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bent sickle bar

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I am waiting for Fedex to deliver a part for my 46 inch Simplicity sickle bar. I thought I would get the pieces onto the work bench and get the tools organized. As I put the bar on the bench, I noticed a slight bend in it. Where the 1st and second rock guards on the inboard end meet, there is a slight bend. If I run a string from end to end, I doubt that I would have more than 1/8 inches of clearance at the bent spot. This is right in the area where the drive meets the knives. Should I be greatly concerned about this? I have no idea how much play is allowed for on the bar. If I take the first three rock guards off, I should be able to straighten the bar in a press at work. But I wonder if it's necessary. Any thoughts on this will be appreciated.

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I wouldn't be greatly concerned with a slight bow on a working sickle. But if you already have it apart, why not do the job right and straighten it? Maybe even weld on a strong-back reinforcement.

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Dav, I have two bars and both of them have that slight bend in them. It has never affected the proformance any as far as I can tell. Its pretty hard to weld any thing on it as the clearance is such that it can snag on the rock guards. Personally [I] would leave it alone.

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Our flex bars on our combines bow all over the place when we are running. If it doesn't really rub hard run it. But if you can press it a bit....might not hurt to straighten it a tad. ken

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