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I Love All Color Tractors
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You do some really nice work JRD. Thank you for taking the time to keep us up to date on what you are doing. It looks great!
 

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Discussion Starter #122
While rooting around in my stash of spare parts, I found a pair of handles with wooden ends. They're a bit dried out, but look like they're servicable. Given the nature of this project, I think they'll be a good addition. I also have some white and black plastic handle ends. What do y'all think? Wood or plastic?
 

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Gravely bug bit.
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While rooting around in my stash of spare parts, I found a pair of handles with wooden ends. They're a bit dried out, but look like they're servicable. Given the nature of this project, I think they'll be a good addition. I also have some white and black plastic handle ends. What do y'all think? Wood or plastic?
As it is post 1955, might as well go with the plastic handlebar grips. Save the wood ones for a pre-55 unit. And in red, not black or white.
 

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Discussion Starter #124
Huh, I think that's the only color I don't have. Hafta root around in the parts boxes some more.
 

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Discussion Starter #125
Man, I gotta retire or something so I'll have time to finish all these projects.

Couldn't find any red transmission control handle ends, guess I'll just use the black ones that came off it. Oddly, the handlebar handles are red.

Machined up a new pivot for the governor linkage. Put the tires on the wheels. Put the tank on. Went to put the kill switch together, discovered that my replacement switch doesn't fit. Not sure what to do about that yet. Forgot to bring the dog gear and trunnion block back to the shop, so couldn't put the PTO together.

I keep saying I'm gonna run out of little fiddly bits on this thing, but it hasn't happened yet.

BTW one of my QE inspectors discovered the fuel line is chafing against the cylinder baffle. I fiddled with both, but both appear to be correctly installed. I know there was never a lot of clearance in there, but this seems like something wrong. Unless somebody has a better idea I'll probably bend the line a bit to try to move it, or just put something in there to prevent wear.
 

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I Love All Color Tractors
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Run out of things to fiddle with? On a Gravely? Never!
 

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Gravely bug bit.
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Man, I gotta retire or something so I'll have time to finish all these projects.

Couldn't find any red transmission control handle ends, guess I'll just use the black ones that came off it. Oddly, the handlebar handles are red.

Machined up a new pivot for the governor linkage. Put the tires on the wheels. Put the tank on. Went to put the kill switch together, discovered that my replacement switch doesn't fit. Not sure what to do about that yet. Forgot to bring the dog gear and trunnion block back to the shop, so couldn't put the PTO together.

I keep saying I'm gonna run out of little fiddly bits on this thing, but it hasn't happened yet.

BTW one of my QE inspectors discovered the fuel line is chafing against the cylinder baffle. I fiddled with both, but both appear to be correctly installed. I know there was never a lot of clearance in there, but this seems like something wrong. Unless somebody has a better idea I'll probably bend the line a bit to try to move it, or just put something in there to prevent wear.
With red handlebar grips you use black control grips. Looking good!:thThumbsU
 

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Discussion Starter #129
Almost done. I keep saying that :)

Made a choke lever. Connected up the PTO and put on the battery box. Hung the starter. Screwed around with the kill switch for a while, then found an ignition switch that has a pair of terminals which close when the key is off. I'll use that instead. Couldn't find the solenoid I'd put aside, so may have to go out and buy one. Put the bars on. Cleaned up and painted the control levers. Still have to find a grommet for the PTO rod, put the wheels on, mount the controls etc. Finish the wiring for the starter. I think that's about it.

I test fit the hood. It's starting to look like a tractor :)
 

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FIX IT MAN
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JRD,
You can find a grommet to fit it at Lowes-in the section where they have all the specialty hardware in those pull out bins/ drawers- that's where I got my replacement one.
 

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Discussion Starter #133
Mounted the transmission controls. Spend 45 minutes rooting around in my stash of parts, finally found the solenoid and stuck it on. Made a bracket to hold the starter switch. Discovered I had the wrong size lugs, so couldn't make up the wiring, sigh. Went to mount the throttle and couldn't find it. I swear I sandblasted it and painted it and put it aside months ago, but I must have put it somewhere safe, because I couldn't find it today. Grumble. Replaced most of the axle housing bolts with shiny new ones.

I dunno whether you guys are as sick of hearing about this thing being almost done as I am. Gonna try to find time tomorrow and tuesday to knock down the rest of the stupid issues. We'll see how that works... :)
 

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Gravely bug bit.
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Mounted the transmission controls. Spend 45 minutes rooting around in my stash of parts, finally found the solenoid and stuck it on. Made a bracket to hold the starter switch. Discovered I had the wrong size lugs, so couldn't make up the wiring, sigh. Went to mount the throttle and couldn't find it. I swear I sandblasted it and painted it and put it aside months ago, but I must have put it somewhere safe, because I couldn't find it today. Grumble. Replaced most of the axle housing bolts with shiny new ones.

I dunno whether you guys are as sick of hearing about this thing being almost done as I am. Gonna try to find time tomorrow and tuesday to knock down the rest of the stupid issues. We'll see how that works... :)
I never get sick of seeing or hearing about other people's projects. Anybody can buy a new tractor but it takes skills many are lacking in today's society to rebuild an older unit.
 

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I Love All Color Tractors
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Amen, Don, amen.

JRD, I love seeing your progress pics. The tractor is progressing very nicely.

Do you think that vibration is going to be an issue with your ignition switch holder? My handlebars vibrate badly out at the ends, but not too bad near the shroud mounts. Do you think that it might wear through the paint and/or come off? I'm not knocking your idea in the least, I'm just wondering. I do think that it is a good idea and I love your fabrication skills.
 

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FIX IT MAN
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I'm with the other guys, never get sick of watching your progress. You do a good job, have ingenuity (a lacking trait today) and take GREAT pictures. keep up the good work JRD- we love it.
 

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Discussion Starter #138
I got most of my other chores done, and it was raining out, so couldn't do yard and garden stuff, so went back to the shop.

Looked all over and found the verdammt throttle handle under some wing parts. It had gotten kind of banged up so straightened it out and repainted it. Made up the battery cables. Mostly roughed out the wiring for the starter switch. Got the choke hooked up. Made another battery hold-down, because I ended up using the last one on the '63 L8. Test fit the battery, to make sure everything had clearance and the cabling worked out etc. Cut and fitted the starter chain.

DJ, re the starter switch, I thought about that, but decided to try it as is. The plan is to mount it just aft of the tank on the right side, ie well forward of the handles. Vibration will be lessened there, I hope. I could put it even farther forward by moving it to the outside, but that would make it hard to reach, and it would catch on stuff, not good. So I'm going to see how it works out there.

My '65 L8 has a piece of aluminum channel that somebody stuck as a crossbar between the bars, just aft of where the hood closes. The starter switch is mounted in a hole in that. That's what gave me the idea. If this scheme of mine doesn't work I'll probably make a similar crossbar for this machine. I hope I don't have to do that, though, as I like the look of this little bracket I've made for it :)

And thanks all for the encouragement :):)
 

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Discussion Starter #139 (Edited)
Well, ok, now we're getting somewhere.

Finished hooking up the wiring, put oil in it, looked it over for loose fasteners, and tried cranking it over with the plug out. Click, nuttin. A bit of debugging revealed that I'd done too good a job painting everything, and the bolts holding the starter on weren't grounding it. S-c-r-a-p-e-d a bit of paint, and now the starter works, yay!

Spark looked good, and about 30 seconds of cranking got something to show on the oil pressure gauge. Took it down off the bench, put the wheels on. Wheeled it outside, and while looking for a block to put it on, Bear asked "where's that oil coming from?" Dang, looks like I dinged the oil intake fitting where it comes out of the transmission. Probably when I was taking it down off the bench. Had to go home to get another one. Easy-outed the stub out, put all that back together.

Put a bit of fuel in it, turned on the petcock. Nothing bad happened, so choked it halfway, set the throttle, and turned the key. Within 2 seconds it spit and caught. Yay! It blew a fair amount of smoke for maybe 30 sec, then it tapered down. Had to fiddle mixture settings, and in the process discovered that the fuel line wasn't as tight as I thought, so redid that. Started it again, ran it around a bit, clutches seem ok, but then it died. Fiddled a bit, no fuel. It seems something was clogging the inlet to the gascolator. Blew it a little with an air line, and it freed right up, but I think I didn't get the tank as cleaned out as I thought. May have more problems there.

Anyhow, buttoned it all back up, and ran it a little more. Mixture still isn't quite right, it misses every once in a while. I tweaked it some and improved things, but still need to fiddle some more. After about 5 minutes the smoke seemed to be completely gone, except for some coming from under the hood, which seems to be grease and stuff burning off the hot parts. The oil pressure is ok, not at the top of the gauge, but well in the white. Have to keep an eye on that.

I'll probably bring it home tomorrow, run it a bit more, and change the oil.

Before I left for the day, I installed the finishing touch :)
 

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Gravely bug bit.
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Looking good. As far as the oil pressure goes, look closely at the gauge and you'll see a black tick mark off the bottom of the bottom line of the crescent section of the gauge. If when warm it is at that mark or above, you're good.
 
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