My Tractor Forum banner

1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
149 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello MTF. I am the new owner of a 1986 318. This particular tractor was talked about on a previous thread because it was listed on craigslist as a good deal. I thought I would start a new thread because I have some 318 questions.

First, this is my first John Deere, but I am already a member of MTF because I own 3 Simplicitys and I usually post on that forum.

Here are some of my questions:

Power Steering.
I purchased this unit mainly because I wanted one with power steering. Last night I mowed for the first time and I couldn't keep it going in a straight line. It was always wandering and dodging left and right and I was constantly correcting and adjusting (about a 45 degree motion on the steering wheel (10-2) )to keep it going straight. There seems to be no other steering problems and no visible fluid leaks. The PO had the fluid and filter changed in the hydraulics during a spring tune up performed by his dealer. There are approx 620 hrs on the tractor. Is the 318 a "steer by hose" power steering system where there is no direct hard steering link between the steering wheel and the front wheels? If that is true, then would my problem be in the front-end linkages? Is there a way to tighten these up to add more resistance and straight line tracking? Or is it in the hydraulics such as the control unit not be able to center itself ?


Emergency stopping:
What is the normal braking action? If I try to do an emergency stop by pushing down all the way on both brake pedals, the Hydo drive does not disengage and return to neutral, rendering the brakes useless except for just slight slowing down of the tractor. Is this normal or is there an adjustment that should be made? The brakes individually work because when I step on the left or right brake each one of those wheels will lock up while the tractor is moving, but again no change in the hydro drive lever.

I have read a post that you can increase the speed of the 318 by moving the drive linkage up a hole and that would cause you to go faster. I think my PO might have done this. This baby feels like it really moves a lot faster than the 6mph it is rated for. Would one of the by products of this adjustment be a "touchy" or "jerky" sensation when shifting from forward to reverse ? I thought that maybe the shift contol damper (shock?) was disconnected but that looks to be attached as far as I can see. Would this affect the braking / Stopping too?

Any comments would be appreciated. I have attached a picture because I know everyone wants to see one.

Thanks
MarkT:thThumbsU
 

Attachments

·
The Magnificent
Joined
·
20,952 Posts
Congratulations on the new purchase. That is a nice looking specimen.

Let's look at a couple of things for your steering.
- there are two large bolts behind each side of the axle which limit front to rear movement of the axle. They should be snug, but allow smooth up and down travel of the axle.
- check your toe-in. The distance between the front of the front tires should be 3/16" (I believe - don't have my manual handy) less than the distance between the rear of the front tires.
- check your air pressure - 8-12 psi.

This is fully hydraulic steering, btw, not power assist, so the steering wheel will never "center" exactly.

Your braking issue is improperly adjusted linkages (possibly caused by this speed modification). Check your brake shoe adjustment as well.

The jerkiness could be sloppy linkage, or it could just be due for a service. Go ahead and plan a hydro fluid and filter change to see if that helps.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
5,415 Posts
I'd second what D-Dogg says about the jerkiness being worn linkage components. There is a pin that connects the linkage to the transmission arm and it gets worn down and out of round causing a lot of excess slop in the linkage. There is a turnbuckle in the middle of the linkage you use to adjust. You can do a quick neutral adjustment and see if that helps. Enjoy your new Deere :fing32:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
397 Posts
Your braking issue is improperly adjusted linkages (possibly caused by this speed modification). Check your brake shoe adjustment as well.
Agree with D-Dogg here...also you will find that you will rarely need to use your brakes....just use your hydrostatic control to start and stop. Only time to use brakes is to set parking brake or to brake one side over the other for turning purposes.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
35,870 Posts
I wish I counted how many times someone bought a 318 that had the same steering issue. Mine had it when I bought it last year. D-Dogg is correct and I would add that you cannot over grease the area where the arms move up and down. It took me about 3 times adjusting that to get all the "Walking" out of the arm. It really improves the ability to hold a fairly straight line! They already have you on the correct course for the brakes!

Congrats on that purchase it otherwise looks in very good condition and should give you years of use!!!!
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
17,135 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,535 Posts
All good advice and I also had the steering wonder issue.Especially at higher speed.But with a little trial and air mine is OK now.

Im surprised no one has informed you correctly about the braking however.The reason the hydro lever does not snap back to the neutral position when you apply the brakes is because.That would do away with the advantage of independent left and right brakes.When you want to turn short or have a heavy 3 point load on the back like a tiller.You can hit the brake that is the direction you want to turn and bring the tractor right back around in its tracks.Especially usefull in loose soil.Also if you get stuck you can hit the brake opposite of the wheel thats spinning and the other wheel will spin to pull you on.Also useful when trying to mow a steep ditch.If it starts to pull to the bank side hit the opposite brake and it will get you going straight again.Just make sure the latch that locks the two brakes together is not between the brake pedals.
 

·
Citizen of Earth
Joined
·
15,744 Posts
The other guys gave you more info than I have for fixing the dteering. as to your brakes, they do not return the hydro to neutral as you have discovered. And they are not strong enough to stop the hydro. You use the hydro controls to stop the tractor. All that vintage 300 series work that way. The older 140 did return the hydro back to neutral. I have two 316s, one is a '78 Kohler powered unit, the other is a newer Onan powered tractor very similar to it's big brother, the 318. The hydro is a little jerky compared to the older one. I'm not 100% sure why, but imagine it has to do with the difference in linkages. I've seen it mentioned in other forums also, so I guess it's the nature of the beast.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
128 Posts
Mine had the wondering issue as well. I tightened up the large "axle locating bolts" as mentioned above. Not sure what the actual procedure is but I used one of the larger feeler gauges I had just to get both sides equal. You can turn the steering wheel slightly to get the gap to open on each side and check it.

Also a cinched down the large bolts and nuts on the steering cylinder. I could see some slop there while nudging the steering wheel in either direction. Now my steering is great.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
35,870 Posts
All good advice and I also had the steering wonder issue.Especially at higher speed.But with a little trial and air mine is OK now.

Im surprised no one has informed you correctly about the braking however.The reason the hydro lever does not snap back to the neutral position when you apply the brakes is because.That would do away with the advantage of independent left and right brakes.When you want to turn short or have a heavy 3 point load on the back like a tiller.You can hit the brake that is the direction you want to turn and bring the tractor right back around in its tracks.Especially usefull in loose soil.Also if you get stuck you can hit the brake opposite of the wheel thats spinning and the other wheel will spin to pull you on.Also useful when trying to mow a steep ditch.If it starts to pull to the bank side hit the opposite brake and it will get you going straight again.Just make sure the latch that locks the two brakes together is not between the brake pedals.

Actually if you hit both brakes simultaneously it will return the hydro lever back to neutral. If you hit just one it does not return the hydro. Also you should hit the brake on the side of the spinning wheel so that the wheel with weight on it provides the power. This requires that the brakes are adjusted so that when you use one pedal it will with pressure lock that side up! I'm still adjusting mine after replacing the entire rear end!
 

·
The Magnificent
Joined
·
20,952 Posts
Actually if you hit both brakes simultaneously it will return the hydro lever back to neutral. If you hit just one it does not return the hydro. Also you should hit the brake on the side of the spinning wheel so that the wheel with weight on it provides the power. This requires that the brakes are adjusted so that when you use one pedal it will with pressure lock that side up! I'm still adjusting mine after replacing the entire rear end!
Not sure about the rest of the 300 series, but the 318 does return the lever to neutral. And, its brakes are stronger than any over GT of that size with which I am familiar.

The correct operation of the braking system can be found in the operator's manual:

When both brake pedals are pushed gently, ground speed is reduced and the speed selector lever moves toward neutral.

When both brake pedals are pushed sharply, the tractor should stop and the lever should snap back to neutral.

When either pedal is depressed individually, that wheel will be braked only.

My 318 works exactly as the manual says it should. Any 318 which does not operate thusly is in need of adjustment/repair.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
149 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks for the info guys. It nice to hear about other people's experiences. I agree with D-Dogg about the brakes disengaging the hydro drive because that's what the operator's manual says. That's why it raised a question with me because mine does not do that. I have other tractors with Hydo drives and some date back to the 70's. In all these tractors, the brakes would overide the drive mechanisims in an emergency stop. It would simply be a fail safe operation. You could find your arms tangled up in a low hanging bush or tree limb while mowing and no way to stop the forward progress to prevent injury to the operator except to apply the brakes with your foot. Why would JD have the dual pedal latch to operate both L & R brakes simultaneously if the brakes can't stop the tractor? So it looks like I will have to check out the linkages for wear and adjustment.

As far as the Power Steering, I have adjusted the two bolts on the front axles based on advice in this thread. The gap on the left side was about 1/6th -3/32nds of an inch. I tighten up both sides and still left about 0.020 for movement. It didn't help. In my best estimation, I believe it is in the steering control valve. I say this because it simply takes a 1/4 turn on the steering wheel to change the direction of the wheel, no matter how slight of a turn I want to make. If the tractor is headed slightly left I need to turn the wheel a whole 1/4 turn to the right before the front wheel even responds and starts to move right. So to keep the tractor going straight I am constantly swinging the wheel back and forth between the "10 & 2" positions just to make the slightest steering corrections. I don't know what is normal, but I think that much steering motion is probably excessive. I am waiting for a "CD" version of a service/repair manual to arrive and hopefully there is a section on testing and performance of the PS system to help me ID what the source of the problem is.

Keep the comments coming, I am learning a lot!
MarkT
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,535 Posts
I never gave that a thought about emergency stopping and your arm could not get to the lever.I will check to see if mine snaps back to neutral if I hit both brakes.

But since my mowing tractors have foot operated pedals rather then the hand lever I am not to concerned.If I used the 318 for mowing around trees I would have already had mine checked out.

A few years ago there was a kid killed while mowing around a grain auger.Broke his neck when he got tangled up in the augers dereck.Makes me wonder now?
 

·
The Magnificent
Joined
·
20,952 Posts
Mark, observe the steering cylinder as you turn the wheel. It could be the bushing are getting worn.

But, your CD service manual will have a test and repair section. First step may be to perform the purge procedure.

BTW, how is your hydro fluid level? I don't think we has asked you that yet.
 
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top