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About cod

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  1. How is it that the connections go bad? One would think that a clean metal surface, fastened to another clean metal surface would provide enough surface contact to prevent the build up of corrosion between the two surfaces but apparently that is not the case. Battery terminals and the main ground connection seem to be two areas where you would have the "best" case for a large amount of surface area, but both still get corroded over time. Cod
  2. Just a quick update. Went out yesterday and started cleaning all of the connections. Removed the battery and cleaned the terminals and wires that connect to them. Disconnected all of the solenoid wires and brushed them up. Removed the ground connection and cleaned there. Removed the connector from the back of the ignition switch and cleaned each female clip and male plug (hope the wife has some spare nail files as those slots are rather tiny). As I went I checked each wire with a ohm meter and each of them tested fine. When all of this was done I applied dielectric grease to every surface and re-assembled everything. Needless to say the beast fired right up, it's charging the battery at around 13v and so I let it run for about 15 minutes, turned it off and it fired right up. So for now the gremlins are placated with the ritual offering but it has exhibited this behavior in the past and perhaps when it gets real hot next with next weekends mowing... Thanks for the tips and to answer Garry's question, I think the board was fried when I got it as I've never been able to resurrect it. I had a spare board I sent to SOI and he mapped out how all the circuits ran and the parts to fix it but I haven't had the inclination to tackle that kind repair work. I tend to solder wires in a similar fashion to how I sweat pipes and believe me it isn't pretty! Cod
  3. Won't crank. If I turn the key to the on position and jump across the solenoid, it turns over and fires up. I'm heading out to garage now to do more tinkering. Cod
  4. Title says it all but would any of you know if there is some way to test the wires in a harness to see if they need to be replaced? I've got a 418 and it runs great but occasionally it will not start when hot. So I got through the "rituals" to satisfy the harness spirits (clean the ground, disconnect the plug from the ignition switch, jiggle wires, etc) and the problem goes away for months at a time. I'm not sure if there is a resistance setting on an ohm meter that would indicate that some of the copper strands are broken although I'm not sure that is the problem. I'm beginning to suspect that it might be easier to just run all new wires as the original are 30 years old but futzing with copper spaghetti is not my idea of a good time so any pointers/suggestions are greatly appreciated. Thanks - Cod
  5. Bob, I've never seen the axles on a 520 up close so I really don't know. JAinVA wrote: The down side to what you propose is that the normal bearings on the 3/4 axles are ball bearings and not tapered roller bearings.A ball bearing of that type is designed to take a large radial load( up and down)but is limited in axial capability(in and out).If you try to eliminate axial play with a castle nut you could overload the axial capacity of the bearing.I would recommend shims or ignoring small amounts of play as this will keep you from possibly destroying a bearing.These machines have been operated with this setup for many millions of hours and only had the tapered roller bearing upgrade to handle the greater weight of a 60" deck or loader. Jim, I agree with what you wrote and I only mentioned it as a means to "possibly" make it easier to keep the axial play low. It might be that the ball bearings aren't affected by a certain amount of play and I'm over thinking it.. Cod
  6. Out greasing the 418 the other day and got to thinking about ways to possible decrease the clearance between the front wheel bearings, the two washers and the cotter pin. I suspect there a variety "shim" type washers that might work but has anyone tried threading the ends of the axles ( 3/4-16 ) and using a castle nut instead to adjust the clearance. I've seen articles where folks have mounted a trailer hub on their axles but I'd prefer not to go that route but it seems like there is loads of space that could be taken up perhaps the bearing may last longer. Cod
  7. Replaced the battery on my 418 last week and while the old one was only 3 years old, I was puzzled as to what caused it to die over a 7 day period. It worked fine all through last winter and for the first part of this mowing season but two weeks ago when I went to start it, nothing. In fact it even when I tried to charge it, the voltage would rapidly decrease as soon as I took it off of the charger. That said I have another battery now and while the beast was running yesterday I measured the voltage going to the battery at low idle ( 12.9 ), mid idle ( 13.4 ) and high idle ( 14.1 ). Is it possible that at high idle I'm cooking the battery? Have any of you looked into a additional regulator that would keep the charging voltage at a level that charges the battery but never gets high enough to over charge it? I believe the existing regulator is working but anything over 14v seems like you may be damaging the battery if your mowing for 2 or 3 hours. Thanks in advance - Cod
  8. lawn drag

    Thanks Gents! Never heard of a drag harrow but now I've got something else to root around for. Cod
  9. lawn drag

    Looking for some ideas or suggestions to flatten lumps of compost that I spread over my lawn instead of fertilizer. I've thought of getting a piece of chain link fence, tossing a couple of cement blocks on it for weight and using that as a drag to break the compost down so it doesn't smother the grass underneath. I've thought about a spring harrow of the disk harrow but I don't think they'd work on a lawn. As always any advice is appreciated. Cod
  10. Snowblower clogging

    Wet snow seems to always be a problem and sometimes no matter what you try, the results are poor. I live in Maryland and usually the snow is "less than powdery" and at some point I may have to get a plow for when it's too wet. What really helped me was when I replaced the sprockets, pulleys and bearings, I had total access to the housing without the auger. I sanded the blazes out of it and then put on multiple coats of paint in both the housing and the chute. Once all that dried, I wet sanded everything and buffed the blazes out of it. The finished surface was as close to a mirror as I could get it and than I put on a heavy coat of wax and polished that as well. It might have been overkill and I'm not trying to recommend that you do the same but for me it made a huge difference. I haven't had a clogged chute in 2 years and last Tuesday we got about 5 inches of snow and freezing rain, and I didn't get out till it was starting to melt. The beast sailed right through it with no problems and I clean 4 driveways, so I've lucked out for now. Good luck! Cod
  11. Thanks gents although I'm surprised as I thought (and hoped) the powder coat would solve the problem. A friend of mine mentioned that perhaps spraying it with Rhino liner might work but I don't think I'll go there. I also like the idea of the SS liner as 25 years is great advertising. Oddly enough I was wondering if one could mold a plastic shell that you could fit to your deck but I suspect that it's harder than I think although they've had disposal inserts for paint trays for years. Hmmm, retirement is coming up and one does need a hobby...
  12. It's be a rough winter here in MD and the "dreadfully warm temperatures" gave me a chance to haul out the mower deck and start prepping for spring. I've got a 42" RD deck and last year I cleaned it up as best I could and tried using the POR-15 treatment to try and protect the bottom of the deck. Last fall when I put the deck away I noticed that there were a couple of bubbles and sure enough I found that the POR-15 was pulling away in those areas. I suspect that "user error" may have had something to do with it but this year I decided to clean up the problem spots, re-sand the the whole bottom and repaint with Rustoleum Rusty Metal Primer. I let that dry for about 36 hours, scuffed it up with Scotch Brite and gave it a coat of Rustoleum Gloss Black. I waited another 36 and scuffed up again and gave it another coat of GB. Once that dried I resharpened the blades and put the deck away till end I'll let it age till the end of March. The thought was that perhaps I may not have waited long enough for the POR product to set up completely (I did wait 2 days) and maybe with more time to setup, the new paint job will do a better job of stopping the rust. At the same I got to wondering if it might be better to pickup another deck, strip everything off of it and have it powder coated as from what I've seen of that process, the adhesion seems superior to traditional paints but I don't know enough about how well the powder coating would hold up over time. So if any of you have any experience with the powder coatings as they may apply to mower deck shells or snowblower components, I'm all ears as each of those items seems to benefit from extremely smooth surfaces that inhibit any kind of drag. And I also promise not the take the snow thrower off the beast until April as I'd prefer not give the snow deities a reason for their own version of March Madness... Thanks - Cod
  13. Some Drawings

    NX!!!! You lucky dog, one of the best CAD packages $$$ can buy. Started using UG16 years ago and was lucky enough to get to NX3 before I changed organizations and switched to Solid Edge and Solid Works. After 35 years of screwing around with different CAD packages NX will always be a favorite so enjoy the ride! Cod

    SpinJim, Thanks for saving me from myself as I was watching this tractor while I wrestled with my inner demons over trying to buy it. I have two 418-As and I really like them. The older of the two has over 1900 hours on the meter while the young'n just flipped to 1000. The low hours on the engine are what really appealed to me but I sincerely doubt I could have sold my wife on the idea and I've got enough bumps on my skull already... Hope you get many years of excellent service out of it and if you decide to unload the deck let me know. Cod