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  1. #1
    Silver Member jshwhite's Avatar
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    Nov 2011
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    154
    Location
    Central Michigan
    Tractor
    Kubota L3710

    Default Ford 501 sickle bar help

    Looking to do my own hay next year and just picked up this Ford 501 7ft sickle bar for $75 - pretty good deal in my area. The seller said it he used it last year and it worked well. Looks like it needs a couple of teeth, but otherwise in decent shape.

    Got it home and unloaded and can't seem to make sense of how it mounts on the tractor. I have a kubota L3710 with a regular 3 pt hitch. From the looks of it, there are 6 points of attachment on the sickle bar. It looks like maybe something for a stabilizer and something else to raise and lower the bar. Can I just run it without the other attachment points? I've attached a picture of it.

    Hope it's not a stupid question, but can anyone tell me how this works/offer suggestions? Thanks!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails -photo0122-jpg  
    If you don't have it, make it.

    If it breaks, weld it.

  2. #2
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Posts
    102
    Location
    Knoxville PA

    Default Re: Ford 501 sickle bar help

    You can download the operators manual from ntractorclub website for free. It will have the instructions on how to mount the mower.

  3. #3
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
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    565
    Location
    Westmoreland County PA
    Tractor
    Fords

    Default Re: Ford 501 sickle bar help

    I have one just like that. It is a really nice mower. It is hard to tell from the picture, but it looks like you are missing the arms that clamp onto your tractors lift arms.

    To hook up the mower:
    1. Connect lift arms and top link
    2. Connect stabilizer arms (one on each lift arm) tighten clamps with a wrench
    3. Raise mower and install pin connecting linkage from top link to the big spring.

  4. #4
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
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    104
    Location
    West Central Illinois
    Tractor
    Branson 4720h

    Default Re: Ford 501 sickle bar help

    I have one also. It should hook up fine to your 3 pt, but it looks like your missing the top link on the mower. It should have a solid top link that attaches to the main spring.

    It looks like you have the left arm clamp that supports the cutter bar, but it looks different than mine. It probably doesn't matter as long as it can attach to the 3pt arm. It's hard to tell from the picture, but the right side clamp is missing. This isn't a big deal as long as your tractor has sway control.

    The bar is supposed to be raised and lowered manually, but maybe yours is modified. If you can't find a manual online, I've got one I can post. Take some time going through the user manual and make all of the adjustments. My mower cut like crap until everything was adjusted right.

    Hopefully Sweettractors will be along soon. He is a dealer and seems to be an expert on sickle bar mowers. He was a lot of help to me and probably a good source for parts.
    Branson 4720h

  5. #5
    Silver Member jshwhite's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
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    154
    Location
    Central Michigan
    Tractor
    Kubota L3710

    Default Re: Ford 501 sickle bar help

    Thanks for the help everyone. I went to ntractorclub and found a manual - that will be a lot of help.

    Looks like I'm going to have to find/make that top link, but other than that I think I'll be able to make it work. My tractor has the lower arms with drop pins for stabilizers l so I won't worry about the right stabilizer. I'll make some sort of clamp for the left stabilizer.

    Sweet tractor is just down the road from me. I think I'll just run over there and take a look at the mowers he has and ask some questions. Maybe he'll have a top link.

    Thanks again - I'll post again once I get it up and running.
    If you don't have it, make it.

    If it breaks, weld it.

  6. #6
    Silver Member jshwhite's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
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    154
    Location
    Central Michigan
    Tractor
    Kubota L3710

    Default Re: Ford 501 sickle bar help

    Got the sickle bar going the a couple days ago and thought I'd share the results. I managed to do it without getting any new parts. The end of the push rod on the left side had some contraption that the previous owner had used for his tractor. I took that, cut some things off of it, burnt another hole in it, and now it will bolt onto the lower arm of the 3 pt on my tractor. Works great! When I raise the mower, it multiplies the lift and raises end of the cutter higher. Here are a couple pics.

    Now for a question. It's got a lot of bad sections. Almost all of them actually. Is it better to replace each section or just get a whole new blade assembly? Pros and cons of each option? If I do go with a whole new blade, are there any good online sources?

    Thanks
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails -photo0124-jpg   -photo0126-jpg  
    If you don't have it, make it.

    If it breaks, weld it.

  7. #7
    Platinum Member KYErik's Avatar
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    Dec 2005
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    503
    Location
    Kentucky
    Tractor
    1963 Ford 4000, 1943 Case SC, Case 530CK backhoe

    Default Re: Ford 501 sickle bar help

    It will take a long time to replace all of those sections with rivets.

    I replaced the whole moving blade assembly on my old john deer #8 sickle mower 8-9 years ago- I believe that I bought it at Tractor Supply. I'm not sure if they still stock them.
    "Attitudes are contagious; is yours worth catching?"

  8. #8
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    674
    Location
    Thumb, Mich

    Default Re: Ford 501 sickle bar help

    It's not a big job to replace sections using nut & bolts designed for that purpose. You'll find them with the sections at TSC.
    The Opti-Mist

  9. #9
    Advertiser sweettractors's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
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    7,209
    Location
    Central Kentucky
    Tractor
    JD 6403 CHA-JD 3130 CHA

    Default Re: Ford 501 sickle bar help

    Quote Originally Posted by Opti-Mist View Post
    It's not a big job to replace sections using nut & bolts designed for that purpose. You'll find them with the sections at TSC.
    Don't forget to put on the special "High Rise" hold downs when you put on the bolt on sections. Ken Sweet
    http://www.sweetfarms.com/

    Sweet Farm Equipment LLC (Internet Sales, Shipping All States)
    Shipping Facility
    1815 Defries Rd., Canmer, Ky 42722 Toll Free 1-866-528-3323
    Ken Sweet sweet@scrtc.com

    Shipping Example: Can ship 800 lbs from Ky. to Dallas for $165
    The Northeast shipping corridor is a little more expensive.

  10. #10
    Silver Member jshwhite's Avatar
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    Nov 2011
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    154
    Location
    Central Michigan
    Tractor
    Kubota L3710

    Default Re: Ford 501 sickle bar help

    OK, thanks guys. I think I'll just go ahead and replace the individual sections if the new hold downs aren't too expensive. Thanks again for the help.
    If you don't have it, make it.

    If it breaks, weld it.

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