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SimpleMan

Cast iron vs. Steel front axles

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dmcluckie
I believe it has become a marketing thing. You could make a durable axle out of plastic composites. But "cast iron" is a marketing knock on the cheap stuff found on low end lawn tractors. My 93 Landlord has what appears to be a formed hollow steel axle. If made well, it can be and probably is very strong. -Don

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Kent
I agree with Don -- it's a marketing gimmick -- much like the HP races. I can't believe 24-25 HP engines being put on tractor frames that couldn't handle but maybe half that much power if they could get traction.... What was the HP of a Ford 8N, Massey 35, Allis B? Or, look at the little 15-20 HP two and three cylinder diesels in the Kubotas, Yanmars, NH Boomers and stuff. They run backhoes and loaders and other serious attachments, not just a mower deck.... Weight for strength and traction, heavy flywheels for torque, etc... Any way, the Simplicity solid steel axle is (was?) a pretty rare design. The cast iron is commonly being compared to the cheap and weak stamped steel axles found on many AYP and MTD lawn or yard tractors...

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jlasater
The thing about cast parts is engineers can modify the mold to put more metal where it's needed and less where it's not. That's tough to do with normal stamped steel parts. Looking at it, the front cast axle on the to-be-restored Bolens H14 I have is probably stronger than the solid steel axle on my 716H. Both are overkill for my uses though :-)[A href='http://www.wheatfarm.com']http://www.wheatfarm.com[/a]

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powermax_paul
To me, the terms “Cast Iron” and “Steel” are as meaningless as “Wood” or “Plastic”. There are so many different types and grades. Very weak vises are made of cast iron, as are the strongest. Some solid steel wrench jaws will spread if too much force is applied by hand. Others will withstand excessive force applied with pipe extensions. Quality design, materials, and construction are the only factors that matter. As for the steel axle in the Sovereign, lets say you hit something hard enough to bend it. It can be straightened. Hit a cheaply made cast iron axle with the same force and it will break beyond repair.

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SimpleMan
Hi to all. I was wondering as to the pros/cons between a cast iron front axle, and a solid steel one such as on my Sovereign. I have no problems with mine...but was curious since most every one has it in their heads that "cast" is the only way to go when it comes to a heavy duty front axle. Hoping that someone can clarify this for me. Thanks GordU

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MikeES
Here is my nickels worth. Go look at an older Cub Cadet and even the 300 and 400 AC with the cast iron front axles, and compare them to the steel axles on the other older ACs and Sims. NO COMPARISON! All the cast axles are worn out and sloppy in the pivot!! and many have been welded up on the ends too!!. I can name four people that have broken their Cub's front axle, has anyone broken the Sim/AC steel front axle? It is rare to find a Sim steel front axle that is even a little bit worn out in the pivot. Mike S.

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JordB110
My Grandpa broke my B-110's front axle plowing snow, many years before I got it. I don't know the details. he just pickup the front end(pushed the blade down) with the hydro lift and backed it off the drive way. Jordan

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