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If you don't know the history, then how do you know that it's got less than 400 hours on it? That's what the hour meter may say, but that may have been replaced at some point in the tractors life.
 

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I confess I didn't quite follow the parking brake comment. I get tying it, and checking if it will spin a tire, but that was while flooring the pedal.

I'm not sure how you check the parking brake, as it relates to this.

Also, davescarp, in the other thread, you had mentioned that you were going to get the different (higher viscosity) transmission fluid. Did that fluid change anything?
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
I confess I didn't quite follow the parking brake comment. I get tying it, and checking if it will spin a tire, but that was while flooring the pedal.

I'm not sure how you check the parking brake, as it relates to this.

Also, in the other thread, I think you had mentioned that you were going to get the different (higher viscosity) transmission fluid. Did that change anything?
I bought the TT oil but haven't done the swap. I'm having a very hard time thinking that is going to be a magic cure. Would seem like a bandaid on something that needs stitches. Was going to use the TT oil after the rebuild (if I can source a kit).

Tying it to a tree is easy enough, but seems exactly like what happens when it goes uphill. Tires don't spin it just dies. But am home all day so will try that later.

Has anyone actually done the rebuild on a K72? Just curious if there are any significant pitfalls that are different than the videos I've watched with the k46 and k61(?).
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
If you don't know the history, then how do you know that it's got less than 400 hours on it? That's what the hour meter may say, but that may have been replaced at some point in the tractors life.
Yeah this is what I don't know but am starting to suspect...
 

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why you ask? it's a 2009 I believe.

View attachment 2511072
I ask because with your model number I am able to see that a new OEM K72b is $1,556 with free shipping through hydrodrives. If it turns out you need to rebuild maybe purchasing new will give you better piece of mind. Judging by the condition of your X500 it would be worth the money to do the swap because you cannot replace that tractor for similar money.

If it were me (because I'm just this way), once I confirmed the existing unit was bad I would buy a new K72b and at 50 hours drain the oil and replace with the TT oil you just bought. Then you have no worries for another 800+ hours. 👌

Good luck!
 

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I bought the TT oil but haven't done the swap. I'm having a very hard time thinking that is going to be a magic cure. Would seem like a bandaid on something that needs stitches. Was going to use the TT oil after the rebuild (if I can source a kit).

Tying it to a tree is easy enough, but seems exactly like what happens when it goes uphill. Tires don't spin it just dies. But am home all day so will try that later.
Hadn't you said that the weak tranny started after the recent oil change though? That would make me think it's at least worth trying a fluid change.

Personally, I don't think the tree test will show you any "surprises". You know the wheels will stop. But IMO, it may be an opportunity to confirm some other stuff, like that the hydro's pulley is still turning.
 

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John Deere X485 John Deere GT235
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That's a nice tractor and if it were mine I'd consider all options before giving up on it. Sure you can sell it, but your just passing on a problem to a sucker (hopefully one that lives far away..LOL). Definitely would not take it to a dealer (Unless you recently hit the lottery). I would look at a cheap tractor just to get the basic maintenance done (I keep a LT4000 AWS on standby). Sometimes waiting is a good thing. If you have backup that will get you by, then open up the tranny and inspect it. Sometimes it's not as bad you think once you get into it.

Don't be afraid to take on a project like that or predispose that you will "F" it up. Set up the correct work space and pick up a service and repair manual for your tractor. Post you progress on this site and you will be amazed at the expert advice you will get. You won't be alone with all the great people here.

I have a old Bolens and some years ago the wiring was all messed up and I had to completely re-wire everything. Walt (Professor Walt) walked me through the job AND explained how the wiring functioned all the different components. Great learning experience..!

With a backup tractor you can take your time.

At least you will know exactly what you are facing and can make informed decisions.

I have a 20+ YOA GT235 and the oil filter is buried inside the tranny. I think it's overdue to be be replaced. Over this next winter I plan to post my situation on this site, get some advice and do the job (If I learn it would be a good idea).

I've never tore into a trans either, but if its necessary then I will.

I feel for you brother. Best of luck.
 

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That seems like good advice to me. I don't keep a backup tractor, but you can usually find something basic & cheap on Craigslist.

Like he said, you could buy a backup, use that to give you time to work on this one, and then maybe even sell the backup when you're done. The backup might cost you very little.

With the luxury of some time, I'd probably at least open up your tranny, before deciding what to do. If the insides are shredded, maybe a rebuild is unlikely to work. And if you find that something simple and cheap failed (I dunno, a check valve or something), maybe it's an easy fix. You'd at least better understand the problem.

I've never opened a tranny either. But there are definitely a lot of knowledgeable and helpful users here, who could help guide you.
 
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John Deere X485 John Deere GT235
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Many years ago I used to be afraid of doing any serious repairs on different engines. I saw that as a personal failing, so I just started studying and working on them. I can't tell you how many quality repairs I've done over many years. In my case I just had to do it because going to someone else (Dealers) frightens me even more..LOL And at the prices they are charging today...OMG
 

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Many years ago I used to be afraid of doing any serious repairs on different engines. I saw that as a personal failing, so I just started studying and working on them. I can't tell you how many quality repairs I've done over many years. In my case I just had to do it because going to someone else (Dealers) frightens me even more..LOL And at the prices they are charging today...OMG
Yeah, same reason I learned to work on things mechanical.... I simply couldn't afford to pay someone else to do it. :D Sure, I made some mistakes, and had to re-do a few jobs, but, in the end, it just made me more mindful of what I was doing. :D
 

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Has anyone actually done the rebuild on a K72? Just curious if there are any significant pitfalls that are different than the videos I've watched with the k46 and k61(?).
Never did a rebuild, but have had a couple of them apart several times. They're not overly difficult to get apart and get back together. Be careful with the fittings for the external hydro lines, they have to pass through the case and thread into the pump on the bottom of the case, there's several o-rings on these and if you nick one it'll leak. This pump is separate from what drives the tranny, but connected to the same input shaft, so it stays connected to everything as you take it apart.

I didn't read you're other thread, so I can't comment for sure if your transmission needs a rebuild or not, but based on what your saying it wouldn't hurt it though the hours don't make sense.

If you want a different transmission and don't want to pay Deere prices you can look into one used for a Simplicity Landlord DLX or Prestige. They'll have a different letter designation on them, but if you're at the point of rebuilding then maybe you can swap parts. Be careful on some of the K72's for Simplicity Landlord DLX's as some of them didn't have external hydro.

I've had my original K72 on my Landlord DLX apart twice now, mine didn't come with external hydro (no power steering), so I bought another K72 for $350 and added it. Since then I also picked up a whole tractor for $250 with a blown Vanguard, but good hydro. You could also try this approach. Since adding external hydro to my DLX mower I've since swapped trannies completely and put my original K72 (sans external hydro) on another DLX with a loader and added diff lock to that one. Bottom line they're not overly difficult to take apart and get back together, heck I'd buy one that's blown up for cheap if you can just to take one apart. Biggest pain in the butt was getting the right parts together for the differential before assembly, make sure you have an extendable magnet to slide in some of the pieces for the differential. Also have some good quality RTV on hand to seal the case halves together, or go bonkers and use Yamaha Yamabond it's good stuff, but pricey.

If you don't mind me asking, what's all included with the rebuild kit? Also, as I didn't read your other thread, have you pulled the rear spindles off and made sure the keys aren't sheared to the axles?

Edit: I apologize the Simplicities use the K71, not the K72
 

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@davescarp Have you made double triple sure that the freewheeling lever is all the way in? It could be that the bypass valve is not fully seated closed. My friend's x570 seemed to have a little catch in it before it was totally in. Give the rod a good firm push.
It just seems really freaky that it goes from working to not after an oil change.
 

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If the parts are available, I would not hesitate to rebuild it. I think I have seen the same videos that you have, and it doesn't look bad to me. The one pitfall, and I'm sure you are aware, is that little tic tac thing for the release lever. That looks incredibly easy to lose or forget to install.
 

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Discussion Starter · #35 ·
if you find that rebuild kits are available let us know! I'd like to have one in stock!
Just talked to Tuff Torq, they have the kit for my particular unit listed as on backorder, but the guy told me that just means it'll be about a 10-14 day delay to ship it, so yes it's available... There is also a place in my home state called Mulligans Parts Co. that lists it in stock, though I've never heard of them and there isn't a lot of reviews etc.. The latter is a bit cheaper.
 

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I watched the videos years ago, when I worried about my K46 not holding up. I ended up buying a spare one. The spare is still in the basement, unused. The original is still working fine.

I did recently take apart the front axle hubs on my X749. I was concerned about the difficulty, but was not convinced the dealer would be able to solve the issue at a reasonable price. The TSM instructions leave a LOT to be helpful/desired. It has really (not) helpful stuff like, "remove gear". It doesn't say you NEED to use a puller, let alone what type would be necessary to fit in the VERY constrained space. My guess is that the people who write the manuals have never actually worked on the machine/item. I have had a long enough history with doing similar things that I was able to figure it out. I would be concerned about the amount of time it would take. At some point, it might be simpler and possibly cheaper (taking into account the value of my time) to just buy a new one (either transaxle or whole machine).
 

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For all we know the previous owner may have run it low on fluid. Used equipment is always a gamble.
 

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Discussion Starter · #38 ·
@davescarp Have you made double triple sure that the freewheeling lever is all the way in? It could be that the bypass valve is not fully seated closed. My friend's x570 seemed to have a little catch in it before it was totally in. Give the rod a good firm push.
It just seems really freaky that it goes from working to not after an oil change.
triple checked. and just checked one more time. :) At first I was pretty convinced that the fluid change was a factor, but I think that it was just a spurious coincidence.
 

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How much oil did you put in when you did the fluid changes? I know they can be tricky to get all the fluid into the transmission as there's no air purge on them and it takes a while to get the fluid into all the nooks and crannies.

I've had it before when I changed fluid, let it sit overnight, drive it the next morning and it was low. You can also overfill it, which sucks but less damaging. I'm just speculating that you ran low on fluid after an oil change. Though I've torn down one before that had metal shavings floating around inside and it still didn't slow down when heated up.

Also I apologize, I thought the Simplicities had the K72 in them, they used the older K71's which is what I've torn apart. Though I wouldn't be scared to take a K72 apart.
 

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This was probably discussed in the original post, but just in case... I believe this transaxle has two drain plugs and two fill ports. I'm guessing that you knew that, but I wanted to be sure.
 
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