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  1. #1
    Epic Contributor jinman's Avatar
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    Feb 2001
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    20,950
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    Texas - Wise County - Sunset
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    NHTC45D, NH LB75B, Ford Jubilee

    Default Rotary Cutter Abuse

    I sometimes think the "RC" abbreviation should be for "rock cutter" in my case. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/blush.gif[/img] Everytime I use my cutter, it borders on abuse because of the number of football sized soft limestone rocks I hit while cutting native grass and brush. On a good day of mowing, I'll use less than the four shear bolts I normally carry with me in my toolbox. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]

    Well, yesterday I think my TSC light duty cutter had all it can take. I hit a rock and snapped a shear bolt. After replacing the bolt (I didn't have to rotate the gearbox but about 1/4 in.) I checked that everything was clear under the cutter and slowly engaged the PTO lever. The engine started loading down a little and then, POW!. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif[/img] The new shear pin just sheared right off. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif[/img]

    I was hot, and it was late, so I just shut everything down and parked the tractor. Later this week I'll open the gearbox to see how bad the damage is , but right now it looks like the 40 hp gearbox is gone. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/frown.gif[/img]

    I bought a TSC cutter just because I give it so much abuse. I've had this cutter over 6 years, so it has paid for itself many times over. I'll probably go back and buy another TSC cutter if this one proves too expensive to repair. It's a 5' cutter and I'd really like to have a 6' cutter.

    I also have an old Howse cutter that has a good gearbox. I might get lucky and be able to replace the gearbox with one from the old Howse. We'll see... [img]/forums/images/graemlins/smirk.gif[/img]

  2. #2
    Elite Member
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    Sep 2003
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    4,142
    Location
    New Brunswick, Canada
    Tractor
    Kubota L5030 HSTC, MF 5455

    Default Re: Rotary Cutter Abuse

    Seems like a common story, our neighbour had a collection of old bush hogs with a variety of ailments.

    The best is the big one had, 8 footer or so, huge gearbox on it. I looked under it and the spindle was broken clean off! This is a 2"+ diameter shaft!

    The Howse he had managed to cut the centre of the deck completely free from the rest of it where the blades rubbed.

    He bought a Bushhog Squealer 600 the year before he passed away, it seems to be showing signs of distress too, the blades hitting the deck.

  3. #3
    Epic Contributor jinman's Avatar
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    Texas - Wise County - Sunset
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    NHTC45D, NH LB75B, Ford Jubilee

    Default Re: Rotary Cutter Abuse

    </font><font color="blue" class="small">( The Howse he had managed to cut the centre of the deck completely free from the rest of it where the blades rubbed. )</font>

    Your neighbor's Howse must be a 1st cousin to mine. The sheet metal is so thin on mine that all the welds started breaking loose. In order to stop the process, I drilled holes and put about 10 carriage bolts on from the bottom to hold it together. Finally, the stump jumper lost all its spline where it goes onto the gearbox shaft. One day the stump jumper started spinning and when I checked, the spline was gone. As strange as it sounds, the nut did not come loose, the metal was just soft enough to expand and spread until there was nothing to grip the gearbox shaft.

    I checked my TSC King Kutter last night and the silly thing was turning free (I reached under the deck and turned it with my hand.) That led me to check the oil in the gearbox, and sure enough, it was dry. When I added a little oil, it just ran out around the bottom seal. How I never noticed oil leaking I don't know, but the gearbox must have gotten so hot it siezed up until it cooled off. I think I'll try to get the seal replaced and see if it still works. Otherwise, it's a "boat anchor" anyhow, so I might as well get as much use out of it as I can.

    Next year I'll probably buy a 6' cutter. I bought this one when all I had was a Ford Jubilee. My NH TC45D can handle the 6' cutter and it still won't be wider than my rear tires. Since I mow around 1000's of trees, I have to be careful and not get a cutter that's so wide it won't fit the same space as my tractor.

  4. #4
    Elite Member
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    Mar 2002
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    2,816
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    Iuka Mississippi USA
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    3550 Fard Backhoe and a 1948 Farmall Cub,

    Default Re: Rotary Cutter Abuse

    Ive seen my dad quick fix the old bush hogs here that had the splines stripped and the jumper just welded onto the shaft. When the bottom seals went out hed take the check plug out and put in an alamite grease fitting. then take the smaller check plugug out to keep the new pumped in grease from pushing the other seals out. Then when it was full hed put the plug in and bbe on his way. Every 40 hours of hogging hed put more grease in it. There at least one of his running around here for the last 12 years like that.

  5. #5
    Epic Contributor jinman's Avatar
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    Texas - Wise County - Sunset
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    NHTC45D, NH LB75B, Ford Jubilee

    Default Re: Rotary Cutter Abuse

    Thanks for that info. I'd thought about filling the gearbox with grease, but didn't know if it would hold up. If I can't get the seal to work properly, I just may fill the gearbox with grease and give it a go. What would I have to lose? I'm sure the grease won't transfer heat as well as oil, but having some form of lubricant will surely also keep the gearbox from getting nearly as hot as it got when it ran dry. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/blush.gif[/img] I'm still "kicking myself" for not noticing the oil had leaked out. In hindsight, I think I heard the gearbox making a different sound and just didn't realize why the sound had changed. At least this mistake is not too expensive. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/smirk.gif[/img]

  6. #6
    Elite Member
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    Iuka Mississippi USA
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    3550 Fard Backhoe and a 1948 Farmall Cub,

    Default Re: Rotary Cutter Abuse

    I was worried about the Gator brush hog we bought for the landfill we run. We bought a light duty 6 foot gator for 650 bucks at a dealer friend of ours. the first hour we ran it it got hot and was making a gear box noise it was full of oil but the only explanation was the bearing had to break in. I decided to run it it would have either died or worked an it lived lol.
    I have a frien in the right of way bush hogging business and I fix all their stripped stump jumpers by welding them. THey usually get another 2 years out of running them with straight grease when they loose an oil seal on the bottom. Just remember to take one of the other plugs out to keep from killing the other seals.

  7. #7
    Veteran Member
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    Aug 2001
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    1,001
    Location
    Vermont
    Tractor
    NH TC33D

    Default Re: Rotary Cutter Abuse

    </font><font color="blue" class="small">( I'd thought about filling the gearbox with grease, but didn't know if it would hold up.)</font>

    Don't FILL it with grease. That's a sure way to blow the seals when the grease heats up. Go for about half full (or full up to where the fill level hole was when you were using oil.

    John Mc

  8. #8
    Epic Contributor jinman's Avatar
    Join Date
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    Texas - Wise County - Sunset
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    NHTC45D, NH LB75B, Ford Jubilee

    Default Re: Rotary Cutter Abuse

    </font><font color="blue" class="small">( Don't FILL it with grease. That's a sure way to blow the seals when the grease heats up. Go for about half full (or full up to where the fill level hole was when you were using oil.
    )</font>

    When I got the RC turned up on its side, I found the output shaft bearing and seal were gone. The whole shaft was loose and floping around (not enough so the blades hit the deck, but very close to it). It was far beyond being able to "fix" by adding grease. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/blush.gif[/img]

    I pulled the gearbox off the old Howse cutter and it was still in very good condition. The oil level in it was even perfect. The stump jumper was pretty easy to get off because its splines were gone.

    The stump jumper was much harder to get off the TSC-King Kutter, but a few wedges and a sledge hammer tap got it to pop off. The Howse gearbox mounted perfectly on the TSC-KK deck. The TSC-KK stump jumper also fit perfectly.

    I took the opportunity to sharpen my blades while the stump jumper was off, then I reinstalled everything. So now I have a unique cutter, and it works perfectly. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

    I'm sure glad I kept the old Howse. It has been a great source of spare parts. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif[/img]

  9. #9

    Join Date
    May 2002
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    579
    Location
    Harrisburg, Illinois
    Tractor
    MF 165, Kioti 2554

    Default Re: Rotary Cutter Abuse

    So now I guess you could say there is a new King in the Howse? [img]/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

  10. #10
    Platinum Member
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    Jun 2004
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    546
    Location
    Western PA
    Tractor
    Mahindra 3510

    Default Re: Rotary Cutter Abuse

    </font><font color="blue" class="small">( So now I guess you could say there is a new King in the Howse? )</font>

    [img]/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img] [img]/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img] [img]/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

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