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Terramite info T5C

9925 Views 13 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  Upper5Percent
I have been borrowing my neighbors Terramite T5C for the last few weeks, and despite the work it needs, it's a capable machine. I have been fixing little things on it in exchange for borrowing it, the most complicated was brazing the radiator, the fan shroud was twisted and rubbing into the fins.

The motor is a Perkins Diesel, as best as I can tell, but I only hear about Kohler diesels in these, or gas engines.

My neighbor bought the machine from another neighbor that ran the machine without an air filter for some time. I think it's wreaked havoc on the motor, it takes a bout 20 seconds of cranking to get it to fire after you give the glow plugs 10-15 seconds. And I swear I see as much smoke coming out of the rocker cover vent as a I do the exhaust. I almost think I should route the vent back into the induction for fuel savings..

Anyway, the hoses were nearly all replaced, the cylinders appear good and functional, 1 needs a new hole drilled and a grease fitting installed. I recently discovered oil running down the steering column, I can only assume the seal for the input shaft on the steering servo is bad, and hemmoraging.

Here's the thing. My neighbor is offering me the machine for $2000. I am on the fence about buying it, refreshing the motor and fixing the few issues with it, using the tar out of it for a few years doing pond work, ripping up my driveway, and stuff like that, then selling it.

Looks like a basic Perkins 100 series rebuild kit is about $500 or so, not including any head or valve work that might be needed. I wonder when the injection pump will go ($500 from what I see). And if the hydro unit is as good as I think. I am wondering if repowering with a 22 HP Honda GX might be a better option. Since it's not a full time use machine, I wonder if the cost of a diesel rebuild is worth it.

I really like the machine, and being on 2 acres, having to spring for a driveway repave or concrete job that this machine will help me save a ton of money on... I'm on the fence with buying it. The upside is that I've had hours of time running it as a "test drive", so I think I know the machine much better than I would if shopping for something in the funny papers. Thoughts?
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Corporate Headquarters:

TerraQuip Construction Products, Inc.

PO Box 9102

Wichita, KS 67277

Phone 316-943-8889 Give them a call, maybe they can help you...

Fax 316-943-4448
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Thanks for both links. I already contacted corporate, looking for a cooling fan and a radiator. The fan on the machine is pretty beat up. All those parts are Perkins direct parts, and I was able to solder the rad up and hold pressure.

I did see the "are Terramite's Bad" link, and after using this little guy for at least 10-12 hours over the last month, I'm really liking it. The backhoe moves more dirt than the little Kubota excavator I rented last year, and I've been able to fill the 1/4 yard FEL almost completely. It is slow in transit, but I'm not on the clock, and I rarely need to transit more than 100' at a time, if that.

I consider myself fortunate to have "test driven" the machine, and I think I can make a pretty fair assessment of it's condition, and what it needs.

1) Charging system is not working
2) Engine is tired and needs at least a re-ring if not new liners and pistons. I think I would keep running it until it's REALLLL tired. Since I have a decent air filter on the motor, I suspect the degradation will not be as much. I still think I might plumb the crankcase vent back into the induction path it smokes that bad.
3) Front tilt cylinder needs new packing and seals. Piece of cake
4) Steering servo input seal must be shot, it is dripping fluid down the column, so I suspect the column is a secondary oil reservoir at this point.
5) Cooling fan is beat, but still still moves a lot of air.
6) Backhoe lower arm cylinder needs a new grease fitting.
7) Some of the hydro lines need to be tightened.
8) Left lower rad support just broke. It's likely due to the fact the right support was "repaired" by welding it to the frame, and the left one was still mounted to the engine "cradle"

1,2,5,&8 can be resolved with a repower, looks like a GX690 Honda is about $1500 new, figure $1600 delivered.. food for thought. I wonder what the Perkins is worth in it's current condition.
If you had gone to the first would have found a link for parts...:)
Terramite parts sources? - Page 4
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