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Well I've got a 420 on my trailer so this thread may be very timely. But that's another story. I've looked over the front PTO and thinking something something different might work better. Army? You mentioned running a single belt. Have you done a lot of work with it that way? I'm thinking a single "B" belt may work just as well replacing the impossible to find dual clutch sheaves. Of course the PTO is burned up on the 420.
 

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I only had the single belt on to see how tight it was with the engine leveled properly and to help determine the belt size I actually needed. The dual belt set up works fine. I just need pulley guides for it.

Ah, yes! I have a plan for that.
By keeping the original front engine mount, I still have the original holes in the original locations for the belt guides. One of my belt guides has always been missing so I plan to make or buy a replacement for that one and bolt them back in.
I didn't think about you retaining the original front mount. I used the original front mount on the engine I made the mounting plate for too so the shield and guides worked fine and still do. Will the U shaped shield still work for you? I had to replace the bolt tabs on two of my 400 shields. Made some L brackets and bolted them to the shield and then the lower engine mount. They seem to crack and break easy. The belt guides are different from side to side. Which one do you have? Don't see any on eBay at the moment for reference purposes.
 

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Pretty crappy pic. Sorry. Best one I have showing the pulley guard/cover/shroud/shield ..or whatever it's called. This is what I did with mine. I cut the buggered up tabs off the sides and bolted some brackets in their place. I imagine you'd weld them but the brackets would work fine either way.
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John Deere 400
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Discussion Starter · #104 ·
Army,
Your right side bracket (left in your photo) looks correct, but the left side bracket is upside down and on the wrong side of the engine mount bracket. At least according to the manual:
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I have the M49701 bracket for the left side. Missing the straight M49700 for the right. Which is good…the straight one will be easier to fab.
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Really hoping to make good progress on the PTO tonight.
 

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Could be. Wouldn't be the first part I installed upside down. That's an old pic from about 2008 or thereabouts. Don't recall if there was a reason for it.
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Army,
Your right side bracket (left in your photo) looks correct, but the left side bracket is upside down and on the wrong side of the engine mount bracket. At least according to the manual:
View attachment 268352

I have the M49701 bracket for the left side. Missing the straight M49700 for the right. Which is good…the straight one will be easier to fab.
View attachment 268353

Really hoping to make good progress on the PTO tonight.
 

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John Deere 400
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Discussion Starter · #107 ·
Not nearly what I wanted to. I had an appointment run longer than expected and then got a call from my dad to help put a boat back together. But I made some progress.
I cut a section of pipe to space out the PTO pulley from the engine. Unfortunately the pipe ID was just a bit too big which would allow it to fit over the slight step in the crank and contact the crank seal. That’s not going to work.
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So, I made a washer that is a very snug “wiggle fit” on the crankshaft and will not fit over that slight step. I counterbored it to center and locate the pipe.
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I’m planning a similar counterbore in the PTO pulley to capture the outside edge, but I didn’t get that far.
I’m not sure I’m very happy with this solution. It will work just fine, but it feels slightly cobbled to me. If I were buying a kit, I’d expect this to be a heavier wall pipe bored to the proper size to slide on the crank.
I also considered drilling and tapping the PTO pulley and bolting a steel plate over the end of it to locate it. But that felt sloppy to me as well.
I’m going to keep going down this route for now and see how it turns out.
 

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John Deere 400
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Discussion Starter · #109 ·
I've adapted shaft couplers cut to length that are inexpensive and bored to the correct shaft size for uses like this.
Good suggestion.
I started poking around the McMaster site for shaft couplers. There are some possibilities. Looks like the cheapest option is around $30.
Then I did some searching through their spacers and found a 1.5” long bushing to fit this shaft that appears to be drop in for what I’m doing. It is about $7.
I’ll still stick with what I have here for now, but to do it again, I think I’d go with the bushing.
 

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McMaster is my go-to for stuff like this. Occasionally Surplus Center, too. Have a care with the amount of tightening on the shaft bolt torque to hold the PTO pulley on. You are asking that modified washer to hold a fair bit of pressure. I might be wrong and the bolt just keeps the pulley from falling off.
 

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John Deere 400
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Discussion Starter · #111 ·
I got the pulley cut to locate the pipe.
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And the pieces stacked into place:
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I need to get a bolt for the end of the crank to keep everything in place.
Next I’ll make the belt guide that I’m missing and put the guard on. Then I think I’m moving to the exhaust.
 

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Discussion Starter · #112 ·
I pulled the valve cover with the oil fill:
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And replaced it with the standard valve cover:
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Then I got a measurement from the exhaust gasket and the exhaust port to verify what size pipe to order for the exhaust:
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I ordered a couple feet of 1”, schedule 10 stainless pipe and some stainless perf from online metal supply. Also ordered a couple schedule 10 weld els, a bolt for the end of the crank, and a push/pull cable that I intend to use for choke and throttle from McMaster.
Got the replacement built for the missing M49700 belt guide:
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Bolted together the guides and guard around the PTO pulley. I didn’t realize ‘till this morning that this photo is too dark to see much. I’ll try to remember to get a better one

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Another view:
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That is where she sits right now. The McMaster order will be here today. I’ll get the crank pulley bolted down tight when the bolt arrives and will likely start cutting exhaust flanges.
 

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Excellent progress. Really enjoying your thread. I tried brightening up your pic but another shot with better lighting would definitely be more gooder.

Could just be the pic but your belts look tight enough to spin the PTO even when it's not engaged. Mine don't do it (now) when the belts are cold but they start grabbing and spinning the deck after they warm up and have more grip. They seem to be right on the edge of too tight/too loose. As I'm sure you already know, the trick is to have them slack enough to not grab with the PTO disengaged but not so loose that the idler pulley pushes the belts over too far.

I somehow ended up with two sets of really good PTO belts in the parts cabinet. They will only work on my resto'd 400 and my blower 400 and they both already have newer belts on them so I'm in good shape for spares.
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Discussion Starter · #114 ·
I think it is just the picture and the way I have the belts positioned. I’m actually concerned that they seem loose when the tensioner (PTO) is pulled in. I don’t know how that can be since the pulley should be within mm’s of where it was with the Kohler. Not going to worry about it ‘till I can test it. Might be just fine.
 

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Discussion Starter · #115 ·
I made a washer to retain the pulley on the crank. I could have just bored the original washer out to fit the larger 5/8” Honda crank bolt, but it was pretty beat up. Sitting on the bench was a 1/2” thick scrap from a hole saw. The OD was good for what I wanted and I just needed to open the center hole to 5/8”. The 1/2” thickness was a little ridiculous for this purpose, but I decided to go forward with it anyway. Then I decided to dress it up a bit too.
Yes, I’m completely aware that this part is crazy overkill and totally silly. But I had fun making it.
Too bad it is another nice looking part buried in the machine and nearly impossible to see.
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The fine thread bolt from McMaster shipped from another location and didn’t arrive yesterday. In the meantime I just stuck a course thread in place to get everything to sit there. Added some light to better show everything. Would have turned out better with some cleaning.
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Discussion Starter · #116 ·
The choke/throttle cable DID show up from McMaster. I was initially a bit disappointed. The thing is massive. I should have spent some more time looking at dimensions. Rushing leads to mistakes. Check this thing out. I think I could fit it under the dash, but I’m not sure that I WANT to fit it under the dash.
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However, as I looked it over more closely, I realized the dimensions I care about look pretty good. The diameter of the center wire and the diameter of the outer cover are quite close to the Honda cables. They should be since those are the dimensions I was paying attention to while shopping.
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So I may not use the knob end of this cable, but I think the rest of it can be chopped up to work.
I should also note: I could have just ordered auto parts choke cable and made it work, but most of what I could find was Dorman. I avoid their products like the plague. Too many bad experiences.
 

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Discussion Starter · #117 ·
Now, on to the stuff a few folks asked about; exhaust fabrication.
I had this scrap of 3/8” stainless left over from my last exhaust project. It’s kind of ugly, but big enough to cut out a couple flanges.
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I started by tracing the exhaust gasket onto it:
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And after some quality time with the angle grinder I ended up here:



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Round one to the drill press left me with an exhaust cap. Not going to run very well like this:
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Round two at the drill press looks a little better. Too bad my biggest bit is only 3/4”. I need a 1” hole.
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So next we had a little make out session with a carbide burr in the die grinder:

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It slides into place nicely:
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And even lines up with the exhaust port:

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And a quick mock up of the first weld elbow (also from McMaster):

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Discussion Starter · #118 ·
The correct crank bolt arrived yesterday:

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And I made the second exhaust flange:
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I think I’ll be putting the hood on today so that I know how much room I have for the exhaust. Pipe should arrive today so I’m hoping for good progress over the weekend.
 

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Very interesting project you have going on here, I find it mesmerizing stepping down through all your fine photo's, looking forward to the next update. Tom
 

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Discussion Starter · #120 ·
I didn’t accomplish much last night, but I’ll share some photos anyway. I spent most of the night sitting on a bucket next to the tractor looking at stuff and test fitting pieces. Hood, grill, and side shields all went back on (and off and on…) to check fit. Found that valve cover to side shield clearance is too tight. They’re touching. So it looks like I’ll be dropping the front mount just a bit today.
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I checked the PTO mechanism as Army had warned about. There is not much room to drop the engine before the pulleys try to occupy the same space. I think I’ll be ok, but if not, it looks like some simple modification to the PTO bracket would create clearance again.
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I found a tin can in the recycling bin that matches my 4” pipe pretty closely. The 4” pipe will form the outside of my muffler.
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It is a lot easier to hold this up in place to get ideas.
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I wanted to use this 1 5/8” stainless pipe as an exhaust tip, but it is a pretty tight fit through the side shield.
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Looks like I’ll be using the 1” stuff instead. I’ll probably dress it up with some sort of slash cut and rounded edges.
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