FrankenCase

Discussion in 'Shop Talk' started by daeve, Aug 1, 2004.

  1. daeve

    daeve Well-Known Member

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    Jan 24, 2003
    Location:
    East Central Alabama
    Bought a Case D310G, or that is what the tag on the tool box shows. Not sure what I really got as there seem to be parts of 3 or 4 machines making up this one. As soon as I got it off the truck I had to play with it and went to push a tree and some brush over. Backing out from doing so the radiator and fan met. When they parted coolant filled the air. Which I smelled all the way to the barn... A few days went by with other things requiring my attention and after another adventure that is detailed in the thread about the John Deere 440 with water in the oil, I got back to work on the Case

    Got the radiator core and upper hose connection soldered up. This sounds simple, but involved a refrigerator on its back with the holes duct taped up, a few plumbing fittings, a air regulator and the torch. Refrigerator was used with water in it as a tank to submerge the radiator once one of the hoses were plugged and an air source was attached to the other. Once the air was turned on a bit bubbles come out where the damage is. Make a note of where some is and take the radiator out and start cleaning the area off with a wire brush. Then use a flux brush to put flux on the area of damage. Then heat and add solder, sometimes scrubbing with the flux brush when the solder doesn't want to stick. And back in the tank and more bubbles... Wash, rinse, repeat. Many times. About a dozen tubes were damaged in greater or lessor amounts but after a couple of hours I had a radiator that no longer leaked with 15 pounds of air applied.

    Spent a bit more time welding on the cowl frame mounts to make sure it couldn't shift and let the radiator hit the fan again. Put the radiator in and had to take it back out and reshape the fan blades to miss the bottom tank. I had taken the fan off earlier in this misadventure and straightened the blades as they were all bent up from this and earlier mishaps however had failed to note that the ends bent up with pliers were done that way for a reason... From the marks on the radiator this isn't the first or second or even third time this has happened. I just don't understand not fixing a problem like this the first time it happens. Anyway after getting the fan blades reshaped to miss the tank I put the radiator in place, bolted it down, got the hoses connected and filled the cooling system. No leaks!

    Put the trickle charger on last night and by this morning the battery was charged enough to try to start it. Surprisingly after a cough or two it started and ran fairly well. Got the blade raised so I could run a tap through a nut I welded on the cowl mount with a little too much heat and rod. Got the nut cleaned out and the front cowl bolted on. Upper radiator support arms bolted into place with only one foot required for alignment. ;)

    Starting it back up didn't go as smoothly with a long spell of just spinning and no attempt at starting. Fiddled with the throttle and it finely took off running. Pulled it out and into some brush and it quit. Started back up and pushed some privit over. Then took it to the top of the garden to a pile of brush that was too near an apple tree and blueberry bush to burn. Started pushing the brush pile and it died again. Pulled the coil wire and turned it over and had a good 1/2 inch of blue spark. Pulled a plug wire and had a 1/8 inch weak red spark. Took distributor cap off and inside was covered with moisture. I had cleaned it out last night but I guess this had condensed in there overnight, or was left over from some of the rain we have had and had evaporated from down in the bottom of the distributor as the engine warmed up. After wiping it out with a rag I then sprayed it out with WD-40, wiped the excess off and let it air dry for a few minutes for the volatiles to get out, then reinstalled it and tried the starter and it fired right up! :)

    Pushed at the brush pile until hornets started buzzing around then went and pushed some logs up into another pile. The Case seems to be running fairly well. Going to have to work on a governor or move the throttle or both. The control that is there now is a lever welded onto the dash and I have to lean forward a bit more than is comfortable to adjust the speed. If it had a working governor the need to adjust the speed wouldn't be as much of a problem. The machine (or cab at least) once had a foot throttle control but when it was converted from diesel to gas engine the hand throttle was installed. After trying to run this machine with 4 controls that need hand attention I don't think I am going to leave the dash throttle. The right foot doesn't come into play much as it only has to push the brake which the hand controls also do if both are pulled back.

    I've still got some adjustment to do on the clutches and need to get the hood back on and the exhaust finished but as of now I have a working dozer! Will try to do a bit more tomorrow toward finishing the necessaries and then plan to start leveling the holding area for the mobile homes to sit till I get the permanent site and road going to it finished.

    Just rambling...
    Dave
     
  2. Tractorman

    Tractorman Well-Known Member

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    Jun 8, 2004
    Location:
    Danville,AL
    Just curious how much did you have to give for it? I just bought some land and will need some clearing and I have always wanted a dozer anyway.
     

  3. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

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    tractorman
    I sold an intact, good running, needing nothing, Cat 955 H that had been in the family for nearly 20 years for just $9,000
     
  4. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    Ontario
    My neighbor has a Cat 975 (??) for the price of scrap steel. It's a monster track loader and I've always wondered about the cost of ownership of one of these beasts. I know the pup motor needs to be rebuilt again as it wasn't assembled correctly, but it was supposed to have run very well. Are track machines money pits?
     
  5. Tractorman

    Tractorman Well-Known Member

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    Danville,AL
    My grandfather has run a dozer for 50 years and he always said the undercarriage is where the money is.
     
  6. daeve

    daeve Well-Known Member

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    Jan 24, 2003
    Location:
    East Central Alabama
    Too much! The guy selling it wanted 7500 but after trying to sell it for several weeks came down to 5000. I have since found several machines that are of similar age and condition (all needing work in varying degrees) in the 2500 to 6000 dollar range.

    There is a weekly (?) magazine called Heavy Equipment Trader that covers a (almost) 3 state area (Alabama, Georga, and SE Tennessee) and has listings for dozers along the same age and size starting around 7000.

    Dave
     
  7. Tractorman

    Tractorman Well-Known Member

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    Jun 8, 2004
    Location:
    Danville,AL
    Thanks for the info I have looked at the traders before but it was a while ago. Just curious what do you do with them sounds like you have at least 2?
     
  8. daeve

    daeve Well-Known Member

    Messages:
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    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2003
    Location:
    East Central Alabama
    Well, there's a problem. I bought the Case after several weeks of looking as I have just bought a couple of mobile homes (old construction offices) that need to be moved from their present location asap. I figured on using it as "was" to clear off and level an area to park them till I can get the trees down and the area cleared to put one of them on to live in. The other is now sold but still needs a resting place for a while.

    As I said earlier, I failed to note the loose condition of the cab and the broken cowling mount and screwed up the radiator. So since I was going to a equipment auction the next day I figured it couldn't hurt to look... (Boy was I wrong...) They had a good looking JD 440 sitting there not getting bid up much so I decided to try to get it too and sell one or the other later after I had time to fix them up. But after getting the JD home I found why the bidding was low. My bad... And just the rebuild kit is nearly 800. Course with a cracked block that won't help. If the block is gone I suspect I will repower it with a VW diesel. There is room and I don't think the machine work required to make the adaptors will be that much of a problem.

    I'm looking to get a few more just to fix and sell. Or that's what I tell myself... :rolleyes: Worked as a auto mechanic for more years than I care to remember, but with my health being unstable now, I can't do that any more. This looks like something I can do when I feel up to it and may actually make a dollar at. Course not at the rate I am going right now. :( Or it could just be gas. :D
     
  9. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

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    Ross, is that a 977 ? None of the 977's that I have seen here in Dixie have a pony motor. If you were to obtain the machine there is a conversion to remove the pony engine and to go to direct start. I like having a track loader since I only have one track machine. It is multifunctional. As far as costs go, they ownership is not that bad provided you get a decent machine initially. I currently have a 955L that I use on the farm. I had the pins turned and installed new sprockets using non Cat parts and including labor the bill was $2300. I did an inframe overhaul myself on the 955H that I sold several years prior to selling and the parts bill was less than $1200 using Cat parts. Those engines run a long time and the powershift tranny is pretty bullet proof. Knowing it is a costly machine to repair and me being the mechanic I treat the machine with respect and do not abuse it. Filters and lubricants are the main expenses. It is amazing the uses I have found for the loader. I dug the basement where I currently live, cleared many acres of land, filled gullies. made roads, moved buildings using skids, used the machine as a frame puller to salvage a wrecked 4900 series International truck, built a 3 acre pond, etc.
    That 977 you referenced is a hoss when it comes to doing work. It should have a 6 cylinder diesel main engine and with its extra size/weight to go with the HP it will perform admireably. Most 977's were not used extensively since due to their weight they were hard to move to different sites. You may have a diamond their that needs polishing. :)
     
  10. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    Thinking about it it might just be a 955. I know there are bigger dozer/loaders out there but this is a lot bigger than anything we've had doing dozer work here. Perception maybe. I should try and get some pictures up, (but I am super busy at the moment!) If I could get it to run I could drive it home with wood across the paved road, up my neighbor's lane and across a feild to the home farm. I don't mind messing about with engines etc. but I am no mechanic. Looked beyond me at the last encounter but the fellow selling it is used to working on it. Anyone know what one might weigh and what the going rate for scrap steel is?
     
  11. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

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    a 955h weighs approximately 30,000 lbs and steel is bringing $.04 US per lb at the local buyers yard
    Check the machine and determine how many cylinders the engine has and see if it is pedal or lever steer and let me know.
     
  12. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    Hmm that works out to about 1700 Canadian not a bad place to start. I hope to make a run to the MF dealer and will stop up and look tomorrow if I go.
     
  13. daeve

    daeve Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    61
    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2003
    Location:
    East Central Alabama
    After looking at some of the pictures at http://www.ytmag.com/ dealing with Case 310's it looks like most of this machine IS a Case 310. The biggest difference I find is the headlight area at the top of the radiator cowl. This machine has a homemade piece there. I took it off to do some welding and beating back into shape and after looking closer it has been cut and welded in several places. Guess it was the front of a tractor or something that someone cut down. Did a good job too. I was able to beat it back into some semblance of straight and curved and after a couple of hours with the torch with a small tip and some brass rod it is once again on the crawler.

    The other differences that had fooled me seem to be that this one has been built from at least 3 different color machines. Got standard yellow for most of it. Some of the undercarriage was once (bottom layer of paint) a light blue and several of the idler rollers and the final track drive gear are orange. But the stuff fits and works together (mostly).

    Took it out yesterday (Wednesday, Aug. 4) and was able to do a fair amount of work with it. Nice little machine over all.

    Still got the exhaust manifold to flange to seal and a muffler to install. Metal hydraulic hoses to the blade cylinders need straightening and fastening down. Hydraulic controller needs taking apart and some welding and then machine work done to repair side wear where the handle meets the piston. Have to "feel" for the up and down positions and watch the blade even then. Got a lot of track and final track drive gear wear. Several of the idler rollers on the bottom and the one on the right top are in need of replacing or new bearings. From one of the articles I read at Yesterdays Tractors it appears that this model uses planetary drive and braking for steering instead of clutches and brakes. Whatever it uses, going forward, one side doesn't work most of the time and the other some of the time. Both sides work most of the time in reverse. If you have a load of dirt, it takes you where the ground or resistance leads. In the area I am leveling now it doesn't really matter (much) but gonna have to fix that before trying to do any close work.

    Anyways just a quick update.