John deere 4400 and 1300 hours
Last Saturday I started my vacation,I thought great I will get some work done on my tractor,well I was hoping for quality seat time,but it ended up being wrench time. I am in the woods grading my road and I hear a peculiar noise...well the splined collar is slipping on my drive shaft that engages the front wheels for 4 WD,then it was about 4 1/2 days of tractor repair time
My JD 4400 is setting out at the barn with no steering but I think everything else might be ok now after a rebuild,it gradually started to go IE: it would turn to one side and not the other and now it has quit completely.I have a JD 4400 shop manual I bought on ebay and it tells how to check to find out if it is the steering cylinder or the SCU ( Steering Contol Unit) behind the dash. I have the old style front axle on my JD 4400 I know John Deere does not sell a rebuild kit and you have to buy the whole cylinder and a new cylinder is $600 plus not sure what the SCU costs but I will 1st have to determine which has failed . I also had to replace the wheel centers on my rear wheels they had actually started to crack,I could never keep them tight. Another thing I had to repair was the 4wd drive shaft going to the spindle in the four wheel drive pumpkin,the splines were worn and the collar was slipping on the spline,the spline shaft and pinion/ring gear/pinion shaft is sold by John Deere as a 3 piece package another $600 dollars, and the splines on the pinion is the only thing that were bad. I took the differental cover off and had to remove the spindal housings to get the pinion out and pulled the pinion out and had it welded direct to the drive shaft and done away with the splines on the front part of the drive shaft. Also the bushings were gone on the front and rear axle support blocks for the axle housings,we went to the local muffler shop and found some scrap pieces and the muffler shop even cut and spread the pieces to fit,then we shimmed and welded them in place. Replaced my seal for pinion gear.Also we had to rebuild the tie rod ends/welded them built the ends up to remove the slop in them I already bought 2 of these little tie rods a ($200. a piece) last year.
While we were at it we replaced the right rear axle seal and the right rear axle(because bolt holes were bad)
this time last year I had to replace the shifting fork (split the tractor to do so) and had to replace both rear axle housings because the cast aluminum was completely worn out where the lower pins for the lift arm go had worn out.
Here's the kicker !!! The steering was slowly starting to fail,but I did have some steering left...hoping I could prolong the inevitble $$$$ of the steering cylinder or SCU my cousin who helped me with the repairs asked me to take the tractor to his house and do a little work for him,so I agree and we load the tractor up on my trailer and go to his place and I start moving the dirt ,well the steering gradually gets worse( my luck !!!) it gets to the point where I have to raise the front end of my tractor up off the ground and my cousin turns the front wheels for me in the direction I have to go or I use the brakes to steer,well this can only last for so long,we load the tractor up and I get it back home and now I am contemplating my next move,if it is in fact the steering cylinder my cousin wants to see if he can some how rebuild it 1st and save me some $$$$.
Heres another kicker....John Deere did send me a letter 2 weeks ago stating there was a recall on my roll bar because it could fail with a canopy on it.