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 MUT: Murray Utility Tractor

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Double W Cross Ranch
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeFri Feb 01, 2019 11:39 am

That's a clean looking tranny!  This rig is so complex and awesome I forget everything you've done to it.  You should make a walk around video!
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TourMax
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeFri Feb 01, 2019 12:36 pm

Had thd MUT out to plow the driveway today. Shifting is pretty good!

Reverse is an easy find, but all you need to do for R is just pull rearward as far as it will go.

Neutral is still a little tricky from reverse. It sticks in R a bit and then “pops” forward when it finally lets go. It’s manageable, but I think I need to ease over the shift shaft fan peak a little more to make it a smoother smoother transition.

1-5 are easy. Nice light click in and out of each. 1st sticks a tiny bit on upshift, but not too objectionable. Little more work there with the file should fix that up too.

5th is actually usable now. Where it would buck and kick before, now it will take full throttle as long as you want. 5th won’t get much use for me, except to travel to the neighbors driveways to help plow them out.

The shifter handle arm is a touch too loose on the shifter torque shaft. I machined it to be a tight slip fit on the shaft itself, but the through bolt hole ended up a tiny bit out of round in the shaft itself. That lets the handle rotate a smidge before the bolt snugs up. It results in a loose/play feeling in the mechanism, which only makes getting from R to N even harder to manage accurately. I can fix it easy enough, but I’m going to put some thought into maybe designing an attachment scheme that might be a bit more solid. A splined connection would be ideal, I’m just not sure I want to go through the misery of cutting internal and external splines on such a small part.

My steering joint popped off at the axle steering arm. Not a surprise as I knew the joint was worn. It stays on under steering loads, ut only takes the lightest of upward knocks to pop the rod off the ball. I think I’m just going to do away with the cheap/pressed ball and socket design and use a couple big eye ends. I was saving them to make a 3 point rear hitch, but steering safely trumps a 3 point...

Wink


Last edited by TourMax on Fri Feb 01, 2019 4:06 pm; edited 1 time in total
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SebastianAlbrecht
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeFri Feb 01, 2019 2:03 pm

Now the 820 shouldn't get aluminium rust again on the case
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prancstaman
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeFri Feb 01, 2019 8:04 pm

Going to make a skid plate for the trans?
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mistavp05
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeFri Feb 01, 2019 8:09 pm

This build thread is so inspiring. THANK YOU FOR SHARING!
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TourMax
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeFri Feb 01, 2019 8:44 pm

@prancstaman wrote:
Going to make a skid plate for the trans?

Yes, I actually was thinking about it.

Not what you would consider a convential one though. I’m thinking a couple longitudinal pieces of 1/4 flat stock with some sheet to fill in the gaps. Bolted to the chassis so it can be removed to remove the transaxle when needed.

It only needs to provide some light protection as this is a utility tractor and not a “mud mower”. Only real worry I have is the potential for a high center scrape when digging or maybe down in the wooded part of the yard.
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TourMax
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeThu Feb 07, 2019 10:18 pm

Discovered an unexpected bonus of mounting the shifter on the column and tighting up the whole linkage mechanism.

Was plowing today in 1st gear close up to the house and wanted to go faster once clear the building. Not totally paying attention, I pressed in the clutch, shifted up a couple gears and let the clutch out again.

Then I realized I hadn’t stopped before shifting up like I usually do.

So I tried it again with only slightly depressing the clutch. Easy and smooth upshift again.

It seems I have inadvertently stumbled upon my own version of the Murray “shift on the go” system:



But in mine, I’ve essentially “divorced” the shifter from the auto clutching design of the Murray “shift on the go” system.

A little fan of the foot clutch to decouple the engine, a quick flick of the new short throw shifter and its up or down a gear lickety split and smooth as butta. It’s the location and ease of the shifter that makes mimicking the Murray shift system possible.

Nioce!

Smile

Time to make that lighted shift indicator now so I can see which gear I’m shifting in to instead of finding them by “feel”.


Last edited by TourMax on Thu Feb 07, 2019 11:54 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeThu Feb 07, 2019 11:26 pm

You know, now that I think about it, I think I’m going to remove the brake linkage from the clutch pedal altogether. That would let me use the clutch pedal like a “real” clutch pedal and fully decouple the engine from the transaxle when “shifting on the fly” like a “real” drivetrain.

I’ve already put independent disc brakes on the MUT, so I don’t need the brake on the transaxle for stopping. I honestly never use the transaxle brake, it just doesn't have the balls to stop the rolling MUT. The transaxle brake only comes in to play because I’m stepping on the clutch so the engine doesn’t lug or stall.

That little transaxle brake is useless for stopping the (now) Heavy Duty MUT anyways. The MUT is just too heavy with all it’s added “beef”, it carries too heavy a load (plow, bucket or trailer) when working and is just all-around works too hard for that little tiny disc and minuscule set of pads to do anything significant in the way of stopping the rolling MUT.

I still do need a park brake though. Gotta hold the MUT in place on a hill if I have to get off to change the plow angle or do something else off the tractor. So I think what I’ll do is add a car style hand brake lever and link that to the transaxle brake caliper. That little transaxle brake may be useless when the MUT is rolling, but it’s more than capable of holding the MUT where it is if it’s already stopped.

That will make operating the MUT about as close as it can be to the way a “real” drivetrain works.

Brake pedals only do brakes, park brake handle only does park brake, clutch pedal only does clutch.

Yep, then it will drive much like any other standard shift vehicle. It’s just that the shift pattern will be more like a motorcycle “inline” pattern instead of the traditional car/truck “tree” pattern. It’s also one less spring opererated thing under there, which makes it feel more like the brawny MUT it has become and less like a wussy ride-on mower where it started.

I’ve actually had guys mistake it for a SCUT, until they get close enough to realize it’s even smaller than a SCUT. Then they’re just confused by it. Looks like a 3/4 scale SCUT, but belt drive? Then it’s “where did you find it?”, “I didn’t know they made these” or “how did you build it?” “Can you make another one?” And on like that for usually 10 mins minimum. Makes it hard to get any work done sometimes!

Lol!

Smile

Now; about that throttle arrangement......Wink


Last edited by TourMax on Fri Feb 08, 2019 12:21 am; edited 10 times in total
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AllisKidD21
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeThu Feb 07, 2019 11:35 pm

I'm really liking your idea with the seperate parking brake. The stock tractor brakes seem to wear out pretty quick with any hard use, but for only parking brake duty they should last quite some time.

Looking forward to seeing the setup! MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 2731072446

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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeFri Feb 08, 2019 11:55 am

The Channel ,,LynolsOffice" is really interesting to watch!
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TourMax
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeFri Feb 08, 2019 11:59 am

@SebastianAlbrecht wrote:
The Channel ,,LynolsOffice" is really interesting to watch!

Other than the fact that he has some lawn tractors, I don’t see what that has to do with my MUT build?

scratch

Any chance you posted in the wrong thread
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeFri Feb 08, 2019 12:01 pm

@TourMax wrote:
@SebastianAlbrecht wrote:
The Channel ,,LynolsOffice" is really interesting to watch!

Other than the fact that he has some lawn tractors, I don’t see what that has to do with my MUT build?

scratch

Any chance you posted in the wrong thread

Nah! I like the Channel, and I like your MUT Build! I also have a Murray Shift on the Go
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TourMax
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeFri Feb 08, 2019 12:02 pm

After a quick dig through my parts bins, I have a likely candidate for the park brake handle:

MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 F2544510

Smile
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SebastianAlbrecht
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeFri Feb 08, 2019 12:57 pm

@TourMax wrote:
After a quick dig through my parts bins, I have a likely candidate for the park brake handle:

MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 F2544510

Smile

Nice! I will use the old Deck lift Lever off my Dynamark for the brakes!

MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Brake10
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeFri Feb 08, 2019 6:02 pm

Little cuttin’, little weldin’ and:

MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 54e9c610

MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Ae8fe310


Nice!

A bit of metal metal trimming to finish out the hole and either a stitched boot or split brush cover in the opening and all thats left to do is make the linkage down to the transaxle brake.

That was easier than I thought it was going to be!

Smile
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SebastianAlbrecht
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeFri Feb 08, 2019 6:17 pm

Very good spot!! I like that!!!
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TourMax
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeSun Feb 10, 2019 7:37 pm

Well dirty sunuva......

Built the linkage for the park brake and everything was working fine. Then, on about the 4th test pull, it felt....different.

Everything looked good, but then I crawled under the tractor and....

Dirty, muthaluvin, sonova.....grrrr!

The rear bolt on the caliper stripped out!

Ugh.

Thime to go buy more helicoils....
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeTue Feb 12, 2019 6:30 pm

Not my best work, but it’s functional:

MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 8b6e2a10

I didn’t bother messing around, I drilled out both bolt holes and helicoiled them even though only one was stripped.  Not a single aluminum hole left on it now that hasn’t been helicoiled. The bolt holes will outlast the transmission.

Lol!

Now it’s ready for the “weather bomb” thats supposed to be coming tonight. Serious plowing tomorrow...


Last edited by TourMax on Tue Feb 12, 2019 7:43 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeTue Feb 12, 2019 6:39 pm

Sweet! I like the E-brake setup, the handle location it super cool.

Have you tested how well it holds on a hill yet?

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TourMax
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeTue Feb 12, 2019 7:50 pm

@AllisKidD21 wrote:
Sweet! I like the E-brake setup, the handle location it super cool.

Have you tested how well it holds on a hill yet?

Nope. Just rocking it back and forth in the garage. It doesn’t have to hold much anyways. My drive has a slope, but not very much. More like a gentle grade, but just enough to start rolling if I get off to change the blade angle. That will be power angle sooner or later.

But the park brake will be usedful in both summer and winter all the same. Stop, put it in neutral, pull the park brake and walk away. Just like a normal vehicle.

Wink


Last edited by TourMax on Wed Feb 13, 2019 7:09 am; edited 1 time in total
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SebastianAlbrecht
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeTue Feb 12, 2019 10:18 pm

LOL ,,not your best work" but it's looking better than anything I built....

I Like it!
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Double W Cross Ranch
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeWed Feb 13, 2019 3:28 pm

Nice!  Is the 820 rotor that size stock?
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeWed Feb 13, 2019 3:36 pm

So, plowed the driveway today.

The MUT did OK, but you can tell it's being pushed past what it was designed for. It may say "garden tractor" on the side and the Peerless 820 may be rated "ground engaging", but it's definitely light duty overall.

Deeper snow pushes the front end sideways with the blade angled, shifting is still crappy and it's just not HD enough for what I want. Its just not easy to use for what i'm trying to use it for.

The stuff I've modified and built are holding up fine and about all that's left of the Murray is the bodywork and the drivetrain. But it's the drivetrain that seems just not up to snuff.

So I've started thinking about MUT ver 2.0

The B&S flat twin runs well enough but it's loud, smelly (pretty sure it's burning oil but not smoking), drinks fuel like there's no tomorrow and just generally a crude piece of equipment. Comes from being designed to a price point I'm sure. Overall, it's an "old tech" engine design and it operates like one.

The belt drive is, well.....a belt drive. Hard to use and be smooth with it as a clutch. Engagement is never at a consistent spot, sometimes engaging normally and sometimes popping so hard it lifts the front wheels and jerks you head back. And you never know what you're going to get until it does it.

Chassis weighting is another problem. IOW: it's too light. I've got 5 suitcase weights on the back and bolt in tractor wheel weights. It will still spin if you work it hard. Luckily, I was able to use the separate rear brakes when plowing today to send power to the non spinning wheel and get myself out of some sticky spots. The front tires slide and push everywhere. even when i'm just turning in the snowy driveway. Granted, the turf tires I have up front don't help, but it needs wieght on the nose. Desperately. At one point I had thrown about 50 lbs of chains on the front grill guard, but that's a major PITA.

The peerless 820.

Yeah, what can I say about that......It's been a fight to get it to work the way i want it to and it's still not right. Honestly, it's probably working as well as it was designed to, it's just the way it was designed work sucks in my opinion. Again, it's another component designed to a price point and it shows. It shifts like crap, you're never really sure what gear you are in and even then, it may pop out of gear if you haven't "guessed" just right at the shift position. This is after I went through the box, installed new shift keys, rebuilt the shift selector and built the new/tight tolerance shift linkage. In a nutshell, it's just not up to my standards.

Right now I'm just mulling over my options. The frame (as I have modified it) is up to snuff for something a bit more...robust....than the B&S so I'm good there.

I'm thinking a full 4 cyl drivetrain from a car. Maybe a 3 cyl if I can find something like a firefly or Geo. I thought about a V6 for a while, but that's just too much weight, width and complexity for this small chassis.  

My first thoughts are a 4 cyl mustang, mostly because I am familiar with the components and how it's built. But it could be any 4 cyl rwd car. I'd prefer to buy the whole car though, so I can get all the components I need. A project like this will nickle and dime you to death for small parts if you're not careful. Condition is not that important, so i can buy a junker if I want. All I need is the drivetrain and the rest will be scrapped. You can get junkers like that around here for a couple hundred bucks as the bodies rust out long before the drivetrains die.

A 4 cyl car engine is pretty much a "ready to" go package. About as small as it gets for car engines, unless you go to the 3 cyl suzuki engines, Problem with teh suzuk's is they are all front wheel drive, which makes the transmission and issue. You could turn it sideways, but then you have a shaft pointing front and rear. I'm sure a lot of you are thinking "4WD!", but that's too much hassle for me to bother with. I don't feel like building a steering front axle/diff.

Bonus is a car engine will come with a hydraulic pump already on it (PS pump) and an alternator.

Fuel injection would be a bonus, making it much nice to use and run. Would add a little more PITA to the install, but nothing I can't get done.

Auto or standard, although I lean towards an auto for ease of use. Auto adds some extra components and size, which could make it difficult. But I like the "drop it in gear and forget it" of the auto. Then it's all throttle control.

Rear axle would get shortened to essentially the center section and brake drums. I'll do that myself also. Since this is a low speed application (about 5-10 mph, tops) there's no need to go crazy with balancing it. No suspension either so just bolt it up and go.

Drop the engine and transmission between the frame rails, shorten the rear axle to mostly the center section and brake drums, make a stub of a driveshaft and bolt it in.  

Cooling is something I would have to work out, probably end up having a custom rad built. I've got a couple motorcycle rads hanging around, but I don't think they will work well enough to cool a 2-ish liter engine in a low speed tractor application. An auto trans will need a cooler as well.

So about all that will be left of the Murray will be the bodywork. Even then, I may have to split it and widen it.

I'll also have to toss on a set of 3 rib front tires and consider some type of hydraulic steering. Steering is an easy fix;a power steering worm gearbox and good to go.

It's all just thoughts right now, but a plan is slowly forming....if it happens at all. Lots of hills to climb there.

I dunno,maybe if I go through the 820 again I might find something that makes it work better. The transaxle is where the main dissatisfaction is. That, and the front end push problem....


Last edited by TourMax on Wed Feb 13, 2019 5:24 pm; edited 5 times in total
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeWed Feb 13, 2019 3:38 pm

@Double W Cross Ranch wrote:
Nice!  Is the 820 rotor that size stock?

That's the one that came with it. Other brands (my understanding was each manufacturer could spec what they wanted from peerless) may be bigger or smaller I guess....
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeThu Feb 14, 2019 6:59 am

Plowed again last night.

Happy to say my differential braking setup works great as a “select-able posi”. Even though I only have the RH brake installed, it was usable several times to stop a spinning RH tire and have the LH tire grip to pull us out of snowbanks and icy spots. So that's at least one check mark in the “win” column.

Another check in the win column was the park brake. Nothing spectacular there. Did it's job, held the tractor in place on the hills with the transaxle in neutral and engine running. Discovered that I need to pay attention when mounting the tractor with the park brake on. Nothing horrible, you just have to remember the lever is sticking up right where you swing your foot through. Bumped my foot twice getting on and off and then I was "trained" to lift my foot a little more.

But that's where the "wins" stop.

I got bit int he butt pretty hard by the "cheapness" of lawn tractor construction in the drive system. All suited up in cold weather gear, I jumped on the MUT in the garage, ready to plow. I dropped it into neutral and fired up the engine. Opened the garage door, pressed in the clutch and dropped it into second gear. Then all hell broke loose. Big bang, lost all drive and the clutch stayed flat on the floorboard. Couple nasty words and I shut it off. Crawled underneath thinking the cotter pin holding the clutch rod to the pedal had dropped out or something similar.

Nope. Nothing easy like that for you!

Turns out the spring holding the pulley against the drive belt had broken. The hook on the end had snapped clean off. Another round of screaming curse words at the MUT ensued. I was having a bad day all day and this was the topper. B!tchy, greedy, PITA ex-wives are good at ruining your day....Rolling Eyes

The spring was still long enough to work, so I tried to bend a new hook end on it.

SNAP!

Spring steel. I should have known better than to try and work it cold. Heat it cherry red and it bends like a piece of well cooked asparagus.

Then it was another 10 minutes of screaming and cursing under the MUT while lying on a wet floor. It just DID NOT want to go back on. Always something in the way or not enough slack left to slip it through the hook holes. But I got it eventually and finished plowing the driveway.

Before I finished the driveway, one of my pet peeves with this thing reared it's ugly head again: sheet metal screws.

Was plowing away and the steering wheel started moving around on me. Turns out that the two sheet metal screws holding the plastic ”guide” at the top of the shaft worked their way out and eff’d off. I put a couple random screws back in for now, but next time I have the top off the instrument panel it’s getting 1/4” lock nuts welded to it. That will be the last time I have to worry about that. I’ll likely do the same for all the screws that hold the panel down too. You won’t be able to count the sheet metal screws left one hand when that's done. Gawd, I HATE sheet metal screws for permanent installs. So bloody CHEAP...they don’t hold up to doing serious work and wear out fast if you have to take things apart for any maintenance. Sheet metal screws: BEGONE! Lol....



Front tires still push and slide. I tossed a out 40lbs of chains on the grill guard again and it was a little better. Those turf savers have got to go. I may look at adding a front chain to them, just for winter use. I’ve seen a couple posts on the web about using bicycle chain. Kind of like a “poor man’s” three rib tires. I’ve got some worn out #40 double roller I might try. It’s just to dangerous plowing close to things with it taking off sideways unexpectedly. Most likely look at adding something to the front end that will let me hang a couple suitcase weights over the front tires too. I could build wheel weights for them, but they're just too small a diameter to get any serious/useful weight directly on them.

Transaxle still is very “sticky” in first gear. Essy to drop in to 1st, very hard to shift out of it, often forcing me to “slam” the shift handle much harder than I want to. Luckily, my new linkage was up to the task and it took it in stride. Still, I don’t like beating on it, thats how things get worn out and broken and I JUST finished building this. I’d like to not put excessive wear on it in it’s first couple weeks....

I also may have and idea why neutral is so hard to find on my 820. Last time I had the gear set apart, I remeber putting the neutral spacers back in the proper orientation.  But re-reading the peerless service manual reminded me that even though the two spacers look the same on a quick glance, they are different and go in a specific way. I definitely remember NOT paying attention to that when I put it together, so I may have them backwards. Probably expalins why it’s so “wishy washy”  finding neutral. You’ve got a 50/50 chance of getting it right if you’re not paying attention and my luck is so bad that way that a 50/50 for anyone else is more like a 95/5 for me. 5% of winning that is. I don’t gamble at casinos because with my “luck”, it makes more sense for me to walk in, give the cashier my money and just walk out. It’s what would happen anyways and I wouldn’t be wasting my time.

But I’ve got one shift key coming to replace the wrong one that was shipped to me. When that gets here, transaxle out, bentonite stripped out, gears and shafts get checked, last key installed,  new bentonite installed and sioicone seal the box. That will be the last time and if it doesn’t fix it, I’ll be seriously considering a drivetrain swap to something all around better. From front to back....
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitimeSat Feb 16, 2019 2:11 am

Might be worth it to have 2 tractors. One for summer work and one for winter work.
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PostSubject: Re: MUT: Murray Utility Tractor   MUT: Murray Utility Tractor - Page 8 Icon_minitime

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