Well it is bound to happen to all of us sooner or later. Mowing the yard, minding my own business and then noticed I am striping the yard and not in a nice way. One of the blades was cutting the grass uneven. The deck on "Next" my Ford 195 LGT broke the center spindle out. Rust, neglect, and old age are to blame. As these tractors are hard to find and usable decks even harder; There was no choice except to fix it.
Well it could be worse. Last year I fixed one of the outer spindles and noticed this one would need repair sooner or later. Used a piece of card board to make a template. Time to find some metal. Had an old wood stove laying around. A few minutes with a cutoff wheel in the grinder and I had my part. Used a torch to cut center hole.
Tip: When making a big hole in a piece metal, use an almost worn out grinding wheel to true up the edge.
Had my part, so I thought.
Well, soon realized that I had chosen my metal poorly. The side of the stove seemed thinner than the deck. Checked it with the dial calipers and it was .060". Deck measured .110". The patch was way to thin. Didn't want this to fail again. Time to regroup. Fire box of the stove was .125"; Perfect. Nice and strong. Sprayed everything with rust restorer, and a hour later was ready to weld.
Welded in a crisscross about an inch at a time to minimize warping. All welded up. May need a new wire brush.
The belt cover even fits.
Well let's see how I did. Yep, good penetration.
More welding. The bottom was a harder to weld because of the rust and thin metal. Used a modified stitch weld, basically pull the trigger on the mig. As soon as you start to weld; stop. This minimizes burn through. Not as pretty as the top, but it doesn't need to be.
Notice no mounting holes yet? Here is the easy way to ensure the holes are correct. Use the holes that were left in the deck to drill and mount the spindle. Use the spindle to put the other holes exactly where needed.
Save the pieces of metal that were broken out. These will be used as spacers to ensure the spindle rides true with the other blades. These "washers" once trimmed up are the exact thickness of the deck and because they where under the bolts, there was no rust thinning.
So how did we do? The hole for the spindle is not 100% in the right spot, but only you and I know this. Once the pulleys are on, no one will know the difference.
A little paint, and we are ready for another 35+ years. The deck is rough, but thick. I am only trying to preserve it. One of these days it will get a full restore.
I know this was long, but I hope you found it interesting and maybe learned a little along the way.
Edited by Bmerf, August 16, 2015 - 05:17 AM.