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spi

DSCF0591.thumb.JPG.41ea148d0cac590994ea512bf035a332.JPGI am hoping to pick the brain of someone who's been here before.  It is time to mow the field again and as much trouble as this sickle bar mower is to keep going it does do a pretty nice job. The problem I am addressing now is how grass gets wound around the shaft behind the planetary thing. I gets wound in there so tight it stops the mower and smokes the belt. when I took the pulley off and took the shaft out the grass was wound in so tight that it was forced into the bearing so tight it wouldn't turn. it took some doing to clean it out so it would be usable.

 I am just wondering if anyone has had the problem before and knew of a fix.

Thanks

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gwiseman

Are you mowing with the swathboard and swath rod attached? (On the farm in the day) In heavy hay  a swathboard was important tool to lay the end cut back to open a clean path for the next cut so the Putnam (sickle drive) didn’t ride over downed hay. If that didn’t happen the pitman would wrap as you show & before you could stop the mower you’d break the pitman rod. These little sickles work essentially the same. If a layer of cut grass/weeds are directly under the shoe that green stuff will wrap around the driver. I usually don’t use a swathboard because I only cut 1 swath around my drainage ditch and parimeter each year but if I cut a 2nd swath this happens to me too. 

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wwbragg
25 minutes ago, gwiseman said:

swathboard and swath rod

Glad you mentioned this.  If you look at the videos in my sickle bar blog, you can see that the end of my bar is getting hung up and pulls the whole tractor off to the right.  OK, it is just a little 725 but there it is.  It seems to work better without the swathboard and rod but like you, I have only made one pass so far.  My question is, what is the proper position for the swathboard and rod?  Is it bunching up because I don't have the swathboard mounted correctly?

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gwiseman
22 hours ago, wwbragg said:

Glad you mentioned this.  If you look at the videos in my sickle bar blog, you can see that the end of my bar is getting hung up and pulls the whole tractor off to the right.  OK, it is just a little 725 but there it is.  It seems to work better without the swathboard and rod but like you, I have only made one pass so far.  My question is, what is the proper position for the swathboard and rod?  Is it bunching up because I don't have the swathboard mounted correctly?

Check that your end sections/knives are tight. If not give the rivets a rap with a ball peen hammer to tighten.  Also check that the ledgers (cutting portion of the guard) are tight and free of rust.  Using a swathboard will cause a draft on your mower tractor as will dragging hay on the end (not cutting clean).  Usually, if you increase speed of the sickle (but no more than 1/2 throttle) it will help throw the cut "hay" up and off the back of the sickle bar. Speed of travel is also a key element to make this happen. 

Loose sections/knives can cause a lot of headaches when mowing. 

  

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spi

I do have a board that I made but no rod. I will try that out. Like Mr Bragg I wonder if angles make a difference. Now that you mention it I do remember my Dad breaking a bunch of wooden rods on his J.D. but I was too young to give a rats behind at the time.

I did look at your videos and it didn't look like it was cutting very well, more like pulling it out until it weighed more than the tractor.

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spi

Made a rod and it helped but now something let loose in the transaxle. Fortubnately I have another one laying on the shop floor. This whole project is getting pretty old. It has taken me since the end of june to do about a days work.

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spi
On 7/6/2019 at 10:45 AM, gwiseman said:

Are you mowing with the swathboard and swath rod

Thanks, it helped.  Since then the retaining ring came off the axle and the set screw loosened up on the PTO so still haven't finished the field.  One thing right after the other.  Will probably need remowing if I ever get it finished.

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SmilinSam

I mowed 12 acres  once with one of these. Learned there are Alot of factors at play in trouble free mowing.

1st and foremost these things do NOT like thick grass. Works real well in alfalfa, clover, and stalky type material & weeds.

 The taller the material, the more likely its going to hang up on the swathboard and end up dragging the tractor. One reason why the early sickle mowers were marketed with wheel weights and dual wheels for the tractor.

The rod, when properly bent and placed helps the material lay down in the correct direction.

The swathboard also needs to be able to pivot some so it can "float" over the ground and the material its pulling to the side.. Its not bolted up tight. Cant remember if it has a lock nut to achieve this, or if its got a bushing..... I never made a board for my current 3310 mower, as I never mow more than one pass using it for what I use it for....so I had no cause to remember at this point.

Like already pointed out above by others, anything loose in the driveline will cause problems.

Wide front tires and wheel weights do seem to make some a difference. Helps compress the previous;y mowed material on the second and further passes.

I even played with changing the angle of the swathboard at one time to see if a lighter angle worked. Seemed to for some conditions. Nothing I deemed conclusive though.

 

Just some things I have noticed over the years....

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spi

When it works it seems to work quite well.  But it seems like I have spent way more time working on the machine than the field. I am thinking that in another year I might go in for one of the DR field mowers.  A lot of money and the whole reason I play around with all this old stuff is because I'm too darn cheap to buy new. The problem is that there are a few other things to be done, believe it or not.

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SmilinSam
On 7/12/2019 at 3:38 PM, spi said:

. I am thinking that in another year I might go in for one of the DR field mowers.  A lot of money and the whole reason I play around with all this old stuff is because I'm too darn cheap to buy new.

I have a Bachtold wed mower with the full metal hood on it like the DR field version that was made under that name for a while. Paid $80 for it at an auction and another $30 for the hood on another auction. All it needed was a mag. They mow alot more kinds of material, including small trees, than a sickle mower.  Had it for 20 years plus.

The new ones are way better with the air tires, wider wheel base,  and better handle bars, but they are just insanely high priced. Better than 3 grand at the farm store the other week when I was there. High priced as they are , they do not beat you to death like the older , narrower, hard tired  versions like I have.

Edited by SmilinSam

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wwbragg
45 minutes ago, SmilinSam said:

They mow alot more kinds of material

I have a Swisher 24",   11.5 HP rough cut mower.  It will cut down small houses.

 

swisher.png

Edited by wwbragg
add HP

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