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  1. #1
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2000
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    681
    Location
    Valrico, FL
    Tractor
    No longer have :-(

    Default Gotta be an easier way to learn ...

    The snow from this past week was a great excuse to get out and have some seat time. Unfortunately the seat time required to keep up with the driveway [img]/w3tcompact/icons/smile.gif[/img] and the blowing snow kept me from TBN [img]/w3tcompact/icons/frown.gif[/img].

    Finally had my first breakdown on the snow blower. Heard many stories of others and the constant replacement of shear pins due to picking up rocks and other debris. After clearing our driveway we decided to be neighborly (more seat time [img]/w3tcompact/icons/wink.gif[/img]) and help a couple others. Did my parent's driveway and while going through some 10" stuff the blower just quit. Scared the living daylights out of me. I'm used to shear pins but the PTO shaft stopped turning. Turned the PTO off and on, no movement. Won't repeat the details of what my original thoughts were but will summarize that I wasn't too pleased with the potential that something snapped in the transmission. Dejectedly drove back to the barn (after finishing the driveway the the FEL) and turned the unit off. Sigh.

    Got off and started to walk out the barn but turned around and went back to look at the snow blower to assess what kind of damage there might be to it in addition to the tractor. Wanted to know how much money I might be looking at. Was mentally adding up the thousands and preparing my verbal tirade against the stupid engineers or maybe it was shoddy workmanship during assembly. Blood pressure was rising as I hand turned the auger on the blower. It turned easily enough, but occasionally there was a metallic clanging sound. Hmmm. Must be some slop somewhere. Seemed to come from the fan. No the fan does not touch anything. Turn it faster, its clanging more. Faster and faster (turning by hand) and then JAM, stops dead. Humph! What the ?? Turn slowly and its fine. Turn fast and it jambs again. Then my eye catches a little something down in the snow still in the blower. Start digging and it looks like it might just be, yes it appears to be, yep it is. One of those nice, twice as hard as poured concrete, round 12" stepping stones. A little scuffed up but still totally intact. Stupid $1.49 stepping stone breaks my $3500 snow blower!!! [angry] Those...those...engineers...humph!!!

    Now I have a couple different emotions coursing through my veins: relief that the snow blower is not damaged (deduct that amount from the total $) but a little edge is beginning to creep in because my parents (or siblings) left a paver stone in their driveway for me to pick up with a snow blower! [angry]

    Decide that this is not a good time to go back to the house! I need time to cool off. So we decide (we? my angry side and relieved side) to spend some extra time with the wounded tractor. Start it back up, turn the PTO on, no luck. PTO shaft still does not turn. Now I'm beginning to wonder: "Why did the snow blower engineers make the darn shear pin so strong?" Wonder where the darn thing is anyway. I know where the pin is on the hay balers. Hmmm. Oh well, have to look at the owner's manual when I get back to the house. Wonder if the PTO spline on the tractor is frozen or if it free wheels. It might be nice to know this. So we remove our mittens (don't want to get grease on them) and pull the PTO shaft off the spline. The spline acts normal (but that metal is cold). Hmmm. Start the tractor, engage the PTO, it turns! Now that's weird. Its turning but it must not have any torque. "Should I grab it"? "No, that would look like a really stupid entry to put on TBN, if I were to survive." Turn the tractor off.

    "Now what?" Curiosity has now temporarily blocked any desire to strangle any blood relations. "Well, how do we determine how much strength the PTO is capable of driving?" Decide to reconnect the snowblower PTO shaft.

    As I pick up the PTO shaft from the ground I see the head of a little black bolt on the ground. "Oh, great! Not only is something internally wrong but bolt heads are breaking off the outside!" Pick it up and look at it. Yep it has the three marks on the head indicating it is a hardened bolt. "Where did it come from?" Look around and cannot find a place for it. "Maybe it fell off some other piece of equipment. Anyway, might as well just reconnect the PTO shaft". Then I see something that all the rest of you already know (and have been yelling at the screen for the past couple minutes), the PTO shaft has a shear pin at the tractor end. Just past the female coupler and before the u-joint there are two plates, smooth plates facing each other, that are freely spinning. These plates have two matching sets of holes in them, that just happen to be empty. [img]/w3tcompact/icons/grin.gif[/img] [img]/w3tcompact/icons/blush.gif[/img] [img]/w3tcompact/icons/smile.gif[/img] [img]/w3tcompact/icons/blush.gif[/img] [img]/w3tcompact/icons/grin.gif[/img] [img]/w3tcompact/icons/blush.gif[/img] [img]/w3tcompact/icons/smile.gif[/img] [img]/w3tcompact/icons/blush.gif[/img] [img]/w3tcompact/icons/grin.gif[/img] [img]/w3tcompact/icons/blush.gif[/img] [img]/w3tcompact/icons/smile.gif[/img] [img]/w3tcompact/icons/blush.gif[/img]

    I walk back to the house a happy man. Happy that the engineers were very smart and intelligent, happy that the assemblers were not bungling idiots, happy that I just gained thousands of dollars back in my pocket (it was after all, mentally gone) and happy that I would not have to strangle anyone.

    There has to be a less strenuous way to learn something new.

  2. #2
    Epic Contributor Bird's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2000
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    37,535
    Location
    Texas

    Default Re: Gotta be an easier way to learn ...

    [img]/w3tcompact/icons/laugh.gif[/img]Yep, I've days like that, too, Dave.[img]/w3tcompact/icons/laugh.gif[/img]

    I think I did something much dumber this week. My Dr trimmer/mower wouldn't start. I had put a new carburetor on it last summer, so I put a new spark plug in, checked again and found no fire to the spark plug. I decided I just didn't have the time and inclination to tear into that little motor, so I just took it to a professional (figuring it was going to be something like a magneto to be replaced). Well, he said it sounded the like the kill switch, wiggled the connecting wire, and it fired right off.[img]/w3tcompact/icons/shocked.gif[/img] And then he charged me $24.36.[img]/w3tcompact/icons/frown.gif[/img] I told my wife that the cost of ignorance, stupidity, and laziness is always high.[img]/w3tcompact/icons/laugh.gif[/img]

  3. #3
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Posts
    1,314
    Location
    Alberta
    Tractor
    Kubota B2410 with turfs

    Default Re: Gotta be an easier way to learn ...

    Dave,

    To funny. LOL for sure!!! I haven't broke a shear pin yet on my rotary cutter, but I'm not afraid to admit I don't have a clue where to look or how to replace it when I do. I'm pretty sure it's a matter of time and I'm sure I'll be having some of those same emotions!!!

    Thanks for sharing!

    Kevin

  4. #4
    Platinum Member PitbullMidwest's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Posts
    944
    Location
    SE Iowa
    Tractor
    1998 Kubota L2900GST

    Default Re: Gotta be an easier way to learn ...

    The first time I ever used my father in law's 8n (or any tractor for that matter) I broke a shear pin on the brush cutter. I'd only been married for about a month and had no idea how he would react to my "breaking" his pride and joy. Luckily it was a shear pin and he just laughed and showed me how to replace it.

    My brother in law on the other hand makes a point of showing me where the shear pins are EVERY time I use the Ford, and it's been 14 years since I last broke a pin. Funny guy my brother in law. [img]/w3tcompact/icons/smile.gif[/img]

    Glad to hear there was no damage to your tractor.

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Posts
    532
    Location
    SE Michigan - between Pontiac and Flint
    Tractor
    Kubota B7100 HST - 1995

    Default Re: Gotta be an easier way to learn ...

    We've all been there and done that. The real lesson, though hard taught and frustrating: is to stay calm, look things over, figure out what's wrong, then decide if it's going to cost you next month's paycheck or not.

  6. #6
    Elite Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    4,383
    Location
    Janesville, Wisconsin
    Tractor
    None -yet. Until then FunBuggy (EZ-Go) will have to do!

    Default Re: Gotta be an easier way to learn ...

    That is truly a GREAT story[img]/w3tcompact/icons/laugh.gif[/img][img]/w3tcompact/icons/laugh.gif[/img]! I 'spose most of us have a few stories like that ourselves, but we don't have the nerve to admit it. I definitely will keep it in mind the first time my blower stops working[img]/w3tcompact/icons/grin.gif[/img]. Thanks for the chuckle.


  7. #7
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Posts
    918
    Location
    QC, Canada
    Tractor
    B7500HSD

    Default Re: Gotta be an easier way to learn ...

    That's funny - same thing happened on my snowblower about a month ago. I turned the auger by hand and the chain moved - I start getting warm. I turn the auger again and move my eyes further up the drive line - the gear box output shaft is turning - I start sweating. I move my eyes further along the driveline and see the PTO shaft turning - now I start getting that very dark sensation. I lift the safety cover on the tractor and notice that the last shear pin before the tractor is the one that let go - sigh of relief.

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Posts
    92
    Location
    Battleground, WA, USA
    Tractor
    Kioti LK-3504 w/FEL & R4's

    Default Re: Gotta be an easier way to learn ...

    Thanks for taking the time to share that with us. It sure took me back to my first shear pin break on my old Minneapolis Moline with my Bush Hog mower. I too first though that something had broken internally in the tractor.

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Aug 2000
    Posts
    3,371
    Location
    California - S.F. East Bay & Sierra foothills
    Tractor
    Kubota L2500DT Standard Transmission

    Default Re: Gotta be an easier way to learn ...

    Dave -

    There is and easier way to learn -- just keep reading stories like this on TBN. [img]/w3tcompact/icons/laugh.gif[/img]

    I think I know where the shear pin is on my rotary cutter, and I never even thought to look for any on the PTO shaft. Next time up at the property I'm gonna look 'em both over real good (if I remember) and maybe I'll even get around to picking up a few extra shear pins to keep on hand. I'll have to review the great controversy (also here on TBN) about what grade of pins/bolts to get.

    Bird -
    You say there's a kill switch on our DR Trimmer/Mowers? Guess I'd better take a look at that, too, before I have the same problem you did.

  10. #10
    Epic Contributor Bird's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2000
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    37,535
    Location
    Texas

    Default Re: Gotta be an easier way to learn ...

    Harv, I don't remember which one you have. Mine is an electric start Briggs and the "kill" switch is engaged (kills the engine) when the throttle is pulled all the way off. There's several wires with a connector plug low on the left side of the engine that apparently had lost contact. Of course, you can also start it with the pull rope, and in fact that's what the guy did at the shop, and it started first pull after he wiggled that connector.

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