engine.....


Now we needed to wait for the new engine to arrive......

You are probably wondering what new engine I went with for the Murray. As much as I wanted to go with another twin cyl and 20+hp, it just wasn't in the budget, plus it likely would be overkill for our use. That being said, 1997Murray was very close with his guess:

I picked up a brand new B&S 17.5 Intek "Powerbuilt" single cyl for the Murray!

The 17.5 Intek arrived to my apartment around 5:00pm on Monday and of course I couldn't wait until the weekend to install it. I ran over to my mother-in-law's house where the Murray is being built and Joe and I got to work getting the engine installed!

We were really impressed on how smoothly the install worked. The motor bolted right in and in a few hours the engine was installed. We were able to remove the "choke-a-matic" system and use a manual choke instead, which we prefer. We also were able to get our gas pedal to work on the factory throttle control with no major modifications. We just needed to add a return spring. We wanted to make sure we used only the factory throttle control and did not integrate with or mess with the governor at all since this is a new engine. The only downside to this is that we lost our dash mounted throttle control, but who needs it!

We were able to make a plug and play wiring harness using an old harness we scavenged from a parts tractor. This worked out perfect since we didn't want to start cutting and splicing wiring on a new engine. The only things we didn't hook up were the headlights, which we need to re-wire.

The muffler we installed was just the old one from the original 13.5 B&S single from the Murray. We had to weld it together since we lost the hardware for it and it had a few holes. We will be fabricating a 1 in 2 y-pipe and using our existing dual exhaust soon, hopefully this upcoming weekend.

By the time we finished everything it was already dark, but we just had to take it for a test romp! We are VERY pleased with the performance of the 17.5 intek. We did take it easy on the motor since we are breaking it in, but we did get on it a few times. It feels like it almost has more torque than the opposed twins did, it pulls hard from idle to full throttle. We will miss the great sound of the oppys, but I think we will be more than happy with the reliability and performance of this engine.

We did a quick top speed run of course and we hit 27mph. We are extremely pleased with this # as it is right in line with what we wanted to accomplish from day 1. This was achieved at the factory governed 3600rpm. We won't be revving more than that for a while.....this does though shed some light on our issues with blowing up Opposed twins......we were able to hit 30+ mph with each of them....which likely means we were running more than 4000rpm...whoops. I guess that would explain the broken connecting rods and why they did not like screaming at top RPM for as long as we did. Ah well, you live and you learn. Fortunately between the 2 oppys we killed we have all of the parts to rebuild and make 1 working engine again. We plan on rebuilding and using the 20.5 in another application in the future......not to be over-revved....lol

We are excited to finish up the last few things on this build and being able to hit the trail and enjoy it!

Thanks for reading and following along.

Here is a first start up and quick romp video:

In this romp, there is about 2 inches of snow/ice and I was in 3rd gear. Not bad!

imgur album with this installment of build pics: http://imgur.com/a/P0jnA
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Mon Apr 06, 2015 1:17 pm

Hey Everyone! We hope you all had a good holiday weekend. Joe and I have been hard at work on the Murray Select Mudder. Over the past 2 weekends we have made some awesome progress and even finally got to do some actual off road trail riding! I am going to provide these updates in 2 separate posts. This post is from 2 weekends ago. The next one will be for this past weekend. So consider this part 1 of a 2 part series.

After we got the new engine installed almost 2 weeks ago, we were only able to do some testing outside of the house, in the back yard and the road a bit. At this point, we had an uncontrollable urge for some REAL off road testing. That being said, before we could even fabricate our dual exhaust, we decided to romp it with the temporary muffler we installed. Good times were had indeed...this thing was pretty much unstoppable....but there were a few tweaks still needed. The grill kept falling off, the hood was flopping all around, the front end needed a bit more lift, and our foot throttle needed some tweaking...We also bent the steering at some point, as both front tires now faced outwards.


aftermath of first official trail romp!

After the first romp, we knew what had to be done. We riveted the grill to the hood. We fastened the hood down with some nuts and bolts/make shift hood pins. Eventually I feel we will swap these for some real hood pins, but for now this gets the job done. We fabricated our 1 into 2 dual exhaust including y-pipe and using much of our old exhaust from the oppy motors. We swapped our low profile 13.5 inch tall front snow hogs for the taller 15 inch stock turf savers...though they were bald. After we finished the above tasks, we noticed that it was still daylight!! What did that mean!? MORE TRAIL ROMPS!

This time we REALLY had fun. We were on the search for Mud and boy did we find it!


During our 2nd round of "trail testing" we could not be more pleased with how everything worked and performed. We drove through all sorts of terrain. Rocky, dirt, steep inclines, steep declines, and of course MUD! The Murray Select Mudder amazed us and pulled through everything we put in front of it! We had a real great time trail testing it!!

The bent steering got worse, but we know Murrys have weaker front ends. We also did nothing to improve the front end of this machine, no steering stops or anything. So we completely understand how/why things got all bendy. We did fix the steering, but I will post that with my 2nd update from this past weekend. Other than the bent steering, we did want to tweak our exhaust a bit, just out of personal preferences. We also needed to get some working headlights and perform the first oil change as we already racked up about 5 hours on the motor.  All of this though was on the slate for the next weekend. We closed the weekend basking in the awesomeness of the machine we have built.

Here is a YouTube video of our first trail romps! Please check it out and like it if you enjoyed it! It's a little long but we had a lot to show everyone!


Here is the IMGUR album installment for the week as well: http://i.imgur.com/irjfzdZ.jpg


Last edited by 98svtcobra on Fri Jul 10, 2015 2:44 pm; edited 4 times in total
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Mon Apr 06, 2015 2:57 pm

Alrighty guys, here is part 2 of 2 of our updates for the past 2 weeks! I'll try to keep this one short.

So after the trail testing last weekend we knew what needed to be done this weekend.

  • Get some working headlights.
  • We had a new hour meter and tach to install.
  • Fix our bent steering (temporary, we plan on completely overhauling the front end later)
  • Change the oil
  • Tweak dual exhaust system with hangers and get the exhaust tips a bit more even.
  • Clean/Pressure wash the Murray Select Mudder
  • Make room for the Craftsman build in the garage


We also needed to get our Craftsman DYS4500 mower up and running again as it was down with a dead battery and needed a tune up badly.



All in all we got it all done. We couldn't be happier with how this build has turned out. The Murray performs better than we could have imagined. We believe for first timers that this build has turned out awesome! There are still a few things we want to do to the Murray, like add an ATV rack, winch and fix up the front end to be stronger and have less play, and eventually paint it.....oh and I have a safety tether switch on order that should arrive soon and we will be installing.

...but for now, we are going to try to shift the focus a bit to our family obligations, household work, and the Craftsman "EZ3" build (ATLTF build off entry), so that Joe and I can actually ride on 2 machines instead of trying to share 1. This is why at the end of our photo gallery you might notice the Murray is getting parked outside. For now we will just use it and enjoy it as is, as we put our efforts to other things for now.

We did have a chance to have some fun swapping a set of turf savers on the Murray and doing some burnouts. We also did testing of the wheelie ability of this thing, and a little back yard romping. We will be uploading and linking a short video here soon with the footage, so check back soon.

Here is this weeks IMGur album: http://imgur.com/a/VhjAr
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Tue Apr 07, 2015 3:04 pm



Here is the quick video from us doing some burnouts and a wheelie.
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Thu Apr 23, 2015 4:58 pm

Hello everyone.

Things have been a bit busier than usual for us the past few weeks, but we have been continuing to work on the build.

2 weekends ago, we installed a new tether kill switch on the Murray Select Mudder. We also added a Mustang "Bullitt" shift knob to our gear shift lever. Since spring was truly in the air at the time and it was a beautiful day, we decided to take the Murray Select Mudder and our grass cutting DYS 4500 on a good ol' romp. We knew of some ATV trails that we had yet to explore, so we decided to check em out. We ended up having a blast and yet again, the Murray exceeded our expectations.

During the romp we ended up bending the front end up again on the Murray. The tie rods were hitting the frame area since it was tweaked. We bent it back and vowed to reinforce the frame and front end before hitting the trails hard again. The Murray front end is just not up to the abuse of our riding puts on it.



As you can see, we had a great time! We got some GREAT video footage that unfortunately I did not get a chance to edit and upload yet, but I promise to get it uploaded as soon as I can.

Here is the IMGur album from 2 weekends ago to hold you over for now: http://imgur.com/a/582lI

PT.2 of this update coming in the next post......
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Thu Apr 23, 2015 5:22 pm

Alright guys, here is part 2 of our updates.

One thing I forgot to mention in my last update/post was that after the romp we found that the battery on the Murray was dead. What it ended up being is that I left the key in the on position, which held the silly solenoid on the carb bowl in the "open" position and eventually drained the battery. I thought to myself that had the battery died when we were in the woods, we would have a problem. I decided then that one of the next modifications would be a pull start for the 17.5 intek.

I have seen numerous pull start setups that are just a pulley welded or bolted to the flywheel, that you can then tie a string around to start the engine. While I considered it initially, I decided that I wanted to go another way with it. I remember seeing a redneckcomputergeak video on youtube where he put a B&S recoil start from another engine on his MMM. After doing some research on the parts, I found out that the same part that redneckcomputergeak used was pretty much a direct bolt on for my engine. It was not long before it was ordered, arrived and I was ready to install it.



The B&S recoil start install was cake. It bolted right up and worked out perfectly. At the time I couldn't be happier and we decided to "celebrate" the successful modification by doing some practice doing some wheelies on the Murray. We used a flipped upside down trailer hitch as a wheelie bar.....this is where things went very wrong....I did a WOT 3rd gear wheelie and when the make shift wheelie bar hit the ground, it turned me around and when I came down from the wheelie, I came down HARD on some railroad ties.....



SMOOOSH went the front end and frame!! <insert slew of cussing and swear words here>

As you can see in the pictures I did some serious damage to the front end and frame....I initially thought that was the end of it but promised myself that I would still try to fix it and not just FIX it...but make it BETTER.

So, this past weekend, Joe and I spent some time....a lot of time.... straightening out the frame and then reinforcing it and the front end. We knew what we wanted to do as far as reinforcements from prior discussions but were not counting on me bending everything up before hand. All in all, I think it came out great. I would say we got it 98 - 99% straight and I think the reinforcements we did will hold up. I am hoping to get the Murray back together this weekend so we will report back soon.

Thanks for reading and following along.

Here is this installment of pics in IMGur album form for your enjoyment: http://imgur.com/a/zkNVJ



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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Fri May 01, 2015 3:47 pm

Hey everyone! Long overdue update here.

So we finally finished the frame repairs and reinforcements on the Murray Select Mudder. We feel that our repairs and improvements will hold up and this should hopefully be the last time we deal with any frame/front end issues like this again. We do though still have improvements to the front end left to do. We did notice that we did slightly tweak our front axle and the design of the Murray chassis still leaves from the axle forward very weak and vulnerable.





We have plans to straighten and reinforce the front axle as well as the mount that holds it to the frame, which our bumper and hood mount to. We will also swap out any ***** plastic bushings for bronze. We also plan on adding reinforcements/gussets to the front spindles, add some 4 on 4 hubs w/ high speed bearings, 8 inch wheels with 16 inch tall tires, and lastly make our own tie rods w/ heim joints for increased strength and stability there. All in all we hope to have a front end and chassis that we can beat the snot out of and not worry about breaking/bending.

Other than the above mentioned frame and front end repairs, we swapped the Craftsman seat for the original Murray seat. In hindsight I wish I never swapped the Craftsman seat on, the Murray seat is much more comfortable for the seating position on the Murray. We also swapped out our brake pucks for some fresh ones as we wore ours out and maxed out the adjustment to tighten them. We also got some custom stickers made up that will be sweet once we get the body cleaned up and painted.

I am working on rendering and uploading a new youtube video with some good romp footage (from a few weeks ago) along with a quick test ride after we fixed the frame. It should be linked below at some point tonight.

For now, here is the imgur album link for this installment of the Murray Select Mudder build: http://imgur.com/a/i7NE0

edit: Youtube video uploaded! Quality should improve in next hour as Youtube finishes optimizing/processing it in HD.
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Tue Jun 09, 2015 2:33 pm

Hello Everyone.

We have a bunch of smaller changes and updates to the Murray Select Mudder to talk about today. Lately we have had to direct our energy and focus on some personal tasks and on our ATLTF 2015 build off entry (http://www.atltf.com/t4480-bj-garage-s-craftsman-ez-build), but we have been continually trying to ride the Murray around the property and improve it where needed.

Here is the list of changes/improvements:

  • replaced bald and stretched front turf savers, for a new/used set with decent tread
  • replaced DESTROYED plastic bushings from front Murray rims with steel (or bronze) bushings from Craftsman front rims
  • replaced our standard rubber drive belt with a kevlar belt from tractor supply
  • did some misc. painting
  • replaced worn brake pucks
  • misc tweaking and adjustments


all in all, things are working great. We have about 14 hours on the setup now. The swap to a kevlar belt made a HUGE difference. We were going through the standard v-belts every few hours. They would just stretch and could not hold on like we hoped. The kevlar belt so far has stretched and wore MUCH less. The grip is amazing. There is no more slippage, we can actually bog the engine now, where before we would eventually cause belt slip if we tried.

We recently adjusted the governor a bit as well by bending the tab where the spring goes. We were only seeing about 3000 rpm according to our tach, so we brought it up to ~3400 rpm. This definitely made a big difference as we feel it gave us a bit of a longer power band.

As mentioned before, we are going to be trying to focus on our Craftsman build for now, while continually improving the Murray Select Mudder. By the fall this year, we hope to have 2 very awesome and capable machines.

Next up for the Murray Select Mudder are:

  • misc odds and ends.
  • Front end improvements stage 1: front axle straightening, front axle reinforcements, bronze bushing upgrades, spindle reinforcements, and tie rod improvements.
  • Front end improvements stage 2: 4 on 4 spindles, 4 on 4 wheels (8 inch), new 16 - 18 inch tall front tires.
  • misc body work, paint and custom stickage.
  • skid plates/belly pan
  • improved brakes


Click here for a HUGE wheelie .gif

Here is this update's installment of IMGur pictures: http://imgur.com/a/6SIKe



Stay tuned! Until next time!
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98svtcobra
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Wed Jul 08, 2015 10:42 pm

Hey everyone. Quick update. We are up to about 17 or 18 hours on the Murray Select Mudder last I checked. We've been romping it around the back yard just to enjoy it and make sure we work out all the kinks while we work on our "Craftsvarna" ATLTF build off build.

We haven't had any issues or to make any changes, but we did finally get around to reinforcing the front axle a bit.




The reinforcements are getting the job done for now, only welded on the outside, but we do plan on taking the front axle off at some point and finishing the welds all the way down the axle to the center.

Other than that, we really have been concentrating on our ATLTF build off so that we can hit the deep woods with both these machines and get to enjoy them. We will keep you posted on any updates with the Murray Select Mudder.

Hope everyone had a good 4th of July weekend! AMERICA!




Check out this installments IMGUR album for more pics: http://imgur.com/a/Gva1n


Last edited by 98svtcobra on Fri Jul 10, 2015 10:22 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Thu Jul 09, 2015 11:56 pm

Man you guys have put some major mileage on this thing, hard miles. New engine looks like it's holding up excellent!
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98svtcobra
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Fri Jul 10, 2015 2:36 pm

redlinemotorsportts wrote:
Man you guys have put some major mileage on this thing, hard miles. New engine looks like it's holding up excellent!

Thanks dude. The new engine is working out perfect. It starts right up first crank pretty much every time and we don't even need to use the choke. I still wish we didn't blow up the first two oppys, but we can salvage 1 of them at least and use it in another project....our future racer build even maybe....who knows.

I don't think we even know how to do "light" miles, hard miles are just the way we do it. That is why we are trying to ride it and put hours on it now and work out all of the kinks while it's still near home. This way when we are finally able to hit the deep woods and go for a long ride, we can try to avoid any breakdowns because of weak points or design flaws. That's also why we are working on a 2nd build so that we have 2 machines to go riding. In the event of a mechanical issue or something, 1 machine can always (hopefully) tow the other out. Right now if we have a mechanical break down, we are pushing it home.....
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Fri Jul 10, 2015 3:07 pm

Holy crap! I just realized that my first post about this build was on 6/9/14! I can't believe we've been working on this build for over a year already!

Boy has it been a blast and we have learned a lot! A lot about what to do and what NOT to do.

Looking back at my goals for the build, I am amazed that we met almost all of them at this point. I honestly could not be happier with how this build has turned out.

I have also learned that the mower life means your build is really never truly 100% done. It's constantly a work in progress....constantly evolving to your needs and to be the machine you design it to be. To me there is not many better feelings than being able to ride the machine you built.

Thanks for everyones help over the past year. I look forward to continue to be part of the scene and community. Hope to meet some of you in person and maybe even romp together! rock on! -Brad
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Wed Jul 22, 2015 1:36 pm

Hello everyone. We have been working hard on our ATLTF 2015 Build off build, the Craftsvarna! We have updated the build thread located here: http://www.atltf.com/t4480-bj-garage-s-craftsman-ez-build


The Craftsvarna and Murray Select Mudder's first back yard romp together!

In the mean time we have been continually back yard romping the Murray Select Mudder and all is still well with it. We are planning for our first DEEP WOODS dual off road tractor romp later this week, so we hope to have some nice footage of both of the builds soon.

We did make a update video of both builds on our YouTube channel, it's about 1 week behind the progress of our Craftsvarna but will get you fully up to speed on the Murray.



Thanks for following along! Romp on!
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Fri Sep 04, 2015 4:31 pm

hello everyone. quick update on the Murray Select Mudder.

As previously mentioned, my brother-in-law, Joe and I have been putting a lot of focus on our 2015 ATLTF Build Off Entry and just putting the Murray through it's paces as is for now.

We are up over 20 hours now since the 17.5 intek install  with some issues starting to rear their ugly head here and there. Some of it has been expected due to things we have meant to do but haven't had the chance and some have been a surprise.

The front axle really needs to be gone through, straightened up, bronze bushings replacing the plastic ones, and reinforcements completed. Also plan on adding some 4 on 4 high speed hubs, wheels and replacing all ball and cup joints with heims.

We also have been having an issue with it eating belts....it used to go through about 1 standard belt a week...with Kevlar we thought we had solved it, but we still wore a kevlar belt out after a heavy duty beating and long ride. We also had one of our idler pulleys seize and we bent our adjustable belt tensioner linkage as a result of that.

Most recently I addressed the part of the belt wear issue by getting the clutch and transaxle pulley in better alignment....this of couse only after figuring out that they were out of alignment. This weekend I plan on fixing the remaining belt system issues hopefully once and for all.

We will probably still trot it around as is until we have some more time, but then I most certainly need to address the front end.

I am also working on a muffler design to go with the side pipes as I am in the middle of buying a house and moving. I'd really like to avoid to piss off the new neighbors with all sorts of loud tractor shenanigans.

Oh yeah one more thing probably one of the next things that were going to do is implement some sort of better braking system. This thing eats the Stock tractor brakes like crazy. I just need to figure out how to mount a manual caliper and rotor to the existing set up.

Here is this installment's IMGUR album: http://imgur.com/a/ooVzP

We hope to have some more updates for you soon. Thanks!
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Mon Sep 14, 2015 2:48 pm

Good afternoon everyone.

Finally had a chance to put some more "labor of love" into the Murray Select Mudder.

This past weekend, we upgraded the brakes on the Murray with a manual brake caliper and 6 inch rotor we got from BMIkarts.com

The install took longer than we thought, but we feel it's some of our best work and we are happy with how it turned out. The Murray Select Mudder stops MUCH better now and we feel a lot more confident riding it knowing we will be able to stop and slow down when needed.

Here is how the finished product turned out:


Below is the IMGUR album with details on the brake upgrade:
http://imgur.com/a/ptTQn

Here is also a video we made to document the upgrade:



Also, don't forget.....my brother-in-law, Joe and I have been putting a lot of focus on our 2015 ATLTF Build Off Entry also....here is the build thread for it. We have also updated the thread today!:
http://www.atltf.com/t4480-bj-garage-s-craftsman-ez-build



We hope to have some more updates for you soon. Thanks!
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PostSubject: Re: My 2003 Murray Select All Terrain Tractor Build   Fri Dec 02, 2016 4:04 pm

Hello Everyone! Last year in October my wife and I bought a house and moved. It has been crazy since then and while I have been continuing to work on and enjoy the Murray, I haven't been able to keep this build thread up to date. Any way, there is a whole lot to get caught up on and I will try to keep it as short and sweet as possible.

Since the last update a lot has changed, or I should say improved with the Murray....so much in fact, that I am sure I will miss a few things.


  • Electrical system improvements, including: marine ignition switch, fuse panel, with all accessories utilizing relays where need, LED brake light, LED light bar, LED hazzard flasher.
  • Doc Locker 2.0 live axle swap for the MST-203 transaxle.
  • "HickLifeCustoms" inspired external rear axle supports
  • 4 on 4, 8 x 7 rear wheels mated to the 3/4 live axle with keyed 4 on 4 hubs.
  • 4 on 4, 8 x 4.5 front wheels with 18 x 6.5 x 8 Snow Hog tires mated to the front spindles with high speed 4 on 4 hubs.
  • improvements and changes to the 1 into dual exhaust to accommodate the wheel and tire changes.
  • custom snorkel air intake setup
  • "built not bought" VIN/ID plate
  • new Murray Select, 17.5hp and MUDDER decals
  • MANY other misc repairs, tweaks as needed!


Overall, we are incredibly happy and proud of this build. We have about 45 hours on the build since the "new" engine at this point. The brakes work well, it goes 30mph, sounds great, and it goes through trails and mud like you wouldn't believe! We have taken it to a local mud bog locally, went through the pit, and was even a fan favorite!

So what is next for the Murray? Honestly, not too much. We are going to be improving/beefing up the front axle and suspension a bit, as I recently broke a spindle and have been putting off improving the otherwise stock front axle since I started the build.

We are going to add some skid plates, some brush guards/foot guards. We will also be adding some mufflers to the dual exhaust. Will be adding some reinforcements to the hood and hood supports also as they are currently a bit weak.

I am also considering removing the governor and doing a Minuki ATV carb swap one of these days.

Lastly, I really would like to disassemble the entire machine, paint the body and frame, replace low grade nuts and bolts with nice hard ware, clean up the wiring and then finally "be done" with it....but I guess only time will tell if I have the opportunity to do everything.

Anyway, below are a few pictures of the Murray in it's current state, a link to an album with many more pictures and a few videos!












FULL IMGUR ALBUM FOR THIS UPDATE:
http://imgur.com/a/0GE99




We have more videos on our FB page: https://www.facebook.com/BJGarage/
Don't forget to "like" us!
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