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Wet Brake question

8694 Views 59 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  ptsg
Hello All,

I have just acquired a Branson 4220 and the previous owner removed all plates within the brake housing. this is the first tractor (aside from a LT) I have owned and do not understand the wet braking system.

some of the reading I have done, kind of reads as the wet brake is getting it's fluid from the hydraulic system/reservoir. other posts kind of read as though ALL fluid beside cooling is the same (Tranny - wet brake - lifting - 3 pt). I did not receive a manual with the tractor but I found some spec's stating 37 gals of hydraulic fluid????? holy cow, is that correct?

so if the wet brake does get it's fluid from the hydraulic reservoir, I am assuming it will just get pumped in when it is running. or do I need to prime it after putting things back together?

more questions to follow and I greatly appreciate the help!!!!!
MTF helped me greatly bringing a 62 Gravely back from a 20 yr sleep, so I know I am on the right forum
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Thanks for the reply newsman! That makes much more sense. Do you have any thoughts on the brakes using the same hydraulic oil as all other systems?

Thanks in advance
Thanks DK Vince! Looks pretty close (spacer plates and abrasive plates). So while running the hydraulic oil just flows from the tranny into the brake housing? I thought this may be the case but kind of flying blind here..... no manual and limited pictures I can find etc.

Thanks again!
I was told that they were sticking or were stuck.
Wow thank you ptsg!!!!!!

Boy have I got questions ? never owned a tractor and found this broken Branson 4220 with FEL for 2500!! What a steal (I hope).....

I knew it had a bad head when I bought it. I did not know that the head was bad because the intake valve seat broke in half and was smashed into many pieces by the number 2 piston.

I am sure a lot of folks are going to say I am crazy, but I dug out the big pieces and polished the piston so it resembles the others....... still good compression and oil does not leak by when I filled up the #2 piston. So figures crossed I am still good, I really did not want to tear it down further. I only ended up with one extra bolt I have no idea where it goes?????

Anyway, new head assembly complete with valve guides, seats etc. fresh oil, fresh hydraulic oil, new filters all around, new battery. Reassembled the brakes from the box of parts delivered. And they delivered an extra friction plate and an extra wear plate. Which explains the sticking part...... found a good diagram and the 4220 only has 3 of each not 4, ugh.....

I’m ready to turn it over and bleed the air from the fuel lines. Anything that you could recommend before starting would be welcomed!!!


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Sorry I do have another question.

I think it is the power steering behind the fuel pump and it has a cap that says OIL. I have no idea which oil I should put in there

Power steering oil
Tran/hydro oil
Motor oil

I did not see a line coming from the tranny resiovior but the thing is bone dry.
Any thoughts on this one?

Thanks in advance!!!!
I took a couple of pictures to maybe better understand what I am talking about.


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Well I found out why they were sticking. They had too many friction and pressure plates. There were 4 friction and 4 pressure plates (if that is what they are called) for each side when they delivered.

Looking at the diagrams I figured out how they went together, pretty strait forward. Once I got everything together the tractor would not roll (like it was in gear). I took them apart and reassemble 3 times before I noticed the Branson 4220 diagram only had 3 of each....... ugh.
Took them apart again but this time only using 3 of each and we are now good to go with a little linkage adjustments.
Thanks Ptsg!!

I guess that makes sense thank you for clearifing I was a little baffled by that one.

I think it is a 2004 or 2005 model number A2000N2 and the vendor you supplied link to is great they have everything that is where I got the head, gaskets, one head bolt from and I got the parts in a week!!!!!

I did look for a piston and they have them for like 69 bucks. But that is not something I feel do not feel comfortable doing. I am really really hoping my shade tree resurfacing will hold up.

Not to mention I have no more money. Got the tractor for 2500, head and other parts for 1800, 200 fluids and filters 50 for a new volt meter so I can read ohms if needed and I still need a 140 dollar battery. OH yea I could really use front tires they look like slicks??? I have no idea what the previous owner was doing to wear them so heavily.

IF this does pan out I will be very happy ?
Newer model 2004-2005
4 wheel drive

And I really need this to pan out as we are in low lying land and every jul-aug my driveway turns into a small creek and I have to float food and water to the house. I am hoping to dig a large swale next to the driveway and dig a small drainage pong to help with flooding. I plan to use the dirt to raise the driveway and increase burm size around the creek that boarders our property.


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Yea right not fun when that happens.

I think I have most of the controls figured out, I think the first pix is the 4 or 2 wheel drive just by looking at the pix and it should be in 2 right now.

The second pix I’m not sure what these controls are for. Hydilift (maybe raise and lower PTO implement)?? And I have know idea what the 1-10 lever is for.

I’m sure you would know so I figured I would ask.

Thanks for your help it is greatly appreciated!!


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You my friend are awesome thank you for taking the time to walk me through those levers “very helpful”!!!!

The more I look at the 2 v 4 lever I am pretty sure I have in 2 because the top pix has an arrow around the front wheel and the lower pix has an arrow around the back wheel.

Just got back from the auto parts store with a new 900 CCA battery and very hopeful I do not have to drain to hear this thing fire ??????

Thanks again I’ll follow up later with hopefully good news........
No dice, big goose egg

Installed battery turned the key saw the gp symbol light up for about 10 seconds turned the key fully and nothing happened.....

Scratched my head for a minute wondering which safety switch was not made. Looking above the starter I saw 2 connections jumped out, so I’m thinking previous owner jumped out a couple of the switches. Saw 2 ground wires running from starter to up under the dash. Poked around and I found a non OEM push button...... well I push it
Bingo motor is turning over ?

Well I was over excited and pretty sure I held it too long because starter stopped turning and got pretty hot ....... even though I have read many posts to NOT run starter longer than 15 seconds.

You think I burned up the starter?

Latter tonight I’ll tap on it and hopefully it will crack again.......

Dang it !!!
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The more I look the more I find.....

The ingnition switch 6 prone switch basically feel apart in my hand as I was confirming I have 12v coming in and out.

I’m thinking about just adding a toggle for the gp and just flip it ON for 12 seconds and another toggle for the fuel pump just so I know I have what I need to try and get it to fire

That is of course once I remove and hopefully get the starter working again
There is a wire going to the pump, I thought they were all mechanical. What is the power used for in the pump?

I’ll have to determine the best course of action with making sure everything is getting the 12v it needs to run?????

gp 12v for about 12 seconds
lift pump (pulling from tank) constant 12v
Fuel pump constant 12v

Does that sound right to you? As far as the basic needs for it to run

Since many if not all of the safeties have been jumpered out...... good lord I thought my lawn tractor was scary with the seat switch bypassed
Ah that makes sense so the 12v going to the pump is kind of a kill switch. I’ll dbl check that to make sure I have constant 12v there as well. I think I do because I did crack the very top screw and a little gas came out and also a small amount from the number 1 line at injector, before starter stopped working. I do have a question on the bleeder screw as I think I see 2. One at the very top of the pump where the return hose is connected, and then there is another “under” the return hose. Does it matter which one I crack to bleed the air out of?

I took it off last night and cleaned the best I could but I do not have much faith it is any good. The copper area of the armature is significantly worn. I cleaned that cleared the spaces in between, cleaned coils, cleaned contacts of the plunger (??? The thing that engages the gears) greased what I could and put it back together. I plan on bench testing later today if it works great if not a new starter is next on the list.

The OEM site lists a starter for 699!!! They are crazy. Did a lot of cross checking and found a Sweeper Cummins type “A” as a direct replacement for 130 on eBay ?.


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Ha, yup diesel ?
Besides all of the wiring issues - hack job with the PTO lever - lack of general maintenance (oil, filters, coolant) the engin does have just about ALL factory paint on the bolts

Maybe I will get lucky and the old starter will work???
I already gave the wife the good news that I need another part........not sure how many more “one more part discussions” she is gonna take ?
Nothing new waiting to be able to afford a new starter. Took it out - bench test good - put it in nothing - did this twice

I am thinking there is a short somewhere in the starter and while installed it must be shorted. Because in the bench I can be more careful to make sure the leads are nice and strait but installed things get a little more tricky.

While I’m waiting for funds I am tracing out the electrical deal because I have multiple issues there as well

Thanks for asking and I will post any updates as they come around.....
Sooooo bizarre
Still broke so you know the story more time than money. Too the starter off again and really cleaned everything. Filed the contacts flat clean all contact areas and re-soldered the wire from solenoid trigger to the out terminal as it was a little wonky looking. Cleaned armature and spaces of armature. Greased all that needed grease.

Bench tested and this thing is singing beautifully. Fires right up no hesitation no ramp up everything looks good.

Installed and nothing!!!!!!!
Check button and I have 12 coming in but not out. Removed solenoid trigger and checked again. I have 12 coming in and out with the trigger removed. So button is good!!

So I’m thinking bad ground right?????
Using jumper I connected negative from battery directly to the bolt of the starter. All I get is a faint tick not like the hard click of the solenoid just a tick.

Pull it off and using the button bingo works perfectly. I did turn the motor by hand fearing the worst and it turns over just fine.

What the heck am I missing here?????

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!!!!

Thanks in advance
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Your right previously I just just did the negative to make sure I have a good ground. Today I tried what you mentioned both neg and pos and it turned real slowly and the jumper cables got wicked hot.

Am I right thinking the starter is toast or am I missing something again?

Thanks for helping me work though this deal!!
So you think the cables coming from the battery are bad?

When I used the jumper cables the starter did spin but very slowly and it sounded very labored. Is it possible this is just because of the jumper cables not being able to handle the load? Or maybe the starter is actually bad?

I’ll reveiw all cables coming from battery and get back with anything interesting ?
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