Motorcycles, tools, and garages! A little bit of everything mechanical and technical.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Going Green. JOHN DEERE green!

I am soooo slow at getting my own projects done.  Last year, a lady approached me about her dead lawn tractors.  She was in need of a riding mower, and wondered if I would be willing to fix one, taking the other as payment.  Only one of them was even close to having all of the parts, and even then it was pretty rough.  This post starts waaaayyy back then when I picked up her mower.  I won't dwell on the assembly of the 110.  I started working on the 314 last week, so these pics came from about a 3 day period.

Here's the 110 I put together for her.  Before:

 And AFTER.  Looks purty good, eh?

And this is what I took in payment.

Yeah I know.

Seems to be in decent shape, other than the busted steering wheel, ignition switch that got cut out, and missing seat foam. Front tires have some slow leaks. I have the rest of the sheet metal for it. Currently trying to figure out the no-spark issue but I'm fairly certain its got a bad coil.

The biggest issue is that the tractor is all I have- no deck, tiller, blower, blade, nuthin.
Spent some time puttering on the 314, and even got it running!

Thought I had a bad coil- tested a bit off. Borrowed a coil from my '48 Dodge, and it tested sorta okay but I still couldn't get spark. Got to monkeyin around with the points and it seems that they had some sort of film on them- while I was probing with the test light I got a big ZAP all of the sudden at the points, and viola- spark! Hooked the original coil back up, shot some gas in the carb and it fired.

Next step was the fuel system- unhooked the fuel line in a couple of places, ran some fresh gas through the tank and let it drain, then began hooking the lines back up with a new fuel filter until I got fresh gas to the fuel pump. Pulled the carb bowl off and gave it a redneck cleaning, got gas to the carb, put it all together and away she went!


Huh. It don't move.

Got to looking and discovered this...

The pin from the drive shaft to the transmission was snapped and had been for a long, long time.

Time for a temporary fix so I can see if the trans is okay. If it is, I might be willing to spend some time / money on this thing.

Drilled out the remains of the busted pin, found a bolt, made some bushings out of a roll pin, and cobbled it back together.

Set the seat pan back on, fired it up, and took it for a spin. Note the awesome steering wheel...

Seems to run and drive great. It's a little worn, but I can fix that. If only I could come up with a deck, blower, tiller, blade, etc. etc.

Followed up a couple of leads on attachements, hoping to score a deck, blower, tiller, and maybe a blade and some other small parts from the same guy my brother bought his entire bucket or three of bolts from.

Spent some more time on it this evening and got a few small odds and ends sorted out. Motor is pretty much buttoned up- still need to pick up and air filter and low speed screw for the carb and fix the points wire but other than those things and an oil change in the near future I think it's good to go.

Next step- prettify. Labor is cheap, parts are not. Might have to wait a while on the big parts purchases so for now I'm going to focus on scrubbing it up and getting some fresh John Deere Green paint on 'er.

After her bath.

Cleaned up nice. I'll let it dry overnight and hit it with the wire wheel tomorrow. Hopin to get a little paint on it tomorrow as well. Time will tell.....

Popped the hood off, scuffed it up, wiped it down with acetone, and masked off the decal.

First coat of paint:

After another coat and some drying time.

And a little comparison of the fresh paint vs. the old faded crap.

Lots better, but not perfect. I'm not spending a ton of time on this, I plan on USING the tractor so it's not going to be a garage queen. Just freshening it up. 

Fenders off, bits removed.

Spent about 45 minutes with the wire wheel knocking off loose paint,

Then a quick once over with the sander to smooth things out a bit.

Taped and wiped, ready for paint.

One coat in.

All done!

I worked on a bunch of other things while it was drying, but I'll include this part now. I bought some trailer clearance lights for tail lights- BUT... Anyone see a difference here?

The light on the right has 2 bulbs, the left only has one. They came off the same shelf, were the same price, and the boxes had the same numbers on them Oh well, one side will be brighter than the other.
Installed and wired.

Cleaning up the control tower...

And some paint.

Wire wheeled and painted most of the frame. Kinda pointless, because most of this is hidden underneath the fenders or side covers, but it makes me feel better knowing the rust has been slowed down a little...

Set the fenders back in place...

Fixed the missing ground wire for the headlights, and put the hood back on.

 Grill before:



Spent the afternoon wiring up a new ignition switch. Took some figuring but I got most of the cut wires from the old and missing switch figured out. There are 2 left that don't seem to be hooked up to anything, and the tractor will start / run and the electric PTO works fine without 'em so I guess I'll just cap them off for now.

Biggest problem was all of the universal ignition switches I found were too big to fit in the original hole because of the steering column, so I had to find a new spot to mount it. At the same time, I cleaned up the dash a bit and put some new paint on it.

Dash before:

Dash after.

Still have a little cleanup to do on the silver paint. When it's dried for a couple of days I'll hit the plastic with some cleaner and maybe some clear coat. Might even try polishing up the knobs, but thats getting a little too detailed for a beater I plan on using. We'll see.

Slapped a coat or two of paint on the air filter cover...

Side cover before:

Wire wheeled:




And the other side.

More pics from yesterday.

Ran wires to the light switch, capped the two extra wires, and tidied everything up with zip ties.


The middle headlight is burnt out but that's an easy fix.

Two more pics from yesterday. I set the seat pan back on, and found the old foam. It's falling to pieces but you get the idea.

All dressed up with nowhere to go!

This project is probably coming to a close as it is for a while. Other than painting the wheels, the rest of the parts are going to cost $$$, which I don't have at the moment.

On the plus side, I still have a week before school starts up again, and I have a '39 Dodge 1/2 ton that needs some elbow grease.

1 comment:

Kristi said...

I'm impressed. I didn't know that a coat of paint could make such a difference!