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WheelHorseSteve

Hydrostatic Heartache

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Hello everyone --

With winter rapidly approaching I want to get my Wheel Horse C-160 automatic ready to go. There are two relatively minor problems that I want to take care of --

1) Leaking axle seal

2) Leaking hydrostatic hoses

I've never drained the trannny, changed the filter or changed the hoses, but my neighbor has done the axle seal and has a puller that works for that.

Can anyone offer some tips on this? I'm starting the job tonight. For example, with the hoses, do I use teflon tape on the threads? (I purchased a nice brand new set from that Kitchen store referenced here on RS) Is the filter difficult to get off? I know many of you have serviced and even cracked open your hydros... any pitfalls I can avoid in doing so would be greatly appreciated.

:dunno:

-Steve

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I doubt teflon tape is going to help you. Usually the hoses leak at the swivel, not the threads, and the ends are sealed with an o-ring. If your hose is leaking at the threads, replace the o-rings. You don't want to risk getting strands of tape in the hydraulics. You'll more than likely have to replace the hoses to stop the leak. Most any hydraulic shop can make you a set.

If you replace the axle seal, check for play in the axle with the seal out. If the bearing has excessive play, a seal isn't gonna change much. You'll need a new bearing as well.

Good luck!

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I doubt teflon tape is going to help you. Usually the hoses leak at the swivel, not the threads, and the ends are sealed with an o-ring. If your hose is leaking at the threads, replace the o-rings. You don't want to risk getting strands of tape in the hydraulics. You'll more than likely have to replace the hoses to stop the leak. Most any hydraulic shop can make you a set.

If you replace the axle seal, check for play in the axle with the seal out. If the bearing has excessive play, a seal isn't gonna change much. You'll need a new bearing as well.

Good luck!

This is very helpful -- I believe the swivels are exactly where they are leaking (you can kind of monkey around w/ the swivels to reduce the leaking). I am glad I purchased a new set -- and will not use teflon tape.

As for the bearing, what is considered acceptable play in that situation? (with the seal out) I can tell you that the leak there has gotten worse and worse over the course of the summer... should be interesting to see what I find with the hub off.

The current lubricant is 10W30 motor oil. Any concerns w/ Mobil One 10W30 synthetic in a hydro?

:dunno:

-Steve

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NEVER but NEVER use Teflon tape in a hydraulic system!!!!

If you get a sting of Teflon inside the system it can ruin your pump make your valves stick and generally screw things up. I have seen several pumps at work suffer an agonizing death only to tear it apart and find a big wad of Teflon stuck to the vane pack, or have solenoid operated valves stuck open(or shut) with a piece of Teflon jammed in between the spool and the barrel of the valve.

Use pipe dope of you must (on pipe fittings) but preferably with O-ring fittings use nothing at all.

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NEVER but NEVER use Teflon tape in a hydraulic system!!!!

If you get a sting of Teflon inside the system it can ruin your pump make your valves stick and generally screw things up. I have seen several pumps at work suffer an agonizing death only to tear it apart and find a big wad of Teflon stuck to the vane pack, or have solenoid operated valves stuck open(or shut) with a piece of Teflon jammed in between the spool and the barrel of the valve.

Use pipe dope of you must (on pipe fittings) but preferably with O-ring fittings use nothing at all.

Glad I asked! :dunno:

Another question - I remember my dad filling his oil filters with oil before installing. Something I should do for the hydro filter or does not matter? I have a new OEM filter ready to go.

And how much oil does this thing generally take? I could swear I read somewhere about 5 quarts?

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So I should have known better than to pick a thread title like this. :dunno:

I successfully swapped the hydraulic hoses out with a new set -- they look nice and don't leak.... that is the good news. The bad news is -- I might have disturbed something in the transmission in the process -- here is what happened the other day.

After having used it for our snowstorm (~1 hr of plowing/driving), and turned it on again a few days later and within the first minute or two it lost hydraulic power altogether. The snowplow was up and slowly sunk... and no further motion was possible w/ the transmission. I confirmed that the hydro pump was spinning... at least, the pulley was... no broken drivebelt here. I ended up rolling it into the shed and thinking I might have a dead hydro pump on my hands.

Well, I added some more fluid and was able to get it moving again. I'm not sure if it was that the fluid was somehow low (again, it worked fine for ~1 hr the other day!) or if some bypass/relief valve opened up... or something. It scared me... I remember reading stories about C160 Autos dying out of the blue.

Some other notes -- I did change the hydro filter w/ an OEM Wheel Horse one. I then filled it with ~5 - 5.5 quarts of Mobil One synthetic 10W-30.

Ideas?

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Those old Sundstrand's really need to be filled right up to work properly. Did you check the level of the oil using the dipstick? Also, I hope you turned the tow valve when you pushed the tractor. Those should never be pushed without turning the tow valve.

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Those old Sundstrand's really need to be filled right up to work properly. Did you check the level of the oil using the dipstick? Also, I hope you turned the tow valve when you pushed the tractor. Those should never be pushed without turning the tow valve.

So I'm hoping it is just a matter of the oil being low. The dipstick is a bit hard to read but it was sort of 2/3 between E & F on it... so perhaps that was the problem!

RE: the tow valve, mine is unmovable. :wh: There is a flat-head screwdriver slot but it's so unbelievably tight and the location is horrible. What I have noticed is that you can slowly roll it for a few feet (~3-4 ft) and it puts up resistance. If you let it sit for awhile (~10-15 minutes) it rolls again fairly easily for another few feet. I have a feeling this is not a good practice but I don't have much of a choice... that tow valve is a real problem! :dunno:

My neighbor's 1978 C-161 auto has a square head and can easily be turned w/ a wrench... they wisened up over the course of those 2 years.

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hope you dont have a bad pump,been there done that,and yes they do just go with no warning at all,i made a special tool for my 1975c160auto to release the hydro,its a flat bar that i ground to fit in the slot and it can be held by a vice grip to undo the screw,good luck

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That valve is a real pain to get loose seems like every Sunstrand I get is stuck like that. I just had a C-120 that would not move no matter what I did. Besides not moving it is in a really tough spot to get at. Anyway I was stripping it down to redo so I sprayed PB Blaster on it and after I took the sheet metal off I could get to it better. After a couple days of spraying it fnally came loose. You can remove it all the way out and coat the threads with never seize to eliminate that prolem in the future.

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Oh boy... I took it out this morning and it is driving erratically. Jerky... Delayed forward response (like 10 sec delay!)... Racing, crawling... It's terrible. Fluid is full... If anything a bit overfilled now. Could too much fluid be to blame or am I looking at a new transmission? :dunno:

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dont see that over filling would do that,but check the linkage first,and the cam plate on the tranny isnt worn or broken,its worth it before you tear it apart,you can put it on blocks and take off the cover that is over the linkage between your legs,make sure every thing is free and working smoothly in there,then start it and play with the controls and make sure its all good,just becareful when its in the air,it is a bit dangerous but its how to see if every thing is working correct,the plastic plate in there does wear,so maybe you will be lucky

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Another thing to check is the little arm on the trans linkage that is fastened to the shaft on the transmission. It's the arm that that plastic cam moves. It's held on with a set screw. I bought my 160 and it was all jerky and erratic. I went to adjust the linkage and that setscrew wasn't even in the arm. The plastic cam was moving the arm back and forth and the arm was slipping on the trans shaft. It would bite now and then and turn the shaft. I readjusted the neutral setting and replaced the screw and that solved the problem for the winter. In the spring It started acting like things were binding up in the trans but the lift worked ok. I ended up having to replace the hydro motor. The pump was ok.

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So I secured another whole transmission -- it's the older 90-2046 {hydrogear type} from a Charger, 12/16 Auto, etc. -- and am excited to have this as a back up. Before swapping transmissions I am thinking of adding Seafoam to the transmission oil as one of my last-ditch efforts to avoid making the swap. I suspect that my oil change caused some sort of contaminant to break loose or perhaps I introduced it somehow... not really sure. Perhaps something is clogging up the relief valves and perhaps seafoam will help.

It sounds like some have had success with this product to fix the jerky transmission problems. The DCL linkage is secured well... it is definitely something internal.

Given that the transmission is running Mobil One 10W-30... I'm thinking of using traditional Seafoam vs the Seafoam transmission product (that is likely geared towards ATF).

Thoughts? Concerns?

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So I've "seafoamed" it... ended up using the transmission product since the engine oil product was unavailable. Prior to doing so I tried the hydro and it's literally producing nothing now... no hydro lift... no motion. Is there anything else I should check before swapping transmissions? (relief valves, etc.) To my untrained self I feel like I might have a bad pump?

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sorry to hear that,i dont know what you should for,when mine went i tore it apart because thats all i knew what to do,i found a broken retainer ring and something else was broken,dont remember because i then took it to a hyraulic shop to be professionally rebuilt,i didnt have a spare then,but if you have one you are good to go with a swap,then you can fart around with theold one

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sorry to hear that,i dont know what you should for,when mine went i tore it apart because thats all i knew what to do,i found a broken retainer ring and something else was broken,dont remember because i then took it to a hyraulic shop to be professionally rebuilt,i didnt have a spare then,but if you have one you are good to go with a swap,then you can fart around with theold one

Thanks Canadian Wheel Horse Lover! I have been studying the repair manual and man... this is not my cup of tea. Check valves, relief valves... blockages that you need a magnifying glass to see... crazy tolerances. I think it's time to accept the inevitable... I am lucky to have found another whole transmission that will work. Once I have the swap complete and the tractor working again I can always take apart the old one and see what I can figure out. Maybe I'll find something obvious. :dunno:

One cool idea... I could somehow mount the old transmission and run it off the PTO to test it. There is no way I'd ever swap back unless I was sure it was working well again... so coming up with a testing setup is definitely desirable.

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I wonder why no one has tried to put a newer style Eaton 1100 in an older "C" like yours Steve? If they fit in the Blackhoods I see no reason why it shouldnt fit in the Square hood "C's" .

If you want to be the first to do this conversion let me know, I have a complete Eaton 1100 with all the hydraulics and linkages still in the tractor I'm looking to get rid of.

Mike........

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I wonder why no one has tried to put a newer style Eaton 1100 in an older "C" like yours Steve? If they fit in the Blackhoods I see no reason why it shouldnt fit in the Square hood "C's" .

If you want to be the first to do this conversion let me know, I have a complete Eaton 1100 with all the hydraulics and linkages still in the tractor I'm looking to get rid of.

Mike........

Very nice offer, Mike! I have the metal working / fabrication skills/tools of a 5 year old... I don't know that I'd be able to pull it off. That said, I too am surprised nobody seems to have tried this conversion... At least, we haven't seen any talk about it on Red Square. The Eaton 1100 is a stout hydro and would be a good option as the Sundstrands get harder and harder to find.

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My guess is that the c160 has the narrow dash tower and a eaton 1100 hydraulics need the wide dash tower. That would still work, but you wouldn't have a flip up seat pan and have to use the c160's lift valve and lift cylinder with new hoses to feed the valve. I think it all could be done with just bolt on parts and new hoses from the trans to the valve, so no real fab skills would be needed. might have to grind a notch here and there to make things fit. The brake rod and motion lever would need to be swapped out too. All and all I would say that it would make a classic c160 a little better! My 74 c160 with a sunstrand works good and does slow down when its worked hard and gets hot. but is back to normal after cooling off for 15 min. so the thought of putting a eaton in mine was a thought, But I like the tractor the way it is and A sunstrand would go back into it, as I like it the way it is. The classic big block :wh: auto with hyd. lift. :dunno:

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I wonder why no one has tried to put a newer style Eaton 1100 in an older "C" like yours Steve? If they fit in the Blackhoods I see no reason why it shouldnt fit in the Square hood "C's" .

If you want to be the first to do this conversion let me know, I have a complete Eaton 1100 with all the hydraulics and linkages still in the tractor I'm looking to get rid of.

Mike........

Somewhere I have seen a C160 with an Eaton, but I'll have to think about where it was. I have had an Eaton case bolted onto the back of my 1276 as a mock up for something I was doing, and I decided it could easily be done, but in the end decided to go with the Sundstand.

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The only sure-fire way to resolve your issue(s) is to pull the hyd pump and hyd motor to examine them. Anything short of that is time-wasted conjecture. Face it; you have a 35+ year old machine that is just plain worn out from abuse, misuse, neglect, and other Rodney-Dangerfield oriented afflictions. I have rebuilt many of these and if you'd like to pursue that course, send me an off-site email. My email address is:

daveoman@windstream.net

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Well, at long last I have the C160 auto running again -- installed a 90-2046 auto tranny from a Charger or Bronco care of another Red Square member (thank you!!) Here is the finished product:

hydrogear_1r.jpg

hydrogear_2r.jpg

This hydrogear based transmission is a few years older than my original but seems to run well at this point... I look forward to plowing with it this winter. It was a bolt-on -- no modification needed! (gotta love Wheel Horse interchangeability) The only snag was the difference in hose connectors on the pump (for the hydro lift). Thank you Eldon (Classic Kitchens & More) for your help! (the custom hoses worked like a charm)

Thank you everyone for your advice and guidance!

-Steve

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That's a pretty sharp looking machine with the new rear end, hitch and all. Perhaps you could share some more photos of the whole tractor. Looks great!!!

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That's a pretty sharp looking machine with the new rear end, hitch and all. Perhaps you could share some more photos of the whole tractor. Looks great!!!

Thanks Gary! I will be posting some more pictures of it this winter (snow will make a nice backdrop while it's in "winter mode"). This is going to be my snow plowing and mowing machine... even got a nice front weight for it (thanks to Charles - CRE1992) that will help keep those front wheels planted for plowing. I have a C-100 8-speed now as well that needs an engine... that is going to be the grading / towing machine once I get it running.

Good luck with your carb / engine swap! I can definitely appreciate wanting the hydro for snow/mow duties.

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