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The footrests were another item I had a few attempts at before finishing up with something that looked right in comparison with the rest of the build.  One pair looked too long and narrow, another try ended up with the fold overs not being deep enough.  Fairly quick to mark out and make so not too much hair pulled out.  Again, made from the scrap 1mm alloy panels. The first attempts found a use elsewhere after being cut up.




How to make the fenders. ?  Simply bending up on the brake press wasn't thought viable due to the curves at each end, although I now think it could have been done with a bit of NON press work included.    Also the corners would need alloy welding etc.  Another possibility was making a plug and moulding in fiber glass.   I decided to make these using built up layers of plasticard sheet reinforced with alloy.  I already had a good stock of this plasticard.   This resulted in very strong fenders.  The plastic, welded together with liquid polystyrene cement, was thick enough to sand the curves on ends and sides.  The alloy inserts were a very tight fit after making a few short trial sections to get the bends in the correct place.   Also bolted at the corners although they wouldn't come out easily.  The top of each footrest slides into the slot at the front of the fenders and will be bolted in place when finished.







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Not many photo's of work on the hood.  A slightly larger than required alloy sheet was cut and a shallow fold made on the center line.  A board with a curved edge was clamped over the sheet, after carefully guesstimating :rolleyes: where the side fold should start.  Hope that makes sense.  The sheet was then bent around the board forming one side of the hood.  This was repeated for the other side resulting in a shape which was not far off the required result.  What luck. :thumbs:  A little tweaking with a rubber mallet and a length of round bar persuaded the front and rear of the curved folds to line up with the headlamp surround and dash.




A lot of time was then spent trimming the oversize edges to get the best fit I could manage, followed by clamping to the headlamp surround and drilling for the pivot bolts.

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2 hours ago, the showman said:

Its taking shape Alan, i know where to come when I build the next special. :lol:

About time you started a new project Chris. :poke: How about converting John's digger into something RED.  You know you like it. :) 

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The fuel tank, non working,  was bent up around a scrap wood former.  The measurements were again supplied by my man with the tape, Iain, :thumbs: along with good side view photo's which showed the radius of each corner !  Although the base of the tank was wider than the top, all corners were the same radius.   The original idea was to bend the alloy around the former then remove it which left the question, how to fix it all together.  The obvious solution, apart from alloy welding, was to screw the panels to the wood which would be left in place hidden from sight.


Odd bits of wood were dug out, cut to size, and screwed together after first using the ends to mark out and cut the alloy outer plates.  These were bolted to the wood with countersunk BA bolts, the heads blended in with filler.  The main panel was cut to size and after carefully lining up, was screwed to the underside of the former.  Then it was bent around one face at a time, securing with screws before moving on to the next, and finishing on the underside. Where else. :)  All the screw holes were countersunk, the screws again being blended in with filler.


The filler neck was a short piece of alloy bar, screwed into place, and finished off with a cap from an oil can.  Rubber edge trim was fitted after painting.




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Various ideas were tried out for the seat using bits and pieces lying around and then discarded.  A visit to a local upholstery shop with measurements resulted in a lottery win quote. :blink:  Back to head scratching mode.  I had already spent hours looking for something suitable on the internet without luck, trying various search word combinations.  Then I spotted some cheap-ish scooter ( Lambretta / Vespa ) back rests.  Not exactly what I wanted but worth a try.  A pair were bought and after initial, not sure thoughts, the end result was better than expected.  The fill in piece behind the seat cushion, made from plastic, still needs finishing off with padding.


The first mock up from ply.




The alloy frame, ex green house, just cleared the top of the gearbox. Fixing brackets were bolted on. Sheet steel was bent up for the base and back rest.




There were two short threaded studs already fitted which made mounting easy.  A length of U shaped trim finished off the steel plate and a similar section was fitted to the fuel tank.




I finally managed to get my Great grandson Henry to try the tractor for size.  Even though he is only 7 : 1/2 months he loved it.  Mummy said she had never seen him so excited, squealing and swinging the steering wheel.  We had to hold him though as mummy refused to let me cable tie him on.




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8 hours ago, the showman said:

I see your wearing your colour coded shirt in the last photo 

Those are mummy's arms Chris. :)

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I have just had the chance to read your build post. It is a fascinating read and not spoiled by the snippets you have shared with me. I am pleased I was able to provide a small contribution with a few measurements. Fantastic workmanship.


Your great grandson looks at home on the tractor, you will have to build another one for him :) 



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After looking for a suitable steering wheel on the internet without success, one was made up.  Lots of ready made wheels but too large, too small, near enough the correct diameter but with a rim much too thick for scale etc.


A local metal fabricator advertised various scroll work items for gates, garden furniture and so on.  A visit was made expecting them to have a ring rolling machine.  "Never heard of one" was the reply from one staff member.  He called another older person, same answer.  When I asked how they made the scroll work they advertised, "We don't, we buy it in ready made from China". :rolleyes:


Mr Showman had previously mentioned that a friend might be able to roll a ring up.  Within a few days I had a 7:1/2" ring x 3/8" section.   The hub is a previously drilled cap screw with the spokes from flat strip jammed between two nuts after having a bend made at the inner ends.  After trimming the spokes to length and clamping down Chris welded all the joints up.  Thanks Chris. :thumbs:  I keep thinking I ought to buy a welder but it probably wouldn't get much use.


Grinding the welds down was easier than expected, especially around the hub, using a Dremel.    A slot was cut in the cap screw head for a roll pin which together with a nut held the wheel onto the column. Two short pieces of tube were pressed / hammered over the nuts and all the joints blended in with filler.


The last photo shows the pin resting on the head of the cap screw which is the column bush.  This still needs a sleeve over it to finish off.  Also a cap made for the wheel center.   I should have made the spokes with a steeper angle but too late now.   My great grandson, pictured above,  liked it anyway.







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12 minutes ago, Alan said:


A local metal fabricator advertised various scroll work items for gates, garden furniture and so on.  A visit was made expecting them to have a ring rolling machine.  "Never heard of one" was the reply from one staff member.  He called another older person, same answer.  When I asked how they made the scroll work they advertised, "We don't, we buy it in ready made from China". 


 Unfortunately a sign of the times. I bet Dibnah would have made you one. Proper blacksmith.


Nice work anyway Alan.

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The original exhaust which.was used for the test runs was unsuitable for scale appearance and was also in the wrong position.




A 180 degree bend to fit within the side panels was needed.  I tried a length of flexi pipe I had but this wouldn't bend into a tight enough radius.   A piece of 15mm copper pipe was bent up using an ancient and crude pipe bender ( found at friend John's place ) where else, which gave the required result.




The exhaust stub on the engine is approx 22mm outside diameter although the bore is a lot smaller.  An adapter was turned up to suit.




During the clear out at John's various stainless steel silencers were found which John had made at work.  This one was removed from a mower and cleaned up.




This was connected to the copper pipe via an old 90 degree plumbing elbow after cleaning off all the muck.   After finding a length of chrome plated pipe a posher version was bent up. No prizes for guessing where these came from.  Not sure how this pipe and the plating will stand up to the heat but not the end of the world if it doesn't.


An extension was made for the silencer, again from copper pipe, as I didn't have anything else of a suitable diameter.  This was drilled and the lower end plugged as per the full size.  An adapter ring was turned up, drilled and tapped to hold everything together.  This ring also located the assembly into the grill surround. 




The completed parts and after fitting.  Still need to make some adjustments.















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How to alter the gear lever so that it pointed rearwards instead of to the right as it was when originally fitted to the ride on Bolens mower. :confused:  The lever was fitted to the top of the box and operated horizontally back and forward but to get the arrangement I needed, ( I had turned the box 90 degrees to line up the input shaft with the engine ) resulting in the selector shaft pointing to the rear.  No problem except that the right hand rear wheel and chassis frame would have restricted the lever movement plus access for my hand.


The solution was to cut the lever from it's mounting plate, turn 90 degrees and refix.  The idea was to drill and tap the plate, thread the shaft and weld up.  Turned out that the plate was extra hard.  The center punch lost the fight and I expect the drills would have too.  A nut was fitted to the lever to help keep it at right angles to the plate then all welded up. Thanks again Chris.  :thumbs:   


The first photo shows the original position ( taken after I had cut off and threaded ) followed by the end result.




The long straight of the lever was lined up with the mounting hole in the plate so that when fitted it would be in line with the gearbox shaft.  A bit of tweaking was needed later to cancel out slight eccentricity. Hope that sounds right.    A photo of the lever fitted in place.




A support bearing was needed in the rear cover plate through which the lever  would pass.  A long dig for something suitable unearthed the component shown below.  Two were found, one with a 3/8 needle bearing although a plain bush would have done.  No idea what they were originally for, but after trimming and drilling one it slid nicely over the not quite round and slightly dinged lever. 




The end of the lever was dimpled so that the bolt had something to bite into after being threaded through the bush which also has two grub screws for added security.  The bolt still needs cutting down for appearance, or something better made, but works well as it is.  In reverse gear as shown.  Push down for neutral then the other gears.  When the tractor and trailer is finished, a suitable gear will be found and probably left with speed being controlled with the throttle and centrifugal clutch.


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Don't think Dylan and my great grandson Henry would want to wait for a Mk 2 Chris.  Be quicker to build a pair of trailers for them. :)  They both like tractors though, judging by the smiles. :thumbs:

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While still at the rear of the tractor, another item which had me head scratching for a long time, was how to provide a support for the steering shaft.  As this emerged through the rear panel at an angle due to the differential being in the way, a block of something with an angled hole was required to give more bearing surface than the thin panel.


Could I drill an angled hole in an alloy block without a lot of measuring and setting up. ?  NO.  I had already looked at various plumb blocks and rose joints on eBay, all being unsuitable for various reasons.  Then I remembered some small rose bearings I had found in a box of goodie's while clearing at friend John's.  Problem nearly solved. :) 


The first few photo's show an alloy block being bored and the edges milled to tidy it up.  The lower inside face was also milled to clear the tow bar.  As is often the case, a change of plan meant that I needn't have removed so much metal. :banghead:   Also seen being turned is a reducing bush for the inside of the rose bearing.




The steering shaft is a length of 7mm steel rod.  Why 7mm ?  Because I had a long length which was originally the drive shaft from an old strimmer I was given years ago.  There was already a short 7mm thread on one end, made slightly longer, and a new thread cut on the other end.  The bearing block assembly is shown next with the unfinished overlong thread.  Overlong to start with as I just eyeballed the squareness of the die to the shaft.  If it was out of true after an inch or so, I could cut off and have another go.  After a little tweaking of the first few threads and checking at intervals all appeared OK.  After threading 3 to 4 inches there was no obvious run out. :woohoo:

I can do small threads using die holders in my Unimat 3 lathe but it would have been a struggle with this especially as the die was not of the split type.

A few nuts were drilled and tapped 7mm.



A 3/8 impact wobble drive socket was obtained to connect the drive shaft to the trailer steering ( when finished ).  There appears to be no slop in an impact drive compared to a standard universal joint, but not sure at this stage if there is enough wobble.  Time will well.  The square plug, drilled and tapped 7mm, was part of the previously scrapped 2 speed drill.  Just needed filing down slightly to be a good tight press fit.   The front axle end of the shaft uses a 3/8 to 1/4 adaptor with a standard U/J to allow for clearance at the differential.




These last photo's show how little clearance there is between the shaft, axle and gearbox.  Approx 3/16th above and below the shaft.  Still need to paint the wheels and hubs too.







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