Once upon a time in the land of Me......

   / Once upon a time in the land of Me...... #1  

Oldpath05

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Who doesn't like a broken tractor story, and you thought this might be another 50 Shades of tractor color story, probably closer to Gone with the Wind.

Few months ago notice trans fluid leaking from the back, couple weeks ago decided to check out, dropped the pto winch, washed off the back, parked on bank, didn't take long to find the leak, cracked transmission case where the top link is mounted to. The cause that everyone here and Kubota will say is too much pto winch pulling with front tires off the ground.

Most will say that the Kubota L3400 is to small for a Fransgard V3004 winch, but all the L series tractor top links are bolted and pinned the same way. But dont worry, everyone that has a pto winch on their L series Kubota and keeps their front tires on the ground, this will never happen to you, in fact I'm almost certain that I'm the only person in the world that has broken a L series Kubota trans case.

Even tho I've welded for 30 years for a living on steel, this fix was not has good as I hoped, not really an expert in cast welding, but if I have half an idea that I can do something......Probably right way to fix/weld a transmission case is take it all apart, place on bench with strip heaters, maintain a 200+ temp, welding in cast steel out of position/place can be a crap shoot, but my mistakes might help someone else out.

It's times like this that I thank the good Lord for giving me a couple sons. So here we go, move tractor in the shop and start dismantling, after about 4 hrs. got down to where the crack is, V'd out the crack, on top there is an extra hole to keep the tractor weight down, so I started there, fill hole in, sealed with mig, then filled with stick, started down 2" weld up, down 2 more weld up down 2 more weld up......., 3 times.......then put 1/2" x 3" square stock across top, weld all around. I used 10018, 1/8 wanted 3/32 but the weld store didn't have any, maybe Nickle rod would've worked better, not sure.

When done, put a blanket on the trans, now it's the next day and notice a 2' crack starting off from the weld on drivers side, so went to the weld store to get some nickel rod, the guy say he has this TensileWeld rod that weld anything to anything, says it;s better then nickel, so I tried that, has a stainless color to it when welded, jury still out on that rod. After that crack I was discouraged so I just got some two part epoxy, covered the weld, and now we wait, full pull test will be this winter, dont think it's going to hold, might have to replace with new trans case next spring, $850.00. My sons got some pretty good pics, enjoy

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   / Once upon a time in the land of Me...... #3  
You may as well order new parts . That weld is not going to hold .
 
   / Once upon a time in the land of Me...... #4  
I would worry about how much "reshaping" the heating, cooling, and contraction of the metal is doing to the case. Are you certain the case is cast steel? From the instant crack, it sounds more like cast iron; the cast steel I've welded did so without any issues. I've only used pure nickel rod on cast iron (unless it could be brazed, in which case it was!)
 
   / Once upon a time in the land of Me...... #5  
   / Once upon a time in the land of Me...... #6  
Quite strange the rear look so weak in design, such a winch can not apply more force then the weight of the tractor can hold back. Even pulling the front wheels of the ground is not much of a deal.
 
   / Once upon a time in the land of Me...... #7  
How much weight do you have on the front end when you are lifting it? I agree with Agvg, just straight pulling shouldn't crack the case, jerking from the log catching on stumps with front end raised is a different situation. Watch people driving down the road with a heavy bush hog bouncing around. That bouncing really stresses things.
 
   / Once upon a time in the land of Me......
  • Thread Starter
#8  
Most of my land is up hill out so during the winter I sometimes fill the bucket with snow, other times I sometimes put some dirt or rocks in the bucket, if the tractor front end still wants to come up, I cut the top of log off or let one go. Maybe the top link should of been pinned through the middle hole instead of the top hole, not sure on that. Next year I'll get the transmission case replaced, least I haven't broken my hammer yet.
 
   / Once upon a time in the land of Me...... #9  
I am not sure if kubota even still makes the Heavy Duty Top Link Plate (I think that is what it was called a long time ago). I bought it since I bought an oversized backhoe cheap... it beefs up the top link... basically it was a 90* bent piece of metal (1/4" IRRC) that spread the force of the 3ph to the top of the transmission. I ended up welding the top link holders to it...

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   / Once upon a time in the land of Me......
  • Thread Starter
#10  
I am not sure if kubota even still makes the Heavy Duty Top Link Plate (I think that is what it was called a long time ago). I bought it since I bought an oversized backhoe cheap... it beefs up the top link... basically it was a 90* bent piece of metal (1/4" IRRC) that spread the force of the 3ph to the top of the transmission. I ended up welding the top link holders to it...

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Hey thanks for sharing those pictures, much appreciated, ideas like that is exactly what TBN is for. That plate should be on every L series Kubota or atleast an option to add on. I can see how much more transmission case support that would give. If I had that on my trans case it might not of cracked and that extra hole on top of my trans case didn't help either.

Now I wonder where on earth can I get one of those plates? Before I haul wood out this winter I'll have one on mine even if I have to make one, thanks again!
 
 
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