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Wet Brake question

8669 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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No worries! We are all here to help. That is what this forum is about.

You're probably right on the 4wd lever.

By the way, on the same position of the PTO lever but on the right side, you have the diff lock. I think that is self explanatory.

Again, feel free to ask any questions.
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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I would suggest checking the fuses, but seems that the previous owner hacked every single thing in that tractor.

But hey, you got something turning! Now is of to bleed the fuel system and make it run. Does that tractor have an electric lift pump or the old style mechanical lift pump? An electric one is a must. It will make things a lot easier when the tractor runs out of fuel and also will make it start faster since the fuel is already there at the injection pump.

Anyways, that's something for another day. If you can get the starter to run again, loosen the injection lines at the injector side, then crank the engine till you see fuel coming out of the lines, then tighten the lines and should start right up. Since you have a push bush to the starter, don't forget to turn the ignition on, just to energize the Stop solenoid to allow the tractor to run.

About the starter, it's hard to say. Check all the connections again I think. I've open a fair share of starters to clean up, oil the bushings and so on. They all run a lot better and faster after that, but never really forced them to the point of getting that hot.
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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
The wire for the injection pump is the shut off solenoid. It needs to be energized to allow the fuel to flow, when you cut the power, it turns the engine off.

The nice thing about Branson is that they are very simple to work on. You get little to no electronics at all, apart from the dashboard. They are still like that in the newer models.

So you need constant 12V for the lift pump and for the shut off solenoid on the injection pump.

Then you can use a toggle switch for the starter and another for the glow plugs. Just don't go much over 12/15 secs so you won't burn them. Even if you have to cycle the plugs twice to make it start.

As far as safeties, they usually have a switch on the clutch that won't allow the starter to spin, but seems like they bypassed all that with the push button.
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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By gas you meant diesel right? :eek:

Since you're already getting fuel at the injectors, I would worry much with the bleeders on the pump.

Now that's an expensive OEM starter, although, I wouldn't be surprise if a John Deere one would go over 1000$. Seems like every OEM part is overprice by 500% or something.

Hopefully the 130$ starter will fit right up if you end up needing it.

What I'm realizing after looking at your picture, is that all the tamper proof caps on the fuel screw and max RPM screw on the injection pump are missing. What I'm wondering now is that the previous owner tried to squeeze a couple more horsepower by turning the fuel screw in. This maybe also cause a runaway condition if it's not done right. Hopefully the previous owner didn't mess up with things that he should really be messing with.

Let us know how it goes.

EDIT: After closer look, doesn't seem like the fuel screw has been touched. I can still see all the paint on the lock nut.
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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 ?
One part at a time is the secret. Preferably with a minimum of 6 months apart from each other. :D
Any updates on the tractor or starter?
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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From my understanding, you just use the jumper cable on the negative lead right? Try use the jumper cables on both positive and negative. Maybe you have bad wires/connections on the tractor.

Is the battery good and strong?
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!!
No worries! I'm also anxious to see it running, as if it was my own project.

The jumper cables can't handle that much load. It was mostly for testing purposes.

Looks like you might have some bad wiring going from the battery to the starter. I would check that careful, checking the connections and terminals for corrosion and such. If possible, replace it. Although the thicker wires can get expensive.

Can't recall if you replaced the battery or not but keep it charged before trying. Don't try to spin the engine for too long. Maybe 10/15 seconds at a time. Let the starter cool down in between tries.
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 ?
The jumper cables can't quite transfer the amperage that good due to the way the clamps work, thus creating a lot of heat. You only get two points of contact, instead two full faces of contact on a simple eye terminal like it must be on the original wiring.

It's hard to say if the cables are good or bad, specially since the starter took a big hit before. But it doesn't work checking everything.
Ok latest up date .......
Replaced both battery cables and we are good now, starter working fine with button wired as I found it. Turns out the center of the positive cable was literally a solid piece. I’m thinking when the starter got real hot it must have soldered itself together.

Now I have white smoke from exhaust and small wiffs from intake side. I know exhaust means unburnt fuel. Possibly cold possibly lack of compression could be a lot of bad things.

I am pretty confident I do not have a compression isssue as the head and gasket is new. I am wondering if I set the valves in correctly because there should not be anything coming from the exhaust side right?

Are you aware of a sure fire way to set the valve so I know I am “on compression” stroke and “TDC”??

I did find a mark on bottom pullly and aligned to arrow on case, thinking this is number 1 TDC. See attached I just took these this morning. And now I can see an issue. I aligned number 1 with the arrow on the pully. AND NOW THAT I ZOOM ON PICTURE I CAN SEE IT IS NOT AN ARROW AS I THOUGHT !!!!! *** 47 year old eyeballs ?. It is actually a number 4 | 1, so I set number 1 on the 4 mark. Glad I wrote this and glad I wanted to show a picture because typing this out and adding photo helped me find a possible solution ?.

I know I’m an odd person. I’ll check with further updates as they come. Thanks for listening to me rant!!!


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One more thing
Like I was saying I am thinking the valves are not set right.

Looking at the front pulley again I see 1|4 and 2|3 stamped on the pulley 180 degrees from each other. I know at TDC both valves should be closed. So I am going to just set the valves closed at the corresponding marks stamped on the pulley and aligned with arrow stamped on the case.

Do you happen to see those marks on your Branson?
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