About front end stabilizing blocks

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About front end stabilizing blocks

Postby Ronny Bailey » Fri Dec 19, 2008 3:11 pm

Here's why they say you should use hardwood when making them.
I only lifted the rear about a few inches, but it was enough to squash this one pretty good.
If you look at the top on the right side, you can see where it started to split in half.
Luckily, I didn't need to lift any higher than I did.
Lots more pressure on it than I thought there would be...
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Re: About front end stabilizing blocks

Postby smigelski » Fri Dec 19, 2008 3:18 pm

I like to use soft wood, just for the purpose you see. it compresses and gets disfigured. This stops slippage. also you can see the pressure on the wood. With a hard wood, it will not dis figure much before it fails. They are just wood wedges, who cares if you only get 1 use out of them.
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Re: About front end stabilizing blocks

Postby Barnyard » Fri Dec 19, 2008 3:23 pm

smigelski wrote:They are just wood wedges, who cares if you only get 1 use out of them.

It's not how many uses you get out of them that is important. Softwood is down right dangerous. By crushing so easily the softwood is more likely to allow your tractor to tip.

One use is all some may get. Unfortunately that one use could be the one where they get hurt.

Definitely use a hardwood.
Last edited by Barnyard on Fri Dec 19, 2008 3:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: About front end stabilizing blocks

Postby Ronny Bailey » Fri Dec 19, 2008 3:24 pm

smigelski wrote:I like to use soft wood, just for the purpose you see. it compresses and gets disfigured. This stops slippage. also you can see the pressure on the wood. With a hard wood, it will not dis figure much before it fails. They are just wood wedges, who cares if you only get 1 use out of them.

I didn't notice the block getting damaged until the tractor was back down.
When I saw this, I had visions of it disintegrating and a catastrophic collapse... :shock:
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Re: About front end stabilizing blocks

Postby Bigdog » Fri Dec 19, 2008 3:31 pm

Some of you woodworking gurus need to design and market wedge and clamp sets.
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Re: About front end stabilizing blocks

Postby Cecil » Fri Dec 19, 2008 3:37 pm

I'll work on it in my spare time.
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Re: About front end stabilizing blocks

Postby Peter Person » Fri Dec 19, 2008 3:51 pm

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Re: About front end stabilizing blocks

Postby Hengy » Fri Dec 19, 2008 3:55 pm

I borrowed some tractor stands from MagnumPI when I split Merlin last year to replace the front seal and pulley. The splitting stand set came with a nice set up that was used to block off the bolster on my tractor. It was like a block of 2x4 that was cut diagonally and put back together again. Instead of wedging the front, you clamp the piece to your front axle through a hole drilled through the bottom wedge and then drive the top wedge towards the center of the tractor. The block would expand, and then the resulting pressure would wedge the bolster in place. This was a SLICK setup! Unfortunately, I don't have pictures of it...

I believe that this system was supplied with the splitting stands made by Bill Poor (I hope I got that right!)

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Re: About front end stabilizing blocks

Postby smigelski » Fri Dec 19, 2008 5:56 pm

My view comes from seeing hard wood fail. In the fire service we use hard wood for cribbing (from 2x4 to 6x6, for stabilization). We also use those wonderful high lift jacks (which we never use 1 at a time). I seen an OAK 6x6 split. luckily we were already done what neede to be done. As wood dries it checks, checking turns into splitting. So as wood gets older and dryer it is more likely to split easier. We are planning on converting to the new plastic cribbing. So when I am useing wood to sure up or crib, I start with hard wood then the last peice used is soft. After haveing 1 tractor tobble over( being in a hurry and not really being safe or paying attention). I learned to take my time and go slow. I wedge both sides with soft wood. I then use a high lift jack on the opposite side that I plan on lifting(I just raise the jack until it is snug). Then as I am jacking the other side, every so many cranks on the jack I check everything. With soft would in place, it will crush some, this will prevent slipping out like a rocket, since it is stuck in place. You can also see any stress that is happening to the wood. When I am done I use the wedges in the fireplace. The reality is if you can't afford another 2x4, to cut up for wedges or cribbing. You really can't afford to be in the tractor business and have no safe ability to take 1 apart safely.
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Re: About front end stabilizing blocks

Postby Bus Driver » Fri Dec 19, 2008 7:08 pm

Two potential problems with narrow pieces on edge. One is the limited bearing surface which results in high unit pressure on the edge and crushing. The other is stability. Tall narrow pieces are less stable than wider ones.
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Re: About front end stabilizing blocks

Postby Don McCombs » Fri Dec 19, 2008 10:24 pm

Bigdog wrote:Some of you woodworking gurus need to design and market wedge and clamp sets.

The wedge and clamp that Bob Grootegoed (sp?) included with his splitting stands is pretty slick. I'll try to take some photos this weekend and post them.
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Re: About front end stabilizing blocks

Postby Gary Dotson » Sat Dec 20, 2008 6:26 am

The last time I wedged my tractor, I used the plastic wedges that are used with a chain saw. Tough little buggers! Worked great!
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Re: About front end stabilizing blocks

Postby RAW in IA » Sat Dec 20, 2008 7:46 am

If you stopand thnk about it, there will be lots of pressure on the wedge if you jack up the opposite rear wheel, as that tilts the tractor, and with no place to pivot it will put a lot of pressure on the block. Does not mean it was ready to roll over though. Looks like the block did do its job.
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Re: About front end stabilizing blocks

Postby Jeff Silvey » Sat Dec 20, 2008 7:49 am

It all comes down to safety. I have used soft & hard would in the fire service they both have there place's.
Here's what myself & BIL used to support the front axle.
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Re: About front end stabilizing blocks

Postby DanR » Sat Dec 20, 2008 7:54 am

The important thing is check the clamps often. They will work loose.
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