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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I imagine you guys experience this all the time. I finally got an afternoon to retrofit and install the 1997 OTC cab I picked up this summer on my '08 Craftsman Pro YT. I had test fit some of the frame, thoroughly read the directions twice and had my plan in order. I figured about an hour. I set to work, methodically following my plan, addressing problems as they arose. Project completed. Imagine my surprise when I went upstairs and it was after 8 pm. Time flies when you're having fun! Pics:

I bought some clamps to hold the frame uprights in place while I fit everything, saving the drilling for last.





First problem, I had to move the chute crank from the Berco mount to the mount on the cab upright, then I had to adjust the OTC bracket so that the crank worked without interfering with the tractor hood or cab windshield and door. The chute deflector handle is still a problem that I have to work on.





I cut down a couple of clothes line hooksto use to mount the rear frame behind the seat.



I wanted to take advantage of the factory mounting holes already on the rear fenders.





Unfortunately, this oriented the cab leaning much too forward, so I had to resort to moving the rear frame back and lower on the fender.



I could only drill a hole right center, the gas tank takes up the whole left hand side. This means there is only one attachment point in the rear, but it seems sturdy enough.





After this, I lost track of time and forgot to take pictures as I fit and tightened the frame, ultimately drilling and bolting the front frame uprights to the tractor footwells. Here are a few pictures of the completed cab. I obviously lost daylight last night so these are from this afternoon.









Two remaining issues. The chute deflector handle needs a new location, the chute crank interferes with it.



And last and most problematic, the Berco blower lift handle is a lot higher than the Craftsman that this cab is designed for, so it is hard to reach and activate through the hole in the right hand door. I will either have to cut a larger hole in the door (a crime as this thing seems brand new), or upgrade to a power lift, something I was planning to put off until next year. I'm going to start another thread about wiring an actuator.

Oh, here's the cab I started with. Nice upgrade huh?

 

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Wow! That is quite the upgrade. Where did you find the hard-top cab?

I think you have a perfectly justifiable reason to motorize the whole enchilada (lift, chute rotation and deflection), and get rid of all of those handles. :)

BTW, I have the soft cab that you show. It always amazes me how long it takes to set that up (along with installing weight tray, chains and blower)...

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Wow! That is quite the upgrade. Where did you find the hard-top cab?

I think you have a perfectly justifiable reason to motorize the whole enchilada (lift, chute rotation and deflection), and get rid of all of those handles. :)

Mike
I found the cab about 10 miles from here in Shirley, MA. I thought it was a good deal but I wasn't sure what I had. The guy even threw in 3 55 lb. Craftsman wheel weights. I almost died when I found the OTC website and saw what these things sell for. Let's just say I got the whole shebang for substantially less than OTC gets for the glass windshield upgrade! And it looks almost new.

I guess you're right, I saved enough to justify the lift actuator!
 

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Looks Great!, and you only lost 5 hours...... I've lost whole weekends, usually right after the UPS man arrives. :trink40: :howdy:
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Looks great!

What are your plans for the old cab?
Giving it to a friend. I owe him dearly since he gave us his old pool pump when ours died just before the fourth of July this summer!
 

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Ah. I'm sure he'll appreciate it if he's blowing with an open tractor now!

(or will be, if we ever get snow...)
 

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Tech Nerd Tractor Convert
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... I almost died when I found the OTC website and saw what these things sell for. Let's just say I got the whole shebang for substantially less than OTC gets for the glass windshield upgrade!...
Nice job on the install, and great price. I got my perfectly good OTC cab last season for price that was hard to beat (trashpicked).

The OTC cab is a nice middle point for retrofits, not a full hard cab that would be inflexible, but still has enough of a frame to provide some attachment point options.

5 hours is not bad. I think I ended up with 3 or 4 evenings on mine. But I wasn't so organized.. I just suspended the cab over the tractor and started noodling things out, bending here, drilling there, adding a few extra pieces, until it fit.

Looks like you've got some serious weight on the back end. Are the tires filled also? I recently had mine (20" turfs w chains) filled with Rimguard but haven't put them to the test yet. Just not enough snow so far.

My blower had a lift handle also and as you noticed that isn't very compatible with a cab so I installed a winch/pulley/lever system to lift it. I recently picked up a JB Jr bucket and plow which comes with 2 removable linear actuators, so now I'm thinking about retrofitting the blower to use one of those linear actuators instead

I also picked up a 12v window motor for chute rotation but haven't gotten around to installing it yet.

Great find, I think you'll enjoy the cab.

(Edit: ah, this is the conclusion of the project you started in your "Metalworking 102" thread.. just realized this. Nice job on the footrest attachments.. looks very clean.)
 

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USMC
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Looking good and enjoy it. slkpk
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Looks good. Any plans for a cab heater?
Not yet, we'll see how it goes. I rarely get cold even with my old 3-sided cab. I shovel the steps before I do the driveway so I'm usually sweating like a musk ox when I climb into the cab. My next enhancements are:

I think I'm going to order the linear actuator to lift the blower tomorrow.

I would like to add front flood lights and side and rear hazard lights (led to keep the current draw down).

Possibly a fan if the windshield fogs.
 

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I rarely get cold even with my old 3-sided cab. I shovel the steps before I do the driveway so I'm usually sweating like a musk ox when I climb into the cab.
Too funny. Shoveling the steps first seems like a good idea, but I would probably get cold from all the sweat!

I live about an hour south of you. I usually wear so many layers that I can barely move. On the really cold days, two pairs of long johns, jeans and ski pants. T-shirt, flannel shirt, one or two fleece jackets, and an old ski jacket. A toque and a hat/half-facemask combo goes on top. My feet are usually the only thing that get cold, even with two pairs of socks and insulated boots. Go figure...

It's amazing what they're doing with LEDs now. Can't have too many lights on the tractor, that's for sure!

Mike
 

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Cranky Motorsports
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Looks really nice Steve! That is a huge upgrade!
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Too funny. Shoveling the steps first seems like a good idea, but I would probably get cold from all the sweat!

I live about an hour south of you. I usually wear so many layers that I can barely move. On the really cold days, two pairs of long johns, jeans and ski pants. T-shirt, flannel shirt, one or two fleece jackets, and an old ski jacket. A toque and a hat/half-facemask combo goes on top. My feet are usually the only thing that get cold, even with two pairs of socks and insulated boots. Go figure...

It's amazing what they're doing with LEDs now. Can't have too many lights on the tractor, that's for sure!

Mike
My secrets to staying warm are good boots and a set of Walls coveralls. I think the fact that the coveralls are one piece with no air gaps makes a big difference. They keep me warm while active during snow removal, and sitting still at the Patriots games. You can't beat that!
 

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I've been living in my Walls "Zero-Zone" coveralls the past week --but I dont think I'll need them today,its supposed to be 50-55 degrees here today,in the 40's tomorrow,and monday highs will be in the upper 30's,the rest of the week looks to be in the 40's ,with maybe some rain later wednesday into tursday.

..hope it snows this hard all winter!..:rolleyes:...had just enough of a dusting early yesterday morning to coat the asphalt,then it melted away by 9:30 am!..my kind of snowstorm!...we got only a dusting back before halloween when everyone north of here got blasted with 22",not a flake in between then and yesterday,and I'm glad of it...even if we get blasted the rest of the winter,at least almost 2 months of it have already passed by..I have yet to put my plow on my truck,usually its on there by thanksgiving and stays on till April..I wont cry if I never have to use it this winter,not one tear!..
 

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I am SO with you on that!!! The only thing I'm sad about with no snow is no sledding with the boys. Four feet on the lawn last year was just beyond ridiculous....
Mike
 
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