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  1. #1
    Gold Member Champy's Avatar
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    John Deere 990

    Default Top Link Lock Nut bent

    I have a JD top link with the locking nuts that have offset lobes/tabs for adjusting or spinning the nuts up tight without wrenches. My problem is that the nut out at the implement end is now bent. Somehow with the nut all the way out at the farthest point on the threaded shaft, the offset lobe is now bent and apparently has flexed the locking nut. Now I cannot turn the nut down the shaft to tighten up against the TL body. The threads do not appear to be damaged either.

    Any suggestions on how to fix this? I cannot get the threaded end to fully unscrew from the body so there must be a roll pin or something locking it in. Not sure there is a fix since it appears to me that it is the "nut" that is bent not the shaft or threads. Maybe take the TL off and simply try bending the adjusting nut lobe back straight? Or just buy a new TL?

    Thanks
    A life spent making mistakes is more honorable and useful than a life spent doing nothing.

    4BusyDads

  2. #2
    Super Star Member RoyJackson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Top Link Lock Nut bent

    I suppose you mean it's threaded out toward the eyelet of the top link?
    I'd use a wrench (if the nut has flats for a wrench) or vice grip or large channel lock plier (if not flats) on the body of the nut to see if it'll thread back down.
    If the nut threads are stripped (doubt it, but they might be...I think it's just jammed), don't thread it all the way down the link. At this point, most of the threads are usable and you may be able to buy a new nut rather then the whole top link. In fact, once broken loose, you may not need a new nut.
    I'd be very surprised if the threaded shaft has a roll pin or other locking method. I'm not sure how the link could be assembled (look for a weld near the end of the body though).
    How did this happen?
    Roy Jackson

    "Any government that does not trust its citizens with firearms is either a tyranny, or planning to become one."
    -Joseph P. Martino

  3. #3
    Gold Member Champy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Top Link Lock Nut bent

    Quote Originally Posted by RoyJackson View Post
    How did this happen?
    Not absolutely sure Roy......but just guessing I went from the bush hog and was using the subsoiler...when I put the hog back on is when I noticed it. Most likely I had the SS adjusted too short and when fully raised it probably pinched the locking nut out at the end of the threads by the eyelet.

    I can turn it a couple of threads towards the eyelet end of the top link and it comes loose but is captive by the eyelet itself (which is welded on). When trying to spin the nut down it will only engage a couple of threads and then binds up really tight. I've tried hammering it around; giant cresent wrench too; but its just not working correctly. If I could get the threaded rod extracted from the Top link body, I could then grind the nut off and install a new one.

    Maybe I need a bigger hammer???
    A life spent making mistakes is more honorable and useful than a life spent doing nothing.

    4BusyDads

  4. #4
    Platinum Member
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    Default Re: Top Link Lock Nut bent

    Many top links have a cross pin through the threaded shaft inside the link. It is removed by screwing the shaft until the pin lines up with a hole in the central tube of the link and then letting gravity (and perhaps a gentle hammer tap on the back side) pull it through the hole. On some the hole is a threaded hole covered by a small (1/4") screw. On others the grease zerk hole is also the hole for removing the pin.

  5. #5
    Super Star Member RoyJackson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Top Link Lock Nut bent

    Quote Originally Posted by Champy View Post
    I can turn it a couple of threads towards the eyelet end of the top link and it comes loose but is captive by the eyelet itself (which is welded on). When trying to spin the nut down it will only engage a couple of threads and then binds up really tight. I've tried hammering it around; giant cresent wrench too; but its just not working correctly. If I could get the threaded rod extracted from the Top link body, I could then grind the nut off and install a new one.

    Maybe I need a bigger hammer???
    It really sounds like the nut threads are stripped, so I suggest you don't use a "bigger hammer".

    I suggest looking at the body of the link for a way to remove a possible pin (as Farmerford suggests in his post) so you can remove the threaded rod from the toplink body. If you can do this and if you can split the nut, you can probably salvage the link.

    If you don't want to go through all of this, Tractor Supply sells those top links and they aren't that expensive.
    Roy Jackson

    "Any government that does not trust its citizens with firearms is either a tyranny, or planning to become one."
    -Joseph P. Martino

  6. #6
    Gold Member Champy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Top Link Lock Nut bent

    OK.......I'll look for an access hole on the Top link and work on it in my spare time and use it as a backup.. meanwhile I'll probably look to get a new replacement from TSC or Rural King as a quicker fix so I can get some planting (Xmas trees) done this week.

    Thanks for your input / knowledge.
    A life spent making mistakes is more honorable and useful than a life spent doing nothing.

    4BusyDads

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