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50" Deck Front Caster Wheel Shafts and Bushings

807 Views 5 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  Gloftness
On my 50" deck's, the caster bushings and shafts are pretty sloppy, so I decided to renew these and it ended up being pretty straightforward to do.

The caster shafts are just 3/4" bar stock. I ground the weld off on the top and the shaft came right out of the wheel yoke. It was worn down quite a bit and I just wanted to replace the shaft.

Without a fixture, I just tapped in a long 3/4" bar and using that longer shaft, it was easier to tell whether it was straight when I started welding the new shaft in place. Once welded, I just cut the shaft off to the correct length.

For the bushings, I found that bearings from fit perfectly. I drove out the old bushings, and then used a 1 1/16" adjustable reamer to just clean up the bore in the front carrier so that the new bushings wouldn't hang up. The bottom had ridden on the caster and galled it up a bit so I was really only taking off any high spots.

I ordered 4 x FF1010 Oil Impregnated Bronze Flanged bushings 3/4" ID and 1.0625 OD x 1.1875 OAL. They drove in with a soft mallet and were a really nice fit with a new cold rolled 3/4" bar. The bushings were about $5.50 each to my door.

I'm really happy with the way this worked out.


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Until I figure out a better bearing arrangement for these wheels, this is what I did.

The first pic shows how my "axles" for the caster wheels were just shot. There are two cast iron bushings that are a light press into the wheel. Then a shaft slides through which should be non-rotating and clamped to the caster yoke by the 1/2" bolt.

I chucked up the small flanged cast iron bushings in my lathe and bored the ID up to 1". Then I took a piece of cold rolled 1" bar and center drilled it to 1/2" and cut the length to fit the yoke. I cleaned out all the "lapping compound" grease that was inside the wheel hub, bolted it together and filled up the wheel cavity with grease.

It's not the greatest bearing arrangement as grease needs to find it's way between the "axle shaft" and the cast iron bushing to keep from wearing. If that hub doesn't get continuous grease gun attention, the axles will look like the first pic. I bought my decks used, so all wear happened by PO's


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