Sunday, July 26, 2015
Twas the Day Before Hay Cutting and.....
We got the baler home this morning. She looks a lot more faded int he bright sunlight than she did in the shed but still pretty good for her age.
My son and I left at 4:30 this morning, met up with my dad who drove his truck as a trailing vehicle and moved the baler just as the sun was coming up. At first I was worried as I couldn't get more than about 15 miles per hour without the baler bouncing around and sounding like she was going to fly apart. After we got out to the main highway however she pulled smooth as silk. I never took her above 45mph though and mostly tried to keep her between 35 and 40. My son rode shotgun and kept a constant eye on how close the overhang came to the road edge.
The entire thing worked out beautifully and we barely met any traffic at that hour.
It was also pouring down rain most of the morning as well. Go figure.
After getting her home I spent a couple hours greasing every fitting I could find. Used some WD40 and oil on moveable parts, some of which were a little reluctant to start moving once again. It was then time to drag out the 861D and see if the baler would hitch up and at least run even if I had nothing to bale yet.
Everything appeared to work perfectly. I did make a call and decide to pull the baler around with a cross bar between the two point instead of the hitch bar off the bottom. I really like the emergency lift capabilities the cross bar allows me and the slight bit of extra clearance. Maybe it will be a mistake I am not experienced to know yet.
After testing the baler it was time to pull some fluid and lubing maintenance on the 861D. Something I should have done months ago when I brought her home but didn't since she seemed to run so well. As I mentioned she was showing way over full on the dipstick so I drained the oil and replaced the filter. The service manual says 5 quarts of oil with the filter change. I drained over 2 gallons of oil out of the old girl. It was thin stuff too. I was really worried that perhaps something was leaking into the oil pan but it passed the flame test so it couldn't have been diesel fuel and the hydraulic fluid levels were fine along with the coolant. I know I didn't put four extra quarts of oil in the old girl. She must have been pushing out oil since I got her I guess.
So after the oil change and lube job she was running like a kitten and I put the sickle mower on in preparation for tomorrow's mowing. Weather permitting of course.
All three implements and both tractors appear to be in top running and working shape now. As near as my inexperienced and untrained eye can determine anyway. The 8N required a negative ground lead to the battery be fixed and I had to clean the sediment bowl out once again.
There are still about a million things that can wrong. The baler especially is just a huge question mark at this point. I have it lubed, threaded and I know the moving parts work but who knows if the timing is set properly still or if I am even properly knowledgeable enough to run it. Honestly though I think the sickle mower is the weakest link. It is old, has suffered uncounted undignified field repairs over the years and is actually missing a front piece off the outside ground guide which I didn't notice until today. I am not even 100% sure it is totally set right with all the extra wire and crap someone has put on it.
Unless it rains the adventure/experiment begins tomorrow. Lord knows I have sunk a huge amount of my long term operating cash into this little experiment.
Keep Prepping Everyone!!!!!!!