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First Generation OEM Power Steering - 917H Install


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#1 Talntedmrgreen OFFLINE  

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Posted February 08, 2015 - 09:53 PM

I had an opportunity to use the garage with above freezing temps for a change, so took about an hour to do a power steering install, and thought it would be nice to share. Power steering is a very cool and useful feature. I was excited to give this a try on my 917H, as it is a scarce, era-correct PS setup for that machine.

This is the early variety of Simplicity OEM power steering. It's more of a power-assist. It is hydraulic powered form the Sunstrand pump, but is unlike the late variety which is far more prevalent and probably what folks are used to seeing on Sovereign's and Sunstar's. There is no orbital valve, and not the familiar fixed-mount hydraulic cylinder to push and pull on the spindle arm. Instead, there is a hydro unit with integrated cylinder that takes 'in and out' fluid direction from a self contained valve, via the standard steering assembly.

This steering setup, in my experience searching for and cannibalizing them from donor tractors is that, they are very few and far between, go mostly unnoticed, even by Simplicity collectors, and have linkage assemblies that get sloppy and worn, unlike the late variety which stays nice and 'tight'. The are also MUCH easier to install.

Here she is in manual steering form. 

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Here is the first generation power steering assembly.

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To install, the LH running board is popped off for slight modification. The drag link is unbolted from the steering assembly and the front spindle mount. In it's place a small mounting bracket, link and 'carrier' are bolted up, and left loose. 
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The running board needs one hole drilled to mount the rear bracket. It is parallel to the tractor frame, or inside edge of the runningboard. The upper hole exists already, and was used on Shuttle tractors for the parking brake.
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Runningboard remounted. Dropping the runningboard on your toe will quickly remind a fella just how heavy duty these tractors were build. They have some heft to them...it's no wonder they are never bent up.
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Rear of the power unit mounted into the bracket, and drag link bolted to spindle arm.
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Attaching the tie rod from the steering carrier to the power unit. This is where the push and pull to and from the hydraulic unit occurs, as the standard steering assembly moved fore and aft when the wheel is turned.
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Pop the output line from the hydro pump loose, and remove the double elbow section that heads into the hydrolift input. The power steering lines will go here, allowing the steering to take priority over the hydrolift.
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Intall complete. The only two components replaced are the drag link and small section of hydro line.
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Here's a look at the late style of power steering, on my 7790. This system is more highly regarded, and due to far fewer moving pieces and pivot points, probably a much longer lasting setup. Sure take a LOT more work and special components though. Here is my writeup on that install:

http://gardentractor....y-7790-diesel/

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I wanted to do a quick video of it's operation, and get adjustment dialed in, but admittedly, only made it 8-10' or so. My lines were old and questionable (you can see the rubber coating has all fallen off). They indeed leak...badly. So tomorrow I'll run to NAPA to remedy that and followup.

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#2 Texas Deere and Horse OFFLINE  

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Posted February 08, 2015 - 09:58 PM

Very cool option and I can't wait to see the video of you driving it around. How long and how many different tractors did it take to put together the whole kit?


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#3 Talntedmrgreen OFFLINE  

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Posted February 08, 2015 - 10:02 PM

This was removed from a donor.  Removal of this setup is super quick.  I count 5 bolts and two hydro fittings to have it removed.  I had this before, stolen from a dead Simplicity 7117, but when it was known I had it, the offers were too enticing to keep it.  Since then I have collected everything needed for the late type like what I have on my 7790, and that took 1 donor sunstar and some excellent reproduction engineering, as factory parts are now NLA.  I'll try to post those as well when I snap some pictures.


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#4 KennyP ONLINE  

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Posted February 09, 2015 - 06:03 AM

Nice! That gets me wondering about the power steering set up from a boat that I have laying about!


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#5 Alc ONLINE  

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Posted February 09, 2015 - 06:29 AM

Pretty neat !  Does the small rod in this picture connect the original steering to the p/s cylinder ?   

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#6 JDBrian OFFLINE  

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Posted February 09, 2015 - 07:08 AM

Very nice install and thanks for posting the info with pictures. I've seen that same setup used on older JD 300 series tractors. It was available as an aftermarket accessory. It looks a lot like the power assist setup that was on my first car. A 1978 Ford Granada :(  I wonder if the main parts originated as an automotive setup? If so, the valve/cylinder unit may be available from salvage yards or as new parts even. We would just need to know what car models used the right cylinder. A good auto parts man might be able to recognize the power assist unit. If you could source that unit for a reasonable cost the rest could be fabricated. 


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#7 Talntedmrgreen OFFLINE  

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Posted February 09, 2015 - 07:21 AM

 

Pretty neat !  Does the small rod in this picture connect the original steering to the p/s cylinder ?   

 

 

Yup...that small tie rod ties the existing steering components to the valve/cylinder.  Works real slick, but the tie rod, drag link and bushed pivots in the assembly all introduce points for wear and slop.  I have had previous units with so much slop they needed some serious attention/rebuild.

 

20150208_080821.jpg

 

 

 

Very nice install and thanks for posting the info with pictures. I've seen that same setup used on older JD 300 series tractors. It was available as an aftermarket accessory. It looks a lot like the power assist setup that was on my first car. A 1978 Ford Granada :(  I wonder if the main parts originated as an automotive setup? If so, the valve/cylinder unit may be available from salvage yards or as new parts even. We would just need to know what car models used the right cylinder. A good auto parts man might be able to recognize the power assist unit. If you could source that unit for a reasonable cost the rest could be fabricated. 

 

 

I would have to imagine there are numerous options for adapting something auto to one of these GT's, using the hydrostatic pump for power.  I think the key would be to get something the correct size, so it doesn't soak up too much of the pumps output, and then figuring out how to tie the controls in.  The later style with an orbital valve would be easier to retrofit, I'm guessing.  Being that this assembly was complete from a Simplicity, the install was far easier than re-engineering something.  I just don't see these very often, despite being on a constant hunt, and thought it would be interesting reading, and in some cases, fodder for a homebrew project!  :thumbs:


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#8 JDBrian OFFLINE  

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Posted February 09, 2015 - 07:38 AM

I really like those AC / Simplicity tractors. I don't see many of them for sale here but I would like to have one if I could find one in decent shape. 


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#9 Talntedmrgreen OFFLINE  

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Posted February 09, 2015 - 09:09 PM


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#10 Talntedmrgreen OFFLINE  

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Posted February 09, 2015 - 10:20 PM

I was a bit rushed but wanted to get a quick clip of its operation. The steering some up after I let the tractor run for a bit. It was about 10* and I hadnt driven the tractor yet when the vid was shot. Still 1 finger steering though. I have a slight adjustment to make to the drag link and then off to another winter project. Cant wait for a joyride!
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#11 KennyP ONLINE  

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Posted February 10, 2015 - 05:46 AM

Pretty neat power steering!






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