Frozen Switch

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Frozen Switch

Postby Stanton » Mon Feb 10, 2014 5:02 pm

Went out to start Nellie ('47 Cub) last Tuesday during our first big snow storm and the ignition switch was near-frozen in the OFF position. Used a crescent wrench under the pull-cap and gently pried it out. Was able to start normally after that. Did it again yesterday.

This is the first time I can remember that happening. Perhaps water (condensation) got down inside it and froze at some point. We have had numerous sub-zero nights lately.

Anybody have a suggestion to remedy this? Thanks.
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Re: Frozen Switch

Postby Don McCombs » Mon Feb 10, 2014 5:13 pm

Hair dryer. :D
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Re: Frozen Switch

Postby ricky racer » Mon Feb 10, 2014 5:33 pm

I struggled with that this year too, but only on the really cold days. When it was below zero I heated my switch with a MAPP gas torch held at length so as to not burn the paint in order to pull it out. This happened several times. I even had to heat it to shut it off. Now that it is not real cold, say 5-10 degrees I am able to pull it out by hand but it is pretty stiff. I brushed a little grease on the shaft just behind the knob but I don't know if it really helped. I'd be afraid to pry it out with something for fear of breaking something. Maybe a little WD-40 would help remove the moisture. I'm not sure how much more of this global warming I'll be able to take....
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Re: Frozen Switch

Postby shyntempt » Mon Feb 10, 2014 5:42 pm

A common fault for us Canadians too. I too use a little propane torch to thaw things enough to pull the switch.

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Re: Frozen Switch

Postby Stanton » Mon Feb 10, 2014 5:54 pm

ricky racer wrote:I'm not sure how much more of this global warming I'll be able to take....


:lol: :lol: :lol:

Thanks, guys!
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Re: Frozen Switch

Postby Dale Finch » Mon Feb 10, 2014 7:37 pm

Stanton wrote:...
Anybody have a suggestion to remedy this?

Move south!! :big smile:
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Re: Frozen Switch

Postby Bob McCarty » Mon Feb 10, 2014 7:43 pm

Stanton, I used to have a small squeeze can of powdered graphite to lubricate locks with. On a couple of older cars that always seemed to eliminate the frozen door lock problem. Not sure whether it would help here or not.

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Re: Frozen Switch

Postby grasser » Mon Feb 10, 2014 8:20 pm

My Farmall C has done this a few times this winter as well.
Did it again yesterday at -5F. I use either a small torch, or just rest a trouble light with a 100w bulb against it.
And like Ricky, if it's that cold when I go to shut it off, I've gotta do it again to push it back in.
Once I just left the switch on and used the choke to kill it.
Probably a good sign to stay off the tractor when it's below zero, but when there's work to do...
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Re: Frozen Switch

Postby Xperimental » Mon Feb 10, 2014 9:46 pm

I have this happen even when the tractors are parked inside. I don't remember this ever happening back in the 50's and 60's with the same switch. I wonder if there was a lubricant in the switch originally that has dissipated over the years.
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Re: Frozen Switch

Postby John *.?-!.* cub owner » Mon Feb 10, 2014 10:52 pm

Keep a can of spray de-icer handy, it will also help prevent it from happening again.
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Re: Frozen Switch

Postby Jim Becker » Mon Feb 10, 2014 11:35 pm

Xperimental wrote:I wonder if there was a lubricant in the switch originally that has dissipated over the years.

An oil soaked felt ring around the stem.
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Re: Frozen Switch

Postby randallc » Tue Feb 11, 2014 6:12 am

You guys are freezing me to death just talking about it .. Burrrrr. When it is that cold everything is going to freeze.

Global Warming = extreme weather patterns: Exactly what is going happening.
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Re: Frozen Switch

Postby midmo » Tue Feb 11, 2014 6:35 am

By Friday it will be fixed. Saturday cured. 55 degrees. :P
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Re: Frozen Switch

Postby BobM » Tue Feb 11, 2014 7:55 am

Happened to "Louie" at the beginning of winter. Used a micro torch to thaw it out and made a little flap with duct tape to hang over the switch. Problem gone.
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Re: Frozen Switch

Postby Stanton » Tue Feb 11, 2014 8:03 am

midmo wrote:By Friday it will be fixed. Saturday cured. 55 degrees. :P


Saw that last evening on the weather forecast: 50's for Saturday and Sunday. Every time I see a day forecasted for 50 degrees F in the midst of cold weather, I tell my wife, "That's paintin' weather." She just smiles... :coffee:
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