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MysTiK

BGB Oil Level - Extent of Repair Needed?

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MysTiK
You might want to get a coffee or a cold one first - this is a long post - an overview - looking for insights, experience, general guidance, whatever you can offer me. Just had to say all this ....... The bevel gear box on my '79 716H is not exactly what I would call tight. There is play. I don't know how to measure the play because I have seen several methods described for measuring at different locations. So maybe it can be measured in different ways - it seems that hardly any play is the only thing that's acceptable. Mine probably does not qualify as tight by any method. So that's one question - what's the best way to measure play?. Since there are 3 locations with shafts coming in or going out, maybe there should be several ways to measure. I would expect to fail by most standards. It's sloppy. And I have heard occasional squawks that are probably from the bevel gears. I still wonder if I can just shim it and go. And then there's question two. (or the other 19 questions)8) I recently did seasonal oil change and lube everything. Then I checked the bgb gear oil level. With the dipstick teetering on the edge of the fill hole, I wasn't sure if I was getting an oil reading or not. So, I added an ounce of oil - no change. I added another ounce. Almost, not sure, maybe an accurate oil reading; but still not sure. I added a 3rd ounce, and had a reading on the little rollpin dipstick that was on the lower 1/8" from the bottom of the dipstick. Is THAT considered excessive? or harmful?? Did I add too much oil? I thought this was ok, since the oil is obviously well below the top of the box, and less than an 1/8th of an inch up on the dipstick. The gear oil was clean since I changed it a year ago; and I thought adding a little fresh oil would not hurt.B) So then I go mowing. Finish mow. Return to garage, and there's an oil slick mess on the back center of the deck shell - not sure but probably an ounce of oil - oil smear about 8" wide and on the back of deck slightly forward of the bgb. - not directly below it. I thought that was a strange location. But I also had a slow drip drip drip behind the rollers on the left side. I was thinking trans vent tube leaking. Left it overnight cos I wasn't going to do anything else anyway. Next day the drip had increased to an 8" puddle. Noticed wet oil around lower trans area. Noticed oil in a lot of places, and I had seen this once before, quite a while ago - perhaps around the time when I first changed the bgb oil - or shortly after - maybe on a hot day or something. (I am thinking overheat is related to bgb leak?? cos that last mowing was in the evening of a 30*C /90*F day.) Well, I can't locate the source of leak, so I get the camera out and I shoot about 100 pix of stuff under the tractor, then go dump the pix on my computer, and try to see what I can't. (cameras are great) I trace oil mess all over the place, and finally track it down to the front of the bgb. The oil seems to either spray or get blown around by movement, or it drips and runs. Anyway, it seems the source is the front of the bgb. So, without do a ton of research, I think there's a seal blown on front of bgb. I'm pretty sure there's excess play in bgb. And when I shut it off last time, I got a "squawk sound" that's probably the noise that grinding bevel gears make. I only ever heard that once before, a year ago, under heavy load, and only one very audible squawk. I think I am looking at the dreaded (for me) "split the tractor" concept. I suppose it's a case of open it up and see what's what. Is a total rebuild required? Can a seal fix it? Can shims offset the play by tightening things up? (all of the above?) I don't know where to start, or how to approach, or what to look for on the way in. I can only guess it's a case of Rokon's "just do it". I also have a 716-6speed parts tractor, which one of the main reasons for keeping it is the probability of needing bgb parts. I can only guess that those parts are good, since there's no motor to run it. Which brings another idea - take the motor out of the hydro and throw it in the 6speeeder. (a parts tractor role swap? - fascinating)sm01 No matter what I do here, I am really going to learn a lot of stuff about mechanics - and this learning is something I said I wanted when I first bought in to this crazy game. yes, you asked for it. 8) Any suggestions? Where to start? How to proceed? I have the LargeFrame Manual, suppose I should do some reading. Do I need any special tools?? I have lots of basic tools; but nothing too fancy. I also need to clear the garage to get started - I get the feeling I am going to split 2 tractors = nothing like getting right into it. Is there an easy way around this? or a way to minimize unnecessary work? (haha yeh, just swap the engine) I beginning to see how fixing one thing at a time can easily lead to a full blown resto. :D Nobody really talks about that. I suppose once you've been through the scary stuff, it's all just old news, huh? Fortunately, the mighty Simplicity Pacer Mower is doing well, and will keep me mowing even if this takes forever - which is the other fear - I don't want to end up with parts all over the garage and no solution. That would be the worst. If I get into this, I think another photo op would be helpful to me and to others. Once upon a time I learned = "I teach best what I most need to learn". Ya know, after my little photo op on the hydro stick, I'm surprised we all aren't using footpedal hydros. This is long post - I want a preliminary overview and similar comments. I know there are tons of threads about bgb. I have the manual. Some quick insights based in experience would be cool. Or other comments, anything you think would be useful, or just plain funny. :D I knew this was coming a long time ago; there's really no surprise here - it's just that it took a long time to prepare myself. I recently returned to an abandoned (nooby me) deck spindle rebuild, and in less that a minute, I grabbed a hammer, and properly separated parts I was just lost in, back when I needed desparately to fix spindles - and had no clue. I guess I have learned a few things from people here. So thanx - but now it's a little more serious. :D If you can imagine me seriously splitting a tractor in half. :D omg 8) Another thing, I wonder if the bgb is just establishing it's own oil level, if I simply added too much oil, or was the front seal blown long before. I don't know how much oil it takes to load the bgb. Maybe I have been running with low oil; but enough to be ok. I have not started the tractor since this oil leakage appeared; that might be a bad idea. (?) Maybe the damage is done; maybe it's minor; maybe I just need to fix a seal, and do some shimming. This is where your experience would be most valued. I expect it's more than that; but a lack of experience causes this uncertainty about where to draw the line with an old tractor. I think also, split both tractors, and just slap in the other bgb - but really, I need to know how to make that call. That's the thing; or so it seems. Thanks for reading.

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RayS
I would n`t consider 1/8" over on the oil excessive. The seals can be replaced withe BGB in the tractor. The right side however will require the plate between the BGB and transmission removed. How much play do you have when grab the cone clutch and turn it before the drive shaft decides to move? I looked over your post and didn't see this mentioned.

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MysTiK
No I didn't mention any measurements - just said it was kinda sloppy. I used a nasty chisel to scratch the cone clutch and indicate the extremes (of forward and reverse) of the drive shaft moving while I spun the cone clutch - that's a relatively easy way to measure it btw. I get 2 3/8" of movement of the cone clutch, measured by tape measure on the outer perimeter of the cone. There's a hex nut approx 1 1/8" that holds the cone clutch on - and the measure of 2 3/8" on the outer perimeter almost exactly corresponds with the "points" of the hex nut. Since the hex nut is "hexishly circular" (360*), I would say the 2 3/8" measured is approx equal to near 60* of rotation between points where the driveshaft moves forward/reverse. I would guess that to be a bit much. I wonder how much movement is considered acceptable - perhaps little or none?? I suppose there will always be some. I hope this answers the question.

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PhanDad
IMO, that's too much play and I'm thinking gear damage. Can you move the BGB input shaft up/down and side to side? If you grab the driveshaft, can you rotate it in a circular motion. You shouldn't be able to. I agree with Ray, 1/8" on the dip stick isn't too much fluid. What I think has happened, if you're lucky, you lost the front seal and the "new" fluid you put in has pushed out the front. If you're unlucky (my guess) is the front needle bearing is shot along with the seal and you probably have some gear damage as well. Only way to tell is to dig in and find out. Basic tools are all you need (and maybe a puller to get the pulleys off). And as you said, there are many posts about the repair.

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ac712
1/8" of fluid is where you want to be. I have a similar issue, but mine is leaking on the PTO side of the BGB. I agree with the above posts, front seal is shot, probably the needle bearing as well. Dig into it and post some pics of it.

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MysTiK
Maybe I should check the parts tractor too. There's no engine; but the driveshaft is there, and all the rest - it's a 6speed. The excess play has been there since I owned it; I suppose it may have deteriorated; but I doubt it's much different. I just feel a little bolder now about getting lost in the repair process. There hasn't been a lot of gear noise - one strange noise a year ago, and then a little noise with the oil spill. Maybe the gears are so bad they are quiet. :D No performance issues. I suppose I might notice some difference when it's fixed; maybe not.? Also I tend to think split the tractor would be better rather than mess around in a confined space - at least, that's how I think of it. I should have a look at the manual, cos I really don't know what I'm talking about, or heading into. I think there's a lot of disassembly to do. I will check the things mentioned above tomorrow - thanx for responses. And I will see if I can check the parts tractor also; and report back.

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GrincheyOne
Graham, If I can split a tractor you can also. No special tools, just patience, and common sense. See my posting in Show and Tell for my 2110 Upgrade. Wayne

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PhanDad
Graham, The BGB can take a beating and keep on ticking. My neighbors B-110 ran for a long time with a front bearing/seal issue. It ran until the gears finally stripped completely. It would occasionally make some noise when the clutch was engaged. When I took it apart for him, the input shaft had rotated so eccentric that it chewed the casing so much that another lip seal couldn't be installed. The only salvagable parts were the cross shaft and rear cover plate.

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MysTiK
Thanks for the encouragement. I spent much of the day cleaning and rearranging my garage, along with my tractor and parts tractor. Garage was in chaos, and it was bugging me, so I fixed it up a bit, and blasted it with my leaf blower. I was trying to make room for large chunks of essence of tractor lying around. 8D In response to (Phandad) Bill's questions, my tractor with it's massive 2 3/8" of play between the cone and the driveshaft responding, doesn't display a lot of movement up/down, or left/right - hard to measure that by feel, there is movement, probably a 1/16", maybe 3/32" max, and definitely less than an 1/8". Circular movement = no, not that I can detect - on the theoretical side, since there's about the same play vertical/horizontal, there's probably circular motion as well. I was kinda surprised the vertical/horizontal wasn't worse. So I am really wondering where 2 3/8" of backlash is coming from. That's a lot of rotation on the cone with the driveshaft NOT moving. I agree with oil seal being shot. Needle bearing sounds right also. But every little part on the way through must be loose to total up to 2 3/8" of pure slop. I also checked the parts tractor - a 716-6speed, circa '78 vintage. The cone clutch to driveshaft moving, measures 1/2" movement on the outer perimeter of the cone clutch. The vertical/horizontal movement is a little harder to estimate due to no engine, so the driveshaft kinda moves freely at the front end, but it seemed no worse than the 716H tractor, I guessed about 1/16". I don't know if it matters, but the cone clutch is locked/stuck/frozen in the ENGAGE position. I pulled fairly hard on the lever to release it; but it's not happening. The lever works, the linkage part that moves with the lever works, the clutch remains in mowing mode fulltime. Won't budge with moderate force; I could maybe break it with brute force?? I went back to the 716H and 'engaged' that cone clutch, and no difference in the play/backlash. I am thinking there's a real bgb in the parts tractor. This other unit with monster play, must be skipping every other beat on the bevel gears. The parts tractor also shows oil around the front and bottom of the bgb box, so seal(s) would be on the agenda, and maybe some recommended items like perhaps needle bearing which seems easy access. I think it's an obvious swap. But I don't have much experience at this. I did read up on the Large Frame Repair Manual's = BGB = section. That was a good read with good illustration. But I think there's nothing like the real thing, seeing it live, seeing it move and breathe. :D It seems I have to split 2 tractors. 8) OO I doubt that both will go back together. The parts tractor is missing an engine, and a steering drag link; add a bgb to that, and we are mainly looking at body parts, rear end parts, front steering parts, tires, and a somewhat exotic hi/lo. The pulleys on the hi/lo are huge - the one on the hydro is relatively tiny. I was wondering if it's possible to swap a hi/lo into a hydro tractor. I shifted it to lo range and that worked, just like a 10-speed bicycle. I tend to drive my hydro really slow, mainly about obstacles while mowing, and my forest trails are only tractor wide with several trailside lurking stumps that I should clear out. Anyway, one thing at a time; but I wonder about the hi/lo idea - it's probably something that requires welding/fab work. I don't know if there's any advantage on a hydro tractor anyway; except it would take the sensitivity out of the hydro stick - not really much of an issue. More of a 'cool' factor. Has anyone done this? Back to reality - any further comments appreciated - I think a bgb swap is the only way to go; but I have never done any of this. So what am I getting into? Am I thinking in the right direction? I also want to recommend the reading of the Large Frame Manual on the bgb section. It makes things pretty clear, makes it seem fairly easy - but I didn't read all the stuff on other disassembly that's required to get to the bgb itself. However, I do have some understanding of how the bgb works. There's only 2 shafts - I used to think there were at least 3. :D There's a "driver" or "drive" shaft or aka "input" shaft - and there's a "driven" shaft, or could be called "output". but the pix in the manual are great, and very clear. Lots of emphasis on clean, almost like work on a transmission - perhaps that's because this is a transmission. Lots of mention of replacing everything that shows signs of wear, lightly filing keyways, avoid filing shaft surfaces, use clean rags, make sure any filings are kept out of the box. Enough bla bla bla from me. Back to you guys. sm01 Full moon coming on. Happy "Canada Day". dOd .

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rm
tractor is not hard to split. common sense and a clean work area. take your time, be safe, set your self up with a spot to line up all the parts in the bgb. as they come out in order, that way you know how to put it together.

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MysTiK
thx rich so far i've done some garage cleanup, that feels good, moved the excess out to shed, made a space for the chaos. keeping it organized sounds good. kinda wonder about what might be dangerous; i imagine the moment of separation might be fun. as for common sense - forget it, no chance. :D

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goodtimo
MysTiK, my dad and I swapped one out in a 7116 in about 3 or 4 hours a few years ago. That was our first time doing it and back when dad only had 1 good knee. It really wasn't as big of an ordeal as I thought it would be, and could probably be done much, much quicker by someone with BGB experience or an actual mechanic. We used long bolts instead of a gear puller to remove the hub the driveshaft bolts to from the shaft...that's about the only hint I can think of. You can do this, just be sure that if you are not sure where things go, then take pictures first. Good luck.

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