Sunday, January 1, 2012

Broken sub-frame

Here's the front sub frame for our nearly 40-year old Kubota tractor.

Hint: It's not supposed to be in two pieces!

Just how long this important structural component has been broken is a mystery. This tractor has always had more up and down movement in the front end than it needed, contributing to a couple of nasty tips. I discovered the crack when the front right tire developed a slow leak and so I was spending more time than usual down around that part of the machine, putting air in the tire.

The weather here in Maine is unseasonably warm, and forecast to remain so through tomorrow, so it was feasible to tear the tractor down, remove the sub-frame, weld it, and perhaps have enough time tomorrow to put it all back together before it again gets too cold for such things. If I'm really lucky with weather, there'll be time to put a new tube in the right front tire too.

Here's the repaired unit. It was an easy weld, a classic butt-weld. It should hold, since there's more metal in that spot now than there was before.

Here's how much the tractor had to be stripped down to get at the part.

This, I suppose, is my idea of fun. I guess I probably need to get a life, but I was happy enough working out there in the sun.

The sheep don't care for the sun much. They hung out all day in the shade, the younger ones playing king of the hill on this frozen compost heap.

What was Mrs Womerlippi doing while I was working so had (and admittedly amusing myself)?

Playing with the new dog.

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