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LMichaels

Mower Deck Crack

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LMichaels

So I pulled the deck off of my Sovereign and assumed a good cleaning, grease and blade sharpening would do the trick. No such luck. Found a crack that seems to follow the edge of the top cover and runs about 12" in length. Anyone had luck having these welded up?

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LMichaels

I would have never thought I would see a crack like this in these decks. They're so damn heavy gauge and built like tanks. Heck my old B10 never showed any signs of this and that thing was decades older.

What was used to weld it? I am assuming a MIG/Wire Feed Resin core would be the best ways

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PhanDad
11 minutes ago, LMichaels said:

What was used to weld it?

No clue; my neighbor's the welder.  I give him stuff to fix and he does it. 

I know he usually stick welds but does have all the other stuff at his shop.  

 

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RAC

Flux core wire will work fine. You'll get a nicer "looking" job with a gas shielded MIG but it's just a matter of spatter. On heavy gauge decks I intend to keep I'll weld it from both sides then grind outer surface close an finish off with flapper wheel on 4 inch angle grinder. The repair will be as strong as the rest of the deck. 

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kwt

You can see the crack you are talking about in Maxwood's first pic. Common. Seems like I fixed a couple of these with ~ 3/32  6011 @ ~ 60-70 amps. Stick. You could reinforce this area. It is a weak spot.

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LMichaels

Yeah just had a welder stop by to have a look. He said once I get it stripped, he'll pick it up than once at his shop, drill holes at both ends of the crack, also put reinforcement straps in place and weld from both sides than grind it smooth. Said it should be good as new for $75. Well worth it to me

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LMichaels

Well I think I figured out what MAY have caused the crack. I stripped the deck down yesterday in prep for getting it welded up. When I took the covers off what  mess! While the bottom of the deck was in decent repair, decently cared for and clean, under the covers was PACKED with s^&t. Paint coming off and lots of rust under there. Going to wire brush all down, hit it with Eastwood Rust Encapsulator and fresh coat of paint. Should be good to go then

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PhanDad
1 hour ago, LMichaels said:

When I took the covers off what  mess!

That's why many of us don't use the stock Simplicity decks covers at all, or have cut off slices at the outer and inner ends of the covers - a small slice at the outer edge and a bigger slice from the inner edge (under the tractor).

That way you can easily blow the debris off the top of the deck occasionally.  Even if you don't let the deck get wet (rain or washing), I've found fresh cut grass still has moisture in it and will with time, when under the deck covers it will rust the top of the deck.  

 

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RAC

Yeah, I've surrendered to in season deck corrosion. Soak it with fluid film and used motor oil every fall and live with it. Just wash out now and then in season. Keeps rust at Bay but doesn't do much for the paint.

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ShaunE

Every 48" deck I've ever owned has been cracked in that same spot.  Never a 42" however.

I would think it would be more rare to have one not cracked based on my experience.

I personally think it's more to do with design & weight than moisture since the 42" are less susceptible.

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Tom45

I had to weld cracks in my 42" decks.  

I tried cutting out the center of the deck covers but had a problem with the engine pulling in too much dirt that the deck belt stirred up.  

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ShaunE
3 hours ago, Tom45 said:

I had to weld cracks in my 42" decks. 

That's good to know as I have not.

I still leave my covers in place.  I remove them once a year & pressure wash, grease & inspect.  However they aren't left outside & I don't wash during the season so water is not an issue, but I'm aware that there is still a degree of moisture in fresh grass clippings.  I just use a leaf blower.

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LMichaels

Trouble is that deck weighs a ton and is definitely NOT easy to pull out and put back, plus the only way to get the covers off to clean it is to remove the deck as far as I can tell. . Would love to see some photos of how others have cut the covers to make it easier to clean out.

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Bill725

To aid in the removal of my Sovereign decks, I took a 2X4 and sawed grooves into it on the same angle as the front of the deck housing. I lower the front of the deck into the grooves and pull it out as the 2X4 slides across the concrete.

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LMichaels

Well I think what I need is that John Deere ride over system they show on TV, and I would ESPECIALLY like it if it comes with the cute blond wearing a pony tail :D

All kidding aside having a hard time picturing your system. I put a floor jack under the front axle and once the linkages and pins were removed jacked up the front end and slid the deck out from the right side of the machine. Figure once I get the deck back together I will do the same in reverse. I still have to put bushings in the front spindles as well since they're shot.

It's kind of obvious the machine had way more hours than the under 300 the seller told me. I realize now he meant only the engine since it's a new(er) engine than the machine. Once I am done it should be in excellent shape again though

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