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Bolens 855?


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#16 Dukedkt442 OFFLINE  

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Posted September 30, 2017 - 05:51 PM

I don't know if it is common to all Bolens or just this one, but the mower deck doesn't raise much at all, even with the lever. When I get home I'll have to reinstall the deck and check for adjustments.

#17 logmillingman OFFLINE  

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Posted September 30, 2017 - 07:09 PM

:welcometogttalk:     Great tractor to get started with it is a lot like my 650 Bolens I noticed that there is no amp meter in the dash just a metal plug which would indicate it was not a electric start tractor. Not sure about all the options of the G9. Sometimes people swap sheet metal from tractor to tractor so things are not original and you have to do the research to figure things out. But it looks like you are getting things figured out.

 

Good luck! Lots of help here.


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#18 glgrumpy OFFLINE  

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Posted October 01, 2017 - 10:47 AM

I suggest going here and loading the manuals for tractor. Might have to get the Tube Frame manual that does many models to get info. There is also parts manuals, but again may need to be for many models if I recall. On belts falling off, there is supposed to be guards or keepers on the arm that prevent that. many take off or bend away as hard to chane belts, have to loosen up pulleys and mounts to move those out of way. There is adjustments for the clutch pedal, that also adjusts the brakes at same time, think you need to check on that. In manuals again.  Some pto's had a snubber that dropped into the pulley when let up from engagement to help stop implement, not sure if that applies to yours, again adjustments in manual. Much of the fasteners may be corroded and stuck good, and need PB Blaster or other penetrant to soak a few days to get to realease, Even with that, care most be taken to not just snap off the bolts, some are special. Oiling everything up first might be a good idea. You'll need to go underneath with PB or other sprays and hit anything that moves. Work the controls and see if improve. I'm not aware of the manual belt speed change, most have a lever back by fenders into trans with that function. Maybe some models didn't have?


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#19 Dukedkt442 OFFLINE  

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Posted October 02, 2017 - 06:42 PM

Thanks.  The issue with the drive belt is that the tensioner isn't aligned with either the engine or shaft pulleys (which do line up), so the washers were needed to put it in line; I'll figure out the exact cause when I pull it apart in the Spring.

 

As soon as I got it home (and after using the old Jake with a moldboard to tear up a 7' x 17' spot in my yard), I fashioned a seat from a 2x12, drilled out the broken retaining pin in the steering wheel (and replaced with a thru-bolt), and cleaned/gapped the plug), I hooked up the plow and used the tractor to push up and grade all the loose dirt.  Despite its age and hard history, it did the job just fine, barely bogging down the 8 hp Briggs in 1-Lo, but occasionally spinning a tire... a higher model with the locking rear differential would have been greatly appreciated.  Before reinstalling the steering wheel (whose plastic isn't cracked!), I did hit the inside of the wheel hub and top of the column with Ospho. 

 

There is no bushing to keep the column from flopping around in the console, so I'll probably pick up a brass bushing in the spring.  The steering is tight, so I need to find, clean, and grease all of the zercs; I picked up oils for the engine and transmission today, will do that before I use the tractor again.

 

The console is also currently held on with a single bolt (and is probably cracked somewhere), so I've got to secure that too.  The hood is pretty banged up, and unfortunately, so is the plastic shield atop the console.

 

 

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#20 Dukedkt442 OFFLINE  

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Posted October 03, 2017 - 08:30 PM

So this thread will probably just morph into my project thread... having some extra time at the end of the day, I decided to change some fluids, make some adjustments, and take the tractor around the block.  Changing the engine oil, the magnetic drain plug came out covered in metal... no clumps or chunks, just a lot of filings.  The engine is old, the oil was tar, but the crank case was full, which tells me the engine doesn't burn much (unless recently topped off).  Sniff-test supports that idea.  With the new oil, however, the engine does run smoother and doesn't hunt as much.  Come spring, I may tear it down after the tractor is put together, as I've got a spare Briggs 8 hp that has been rebuilt, unless I find a good Kohler or Wisconsin core.  I changed the transmission oil, which was a good thing, as I couldn't see any fluid in the fill hole.  It, too, came out black (but not much of it!).  I can actually find 2nd and 3rd now!  Tractor scoots right along in third.

 

I put in a second bolt on the right side of the console to the frame.... but I must ask a novice question: is the console held on by more than 2 bolts?  Even with 2, it does rock slightly on the frame as it pivots on its bolts, and seems like it should have more.  If 2 is all it has, I'll probably weld on some tabs someplace and add 2 more.

 

I attempted to adjust the brake... unfortunately, I've ran out of adjustment while the brake pad (or what's left of it) still doesn't touch the drum, so I'll have to buy a new band.

 

I had to run the tractor around the block in Hi... the Lo engine drive pulley seems to have decided it didn't want to work any more.  See the attached photo.  In Hi, I noticed the newish belt I'd installed yesterday was loose, so I put on the old belt, which was just ever-so-much shorter that it didn't slip.  I have no idea if they're even the proper belts, but this one seems the right length, just worn.  I do need to get a PTO belt, as the one that was on the tractor seems too short: even with the tensioner fully disengaged, the belt still had enough tension to turn the mower blades.

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Edited by Dukedkt442, October 03, 2017 - 08:31 PM.

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#21 Newpaws493 OFFLINE  

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Posted October 04, 2017 - 09:25 PM

:welcometogttalk:   I picked this line;..' I don't know if it is common to all Bolens or just this one'  As a starting point

to weigh in on this. Its a slippery slope you're walkin IMO. I'm a little cautious as to 'congrats and all', because this may be the last chance you get to say just this one Bolens, when it comes to herd control issues. Also the mention of the manual hi /low belt changing thing and "lack of locking rear differential"...  WARNING: These are small indications that you're heading towards your second tube frame already. Oh, And you scored a few attachments with it :( . Word of advice, avoid seemingly random, innocent conversations about this brand with humans outside the forum, (family, friends and strangers alike.)  before they start showing up in your driveway Free or otherwise.

Good Luck :thumbs:


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#22 Dukedkt442 OFFLINE  

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Posted October 07, 2017 - 09:14 AM

:welcometogttalk:     Great tractor to get started with it is a lot like my 650 Bolens I noticed that there is no amp meter in the dash just a metal plug which would indicate it was not a electric start tractor. Not sure about all the options of the G9. Sometimes people swap sheet metal from tractor to tractor so things are not original and you have to do the research to figure things out. But it looks like you are getting things figured out.

 

Good luck! Lots of help here.

 

You're right a lot could have been done in the 40 years this tractor has lived... there is no ammeter, however there is a starter solenoid, a starter key switch, and the bundle of starter and battery wires under the hood.  I'm inclined to believe the tractor was original electric start and either it didn't come with an ammeter or someone replaced a broken meter with a block-off, rather than retro-fit all the other electric-starting apparati.  The guy I bought it from said it was electric start when he got it but he replaced the engine with a spare he had lying around.  Who knows at this point, it doesn't really matter anyway.  The guts are there, so it'll eventually get an electric start engine again.  :thumbs:


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#23 Dukedkt442 OFFLINE  

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Posted October 07, 2017 - 09:20 AM

:welcometogttalk:   I picked this line;..' I don't know if it is common to all Bolens or just this one'  As a starting point

to weigh in on this. Its a slippery slope you're walkin IMO. I'm a little cautious as to 'congrats and all', because this may be the last chance you get to say just this one Bolens, when it comes to herd control issues. Also the mention of the manual hi /low belt changing thing and "lack of locking rear differential"...  WARNING: These are small indications that you're heading towards your second tube frame already. Oh, And you scored a few attachments with it :( . Word of advice, avoid seemingly random, innocent conversations about this brand with humans outside the forum, (family, friends and strangers alike.)  before they start showing up in your driveway Free or otherwise.

Good Luck :thumbs:

 

Don't worry, my collection is already growing... aside from the 26 hp Husqvarna 54" deck I mow with, I also have a 1960 Cub, a 1965 Jake, a 1986 Snapper that I restored over the winter, but I do foresee another tube frame either replacing this one or complementing it (so that I can have the locking diff and 6 speed transmission  :D ).  Here's a pic of  2 still-not-tired pieces of iron in my driveway.  I know I said I wouldn't get into the Bolens until Spring, but the red hood and red, rotted fenders are giving me agita, so I'll probably at least degrease the tractor and repair/paint those white.  Unfortunately I'd have to revisit the hood again after I replace the engine so that I could patch the areas cut away on both sides; I can't do that with the current engine, as the hood doesn't clear the engine.  I noticed that the plastic gauge console is cracked, so it seems a plastic welder is in my future (unless someone has a console they'd like to sell). :wave:

 

Speaking of engines... does anyone have a close-up picture of how their engine mounts to the frame?  I noticed mine is mounted to 2 transverse pieces of square-stock that aren't original (the square tubes extend 4" out from the starboard side), and I'm thinking the engine sitting 3/4"-1" higher than it should is the reason the hood doesn't clear the engine, and would also make replacing belts problematic.

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Edited by Dukedkt442, October 07, 2017 - 09:27 AM.

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#24 Newpaws493 OFFLINE  

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Posted October 07, 2017 - 04:40 PM

 you mentioned a spare, rebuilt Briggs, have you tried to match against the #s Bolens1000 gave?

OUCH! - to the broken pulley...


Edited by Newpaws493, October 07, 2017 - 04:41 PM.

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#25 Dukedkt442 OFFLINE  

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Posted October 07, 2017 - 08:59 PM

 you mentioned a spare, rebuilt Briggs, have you tried to match against the #s Bolens1000 gave?

OUCH! - to the broken pulley...

 Luckily I have spare pulley.

 

My spare Briggs came with my Jacobsen, I was told "a spare rebuilt kohler."  I put it on the shelf without even really looking at it, but I dusted it off the other day to put some marvel down the cylinderand said "that ain't no kohler."  I wasn't sure if it was a Briggs or Wisonsin until I got this tractor, and noticed the engine on it is the same as what I have (which doesn't have a single ID plate, tag, carb or air cleaner, and is painted red), so it doesn't have any numbers to run.  I'll be honest I don't remember that post... I noticed sometimes posts don't show on my phone, so I'll go back through and look.  :thumbs:



#26 Dukedkt442 OFFLINE  

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Posted October 27, 2017 - 06:41 PM

So, it ends up I couldn't wait until spring, and decided to get this restoration completed before the snow flies... or at least before most of the snow flies.  The way I figure it, if I could take my 442 from a rotted mess with a blown engine and frozen brakes to a completely trustworthy highway cruiser in 5 weeks, I *should* be able to do better with the tractor.

 

I got fenders with the tractor.  Looks like they will enjoy some time at the hot end of my MIG; I've noticed other restoration threads with the same cut-out on the starboard side of the fender where it meets the frame, part of it looking factory and part not... is there a reason that multiple people have made this mod?  Passage for implement control rod, perhaps?  The grill also needs to be glued back together in the typical hinge area (the limiting rod/cable is long since gone).

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Edited by Dukedkt442, October 27, 2017 - 06:42 PM.


#27 Dukedkt442 OFFLINE  

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Posted October 27, 2017 - 06:49 PM

I removed the brake arm because there was nothing left of the brake pad (that contacts the drive shaft drum and prevents gear grinding from a start) and relined it with some old Snapper clutch material, in 3 layers.  There should be plenty of adjustment on the rod to allow for the ~2mm increase in thickness due to the 3rd layer (2 layers perfectly equaled stock pad thickness).  Rather than riveting, I tried a 3500 lb 2-part epoxy I picked up at Advance.  It won't be subjected to especially high heat or stress, so it should work; time will tell.  I also painted the arm, rod and other components; I opted with a glossy grey, simply because I prefer that certain mechanical parts stand out from paint contrast.  Makes it easier for me to quickly check things, too.

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Edited by Dukedkt442, October 27, 2017 - 06:51 PM.

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#28 Dukedkt442 OFFLINE  

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Posted October 27, 2017 - 07:10 PM

Upon the teardown, I noticed a couple of issues.  The steering wheel was held on with a though-bolt (which I'd replaced) and after removing the wheel again, remembered why: there is nothing left of the splines inside the steering wheel, nor is there anything left of the splines on the end of the steering shaft.  It actually looks like the steering wheel was cut off because a previous owner couldn't remove the wheel, and then drilled out the column from the removed wheel.  I'll replace the bushing at the top of the console for the steering shaft with a bronze bushing to remove the slop, and use the through-bolt to hold the wheel.  While I believe in not half-assing repairs and making it look and function as perfect as possible, I'm also not really interested in a perfect restoration, especially on a base model lawn tractor.  The plastic console is pretty cracked up, but I'll epoxy that back together.  I'll rebuild the Briggs this winter, unless I pick up an electric start Kohler K181 or 301 for it.

 

I also discovered that one of the bolt hole ears had broken off the PTO, with the body of its bolt broken off in the front part of the frame.  So, in addition to the broken low-range drive belt shieve, it seems I've got some more cast iron repairs ahead of me.  I'll start with the MIG and if that doesn't work, switch to TIG. I like the TIG as I can heat the heck out of the metal without adding metal for proper penetration, but I don't currently own a TIG; I'd have to buy one.  I doubt it was factory yellow; it won't remain yellow.  It seems to spin freely, but the aft bearing is louder than I like, so I'll be replacing that.  I think there's enough bolt shaft on the broken bolt so that I can remove it with vice grips.

 

The left rear axle seal is also leaking like a sieve (but not until AFTER I'd replace the fluid... there really wasn't much fluid in the transmission to leak when I picked up the tractor) so that will get replace.   I really don't want to get to far into the transmission, but will replace what needs replacing.

 

The replaced B&S engine was sitting on some home-made 1" spacer bars, and the belts (which may be stock length; I'll know for sure when I order correct belts from a sponsor) were always tight.  The mower blades spun when trying to start the tractor, and the clutch wouldn't disengage.  So question for the experts: what height should the engine be sitting off the tubes, if any?  I also noticed what HAS to be a happy-homeowner installation of a 1/4" shim between the clutch arm and the clutch idler pulley (see attached picture)... WTH is going on there?  Without it, the idler/clutch doesn't line up with the engine and driveshaft pulley, which both align with each other.  Does anyone have any idea where the misalignment comes from?

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#29 Newpaws493 OFFLINE  

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Posted October 27, 2017 - 08:41 PM

Making progress :thumbs:

I'm thinkin that cut-out on fender is for the cylinder of the add-on hydraulic lift kit. keep your eyes open for one, it might come up quicker than your next tubeframe.

 

hydr 9a.JPG

 

And Don't forget to see the manuals section.



#30 Dukedkt442 OFFLINE  

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Posted October 27, 2017 - 09:15 PM

Making progress :thumbs:

I'm thinkin that cut-out on fender is for the cylinder of the add-on hydraulic lift kit. keep your eyes open for one, it might come up quicker than your next tubeframe.

 

attachicon.gifhydr 9a.JPG

 

And Don't forget to see the manuals section.

Thanks the kind words and hypothesis.  I'll stick with manual lever... I'm not really a fan of hydraulics: they always weep, and I hate seeing the hoses.  I find it easier and much quicker just to use the manual lever (it's not like these are heavy duty large farm tractors moving hundreds of pounds of implements :rolling: ).

 

The tractor came with a 1" thick folder full of manuals and documents; the manuals section here doesn't seem to have one for a G9, but I do.  :D  I've got a shopping list saved on Bolens 1000's parts site based off those parts numbers, just waiting to see what else I might need before I order.  One thing the manuals don't show is whether or not parts were replaced with parts that, while appearing stock, may be from a different model (and therefore different size) or things like crankshaft-above-frame dimensions, belt shieve-from-fixed-point dimensions, etc.  The manual shows a belt guard beneath the drive shaft pulley (which this tractor is missing), but not an upper one around the engine divebelt shieve; I'll probably fashion my own.


Edited by Dukedkt442, October 29, 2017 - 04:04 PM.





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