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Case 448 tear down and rebuild / restore thread.


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#1 NUTNDUN OFFLINE  

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Posted January 10, 2011 - 07:22 PM

I wanted to start a new thread to keep track of my tear down and rebuild / restore on the Case 448 I just acquired. I was originally going to just try and get it all back together and see how it did mechanically before restoring it but a couple of the guys on here have talked me in to restoring it from the get go.

There are some issues that need to be addressed on it. One of the primary ones is going to be the steering axle and pivot point. The other is the Onan, I don't know if it runs or not but I will be ordering a gasket kit when funds allow and tear it down to check everything out, adjust the valves and also clean the carburetor.

I took a quick video to try and show the play in the front axle pivot. I don't think they ever greased it. The front plate has a lot of wear but the axle and rear plate don't seem to be too bad. The kingpins area of the axle definitely seems to be bent back on each side but I don't know exactly where they are supposed to be. I know hydriv said they should be straight and if that is the case then they need to be straightened. I don't have the tools to be able to straighten an axle beam like that.

Here is the video, the quality really sucks. I took it with my phone and it was hard to hold the phone while wiggling the tires. I might have to take another video with the good camera on the tripod.


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#2 olcowhand ONLINE  

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Posted January 10, 2011 - 07:37 PM

The cast iron axle beam if bent would best be replaced if bad enough to warrant. Cast iron doesn't like to be bent. Likely bending it back to it's original position could create stress cracks you can't see & fail later, or fail at time of bending. Hopefully the front plate hole is not bad & wear is on the hollow pin.

#3 grand OFFLINE  

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Posted January 10, 2011 - 07:49 PM

The cast iron axle beam if bent would best be replaced if bad enough to warrant. Cast iron doesn't like to be bent. Likely bending it back to it's original position could create stress cracks you can't see & fail later, or fail at time of bending. Hopefully the front plate hole is not bad & wear is on the hollow pin.

Thanks for the input Daniel. Wear on the hollow pin could be the culprit. While trying to help George I am actually learning quite a lot. Not ready to solo on a rebuild, but always ready to help with the projects.

#4 hydriv OFFLINE  

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Posted January 12, 2011 - 11:45 AM

The front and rear axles used on these tractors are allegedly CAST STEEL, not Cast Iron. The twist/bend in front axles is common. Dealers just heat these to a dull cherry red and straighten them. Some dealers have pressed them straight COLD. It's my understanding that the kingpins should be exactly 90 degrees to the pivot hole. Any machine shop worth it's salt can do this work for a reasonable price. I would guestimate 1/2 hour.

Part of the slop George shows in his crummy video :D comes from wear on the axle bosses and the support/cross member plates. One owner wrote me and showed me photos of how he had made up light gauge metal shims to go between each cross-member plate and the axle. The shims are bored in the center and held in place by the pivot pin. They extend from one side of the cross member to the other.


Other people have used a long 1" diameter bolt placed through the pivot hole and then tightened it to pull the plates together. Heavy C-clamps can be employed on the outer ends of the plates to draw them together in a controlled manner.

#5 olcowhand ONLINE  

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Posted January 12, 2011 - 12:01 PM

If these axles are that common to bending, then likely they are cast steel. Cast iron doesn't bend easily as it likes to crack or break instead. Myself, I would heat the steel & straighten hot.

#6 NUTNDUN OFFLINE  

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Posted January 12, 2011 - 12:07 PM

I will have to see what I can come up with for a torch to heat the axle to straighten it. I might have to take it over to a friends shop or drop it off at a machine shop. I am going to get the rebar I need for the electrolysis tank and start cleaning some of the body parts.

#7 Texas Deere and Horse OFFLINE  

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Posted January 12, 2011 - 12:38 PM

George,

If you own a big heating tip (rosebud) and get the axle really hot, red to yellow in color, you can twist it where ever you want it with a crescent wrench or pipe wrench 18" or bigger. I probably would have the tractor supported by the frame on good blocks, you don't want any weight on the axle during the heating or straightening process. For the pivot pin and holes, I would ream and bush the axle, and if you have room, I would either buy or make a pair of collars to put on each side of the cross member. I would also try heating the cross member and using a clamp to tighten it up on the axle.

That my 2 cents worth of advice,

Brian

#8 hydriv OFFLINE  

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Posted January 12, 2011 - 05:07 PM

I guess you have to ask yourself, which would you rather have? A cast iron axle that might snap in two or a cast steel axle that can be straightened if bent? Personally, I prefer the latter because it's far cheaper.

These are 800 pound GT's when bare. If you add a three point, rear PTO, sleeve hitch adapter, hydraulic tiller, wheel weights, front counter-weight and a 200 pound operator, that gross weight climbs to around 1400 pounds. The axle bends because the tractor uses L-shaped kingpin/spindles on either side that provide a twisting force on the axle when unthinking owners ram into immovable objects. The L-shaped spindle is common on many brands. George's tractor is probably 30 years old and he is going to find a lot of neglect, abuse, wear, tear and bad repairs. All those things go with the territory of bringing an old GT back to life.

So, let's look at the math. George paid $400.00 to buy this derelict. Let's suppose that the engine still has good life left in it. He pulls the heads and decarbonizes before putting it back together with new plugs, points, condenser and wires. He rebuilds the carb and puts in a brass float (mandatory with the fuel of today). All told, he spends $200.00 on the engine.

Decals, paint and miscellaneous small parts run another $400.00. All told, he's got a grand in it. Even if he spends another $500.00, it's not that bad. Why do I say this? Simple. Go to any Lowe's or HD and shop the offerings. In the first place, they don't sell true garden tractors, just lawn tractors. Can you buy anything for $1500.00 that will give you twenty to thirty years of service?

If you can find an Ingersoll dealer and price out a new 4223PS with rear PTO, three point hitch, sleeve hitch adapter and deck, you won't walk out the door for under ten grand. Is the new Ingy a little nicer? Sure. It has power steering and that's a nice touch. It has a nice Vanguard that sips fuel at a lower rate but is that a big deal for most people? George's restored 448 will do all the same jobs that the 2011 Ingersoll will but for a fraction of the cost. On top of that, George won't take a bath on depreciation either.

For the most part, these tractors are damn near bullet proof. When you buy something like George scored, the expensive parts are not worn out. Yes they are worn but they don't need to be replaced. The front axle can be bored and bushed back to stock The frames rarely have major issues and the minor ones are easily corrected with a small MIG and normal tools any decent shop would have. Those three things are the backbone. The cosmetics of paint and decals is often the same for any brand. The rest of the wear parts are minimal.

Much of the restoration has to do with undoing bad repair work and making sure the tractor goes back together the way the engineers designed it to. These are very easy tractors to work on compared to most Deere's and the hydraulic system allows you to use implements that would normally have another gas engine that needs servicing and repairs.

#9 NUTNDUN OFFLINE  

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Posted January 13, 2011 - 11:46 AM

I wrote down all the info on the serial number tag and thought I put it in my pocket to bring with to work so I could post it but I can't find it. It is definitely a 448 and the serial number started with a 1. I will post the info once I either find the paper I wrote it down on or just go in the garage and write it down again.

I did look at the steering wheel cap and it was definitely a separate cap and there is a bolt/nut holding the steering wheel on. It is pretty rusted up so I am going to start soaking it with pb blaster. I gotta get the tools needed to pull the steering wheel without messing it up.

#10 NUTNDUN OFFLINE  

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Posted January 13, 2011 - 07:24 PM

Dad and I have worked on the Case about an hour each night. Didn't really do anything to it yesterday because we put a new radiator in his car which we really made good time on. Had the old one out and new one in close to an hour and a half.

We got the front wheels pulled off the spindles, then we removed the pivot pin. The pivot pin is pretty tight on the axle beam so I think the axle beam is fine. The pin is wore pretty good where the plates are at. Good thing though is the front frame plate is barely worn, most of the wear is in the back plate. I am going to get a new pivot pin and also get a 1/4" plate and have it drilled to fit the new pin. Then I will assemble it and weld the new 1/4" plate to the back plate.

We also got the throttle and choke cables taken off the dash. I am going to need to cables. The levers are alright though. I also pulled the rest of the wiring off of the tractor and removed the ignition switch. I forgot to take the ammeter out which I will do that tomorrow. I am going to stop tomorrow on the way home from work and pick up a new pressure washer hose.

We had torn down a good bit of the other things the other night like the fenders, seat, gas tank and what not. The steering wheel is definitely held on with a nut and it is rusty as all get out in there. I soaked it in pb blaster tonight and will keep soaking it. I still need to get the tools needed to pull the wheel.

Also got the tank for the electrolysis pulled in the garage so I could cut the lid off and get some measurements for the rebar I am going to need. We also cleaned out the dried residue of whatever chemical used to be stored in the tank. I can easily fit the whole hood along with some other stuff all at once.

Here are some more pics to help keep things updated:

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#11 caseguy OFFLINE  

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Posted January 13, 2011 - 07:37 PM

Looks like things are going well in there George! I've got dibs on a tank just like that one from work when one goes empty :D ! BTW, I'm still jealous!

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Posted January 13, 2011 - 07:41 PM

Looks like things are going well in there George! I've got dibs on a tank just like that one from work when one goes empty :D ! BTW, I'm still jealous!


I'll sell it to ya, would put a good deposit towards a diesel :D LOL

#13 Bolens 1000 ONLINE  

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Posted January 13, 2011 - 07:53 PM

Looks like your making good progress George

#14 NUTNDUN OFFLINE  

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Posted January 13, 2011 - 07:57 PM

Thanks guys.

Do have one question though. What would be wrong with the idea of using the same type of rubber mounts that are supposed to go under the frame and putting them on top of the frame between the frame and the motor? Seems to me having them under the frame is what allows the motor to move enough on the frame rails to allow the rails to get ground away. It wouldn't have to be the same bushings, maybe harder rubber material?

#15 NUTNDUN OFFLINE  

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Posted January 14, 2011 - 08:38 AM

The other question I have is about the grip/handle on the forward/reverse control lever. Is it possible to remove the old one without destroying it? I have to remove it so I can at least get the new bushings installed for the levers. The grip on the lift lever is already missing.




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