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 Ranchrodder (formerly 2002 Murray widebody)

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Ranchrodder
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PostSubject: Ranchrodder (formerly 2002 Murray widebody)   Tue Sep 12, 2017 7:13 pm

About a year ago, I got into this hobby. I was given a non-running 2002 Murray widebody with an 18hp Briggs OHV with an MST206. At the time I was just interested in getting it going and mowing with it....that is, until I picked up a set of mud tires for the rear.

Not too long after that, I got some little chevron treads for the front...that didn't work out so well. Two ply tires do not do well out where I live, with all the mesquites and black locusts. It wasn't long after that that I began to watch videos on youtube showing how people were modifying their machines to use different carburetion, change pulleys, etc. and I got hooked.

My rig is a now-heavily-modified Murray. Version 1.0 had the 18hp, with a modified intake to accept a Molkt 26mm carb, a copper head gasket (original was blown, surprise) and a valve adjustment. May not sound like much, but just those things made it run 100% better than it ever had.

On the transaxle, I installed a 3.5" pulley from Tractor Supply, and got a Huskee branded kevlar belt to fit. I got it a little too small though, and while it did fit, the clutch never really wanted to work, so that made for some creative driving and stopping. With that setup, I was able to go at a decent speed, and had plenty of pulling power where I needed it.

The front end is where I had to get creative. I wanted to run 8" rims up front and full size tires the same height as the rear, and I was thinking of going to lugged hubs available online, but the issue I was having was finding rims to fit. The ones I found online were expensive, and I was trying to keep from spending too much on my project, so I was just running whatever I had handy, even if it meant I was bulldozing whatever was in front of me instead of turning. I eventually found my solution in using a pair of drum brakes from a Yerfdog style go kart...they have four lugs, already had rims and tires (to match my rears...bought all of it from the same guy lol), and all I had to do to get them to fit my machine was swap out the ball bearings in the centers. A trip to True Value and less than $10 later, I was good to go.


Version 2.0 is overall the same machine, except I replaced the 18hp Briggs with an 18HP Kohler Magnum opposed twin. I cleaned it up, fixed what needed fixing, and modified the Molkt carb mounting ears to fit on the Kohler intake. With a little tweaking, I got it to run and actually pull pretty hard, but the 26mm is looking to be too small to feed both cylinders. The engine overpowers the gearing now, so I will need to run a larger front pulley and get a longer belt. THEN my clutch will work. lol

The most current thing I am working on right now is the fuel supply for the carburetor. The Molkt is gravity feed, which was fine on the Briggs since it was below tank level, but on the Kohler, the carb is higher up. I attempted to use the factory cam-drive fuel pump to feed it, but it pushes the needle valve off its seat and makes a mess. I am working on making a reservoir setup to let the carb draw on its own, while the pump fills the reservoir and excess fuel is sent back via a plain return hose. A weedeater tank is looking to be the part to fit the job, unless I weld up a little metal tank or something.

And the hood is from an old 70s mail-order Penncraft rider that was sitting in the bushes out here for who knows how many years. I saw the hood and how much character it has, and made it work on the Murray frame. Surprisingly I only had to trim it a little bit and rig up an elevated latch setup (...a bolt and wingnut lol) in order to get it to clear the Kohler heads.

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AllisKidD21
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PostSubject: Re: Ranchrodder (formerly 2002 Murray widebody)   Tue Sep 12, 2017 7:31 pm

Nice man! I love the look of that hood on there, looks real tough. What kinda tires are those on the rear? They look just like the 21" ST's on the back of my brother's Ford.
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PostSubject: Re: Ranchrodder (formerly 2002 Murray widebody)   Tue Sep 12, 2017 7:37 pm

Nice looking rig. The grill reminds me of the iron robot, LOL. Maybe try just a T-fitting next to the carb instead of the added tank next to the carb, and have the hose going back to the tank come up over the engine, then back to the tank. That part of the hose going up over the engine from the T-fitting will be your reserve. Can't imagine you needing more then that, but if you do, have it spiral while it is going up for more reserve.
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PostSubject: Re: Ranchrodder (formerly 2002 Murray widebody)   Tue Sep 12, 2017 8:20 pm

Love the tires! Formerly 2002 Murray Widebody? Did you have an account before?

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PostSubject: Re: Ranchrodder (formerly 2002 Murray widebody)   Tue Sep 12, 2017 9:09 pm

I think he means the tractor was formerly a 2002 Murray Widebody.
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PostSubject: Re: Ranchrodder (formerly 2002 Murray widebody)   Tue Sep 12, 2017 9:39 pm

AllisKidD21 wrote:
I think he means the tractor was formerly a 2002 Murray Widebody.

Durrr... Sorry. Its a good looking tractor.

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PostSubject: Re: Ranchrodder (formerly 2002 Murray widebody)   Tue Sep 12, 2017 9:39 pm

Pretty rad ride dude! I'm playing with the idea of a 4 wheel suspension murray...I'll ask before AK does, you have any suspension planned?
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PostSubject: Re: Ranchrodder (formerly 2002 Murray widebody)   Tue Sep 12, 2017 9:45 pm

CraftsmanQuad19 wrote:
I'm playing with the idea of a 4 wheel suspension murray...

Since when?? Why was I not informed about this?? Haha, I keep telling people, 3-link with coils in the front, elliptical leaf springs with shocks in the rear! It would be awesome to see someone do that setup on a lawn tractor hahaha.
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PostSubject: Re: Ranchrodder (formerly 2002 Murray widebody)   Tue Sep 12, 2017 9:48 pm

AllisKidD21 wrote:
CraftsmanQuad19 wrote:
I'm playing with the idea of a 4 wheel suspension murray...

Since when?? Why was I not informed about this?? Haha, I keep telling people, 3-link with coils in the front, elliptical leaf springs with shocks in the rear! It would be awesome to see someone do that setup on a lawn tractor hahaha.

I told you in the chat, remember doofus? Lmao the Chinese atv front suspension and single axle swing-arm in the rear with a peerless 700 and chain drive.

Enough thread jacking. lol!
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PostSubject: Re: Ranchrodder (formerly 2002 Murray widebody)   Tue Sep 12, 2017 9:50 pm

Oh yeah, whoops. Also, sorry for the thread jack Ranchrodder, hahaha.
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PostSubject: Re: Ranchrodder (formerly 2002 Murray widebody)   Wed Sep 13, 2017 9:57 pm

Thanks guys. Yea, that hood is probably one of my favorite things about it. There are LED housings to fit it, which I do plan to get eventually....lol

The tires are SunF A003s I think. 18x9.5x8 4 ply. Fronts are the same except narrower. I can't recommend them enough, they are super tough, they dig well, and they don't seem to be bothered much by thorns or rocks.

That T with return would allow for gravity feed to work, correct? Pressure would take the path of least resistance and any fuel in the line would just drop down to the carb, right?

I am going back and forth on suspension ideas. I thought of splitting a solid axle beam in front and making it independent (Google Ford I Beam). With the weight of that engine though, I may just look at using a cast iron axle and locking it solid to the frame. Or just build a new axle with heavy duty steering knuckles and direct steer.

Something I want to do for sure is put some kind of belly pan on it. Maybe solid plate, or maybe expanded metal since it would drain easily.
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PostSubject: Re: Ranchrodder (formerly 2002 Murray widebody)   Wed Sep 13, 2017 10:46 pm

AK is planning a ford I beam suspension on (get this) a ford LT 110 he is building. I just find that funny. But since you have a tierod to each spindle, maybe the front suspension off a cheap ATV frame?
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PostSubject: Re: Ranchrodder (formerly 2002 Murray widebody)   Wed Sep 13, 2017 11:58 pm

Shouldn't be hard to do, it's a fairly simple design. It's good enough that I see it alot in Baja trucks. Lots of travel but good road or trail manners.

I could, I need to look at some and see how they would mount. What I'd like is to get independent rear suspension with mini CV axles like a big atv or side by side. Whatever I end up doing, all of that stock Murray steering will go away and I'll build a single tie rod design, with a link between the spindles. Something heavy but where I could keep it compact so rocks don't beat it all up. And whatever I do, it's gonna have steering stops. Lol

When I eventually paint it, which do y'all think would be better....red, camo, black, or something else? Could do a false patina look to match the hood. Lol.
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PostSubject: Re: Ranchrodder (formerly 2002 Murray widebody)   Thu Sep 14, 2017 10:37 am

Yeah I should probably start on that Twin I Bream for the ol' Ford sometime soon. It's not much of a setup for rock crawling but for fast trail riding and jumping and stuff its pretty great. When I make the radius arms for it I'd like to make it so they have tons of flex and allow the beams to drop a bit more.
Also I vote for false patina!! Hahaha.
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PostSubject: Re: Ranchrodder (formerly 2002 Murray widebody)   Thu Sep 14, 2017 4:47 pm

Maybe use little atv coilovers? If you widen the track a bit it might help too.

I'm going to be trying the fuel line T trick today. If it goes as planned I'll post a video of it.

Lol I'm kind of liking that idea too.
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PostSubject: Re: Ranchrodder (formerly 2002 Murray widebody)   Thu Sep 14, 2017 10:35 pm

Sorry, been busy.
Yes, the T-fitting with the fuel line going up over the engine would allow for gravity feeding the carb to still happen. You have the right thinking on it. The fuel takes the path of least resistance, starting from fuel pump to carb, filling up carb before it travels up over the engine, closing the float, since the float is closed the fuel will go up over the engine and back to the fuel tank. Probably a half pound of psi maybe to push the fuel up over the engine. And when the float drops, the pressure of a half of a psi will fill the bowl and close the float again. In design, would be a free flowing setup, but the weight of the fuel would make the pressure traveling up over the engine. This pressure made from the weight of the fuel will always fill the carb first before it travels up over the engine. For more of a reserve, have the line going up over the engine in a spiral, this extra length from the spiral will not add pressure, just more of a reserve of fuel and the spiraling of the fuel line will help keep feeding the carb fuel on steeper angles too, if you plan on doing any serious off roading.
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PostSubject: Re: Ranchrodder (formerly 2002 Murray widebody)   Thu Sep 14, 2017 10:39 pm

Just add a screw in nipple in the top of the tank as a return. I would use a 90 degree elbow just so it doesn't kink the hose but that's just me. Maybe put it close to your gas cap that way you can get your fingers inside to hold a nut for the back side for extra security
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PostSubject: Re: Ranchrodder (formerly 2002 Murray widebody)   Thu Sep 14, 2017 11:17 pm

That's what I'm gonna do, add a fitting to the tank.

Just curious, which wire on these kohlers grounds the coil? Lol
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