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Older sickle mower on 700 series AC

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Well I finally had some time today to mess around with my sickle mower. Here are pics of the FDT PTO on the RBT, I think this was Smilin Sam's or Rod's idea I stole. Biggie Rat did something but I couldn't ever figure out what he did from his posts a while back:

To get the RBT idler pulleys off without taking the tire off, I just unbolt both pulleys off and the it slides right out. You also have to take out one bolt that is a pivot for the cone clutch. Here is the pulley I had to take off the shaft and turn around, and also added 3 thick 7/8" washers. The idler I had to add a longer bolt, 3/8" x 2 1/2", and a stack of washers. I used some random spring I found in my garage for the idler tension. And you can see the part number of the belt I used, it is fairly tight:

Here is a pic from the other side:

These are just the sickle pulleys I guess:

Here is the lift cable, I don't really like the angle it is at, but at least it sort of works. It rubs instead of running cleanly on the pulley, so I gobbed a bunch of gun grease on it as you can see. Good thing that running board was there too to support the chain!:

This is the biggest, baddest filter I could find to screw onto the remote Sundstrand mount, it took right at 4 quarts to fill the hydrostat instead of 3, Baldwin BT 238:

This is the John Holcomb hitch I painted up a while ago. It was a tight fit on the Sundstrand, I had to tweek it just a little bit to fit:

Well that is enough for now. To get the sickle mower actually to cut, I am going to have to remove all the rivets and re-install the knives onto a new knife bar I have, because the old one is broken into three pieces. The sickle mower came from a nice member in NC and rode all the way here in the bottom of a center dump semi trailer. The new knife bar was also made by a nice member here. I also want to replace the 3 heim joints. 2 have to be replaced and I will do the other one too so it is nice and tight. I am convincing myself anyway that if these joints are too loose, they let the bar slam back and forth at the ends of travel contributing to a more early failure.

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A short update on this since I have the camera hooked up. The spring for the PTO idler is not strong enough, I only got about 1/2 mile when I used it last, although it could have just been the main belt shredding causing the PTO belt to slip :> The main belt was really old when I started, and a little on the short side, so I need to get a new belt there anyway. Here is the reinforcement on the cutter bar, I just used pieces of the old cutter bar and longer blots and rivets to make it. It also necessitates taking off the outer cutter bar hold-downs to get the cutter bar out. There may also be some worry about adding extra mass to the weight of the bar, but we will see how this goes I guess. I keep the RPM's as low as possible, just above idle seems to be enough for it to run smoothly and cut cleanly and slowly.

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