My Tractor Forum banner
  • Are you passionate about Tractors? Would you like to write about topics that interest you and get paid for it? Read all about it here!
1 - 20 of 49 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,110 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was going to hold off on this upgrade until next year, but a new cab and cooperative weather have me thinking I can do this now. I just upgraded my cab, and it is now very difficult to access and use the Berco blower lift lever. I could cut the hole large in the cab door, but I really don't want to do that. A linear actuator with momentary toggle switch on the dash would solve my problem and save my right arm. I have a few questions.

1) First, how hard are these to wire? Does anyone have a schematic? Is there a reasonably priced wiring kit to be bought?

2) I have narrowed my choice to the two actuators at the links below. They are similar in specs, 1000 lb. static load/500 lb. dynamic. I THINK they will fit along side the tractor frame under the starter on my Craftsman. I don't care about the difference in price but the cheaper one might fit better. Does anyone have experience with either of these?

The Northern Tool One.

The ebay one.

Here is the tractor with blower and new cab. The lift handle can be seen along the bottom edge of the cab door (blower in the "up" position). Thanks in advance!

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
989 Posts
I don't have any experience with the specific actuator you reference, but actuators are simple devices to wire. Here is an installation manual for one that I have.

The key thing is the switch. You will need a DPDT momentary switch with center off position.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,110 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Johnny Products (Johnny Bucket) will sell you a complete wiring harness and switch for a pretty reasonable price.
Do you have a link? I couldn't find it on their web site last night. Couldn't find the bolt-on actuator mounts either.
 

·
Coach John
Joined
·
106 Posts
One other option, is moving the upper pivot point of the turning arm to inside of the cab. I did this to help when adding my cab last year. Just extend the arm to the correct length, and use an eye bolt, 1/2" for mine, to mount thru one of the cab tube members. When the blower is raised, the arm just extends a bit further into the cab, and not the vertical movement as before.

While I'm working on further imrpovements, and some snow, might want to consider this. Best of luck!
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
168 Posts
ggsteve, attached is the schematic I (not my own but one shared by another forum member) used when we installed an electric actuator to control the height of the deflector on the snowblower spout...http://www.mytractorforum.com/showthread.php?t=214384

Granted your actuator is a lot beefier but if you go with the DPDT momentary switch, it should be the same.

I hope it helps and best of luck in your mod.


lost
 

Attachments

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,110 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
One other option, is moving the upper pivot point of the turning arm to inside of the cab. I did this to help when adding my cab last year. Just extend the arm to the correct length, and use an eye bolt, 1/2" for mine, to mount thru one of the cab tube members. When the blower is raised, the arm just extends a bit further into the cab, and not the vertical movement as before.

While I'm working on further imrpovements, and some snow, might want to consider this. Best of luck!
I would be thrilled if I could get my lift arm inside the cab! Unfortunately, the lift arm has about 90 degrees of travel from a foot in front of the cab all the way down to even with the foot rest. I was happy that I figured out how to mount the chute turn control inside, I thought I had a show stopper for a minute with that one.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,110 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,110 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
ggsteve, attached is the schematic I (not my own but one shared by another forum member) used when we installed an electric actuator to control the height of the deflector on the snowblower spout...http://www.mytractorforum.com/showthread.php?t=214384

Granted your actuator is a lot beefier but if you go with the DPDT momentary switch, it should be the same.

I hope it helps and best of luck in your mod.


lost
Thanks to all who sent me schematics and links. They will be most helpful!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,110 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Before I jump in to the actuators I do have one other possibility that I would like some experienced answers on. I bought a 2000 # winch to lift the blower last year but I couldn't figure out where to mount it, it's really pretty large and would interfere with the tractor hood, or wheels, etc. I just got the bright idea of attaching the winch to the rear of the snow blower housing, removing the cable and replacing it with a short length of chain attached to the tractor frame, then just run the prewired switch to the cab. Has anyone done something similar?
 

·
Tech Nerd Tractor Convert
Joined
·
1,388 Posts
... I bought a 2000 # winch to lift the blower last year but I couldn't figure out where to mount it [...] Has anyone done something similar?
I mounted a winch under the chassis and routed the cable with pulleys. Posting here.

Will likely be replacing this with a linear actuator sometime now that I have a few I can reuse from my JB Jr w Plow.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,110 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I mounted a winch under the chassis and routed the cable with pulleys. Posting here.

Will likely be replacing this with a linear actuator sometime now that I have a few I can reuse from my JB Jr w Plow.
Can someone explain why the linear actuator is a better option? It certainly seems more elegant. Is it stronger? More reliable? My biggest concern with the linear actuator is mounting it. My plan is to mount it along the right frame where the lift linkage for the handle is now. It looks to take up less space than the winch, and the "push/pull" motion is in the correct direction, but there could be interference with the right front tire. Of course, I won't know that until I have it and try to mount it. I guess if it doesn't fit there I could attach it to the blower housing like I was going to do with the winch.
 

·
Retired Super Moderator - Deceased September 2015
Joined
·
26,672 Posts
I have both on my Custom 6. Actuator on the SH and winch on the plow. Not sure about a chain to replace the cable tho? Only problem I have with the winch is cable gets worn and breaks and then have to reattach. Plan to some day change it to a Actuator, just haven't. No down pressure with the winch where with a Actuator you could apply some if you didn't slot one of the mounts. :trink40:
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,110 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I have both on my Custom 6. Actuator on the SH and winch on the plow. Not sure about a chain to replace the cable tho? Only problem I have with the winch is cable gets worn and breaks and then have to reattach. Plan to some day change it to a Actuator, just haven't. No down pressure with the winch where with a Actuator you could apply some if you didn't slot one of the mounts. :trink40:
The chain idea came from a post I read here. I think it was a member that had the actual factory Berco power lift which is a winch. These have been problematic with your mentioned worn cables and melted cables due to proximity to the exhaust. He sad he removed the cable and replaced it with a short chain.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,110 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Can you just retro-fit the Berco lift winch? The parts should be readily available and it would be a direct bolt on with no fabrication needed.
My Berco is a manual lift, I don't have a Berco winch to retrofit. If you are suggesting that I buy a Berco winch to mate with my blower, two problems: 1) there are differences between the newer Berco blowers that come with the winch and my older version and 2) I'm pretty sure I could pay someone to walk along side the tractor and lift the blower for me for less than what Berco charges for parts!
 

·
Tech Nerd Tractor Convert
Joined
·
1,388 Posts
Can someone explain why the linear actuator is a better option? It certainly seems more elegant. Is it stronger? More reliable?
Not sure if an actuator would be better in all cases but I'm leaning this way for my application. Here are my reasons:

- You can't push on a rope (or cable). While a winch cable makes for a nice automatic float, it's also easy to end up with slack unless you build in some kind of tensioner. And with my winch, slack makes it unspool and overlap and leads to cable kinks.

- Actuator takes up less space than a winch, so easier to package.

- Should be easier to install and remove compared to a winch, at least the way I've got my winch set up.

- Much easier to install and adjust limit switches in the actuator's pushrod path than having to mount them to the attachment somewhere, which I had to do with the winch.

- Generated force (probably). I haven't found all the specs to know this for sure, but anecdotally the actuators from the JB seem to be able to develop far more force than my cheap $50 Harbor Freight winch does. This will obviously vary depending on what winch you're comparing to what actuators.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,110 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Well, I ordered the linear actuator tonight. I hope it gets here by next weekend, and I hope it fits easily when it gets here. It's coming with a heavy duty mount and a 20 amp momentary switch. Next question, What gauge wire should I get, how big of an inline fuse, and where is the best place to find such stuff, an auto parts store?
 
1 - 20 of 49 Posts
Top