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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
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The first 'garden tractor' i ever bought was an engineless high-wheel Case (i believe its a 446 but will verify and edit that in) that i spotted online. They're extremely rare down here so until i saw this one i didnt realize any of them existed, but i was drawn in by its all-hydraulic drive system and the fact that this one had a small 3 pt hitch (missing all arms). Upon doing a little reading I found out it was pretty optimal for me to have a high-wheel (for looks, mostly) and a 3pt (for function) since lots of Case models didn't come with either!

Anyway, the original thought I had for the use of this thing was to build a small boom/pallet fork thing onto the 3pt to move engines and job boxes and other giant containers full of heavy parts around outside my small shop where i mostly work on cars. I ended up leaving this one sitting (because i couldnt decide how to power it) and building my 'Crane Mower' first which accomplished some of those goals. I even bought a SCUT with FEL after that, but never lost my attraction to the engine-less Case!

At some point I got tired of myself going back and forth on what would be the "best" (at being weird, goofy, nearly free) option to repower it with and decided to order a $99 on-sale Predator 212 from Harbor Freight. This after just barely deciding not to use a Ninja250 motorcycle engine i have which WILL go on a garden tractor at some point, just you wait! Well, the 212 got lost in shipping according to tracking. Then they sent me an email saying they never actually shipped it, and refunded my order. I took it as some kind of sign to hold out for a new more ambitious idea to pop into my head, so I didn't reorder another one. Nevertheless, about a month later, a dinged up Predator 212 box showed up, and at this point it was (deservedly..) free! I then took THAT as a sign to continue the plan.

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I adapted the stock pump/bracket combo to the Predator 212s mounting pattern with a piece of aluminum as an adapter plate. I adapted the 212s engine mounting pattern to the Case frame with a kitchen cutting board as an adapter plate. I had to order the engine side of the lovejoy drive coupling because the 212 has a 3/4" crank while the stock engine for this would have been 1-1/8". I had to extend the hydraulic hoses to the pump because i decided to rotate the entire assembly 180 and have the pump mounted in the front.
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This has been 'complete' and usable for a few months now. The reason I never cared to replicate the stock setup is because I never planned to power anything off a belt drive, or power anything hydraulically other than the 3pt hitch and drive motor, or possibly a custom loader build down the line. I also wanted to be able to run the tractor fairly quietly (a modified muffler is on the list). I knew that ~6hp would be more than adequate to push the tractor to full speed and lift more than the 3pt could handle, and this turned out to be correct. However, I've since decided to use it for light ground engagement as well and have updated my scheme to include increasing my low-speed pulling power through use of.. a 2 stage log splitter hydraulic pump? That's been sitting on my toolbox for a month or two now, awaiting its turn. Since my original lifting duties goal was duplicated by other machines, this little tractor became mostly a testbed for experimentation with hydraulics. I also plan to overspeed my chinesium pump splitter (the 212) AND my chinesium splitter pump, and see how that goes. I have a lot of theories that I'll elaborate on in subsequent posts. For now, here are a couple of pics I already have, and more/better will be forthcoming.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
First thing I actually did to the tractor after buying it and having it sit around for a year or more, was to work on a fork attachment for the 3pt. The 3pt did not come with any of the arms, just the rockshaft, cylinder, and the mounting base those sit on. Not wanting to actually spend any money on what i saw as a bad, maybe unworkable idea of building my own 3pt arms, I found a way to use a couple of things i had as proof of concept and if they survived further than that, great! Namely, track/panhard bars from a couple of different cars. One i believe was a track bar from an ~05 Mustang, and one was for an 80s-90s Chrysler fwd K-car (which i own several of, mostly turbocharged). The reason i picked these is because almost immediately after buying the tractor, I had bought a 3-pt trailer hitch frame for it to build pallet forks onto, and it came with CAT1 pins. The Case is CAT0 originally, but I figured if i was going to be building my own arms id better build them for CAT1 since that type of hardware is so much more widely available. The two trackbars had bushed ends that correlated to CAT0 (chrysler) and CAT1 (ford) pin sizes, once the inner sleeve of the bushings was pressed out. Once i cut those bars in half, i had two tractor ends and two implement ends. Some assembly required!
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To remove the inner bushing sleeves, I blew a propane torch flame through the inner sleeve to heat it up and 'release' the bond of rubber to steel, then pushed them out in my shop press. Im aware that these are a poor substitute for a spherical joint like what's supposed to be here, but i suspected it might be good enough and last a little while before I bought something nicer. One of the reasons I wanted to build my own arms anyway was to pull the attachment as close to the tractor as possible to increase the lifting ability of the 3pt. The arms ended up much shorter than Cat1 arms, but turned out to be about the exact same as stock cat0 Case arms, so the lift was really just 'not decreased'.

Anyway, if you want to hook cat0 inner to cat1 outer AND bring it as close to the tractor as possible and not hit the tire, the arms had to be curved. I did that by bending them over some.. round objects in my press. Such as a piston. Well two pistons, one from an engine and one from a brake caliper. Couple of bushing driver handles for good measure. 馃槀
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Did some bends on the other ends too but took no pictures. Anyway, since the Chrysler arm was an open U-channel (the reason I have extra k-car track bars around is i weld them together like this <> into a single boxed section to reinforce them because they bend easily) i was able to simply hammer it down over the boxed Ford bar to 'nest' them together before welding.
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On the left you can see me trying to get some rough lengths figured out before making the bends and welding. I had to leave that much of a gap between tire and implement because the short arms brought the implement closer to the tires as it rose up. You can also see my intent to use swaybar endlinks as lift links. On the right you can see one arm bent and welded to basically its final form, and see how close I had the implement to the tire when raised. The flex of the bushings allowed enough movement that I could slip the arms on and off the implement pins.

Ok so what about that weird metal thing under the off-the-shelf receiver hitch frame? Well, I was helping an uncle clean out his shop and came across a U-shaped piece made of C-channel that he had built to mount a large stainless cooktop to an outdoor countertop but never finished. I had the thought that it looked the right size and roughly strong enough to be some crappy pallet forks, so i took it home rather than letting him scrap it. What about the black things? Those are front tow hooks off a Jeep Commander. I had two thoughts when it came to how to attach it to the receiver hitch frame. I still wanted to be able to use the hitch, so i could either A: make the forks removable from the frame, or B: allow them to pivot upright to the frame when not in use. I decided that while having the forks pivot upward would be nice, the forks were also heavy enough that whether they were permanently attached or came off, either way i was going to be wrestling with them and didn't want to deal with that. I figured that If I protected the exposed threads of the Cat1 pins, I could simply back the pins up under some hooks on the U-frame, pick it up and drive off with it and also drive out from under it when i was done with it without having to manually lift the thing myself. I had thought to have something hook from the back of the U-frame to the back of the tractor which would cause the frame to pivot upwards somewhere near the top of the 3pt travel, but i had visions of accidentally popping myself in the back of the head with over-traveling pallet forks and dying a terrible death unless I built some kind of stops for it, and I couldn't think of an easy way to make that linkage 'self attaching' like the hooks, so i just abandoned the self-stowing idea completely.

The reason there is a drawbar and hitch ball mounted backwards through the receiver is that I figured out if i took the drawbar that was probably going to be hanging out the back of the receiver anyway (which is not the one pictured) and put it in through the front, the U frame contacting the drawbar/hitch ball would stop the Uframe from drooping downwards enough to contact the 3pt arms, while also allowing me to drive out from under the hooks when i set the U frame down. Unfortunately I don't have a pic of that happening right now, but ill try to remember to take one.

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Pic on the left shows the full view of this u-frame thing hanging on the hooks (resting on stands because the drawbar thing is not in in this pic). The pic on the right i zoomed in and drew the motion path that lets you back in and pick this up, or put it down and drive out from under the hooks. The hooks are angled slightly away from each other to form a 'funnel' so that you don't have to be totally precise backing up to it. It self-centers as you push into it.

Continued in next post because im uploading too many pics for one post...
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
So i did actually finish this thing and test it, but so far only on my Kubota B6100 which has a totally normal Cat1 3pt of a similar ~500lb capacity to the Case cat0. I've used it to move engines on pallets successfully. I have a video of me backing up to the frame on the ground, picking it up, feeding it into a pallet with a 5.6L V8 on it, picking up the engine and driving with it, putting it down, and putting the U frame down and driving out from under that. I'll figure out how to upload that. It's basically 'poor mans quick attach 3 pt pallet forks' except instead of your typical 2000+ lb fork rating, id give this thing a solid 600+ lb capacity rating.馃槄 Im not saying it's great! But technically the only thing in this 'build' i paid money for was the red hitch frame which i got for $59 on Amazon. Everything else i got for free or already had. I have yet to bend it.

As consolation for not having any pics of it doing its actual main job on a 3pt (whoops) I do have these of using it on the front bucket of my Kubota. It's like clamp-on bucket forks but with no clamps (doesn't that sound great?!). A less stressful analogy would be, it works in the same way that a skid steer can pick up and move quick attach items without actually engaging the lock pins. You curl back to hold the item, and 'dump' out from under it to release it.

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
So i did finish those 3pt arms enough to use with a piece of chain rigged up instead of lift links, but then I happened to come across an actual Case 3pt setup semi-local and paid too much money for it and put the DIY arms/links on hold.
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Here's a pic showing how it was briefly being used, being too lazy to build actual lift links (meaning i couldnt use the down-pressure feature of the 3pt). There's a temporary little rod stuck in there as a top link in that pic to figure out the length and movements etc but i did have a real top link.
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There's how the arms I built looked next to the factory Cat0 arms i got later.
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So like I said, I came across a guy selling a bunch of Case odds and ends from his grandfather's estate. Most of it was of no use to me (factory engine stuff, mower decks, steering parts etc) but I did buy a 54" front blade which will probably never see another snowflake for the rest of its life down here, and a set of 3pt arms/links with this sleeve hitch A-frame thing. All the ball sockets and threads were seized up so the first order of business was heat, hammering, wire wheel, and anti-seize. I had a new top link anyway (decided not to build my own when i did the DIY lower arms) so i didn't rehab the seized up top link it came with yet, BUT im probably going to cut it in half and use those as the tractor ends of the DIY lower arms i built, since the top link has actual 5/8 ball joints there.

Right away I decided to modify the frame because I noticed that I could leave the sleeve hitch part functional, but turn the A-frame around the other way and mount a 2" receiver to it. The receiver is a Harbor Freight "ATV Hitch" which as far as ive found is the absolute cheapest 2" receiver that is pre-drilled for the pin and has a decent hoop for safety chains or whatever kind of hook you want to put to it. It's currently $12.
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I figured if i welded this thing on backwards i would have a 2" receiver AND a clevis hole to pull regular riding mower stuff. Not all my 2" drawbars fit into it because some of them hit the 'tongue' of metal (where the bolt is shown in the above pic) before the pin hole lines up, but some do. It totally works. So now the a-frame is sleeve hitch on one side, or 2" drawbar & clevis hole on the other side.

The most use i've put on the tractor so far is pulling around a Guide Gear ATV Landscape Rake. The power-down ability of the Case 3pt is VERY useful for this type of implement. I put it on a pretty long 2" bar so that I can get more lift height to use it to move piles. I can lift it over a pile, set down behind it or push down on top of it, and pull the pile of sticks/branches/straw etc with it.
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
So I keep walking by this thing and forgetting to take better pics. I will come back and edit in better pics to this post, but for now..

I mentioned that I made two adapter plates to fit the Predator 212 to the stock frame and stock hydraulic pump bracket.
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When I was deciding how to mount the engine, I wanted it to be mounted on bushings. At some point a while back I had picked up a kitchen cutting board out of a junk pile and thought "this would be super easy to cut and drill.. someday i'll use this to prototype a plate or bracket before making the real thing". Well, that cutting board now has chunks cut out of it that i used for other things, but I had the thought that on this application of holding down a ~25lb engine that doesn't exert torque (the pump is bolted to the engine itself so no torque from the crankshaft makes it 'out' of the mounting plate), maybe a cutting board would be strong enough to do the real job. And maybe the slight flexibility would aid in damping the engine's vibrations? So i measured the engine mounting area on the frame and ordered a cutting board that fit that space for about $9 on Amazon. It is mounted through the 4 stock holes in the frame with bushings on top and bottom. I believe most of the bushings I used are either shock aborber mounting bushings or swaybar endlink bushings from cars. As a mechanic I replace lots of those pieces and usually at least some of the bushings are still intact and they have fairly large washers on them which i also 'collect'. The engine is mounted to the cutting board with some small/thin pieces of angle iron on the bottom which spread the load a bit and prevent the board from 'sagging' in the middle since it is a bit flexible.

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To adapt the factory pump mounting bracket to the smaller bolt pattern of the engine, i sandwiched an aluminum plate between them. The plate has 9 holes in it. 1 for the crank, 4 for the engine bolt pattern, and 4 for the pump bracket pattern. Since the pump is driven with a lovejoy coupling that allows for minor misalignments, I just left all the bolts/nuts snug and lightly tapped it around until it was 'good enough'. I had the spark plug out of the engine and was spinning the engine to check for binding or 'unevenness' to the spinning resistance, as well as looking at it visually. Seems to be working fine! I did have to buy the engine-side jaw coupling since stock shaft size was 1 1/8 and the 212 has a 3/4" driveshaft.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I had a new top link anyway (decided not to build my own when i did the DIY lower arms) so i didn't rehab the seized up top link it came with yet, BUT im probably going to cut it in half and use those as the tractor ends of the DIY lower arms i built, since the top link has actual 5/8 ball joints there.
Well, the time came and I finally did that thing. ^^ I unseized the old rusty Cat0 toplink, chopped it in half, and welded those ends onto the front of my home-made arms.
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I wanted to be able to use the pallet fork thing with the cat1 receiver hitch frame, which was originally the whole reason i wanted to buy this engine-less Case in the first place. I didn't know I'd get so much use and fun out of running a landscape rake behind it at that time, but the Cat1 hitch frame will take that just the same, so it'll be an upgrade all around.

Only thing id be giving up is, well, having real ball ends on the end of the arms instead of rubber bushings, but I haven't proven that's a downside for my use case yet.. time will tell. But I do have ball ends to weld onto them anyway once i prove the actual need or get bored. The other downside is im not able to use the factory Case lift links with my homemade arms because the stock arms are flat bar whereas mine are rectangular tubing and the lift link ends aren't long enough to make it through my thicker arms. No problem, i had some discarded automotive swaybar endlinks to use as lift arms from the start anyway, but what i lose there is the tilt adjustment on the right side. Will i miss it? Again, time will tell. I sure wasn't using it with the landscape rake other than to periodically put it back where i left it since it would 'drift' (no jam nut).

I'llbpost more pictures of the setup tomorrow, i thought i took more and apparently i didn't. But here's a bonus pic of the Case pulling an old Honda i own. I had to chain it really short like that because I needed to load up the 3pt for down pressure on the tires and lifting up on the car to help drag it out of the holes it had sank into from sitting there for a couple years. 馃槀
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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
If you like crappy pictures, have i got the picture for you!
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Swaybar endlinks are just tacked because i ran out of welding wire to finish them. The ends used to face 180 away from each other, but i noticed that if i rotated the bottoms inward it would be less likely to pop my tires if the 'sway chains' were to fail for some reason, and also give me an easier attachment point for those chains. The chains stop it about 1" from the tire on either side, all the way through the 3pt travel. I had to shorten the links anyway so rotating one end 180 added no extra work.

There is still a cat0 top link in this picture. It is shorter than the lower arms and hooked to the lowest hole on the tractor. This angles the hitch frame upwards a LOT as the 3pt lifts, but that's desirable with the 'landscape rake on a pole' for reasons i mentioned previously. I'll try it with some other implements soon and see if i should swap it out for a cat1 top link. I have 2 normal cat1 top links sitting around from my kubota tractors. One has a power top link now and the other one has a subframe backhoe on it and doesnt use the 3pt so the arms are off it. More to show tomorrow or Tuesday, hopefully..
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
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So here's down. I just got the implement level with the tractor on concrete and welded the lift links at a length that would let the lower arms touch the ground. I needed that so i could back up under the hooks and pick up the 'forks' with the tractor.
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And here's all the way up. Yeah the top link setup has the inplement jamming into the seat because of how i set it but the height the main arms lift to is the same regardless.

Thats a 54" case plow blade on the end of the forks. I'm splitting it into parts. The actual blade may never be used on this tractor, but the front brackets and 'mounting pad' for the blade are going to be repurposed into a different type of implement. Ive lost so much front weight with the predator swap and lack of a clutch assembly etc etc that this thing needs front weight like crazy. I cant max out the stock 3pt lift without lifting the front of the tractor off the ground.

So, the vague idea so far is to make a front implement which mounts on the plow brackets (retaining the angle adjustments) and serves as front weight, a push bumper for cars or whatever other broken vehicle im moving today, and a smaller dirt moving blade on the bottom, no wider than the front wheels. It will still use the old mid-lift cylinder for up/down, but it will be self-contained to the pin-on bracket assembly and use quick disconnects to the tractor. I have some of the pieces for this already and will fill in some detail once ive actually made a move in real life. All i did on that blade today was separate the blade from the brackets.
 

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Looks great, Nice job making it useful again! I'd like to get a case to play around with someday. I really like the hydraulic drive design.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
I really like the hydraulic drive design.
Other than the fact that the rear end is pretty strong in general, the thing i like about the hydraulic drive system is that it's in pieces instead of a self-contained all-in-one assembly like a hydrostatic pump/motor transmission would be. The fact that the pump, valve, and motor are all separate pieces opens up possibilities for modifying and changing and adding things in a way that would be a lot harder if it were a more common hydrostatic arrangement. Downside of course is it's hard to control smoothly compared to a hydrostat since you're relying on a simple valve for travel control. Could use a flow control valve like your loader has if you wanted to have really fine control of travel speed without relying on throttling the engine down which would limit the power available. After you posted your recent video i thought about adding one when i build a front end loader for it and convert or add foot pedal control.

So i put those homemade forks to work today! Not on the Case because i still havent added enough front counterweight to be able to stress the 3pt or forks at all. I used it on the front of my Kubota B8200 to unload a pallet of concrete blocks.
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Now a pallet of 72 concrete blocks weighing 38 pounds each weighs roughly 2800lbs or 1.4 tons. You may note that the truck in the background is not a 1.4 ton truck, or even a 1 ton truck. But rest assured, i DID check before loading the pallet, and the rear bumpstops are in excellent condition. Or at least were. I didn't check again afterwards.
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So the B8200 has a loader on it with a 700 or 800lb stated lift capacity. That means I had to break the one pallet down into 3 pallets so the tractor could carry them to the ground and over where they will actually be used. Luckily a buddy lent me his 'concrete block lifting tool' which is like a tiny log lifting tongs with a T handle on top so that you can lift the block with a straight wrist and without having to squeeze. I moved all 2800 lbs of those blocks with no breaks and it wasn't even actually uncomfortable with the help of the tool. My back feels a little something, but not 'lifted 2800lbs of stuff by hand' kind of bad, and my shoulders, arms, hands etc feel fine. Great tool if you're moving concrete blocks, but try not to move 72 in a row if you don't have to.
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So here's a pallet with 24 blocks on it. 24x38=912 lbs. I assume the factory 48" bucket weighs about 150lbs. The pallet forks themselves probably weigh 60lbs. I dont know what that pallet weighs, probably 40-50lbs. So this was roughly an 1100-1200lb lift. The tractor would not lift it any higher than this. The loader rating of 700-800lbs is 'to full height', and clearly this is not full height.

So, I guess I can say i've put nearly 1000lbs on these little C-channel forks now. Yeah, it's loaded almost all to the rear (the strong part) and it's even side to side. These things have almost no strength to pick something up on only one side, they will twist when loaded that way. But for a piece of C-channel i picked up out of an uncle's junk collection and attached some Jeep tow hooks to, that goes on a 3pt OR on a bucket, and can technically pick up 1000 lbs? It's sure good enough for what it is!




Here's a recent pic of the Case pulling a 5x8 trailer around to hold materials/tools etc. I did extend the cat0 top link all the way out and move it to the top hole on the tractor. I can still feel the implement slightly touching the back of the seat on full lift but it hasn't bothered me. The rake, forks, and 2" drawbars for pulling trailers don't care about the 'angle gain' and the cat1 top links are on standby for whenever it matters. I want a power top link but haven't decided between electric or hydraulic. I do have one of each of cylinder that could work sitting here, but either one will need a custom bracket on the tractor side and a bunch of either plumbing or wiring. Haven't decided yet.
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I did order in an elbow and an sae #10 to 1/2npt adapter for the eventual log splitter pump install, so that's getting closer. Also a roll of 3/4id hose on my shop floor to plumb a return filter. There's actually been a filter+adapter mounted under the hood of the Case for months, but i never ran the plumbing to it (will soon). I did a little work on the plow bracket today, cleaning up the angle adjustment mechanism and eyeballing some cylinder mounting ideas. I have the front 'implement' pretty figured out but i need to buy the push bumper piece and cut and drill on a couple of pieces of metal to get it put together and show it to yall. Settled on 40" width, same width as the front tires. Even with the plow bracket set to its max angle (physically interferes and won't turn any further) the implement would only tuck 1" inside the track width, which i don't see as a problem for what i'd be doing with it. I THINK it will make sense once you can see it. :unsure:
 

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You could use a hydraulic pump/controller like my walkbehind mowers use, where the pump/controller is powered by belt from the engine, and a lever on it gives variable forward and reverse hydraulic fluid flow to a separate hydraulic motor.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I think you're referring to a hydrostatic pump? Come to think of it i did once consider buying a stand-on or walk behind (cant remember) mower that was missing the engine and deck, and the pictures in the listing showed the two pumps being separate from the motors with pipes between them.. That is an interesting idea for a parts donor!

I don't think using it to run a cylinder would be a good idea for a couple of reasons. One is probably that the pumps displacement is probably a bit much for most small cylinders which would make it super touchy and not able to make much pressure without requiring a large amount of power. The other reason is that without some separate valve to isolate the cylinder from the hydrostatic pump when you weren't trying to move it, the cylinder would probably 'sag' or drift because it would slowly push fluid past all the cylinder leakages in the pump. But hey, i'd love to find out im wrong there.

Another cheap idea that you reminded me of is using the 12v convertible top hydraulic pump from a convertible to run a top link. I even parted out a convertible a couple of years ago but didnt think to grab that thing. I may be removing the power soft top from an old Mercedes I have if i find a cheap enough hardtop for it, so maybe that pump will become available.. but i suspect those things have pretty low pressures and would have to run a fairly large cylinder bore and deal with it being slow to get much strength from it. I have an electro-hydraulic cylinder as a top link on my Kubota B6100 and it is rated at 1000lbs push, and i can 'stall' that cylinder pushing/pulling the wrong way when using it with my box blade while it has a lot of dirt in it etc. The case is a small tractor but considering the top link would serve as tilt for the fork attachment it probably needs to be pretty strong. Lots of silly ideas and things to consider..
 

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Well, it's variable, so it pumps the volume of as the control shaft is rotated, you don't have to use the full range if you don't want to/need to. But yeah, the cylinder would sink over time...
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
This is something i've never experimented with, but in theory even if a hydrostatic pump is really too large you could make a control linkage with a really high 'motion ratio' or whatever you want to call it so that moving your control lever several inches would only move the pump lever a fraction of an inch. That would give you fine control, but I suspect there are issues of pump efficiency being really low at low speeds/displacements. Obviously someone wouldn't build a system from scratch with mismatched components but it would probably be good enough if you were cobbling it together with low cost used components (everything i do, almost). Also, cylinder diameter doesn't cost much to increase, so making the cylinder itself larger volume to de-sensitize the pump's output wouldn't be much more expensive if you had to buy a cylinder anyway..

What I really need to learn on is whether there is a cheap DIY way to implement pilot operated check valves (holding valves? im not sure) with something like this. I am new to hydraulic valving. I feel like i understand the symptoms more than the treatments since i dont know the names of a lot of parts like different types of valves yet.
 

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Other than the fact that the rear end is pretty strong in general, the thing i like about the hydraulic drive system is that it's in pieces instead of a self-contained all-in-one assembly like a hydrostatic pump/motor transmission would be. The fact that the pump, valve, and motor are all separate pieces opens up possibilities for modifying and changing and adding things in a way that would be a lot harder if it were a more common hydrostatic arrangement. Downside of course is it's hard to control smoothly compared to a hydrostat since you're relying on a simple valve for travel control. Could use a flow control valve like your loader has if you wanted to have really fine control of travel speed without relying on throttling the engine down which would limit the power available. After you posted your recent video i thought about adding one when i build a front end loader for it and convert or add foot pedal control.

So i put those homemade forks to work today! Not on the Case because i still havent added enough front counterweight to be able to stress the 3pt or forks at all. I used it on the front of my Kubota B8200 to unload a pallet of concrete blocks. View attachment 2533931
Now a pallet of 72 concrete blocks weighing 38 pounds each weighs roughly 2800lbs or 1.4 tons. You may note that the truck in the background is not a 1.4 ton truck, or even a 1 ton truck. But rest assured, i DID check before loading the pallet, and the rear bumpstops are in excellent condition. Or at least were. I didn't check again afterwards.
View attachment 2533932
So the B8200 has a loader on it with a 700 or 800lb stated lift capacity. That means I had to break the one pallet down into 3 pallets so the tractor could carry them to the ground and over where they will actually be used. Luckily a buddy lent me his 'concrete block lifting tool' which is like a tiny log lifting tongs with a T handle on top so that you can lift the block with a straight wrist and without having to squeeze. I moved all 2800 lbs of those blocks with no breaks and it wasn't even actually uncomfortable with the help of the tool. My back feels a little something, but not 'lifted 2800lbs of stuff by hand' kind of bad, and my shoulders, arms, hands etc feel fine. Great tool if you're moving concrete blocks, but try not to move 72 in a row if you don't have to.
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So here's a pallet with 24 blocks on it. 24x38=912 lbs. I assume the factory 48" bucket weighs about 150lbs. The pallet forks themselves probably weigh 60lbs. I dont know what that pallet weighs, probably 40-50lbs. So this was roughly an 1100-1200lb lift. The tractor would not lift it any higher than this. The loader rating of 700-800lbs is 'to full height', and clearly this is not full height.

So, I guess I can say i've put nearly 1000lbs on these little C-channel forks now. Yeah, it's loaded almost all to the rear (the strong part) and it's even side to side. These things have almost no strength to pick something up on only one side, they will twist when loaded that way. But for a piece of C-channel i picked up out of an uncle's junk collection and attached some Jeep tow hooks to, that goes on a 3pt OR on a bucket, and can technically pick up 1000 lbs? It's sure good enough for what it is!




Here's a recent pic of the Case pulling a 5x8 trailer around to hold materials/tools etc. I did extend the cat0 top link all the way out and move it to the top hole on the tractor. I can still feel the implement slightly touching the back of the seat on full lift but it hasn't bothered me. The rake, forks, and 2" drawbars for pulling trailers don't care about the 'angle gain' and the cat1 top links are on standby for whenever it matters. I want a power top link but haven't decided between electric or hydraulic. I do have one of each of cylinder that could work sitting here, but either one will need a custom bracket on the tractor side and a bunch of either plumbing or wiring. Haven't decided yet. View attachment 2533929
I did order in an elbow and an sae #10 to 1/2npt adapter for the eventual log splitter pump install, so that's getting closer. Also a roll of 3/4id hose on my shop floor to plumb a return filter. There's actually been a filter+adapter mounted under the hood of the Case for months, but i never ran the plumbing to it (will soon). I did a little work on the plow bracket today, cleaning up the angle adjustment mechanism and eyeballing some cylinder mounting ideas. I have the front 'implement' pretty figured out but i need to buy the push bumper piece and cut and drill on a couple of pieces of metal to get it put together and show it to yall. Settled on 40" width, same width as the front tires. Even with the plow bracket set to its max angle (physically interferes and won't turn any further) the implement would only tuck 1" inside the track width, which i don't see as a problem for what i'd be doing with it. I THINK it will make sense once you can see it. :unsure:
I like the hydraulic drive for the same reason you said, everything is separate. It's easier to modify, fix, and simple to understand.

Impressive lift with the Kubota btw.. especially considering the load is out in front of the bucket, the Kubota 800lbs capacity is probably measured at the pins!
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
i still havent added enough front counterweight to be able to stress the 3pt
So that turned out to be incorrect. Turns out having just the bare plow base bracket mounted to the tractor is enough that i can stall the 3pt hydraulics without picking up the front of the tractor anymore. I guess I haven't gotten good enough at riding out the wheelies on this thing to guesstimate how much excess power is making me wheelie. Turns out it wasn't that much.


I picked up a couple of heavy objects in my van today and used the Case to unload them.
Wheel Tire Vehicle Plant Automotive tire


This is a hitch basket I bought for a road trip years ago and didn't even end up taking. I've used it as a kind of carryall for the tractors this year. I guess that means I've used the red hitch frame for 4 'attachments' i can think of so far (rake, hitch basket, forks, regular towing drawbar). The first item I unloaded was this trampoline. Had to cart it about 100 feet from the driveway to where it was going and getting a whole car back there to drop it off directly is possible but a bit of a hassle. The trampoline weighed about 160 lbs. No problems there, easy. I just back the basket up to the open doors of the van, drag the box across, and pull away.

Tire Wheel Vehicle Plant Automotive tire

I had a pretty good idea this wasn't going to work, and it didn't. 馃槀 That's 4 x 80lb bags of concrete, so 320 lbs. I had raised the basket up level with the back of the van and drug it across, and the tractor didn't tip up, which sort of surprised me. Well, it turned out the basket was more or less sitting on the van's hitch ball so when i pulled away it DID tip (another wheelie, welcome to Case Town, im used to it). I dropped the 3pt to the ground, then tried to pick it back up, and it would neither wheelie nor pick it up.

So, i believe the stock 3pt is rated for 500lbs. However, that's probably at the end of the stock cat0 arms. That's why I originally made my homebrew cat0/cat1 hybrid arms as short as possible, as seen in this pic i posted previously:
Automotive tire Motor vehicle Bumper Gas Tread

Maybe that would have lifted marginally more than 500lbs since they were slightly shorter than stock, but i never tested it as i had no front counterweight of any kind mounted at that time. Now that i've modified those arms with the ball ends from the cat0 top link, they've gotten substantially longer than the stock Cat0 arms. I will try to get a new pic to show that. So i figure im somewhere under 500, but probably not as low as the 320lb of concrete it failed to pick up (hitch basket is very light, maybe 25lbs). Here's why.

#1, hitch basket starts probably 8+" 'extra' out from the 'pins'. I'll try to get a side pic tomorrow too since it's all still sitting there where i left it. #2, probably more important.. Im using the inner hole for the upper cylinder mount, which gives less lift but more travel. Just for purposes of science im going to try moving to the outer hole tomorrow and see if it will pick up 320lb in that basket.

With the cylinder in the inner hole as i've always had it, i took off one bag of concrete, down to 240lbs in the basket, and it lifted it off the ground but not very high. Drivable. Took off two bags, down to 160, and it lifted it to full height, but i already knew that since that's the same lift as the trampoline.

And at the end of the day im going to increase pressure in this circuit anyway pending finishing front implement. I guess all this info really shows that means anything is that the homemade arms/links can take whatever the stock lift will do without bending/failing. Will update again tomorrow.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
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Alright, so i moved the upper cylinder mount to the outer hole for MO POWAH and it lifts 3 bags. This shot shows how far past the pins the hitch basket puts the weight. Although looking at it just now, i guess if i cared to i could just take the hitch pin out and slide the basket in until the hitch pin hole was popping out the front side of the 2" receiver and pin it there.

New problem lifting 3 bags: front of the tractor BARELY stays down. You can see that i have the plow bracket on simply held up with a chain until i do cylinder mounting/plumbing. Obviously when front implement is complete it will add probably 50 lbs on the front and increase the practical limit of the 3pt by maybe 100 lbs at the pins.

Another little way to cheat a tiny bit more lift before just upping the pressure: I think i have about 1.5" of exposed thread on the ball ends making up the front of my 3pt arms, so i can crank that in and make the arms a little shorter. That will also move where my lift links attach closer to the tractor, so it probably won't increase and might even decrease my mechanical ability to lift since it makes the 'leverage ratio' of the lift link on the arm worse, but it might be a net gain if moving the lifted weight closer to the tractor makes it able to lift more weight before the steering gets too light to be drivable.

I wish i knew how much weight id lost off the front of this thing. Normal Case tractors would be way better off here. I dont know what the stock Onan weighs but I know the 212 only weighs 37lbs, and i no longer have a clutch mechanism with associated pulley/fan/linkage, nor do i have a battery up front anymore, or a mid lift cylinder. Im also missing headlights. 馃槄 Hopefully noone reading this gets the idea the Case 3pt is a mixed bag. It's really just fine for a stock tractor to do what it was designed to do. I just like to change everything and have turned my little tractor into a testbed to stretch my mind around 'tractor issues' like hydraulics, traction, counterweight/weight distribution, etc.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
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Showing cylinder attached in outer position and hitch basket pinned further in for 2.1354% increase in lift capacity (untested).
Tire Wheel Vehicle Motor vehicle Leaf

Here's a shot of the kind of company the Case keeps.. the Toyota has been sitting for most of a year but i shuffled it over to my work area to use as dry tool storage, a phone charger, work lights, and as a very large bluetooth speaker. The golf cart is a 36v model I have running on 24v worth of marine batteries, recently mixed and matched some free ATV tires and trailer wheels to test 25" vs 22" drive tire diameter, every seat on it was found on the side of the road on separate occasions, has part of a truck bedliner on it, parts of a bed frame welded into it, rear seat doubles as a push bumper, etc. Hauls plywood, apparently. Tow balls on the front for moving trailers. Has jumper cables, tow straps, axe and garden shears on it full time.

The tractor back there? Normal! Doesn't fit in around here at all! I want to build an electrohydraulic thumb and a 54" clamshell bucket for it, then it will belong.
 
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