I am going to start a new build thread for the Craftsman Puller looking tractor I recently fell into my hands free. It already had the name of Redneck.
Here are pictures again of the tractor. I didn't see the model badge on the tractor when I took pictures. Then reviewing the pix, I see it clearly there on the hitch plate. I will be hauling this tractor to the house this weekend. I'll have better info on it then.
Current plans are to see if it runs, moves, and whether it is locked. Then from there, I am leaning towards bringing back a "hot rod" or some kind of speed tractor. I'm not interested in a puller.
OK, I've had the hood off messing with the engine. I got it to fire and run, but definitely has some issues. I can tell at least one head gasket is blown or has a valve issue. Won't know till I tear into it. Carb has issues too. Not sure if I can get it successfully cleaned or new carb is in order.
I am 100% sure this hood and dash is not what came with the tractor. Its missing most of the mounting bolts.
Here is where I am trying to figure out if it is a Roper or a Craftsman. I wonder if they took the rear plate and trans together off a roper and put on the craftsman frame, when they locked it. I have not seen any other badging on the frame.
this one EDIT: NOT THIS TRACTOR!
Going by the levers and the fact this was not originally a vertical engine application. It was originally horizontal. One of the firewall brackets are still there. Also, the idler in the rear in front of the trans is not an original pulley to the tractor.
Since it runs AND MOVES in all gears, I am ready for a full teardown.
Seems like having a franken tractor is really buggering a fella up eh!? Lol. No matter how you slice it, you scored yourself a pretty sweet tractor!
The badge and metal firewall is from a first year (1984) Roper GT180, I know that because of how Roper codes them (AR,BR,CR ect.)
I think it's cool how the Ropers and subsequent AYP built Craftsmans are all so similar and can be built like Lego, literally! Even my neighbor @CodeReds 2006 AYP built DGT6000 is compatible for a vertical shaft engine to 633a swap with bolt on parts and is something he'd like to do if we can find a cheap donar tractor or at the very least the idlers needed (I've already sourced a trans).
Do what you do and have fun with it, I'm sure it'll be awesome!
I do plan on having some fun with it. You are right, most these AYP tractors are all interchangeable. I will need some replacement parts or fabricate my own. All but 1 tire is shot. I can get it to sit and idle, but running with me on it or just jiggling the tractor makes it run all rough. I was able to get one lap around the yard with it today. Not much power in the engine. I was going to do a compression test soon. I fear this thing is down on one cylinder. Barely pull itself along. I do feel a new carb will be in order for it. I will start there with the engine. Just not from the same leaky place as the last. LOL. With the amount of exhaust vapor coming out of the carb on shutoff, I feel there is a blown gasket or valve needing attention in there.
I will say the builder did a simple but clean looking job with the horizontal to vertical engine swap on this.
Tractor still has weights attached underneath. I'm guessing 40 pounds. (NOTE the redish orange under the footboards and fender.)
I will say it is locked just on how much the front end raked when trying to steer it the one time I did go around the yard.
When it was running OK, I was feeding it the onions and blew a hole through the bottom of the muffler. haha.. I'll try to get a pic of that soon.
OK! Investigation is complete. No Craftsman GT180 parts in this tractor. It is all ROPER GT180AR. Model plate is correct. I found a picture of the model with all the right levers, seat spring and fenders. It only has a newer craftsman hood and dash which almost fell off on me today. LOL
Last night between 11-midnight. I wasn't tired so I went out to the garage and messed around with a few things. Realizing I have parts from about three 3-screw carbs. I ended up making 1 what seemed good carb from the parts and pieces. I pulled the old carb off this engine and put on my new parted carb.
Today, I went out and seen how it would run. It licked right off almost instantly and ran smooth with no surging. Revved a couple times and decided to hop on for a ride around the yard. She took to all gears just fine. Hi and Lo ranges worked great. No trans noise at all.
I was scooting along pretty good in 3rd-Hi in this pic.
I didn't see any of the evidence of the blown gasket this time. I will check other indicators like exhaust vapor coming out the dip stick the next time I start it and kill it.
Speaking of Kill it. None of the kills work on the tractor when it runs good (key or the on/off switch on dash that looks wired to the engine). Before I just idled down and it died. Not now. I even tried jumping a wire to the kill post on the engine. I think the wire is either broke or unplugged from the magneto/coil. But today I feel was a total victory for running the tractor. Now to start planning. I do not like the plate in use for the engine. Lots of jagged edges and I don't know what it came from. I plan on building my own new engine plate for this thing. I got the materials to do so. 1/4 inch flat plate I have. Should work well.
I did find out the rear is NOT LOCKED! Man, what class was they running on this tractor? Basic stock something or another? I'll try to check the local pulling groups to see if i can figure it out. It's basically a stock tractor with a welded on piece of metal for hooking onto. Not even a rear kill switch???
That's great news! Except for it still having an open diff... Lol.
You asked what you should do with it, my vote is on finishing what the previous owner started and making it a puller! You don't have a dedicated puller but do have plenty of offroaders and utility tractors plus you must be able to find a pull or 2 to participate in around there eh?
No matter what direction you go I'm sure you'll do a good job and I'll be following!
Minus the mud flaps, what you see is all Roper, the Craftsman has been removed.
Engine up on the stand. Pretty much all I plan on doing with it right now is clean it up and reseal the valve covers. It ran great on the carb I put on it. Also, it did not show the exhaust vapor from day one running. Realized it looks like a Murray Muffler.
Here is the plate they had for it. Not sure what it came from.
Found a "why?" moment in the tractor. Used as a puller, but didn't lock it. Did strange things like add that vertical engine plate to make it a vertical engine tractor. Then also modifies the rear end plate for I got no clue.
Rear hitch plate has been tucked under about 2 inches on the bottom. That will be coming back out.
Bottom of that plate should be 2 inches further out. Plate was pivoted on the top bolt. Not sure at the moment how that affected the hi/lo or the cross brace in the middle.
Removed the rear fenders, along with the mudflaps and reflectors. Here is more of that Roper orange under the bad cammo paint.
I am still leaning towards a speed build. Make it a neighborhood cruiser. Maybe I can piss off the neighbor that goes karen on people.
OK, slow day for work, so I have been tinkering in the garage this morning. More tear down, lots of cutting with the grinder. Had a scarry incident with it. Also a tech tip for removing 3/8 or 1/2 square head plugs!
First the scary part. There is still deck/mower hardware on the tractor I wanted removed. This tractor has pins instead of clips holding it on. Of course, they would be all rusted and want to mushroom when trying to punch them out. I figure a grinder would make quick work of it. (Let me back up. My wife and oldest daughter left about 30-40 minutes earlier for the daughter's hair appt, and to put in an application for a job) I figured they would be gone an hour.) Right in the middle of grinding that lever off, they pulled in. I was not expecting that and I flinched. Yep the cutoff wheel binded and shot itself out of my hands into the air, bumping my arm still at full speed then landing back on the tractor eating the wheel off. Luckilly, I always run with the guard on. It was the guard that hit my arm protecting it. I came out a little frazzled but unharmed. Whew!
I proceeded to finish that part carefully. Then I cleaned up the hitch plate of all the plazma boogers. Cut off the horridly cut and welded puller connection. Surprised it did not pull off. I also trimmed off the unneeded portion under the rear axle. It looks more like a suburban hitch plate now.
Then I wanted to drop the trans and finish cleaning it up. I figured I would drop the oil in it. Figured I would see glitter and chocolate milk. Nope, came out good! Surprised considering this thing sat in the elements for a few years.
Wanted to share a tip I use with you guys that I do. If you do not have the right tools to pull those 3/8 plugs out of sears/craftsman transmissions. Here is what I do, it's easy and I've never stripped one of these hard to remove plugs. I have a hex coupler, put a 3/8 socket on the plug (square side of course) then the coupler in the socket of the right size. Now the plug is hex for your wrench or other rachet. (Same for those 1/2 plugs too.)
Here is the model of the trans if you are interested.
and she's out. Top has already been cleaned. I need to get the front and under side cleaned too. I see evidence of the engine blowing some oil out the exhaust. I kind of figure due to revving. I'll need to check on that later.
Band brake looks great, actually I can see a part # on the banding so I wonder if it was replaced not too long ago.
Always liked that roper orange. Those types of neighbors are the worst. We had some once that would advertise horse rides and then bring them on our property, right through the front yard. Even found them stocking our pond once. Good riddance. Vent over lol
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Age : 48 Join date : 2016-09-06 Points : 14290 Posts : 10092 Location : Oklahoma
That front axle as mentioned will be moving forward much like I did with the green machine. See if I can get that front bolt on the axle bracket sharing the same bolt as the front brace. So about 7 give or take inches forward.
Items I plan on needing.
4on4 hubs front. (Unless I get crazy and try something else. This tractor is fair game)
4 inch pulley for rear. (I'm going to try the trick of drilling out the welds on the hub so I can pulley swap it. Thank you tapered shaft for making is so darn easy. #sarcasm)
For the sake of saving $$, the Dirty Rat's road tires that are currently on re will be going on this tractor.
Build a new Engine plate.
Paint, I'll probably go with Craftsman Grey and Roper Burnt Orange.
Lights! May go with some full lights on this thing like I did with Sasquatch II build. TBD.
Future plans beyond.
2" Reciever for pulling the small trailer.
Before I go buying any of this stuff. I need to replace an upper idler on our van. Aye... 2023 has been vehicle wallet drain.
The progress will probably start slowing soon. When the parts are needed. That will be stretched out a bit.
Speaking of stretch, the front has been moved forward. It turned out to be 4 inches not 7.
Also, I got the transaxle pulley hub removed so I can install a new pulley.
I think I am ready to take this part, clean up the rust and hit it with some new semi-gloss black. All the mower parts are removed. Time to start the rebuild. Get the front axle back on so I can build a new LONGER steering link.
Please enlighten me, what's the appeal of stretching them? I see how you would gain stability at speed but that's all I can think of. I've seen several people stretch their rigs but my knowledge of offroading trucks tells me it's counter productive. You lose turning radius and clearance for tackling obstacles (more likely to get high centered). Regular cab trucks are far more capable than extended cabs for just those reasons.
This one if more for looks. I stretched TDR for climbing stability and looks. Also, not a fan of accidental wheelies. LOL! Some the Michigan guys REALLY stretch their rigs. Red and Kal are stretched a little due to the suspension and looks. None of the others are stretched. The Sears guys do it mostly for stability. They also lower the seat down to the fenders for lower center of gravity. Most the Ohio guys only stretch 4 inches so it's not really that noticeable, and doesn't screw with steering or high centering any more than normal.
Good to know and I see the point for hill climbing as well. I'd consider trying it in the future to feel the difference for myself as long as I'm able to revert back if I'm not happy with it. Thanks for the info!