boxing the frame

Mon Feb 02, 2009 12:15 am

The subject of boxing the frame came up a few posts down. Is this do-able I have noticed that turning with three point equipment or plowing really seems to twist my frame and then the tranny pops out of gear. I beleive that Bill, the great one, he who is known as Big. Not because of his size but because of his knowedge knows of a way. And so magnanomous one enlighten this unworthy striker of arcs and loser of tools. Go Steelers GT :lol: :lol:

Re: boxing the frame

Mon Feb 02, 2009 9:25 am

With your tranny popping out of gear is the sheetmetal cover hitting the tranny shifter when the frame flexes? I really don't see any other way for the tranny to pop out of gear unless you have a tranny problem too. I don't think the castiron tranny case can flex at all. I'm thinking the driveshaft may bend causing the bending going into the tranny making it pop out of gear? I can't think of any other way it can happen.

Here are some of my thoughts,we need to figure out the root causes of the problems with the frame first before we redesign it to strengthen it. I'm talking setting up the frame for the FEL/backhoe. Not just fixing the rear part which is ok if your not adding the fel/backhoe and more weight.

I have a feeling my first int154 has a cracked rear section on the frame too.(maybe) When i put it in a off camber position while plowing dirt the frame seems to twist and i hear the fan hit the fan shroud. I inspected all 4 points of the engine mounts and it appears to be solid with no seperations or cracks. I have a few extra 154 fan assemblies too and on everyone I can see grooves were the fan has worn into the fan shroud. Or the frame is subject to a lot of normal twisting action the way its designed. We must remember something has got to give or flex in the structure or it will break. I think the two larger bolts with the spacers on the front of the tranny is actually holding the frame together when the back section cracks from twist. The front of the frame acts like a lever and hinges on the large bolt with the spacer so the smaller section in the rear cracks and seperates when the frame twists.

I have also heard from other int154 owners with FEL's the front axle is prone to split in half. This raises another thought is the front axle running out of room when the axle swings/ or arc's up and actually bottoms out on the frame and causing it to split in the middle?

Ok we need to design a subframe from the front to the rear. At the sametime we must make a note in our minds about watching the front axle swing and bottoming out so we don't split the front axle on uneven hilly ground. Even by adding a stronger structural steel axle we will only put the twisting forces in another place and cause more problems down the road. Since i'm adding larger tires on my 154 it will make me remove the front axle bracket and lower it a channel box to make the tractor still sit level. At the sametime the front spindles need to be addressed too so there stronger too. Power steering too..... :{_}:

Off the top of my head thinking;

I wouldn't box the frame yet, i would add a 1/4" or 5/16" thick vertical plate to the front part of the frame making it a double wall frame. From the front to were the frame bends to go narrow. This can be bolted using grade 8 bolts and tac welds like i explained before by putting heavy beads about 1" long and 1" to 2" apart on the top and bottom of the frame. Using this method nothing can seperate or bow because the bolts are holding the middle section too.

With the very last part of the rear frame i would do the same by adding a vertical plate too.
If you have a 3pt hitch you will need to connect the plate to it.
Then we need to connect the front plate to the rear plate but keeping in mind the mid rocker shaft if you still plan on using it for mowing. On the rear upper section i was thinking of using a thicker larger angle that would strengthen the horizontal and radial twist too for the backhoe frame. Since i'm not using it for mowing i'm going to add a cross beam under the FEL uprites to connect the right and left plates on the frame.

Now you could look closely at the inside of the frame channel to see if it could be boxed in certain places to strengthen it too.

I believe the orginal IH 154 bracket pics shows it goes under were the foot rests are and connects to the rear.

By now i'm sure everyone is thinking its too heavy. We need to make it stronger yet keep it light as possible too weight wise. In your vertical plates you can add lightening holes too and it will keep its structural integrity.

I think it can be done successfully, we'll see soon. I'm starting to disassemble my int154 today. As soon as the snow starts melting i'll be cutting steel. I'm hoping to have all my steel cut so i can start welding it when it warms up.

On the site these gurus are putting FEL's & backhoes on most garden tractors so why not an int154 cub too?

Part 2
I just got thru looking at my newly purchased int154 cub today for the first time upclose. I removed the S/G they had hanging off to the side to make room fore the 10si alternator they had on it too. Right now the frame looks to be free of all cracks. This doesn't appear hard to do and it should move quick once my parts are fabricated ahead of time. Then all i have to do is to weld everything up so its lined up and square. I guess i'll make rough drawings of each part i fabricate so it can be copied if you want to build an FEL or backhoe on your 154/184/185 the concept should fit all 3 tractors.

If anyone wants to add any ideas its ok too i'm sure i can miss things at times too after all there is a lot to cover when designing and building this. I also learn something new everytime i fabricate something too.

Re: boxing the frame

Fri Feb 06, 2009 9:27 am

Just a different idea.

After looking at Keith L's bare 154 frame i believe the frame can be boxed on the inside with the same thickness steel as the frame is. We must pay close attention to what bolts to the inside of the frame in this are too and work around that area. I think boxing the frame from the front thru the "s" turn section to the rear will add a lot of strength and add some ridgity to the orginal design wether you do an FEL / Backhoe or not. I think a tripple box in the "S" area would be even better thats the weakest area of the frame. You can put an inner vertical plate thru the "S" and leave it just short of the outside box plate. Let it touch the inside radious's. Now when you add the outer plate you can key hole it were it comes close to the inner box plate so ithe two plates can be welded together. Remember we can't do any welding on the orginal frame on the outside or inside on the vertical part at all. We don't want to weaken the orginal frame.

We'll have to stay away from the area were the engine is too. But we maybe able to put a lower piece on the inside of the engine area to sneak by it then add a piece to the outside of the engine area too. Were going to be creative in some of the frame areas.

Now to add the FEL/backhoe I would go with just the subframes on the front and rear. With the frame boxed we can use less steel now and it also means less weight.

My thoughts on the design of the frame will change until i start welding it. I'm thinking a combination of boxing the frame and adding smaller subframes will work. But we may need a few cross members to tie it all together. I figure if we strengthen up the outside vertical rails we must be equally strong across the frame too. Maybe it can be "X" thru the center underneath with 3" angle or even channel.

Remember before welding/boxing the frame it must be sitting level in all 4 corners parallel and across it. You will need jackstands and blocks to adjust it so it sits perfect with no twist in it before you start to weld the plates in it. Other wise if its sitting uneven with a twist in it you will end up with a stronger twisted frame when your done.

One more suggestion is don't fully weld any plates in the frame, i would just tac weld all the plates in first. I would weld the inner "S" plate in fully then tac the outer "S" plate if you putting two plates in the "S" part of the frame. Your just tac'ing the plates it first to cut down on distorting the orginal frame. Once everything is in place tac'd you can start welding it up. But jump around the frame when welding it don't put too much heat in one area. This will keep the distortion and twisting down too.

I'm kind of happy with the idea of boxing it now it will keep a ton of weight off the subframe too. Plus the frame will be stronger this way.

I did a similair design on my jeep tractor using 3/8" plate and 4"x4"x3/8" angle. But that was to add weight for plowing plus box the frame. I got tired of adding and taking off the cinder blocks for weight every spring and fall. I just added the weight thru the steel. I left a hole in the box frame so the orginal cross shaft for the clutch linkage could still be used. Its still a solid box but it has a 1 1/8" hole were the cross shaft goes thru. You need to know what gets attached to the inside of the frame and leave room for it before you box it. We need to plan very carefully. But the torch is for correcting mistakes too.