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Gene's Shop

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Maintenance - property and machines



Many of us do a lot of maintenance stuff outside our hobby but it may include our hobby equipment too.  Linda and I have 26 acres surrounding our house that requires a lot of maintenance. So, I thought I’d start this blog with a wide scope in mind and cover some of things I do and probably reflect back on things I’ve done too. 

Sept 18-19, 2021  

Now that I've retired its time to put at least a little emphasis on improving our yard. We live at the bottom of a hill and there is a rock shelf not far below the surface. So, water from uphill comes our way washing what little topsoil we have on farther down into the woods. I let my career get in the way of yard improvement for the last 11yrs and I've vowed to get started. Picked up a nice Simplicity revitalizer in OH while attending 2021 GOTO. Set it to lightly work the surface and loosen thatch in the shady parts of our yard. Some say its late to over-seed but we’ve been dry for the latter portion of the summer and rain is in the forecast. FC1A19DC-1342-4C4A-BE4A-DF0BEBBAE560.thumb.jpeg.2c73016ea0da5de2bf46250e18ceec48.jpegA052DDAB-84EB-40A2-B9CB-7316C570BB6C.thumb.jpeg.5ace5fb41cc7ac81a97e159fc34a89f8.jpeg

Equipment used: Conquest 16-44 with turbo blower, Hydro-18 with revitalizer, the Bumblebee 10 with Agrifab seeder. I used a shade mix including creeping red fescue, bluegrass and perennial rye. Sunny spots are covered w/zoysia.  Found the revitalizer likes more even ground than we have but it worked well carving slight groves for a good seed bed. Blew out a turbo belt (2nd one this season @$22ea) and I used 25# seed at $1.95/lb. Finished up seeding some points and harder to get to areas by hand. DB78EC07-80D1-47D1-B3E5-06B520252D77.thumb.jpeg.20cc95573a5ea1e5c5c514f7c8295e13.jpeg

September 21, 2021  Received 2.1" rain last night so timing was good. We do have a yard irrigation (needs adjustment and more heads) but you just cannot beat a good rain at seeding.  Cleaned up the equipment after use with leaf blower and today I removed excess dirt and debris before placing it on the pallet racks for storage. 6C49A179-4F97-4B9F-A087-8FA830CE0259.thumb.jpeg.c3aea9ea1b1fa9fd838b84f60c7f8a42.jpeg

Found the one way to grease this zerk was to pry the bearing cover out of the way - ugh! Blades and spacers are spring tensioned from middle so I did get it to take grease!3C49A949-BBD0-4517-BC4B-76C4010D6F53.thumb.jpeg.3260c62a5b4a6e467499ca80a9b6c1e8.jpeg

Time to reload equipment on shelving. 

September 21-22, 2021

Zoysa along our drive has elevated to a level that’s above the drive causing water to travel from the street nearly to our house. I am in need of grass in sunny areas around the shop so I used the Agco 2025 loader tractor to dig a strip along the drive and relocate them to around the shop. 

my good neighbor brought his long handle flat shovel, som gutter nails, and string to mark the strip and cut the sod. Worked great after a 2.1” rain. 


strips were cut length of the bucket. East to cut new digits for the sod 


sod strips awaiting placement


not sure why this happened 


luckily I saw the cap quickly so I raised the front off the ground, replaced the snapring and dustcap, and was back in business


I must not have made sure the ring was completely set in the groove


September 23, 2021  Watered in the new sod transplant strips, listened to the Cardinal game, and changed out the blades on the Conquest 44” deck to gators. It’s that time 


Never pass up a chance to grease so while on the floor I greased the Conquest front axle and front wheels. 


Saturday September 25 I musta ran over something yesterday with the loader tractor. Right rear tire flat. Luckily a tire shop could fix it today. So, off with the wheel weight, chains and wheel: forgot the lug nuts are metric


Ellie and her mother stayed a few days and Ellie wanted some tractor time


September 27, 2021 fall roundup and shop cleaning time 9D4E38B9-1773-4EBF-B9C8-18B71D9ACA58.thumb.jpeg.c9150d081a33930b60817ed7a25cae4f.jpeg

with loader assistance the Agri-Fab carryall and seeder on the top shelf and revitalizer on the bottom. Still some rearranging to be done39A76152-A9A9-475F-8D3D-9A82E4A1049D.thumb.jpeg.ec487466f65bd1cc50bc7fd17fc6a7d4.jpeg

winter 2021-22 maintenance. Washed and waxed the Conquest 16-44


and took a few pictures before removing the  deck and power bagger


new in ‘02 and she’s proven to be worthy


 winter duty clothes


and a little seat cushion maintenance inspired by @SmilinSam



Removed the chrome front bumper and replaced with original black one. Chrome bumper was kinda a rare option.



Tuesday December 14, 2021  We are experiencing an extremely warm winter. Local weather forecast for today: Clouds will increase and temps in the mid-60's. Tonight cloudy with temps near 60 at midnight, the warm to mid 60's by Wednesday morning. Wednesday forecast: very warm and windy with > 50mph winds. Temps likely reaching record in mid-70's. Dec 14 avg high is 44* and avg low 27*. So far I've probably only burned a dozen sticks of wood in the shop, mainly to take the chill off in the mornings. Have had the overhead door open many days.

December 17, 2021 Temp in 30’s, cloudy and rainy all day. Fire felt good


Wanted more light so caught this on eBay


and added in-line to a ceiling fixture9D2B4CE6-CA77-425B-ADFD-DDB5D5BF4718.thumb.jpeg.e26d2531838f0634fd0d43163993cfee.jpeg

Never been a detail guy but YouTube can help me do about anything maintenance wise. Watched several videos on dual action polishers and compounds before deciding to buy a MaxShine M8S, some Griots Complete Coumpound, and a bag of HF microfiber towels. 6DB25594-DC76-481F-89AD-A51D82A0AF94.thumb.jpeg.91d437cd101b6c6870c141f021f02744.jpeg

Should have taken a before picture but started on the Sovereign and you can see where I worked first


Bringing the old oxidized paint back to life slowly. Old girl cleans up nice 



Time to try this blogging thing again 

In summer 2017 a SimpletrACtors member alerted us of a CL Simplicity fdt loader and weedcutter for sale near Des Moines, IA. I called, took off work , and landed this beauty3CAD5732-A0F4-4DE1-9F98-644B0ABE7572.thumb.jpeg.673623fd3fa5afeff7f0561c388cb1e8.jpeg1E887334-D2ED-49EF-A739-A40B0E76B000.thumb.jpeg.9bcde871d194c3b4893555f64941c90c.jpeg

Blades we’re stuck and no hitch so I moved it to the basement, squirted PB Blaster whenever I thought about it, and bought a fdt snowblower hitch from a FB group memberD0FD86C3-57FE-47D8-869A-30473F2ADCF3.jpeg.29d3e2b7d77b39b7941e3b2bd3630896.jpeg

Fast-forward to May 2022. It’s weedcutter rejuvenation time! No amount of PB Blaster could free this up so it’s tear down time. So, I pulled out couple B&D Workmates for a work table an the fun begins

2653DC99-17CD-4644-949E-0EB4856AACC7.thumb.jpeg.02c579e51f69ef3783947946aaff08d7.jpeg38E6A372-B50D-4C14-8AFB-4A5AE74958EB.thumb.jpeg.278ff770b7fdc756f80be639e094c75d.jpegThe old machine is in pretty good shape. PO told me it was used primarily to clean up around electric livestock fences. Top shield was realitively easy to remove. Look at the crud in the corner and stiff belts-all original Simplicity 34FCB23B-1CC6-4CC8-8FD9-1F7281462C78.thumb.jpeg.d9d4cafaf49ac48ffcad09d9168d50c5.jpeg627934BC-032D-4D5F-8E39-E3A41395D36C.thumb.jpeg.d669e00cbbd71ad728fb3b0946e028f7.jpeg

Took plenty of pictures for later reference


Removing arbors was a challenge. Bolts rusted so my new Milwaukee 1/2” impact came in handyB3546D54-39F1-4BCA-A7BD-2F48BEDF2927.thumb.jpeg.299255a213bb493ed2bfea2460d4a019.jpeg

After removing all arbors a greater challenge to separate pulleys. #1 came apart rather easily. Note spacers and shims used892FD0D2-3781-42A8-9DF7-88C8BB425688.thumb.jpeg.86e964f67b2f862d57d9c4658db63945.jpeg#2 is the power #2 is the power drive arbor and most challenging to separate. I watched @GrincheyOne YouTube video https://simpletractors.com/forums/topic/46497-990370-weed-cutter-rebuild/

 2307630A-8518-4184-A989-D15A22B1B53C.thumb.jpeg.52e42bfa72dd388c23a07fd6f0bb4e0f.jpeg81559470-B8B1-4B2B-AC9E-8E34AABDAC09.thumb.jpeg.85f3b75010605b16e4bfaee63e5f28e5.jpeg1A51C9F8-407C-4B62-9BC8-47D15BB80180.thumb.jpeg.68348f2654797e03d8be209e5cf14e77.jpegC86DD5CD-9253-46D5-8E67-27BE949F31EE.thumb.jpeg.73caed21dc20d5a4a8712e53ac1c3e78.jpeg32191F11-271F-451F-9888-E8BD37305448.thumb.jpeg.2605cb963b4fc47f492d6a77f9dd14cb.jpegAll original Hoover bearings and same as mower deck bearings. Had 6 inexpensive EBay purchased bearings on hand so decision time: use them and buy 2 more or buy 8 new ones?

Decided to use the bearings on hand and order couple more from Ebay.90ABEFB0-1BF5-4CA1-B870-94837CE65828.thumb.jpeg.7db50cbf5b34b2585ac1842e870a6c2a.jpeg

and bought 3 new NAPA 4L300 belts per @Chris727  https://simpletractors.com/forums/topic/63531-weed-cutter-rebuild-now-completed/?tab=comments#comment-508740


Starting reassembly




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Fleet looks good. When is the proper seeding time for this region? I thought it was in the fall. It always seems to be too dry to seed around here in the fall and there's no practical way to water a large yard. 

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Thanks Chris. We usually seed in early September and water the seed in. Works better than spring seeding most times. 

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Your pictures have served to remind me of the zerks I always forget to grease on the inside of the front wheels....dOd

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Someone has hijacked this - get rid of

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