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 Toro 520XI good tractor for off road?

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PostSubject: Toro 520XI good tractor for off road?   Toro 520XI good tractor for off road? Icon_minitimeFebruary 27th 2022, 5:01 pm

I have a 1996 Toro 520XI garden tractor with a 20 hp twin, hydro, all cast iron front end with 1" spindles, cast iron rear with 1 1/8" axles.
Question: is this a good candidate to turn into an off-road tractor for trails, climbing, maybe light mudding? Concerned about the weight as the tractor weighs 1,100 lbs. as is.
Tractor is a beast and I rarely use it. I have no attachments for it. I don't want to spend the time or money heavily modifying this tractor if the weight and hydro are detrimental for the purpose of off roading. Your thoughts? Anyone convert one of these Toro's?
Thanks
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PostSubject: Re: Toro 520XI good tractor for off road?   Toro 520XI good tractor for off road? Icon_minitimeFebruary 27th 2022, 5:43 pm

Sounds like a beast, here's a pic from tractor data that I
grabbed off of tractor data (EDIT: I mean obviously right? Smile )Toro 520XI good tractor for off road? 1293-td4-b01-ext090
Anyway the engine in this is a horizontal shaft and it is a massive V-Twin and would absolutely rip, however getting this thing to do any speed would be very difficult, I would probably turn the engine 90 degrees and just remove the hydro transaxle and put a centrifugal clutch and a go-kart live axle, not sure what anybody else thinks about that...
Anyway I have a toro WH 210-5 but it's probably 20 years older and has a horizontal engine, not any where near the same thing at all.

However, you have the potential to have a really cool machine if your are willing to do a lot of work, what you would need to do is pull the trans, do a gearing swap on it ( @RCG has done this before ) and then if you got a universal joint for the drive axle you could set up suspension in the rear and the front and you would have a sick hot rodded machine, if you decide to do this I would highly recommend entering this in the buildoff it would be a really cool tractor Smile
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PostSubject: Re: Toro 520XI good tractor for off road?   Toro 520XI good tractor for off road? Icon_minitimeFebruary 27th 2022, 6:08 pm

Ok so what you have is a shaft drive hydro to geared trans axle using an eaton hydro in the center. These are a long sense phased out unit and rebuilds are out of the question. My advice is flip it for cash well it runs and drives and call it a day.

Is it a cool machine yes but if the eaton goes the closest modern retro fit is 2k and fab work to make it fit.

Side note: The electric conversion tractors people make are normally blown eaton drive machines. They pull the hydro input shaft and stick it on the end of a motor and call it a day.

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PostSubject: Re: Toro 520XI good tractor for off road?   Toro 520XI good tractor for off road? Icon_minitimeFebruary 27th 2022, 6:16 pm

Well, there you have it, I was going to say, yeah flip it for cash and then just buy another gear drive belt-driven tractor for a mud mower
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PostSubject: Re: Toro 520XI good tractor for off road?   Toro 520XI good tractor for off road? Icon_minitimeFebruary 27th 2022, 6:47 pm

Not to jack the thread, but are you still going to try and ressurect your eaton RCG? I remember you saying something about the cold causing issues with the trans on your white and I agree that parts are a bear.

Speaking from experience these hydros are tough as nails and are in no way shape or form similar to a lawn tractor hydro. These eatons have balls and rotors instead of piston pumps and are said to be more resistant to overheating. Really the only way to kill one is to run it low on oil.

You “can” get more speed out of your tractor,(If I’m correct) the way you do it is to get a sunstrand 15 (found in the simplicity sunstars, john deere 400s) etc and bolt that up. Again, no guarantees, but the john deere 400s max out at 12 mph on a sunstrand 15 whereas all the eaton tractors hit 7-8. Then again that’s what most pulley swaps usually live in the realm of anyway.

So my thought is that if you want a mug rig I’d install an oil cooler.

The other thing to bear in mind is that you’ve got a tractor that IMHO is almost too nice for this. An old lt1000 if it gets dented no biggie. Millions of them, and they’re dirt cheap. Assuming this tractor runs and drives well you’ve got something worth probably around 1k and even more if it’s clean.

I say sell it buy something horizontal shaft belt drive, or keep it and just use it as a work horse. Seems like a nice tough tractor and these eatons can giver the beans Toro 520XI good tractor for off road? 2731072446

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PostSubject: Re: Toro 520XI good tractor for off road?   Toro 520XI good tractor for off road? Icon_minitimeFebruary 27th 2022, 7:20 pm

My main concern would be the weight of the machine, for most trails and light mudding no problem but if it wants to end up on top of you that could turn out real bad... I have the same fear with my Bolens @ 700ish pounds

I wouldn't worry about the Eaton myself, they're tough and designed to handle decades of hard use. Keep It clean, topped up and maintained, it'll be fine.

I vote forget the mods, throw some decent tires on it and get to testing it out! If it's not what you hoped for then you can put the stock tires back on, sell it and find something more appropriate. You should be able to fit 25x11-12's on it and it will give you a touch more speed.

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PostSubject: Re: Toro 520XI good tractor for off road?   Toro 520XI good tractor for off road? Icon_minitimeFebruary 28th 2022, 12:18 am

Why not try the market in your area and see what it will sell for. If you get it sold, you can find something more suitable. Let us know. That looks like a nice tractor!

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PostSubject: Re: Toro 520XI good tractor for off road?   Toro 520XI good tractor for off road? Icon_minitimeFebruary 28th 2022, 7:16 am

Rustbucket Garage wrote:
Not to jack the thread, but are you still going to try and ressurect your eaton RCG? I remember you saying something about the cold causing issues with the trans on your white and I agree that parts are a bear.

Its up in the air. Mine is an eaton 9 again no parts support. I have a few deals in the wind right now and waiting to see what ones become reality before I decide. The frame on that machine is bent and the engine run based on "to stupid to know how to die".

To upgrade and go new I would have to run an eaton 11 and thanks to plandemic those are no long sold to the public and a dealer only item.
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PostSubject: Re: Toro 520XI good tractor for off road?   Toro 520XI good tractor for off road? Icon_minitimeFebruary 28th 2022, 8:40 am

id say pull the motor and good parts and part it out and cram that motor in a older wheel horse
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PostSubject: Re: Toro 520XI good tractor for off road?   Toro 520XI good tractor for off road? Icon_minitimeFebruary 28th 2022, 8:43 am

RCG wrote:
Rustbucket Garage wrote:
Not to jack the thread, but are you still going to try and ressurect your eaton RCG? I remember you saying something about the cold causing issues with the trans on your white and I agree that parts are a bear.

Its up in the air. Mine is an eaton 9 again no parts support. I have a few deals in the wind right now and waiting to see what ones become reality before I decide. The frame on that machine is bent and the engine run based on "to stupid to know how to die".

To upgrade and go new I would have to run an eaton 11 and thanks to plandemic those are no long sold to the public and a dealer only item.
A couple seconds there I thought up in the air meant on a hoist... yeah I have a few machines that are "Too stupid to know how to die" might have to use that line Toro 520XI good tractor for off road? 1098998679
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PostSubject: Re: Toro 520XI good tractor for off road?   Toro 520XI good tractor for off road? Icon_minitimeFebruary 28th 2022, 11:49 am

you could turn the engine sideways and put a roper 633 on it.
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PostSubject: Re: Toro 520XI good tractor for off road?   Toro 520XI good tractor for off road? Icon_minitimeFebruary 28th 2022, 2:30 pm

RCG wrote:
Rustbucket Garage wrote:
Not to jack the thread, but are you still going to try and ressurect your eaton RCG? I remember you saying something about the cold causing issues with the trans on your white and I agree that parts are a bear.

Its up in the air. Mine is an eaton 9 again no parts support. I have a few deals in the wind right now and waiting to see what ones become reality before I decide. The frame on that machine is bent and the engine run based on "to stupid to know how to die".

To upgrade and go new I would have to run an eaton 11 and thanks to plandemic those are no long sold to the public and a dealer only item.

If you have the bend behind the engine that’s normal. Mines the same way and I was worried but I looked at pictures and did some googling and it’s to make the U joint sit straighter. It’s nice too cause you get the caster and I’ve been told the tilt is good for oiling.

Anyway that’s just my .02. I really hope you can save er cause these whites are super cool and can do some serious work! Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: Toro 520XI good tractor for off road?   Toro 520XI good tractor for off road? Icon_minitimeFebruary 28th 2022, 4:05 pm

Well, another tip since driveshafts and u-joints came up in this conversation.

If you build a drive shaft with u-joints, DO NOT make it straight. Some offset is necessary for the bearings in the u-joint to function properly. That function needs movement so the bearings don’t lock up. Running one straight will kill it sooner than not.
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PostSubject: Re: Toro 520XI good tractor for off road?   Toro 520XI good tractor for off road? Icon_minitimeFebruary 28th 2022, 5:14 pm

Nevadablue wrote:
Well, another tip since driveshafts and u-joints came up in this conversation.

If you build a drive shaft with u-joints, DO NOT make it straight. Some offset is necessary for the bearings in the u-joint to function properly. That function needs movement so the bearings don’t lock up. Running one straight will kill it sooner than not.
Interesting, didn't know that,
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PostSubject: Re: Toro 520XI good tractor for off road?   Toro 520XI good tractor for off road? Icon_minitimeFebruary 28th 2022, 6:54 pm

Nevadablue wrote:
Well, another tip since driveshafts and u-joints came up in this conversation.

If you build a drive shaft with u-joints, DO NOT make it straight. Some offset is necessary for the bearings in the u-joint to function properly. That function needs movement so the bearings don’t lock up. Running one straight will kill it sooner than not.

A minimum of 3 degrees I believe

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PostSubject: Re: Toro 520XI good tractor for off road?   Toro 520XI good tractor for off road? Icon_minitimeMarch 1st 2022, 7:46 am

Rustbucket Garage wrote:

If you have the bend behind the engine that’s normal. Mines the same way and I was worried but I looked at pictures and did some googling and it’s to make the U joint sit straighter. It’s nice too cause you get the caster and I’ve been told the tilt is good for oiling.

Anyway that’s just my .02. I really hope you can save er cause these whites are super cool and can do some serious work! Very Happy

Nah mine is stress cracked in 3 places and the frame on the right side is bent to the point it sits 1.5 inches lower then the other side off the ground and lift brackets under it had to be bent in or they wedged in the frame.
Had plans in the works to fix it tell I noticed the Eaton had a dead zone in it.

Seems this was a common problem on machines using the front PTO often. Any time it bound up it twisted the frame on a 1 to 2 pulley ratio. As we know in Mud mowers at those ratios when something binds up something has to give.

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