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Discussion Starter #1
Recently there have been some posts about increasing traction and locking rear ends. A simple solution would be to look for an older Bolens tubeframe with a locking rear. Many can be found in running condition for less than $500. Recently I picked up a '69 1050 for $75 needing a little tinkering and a battery. Even though only 10hp they have plenty of pulling power and will handle almost anything you can throw at them. You can also find 12hp and 14hp models such as a G14. There is a knob in the center of the left rear wheel that you can tighten to obtain the desired degree of traction. Although not a shift on the fly setup, it only takes a few seconds to stop the tractor and spin the knob. This can be done while still in gear so there is no need for shifting back to neutral. Another plus in looking for these tractors on the cheap is that there is an end play adjustment for the rears which most people ignore. Over time the tranny will slip and make all kinds of knocking noises. Don't be scared off if you start one and try to drive it and this happens. By all means pay accordingly as if the rear is gone, but before swapping it out try the end play adjustment. Another common repair would be a stuck clutch from sitting outside, it can usually be freed up with a screwdriver and hammer. Here's a photo of the traction control knob...
 

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Sure seems like a much more practical approach than all of the
suggestions I have read on contorting the existing Hydrogears
into locking differentials.
 

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Speaking for myself, it'll be 12 months before I have a house. Owning 2 tractors is not practical unless I own and live in a house, just like you guys. So, for the time being, I have to do EVERYTHING with just ONE tractor. So, for me to enjoy a locking differential, I either start all over by buying a Simplicity Prestige(it satisfies my requirements), or a install a 338-3000 Hydro-Gear transaxle(this is the model which simply bolts in my tractor). The cost of the 338-3000 is $761.
But, I'm curious about the Bolens knob which is outside of the wheel. It appears that it's more of a locking hub with adjustable friction, rather than a true differential spider gear lock. I suppose it's possible that it could also be a friction adjustment for internal clutches similar to a posi-traction differential. Is there a source where a person could find a copy of a diagram(drawing) which would answer these questions? Whichever it is, it would not offer the practical/useful feature of a true spider gear lock.
 

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sixchows,
The first thought, after I opened the link, was that without knowing which model number to look at, it would take my dial-up system too long to search for the one that I could guess was the right one. I tried to open one anyway. But, apparently my computer is not equipped to open any of those files.
However, by the mention of "it's all done with gears", the chances are good that it's nothing more than an adjustable lock on the hub, otherwise Bolens would've simply installed a spider gear lock which can be operated with a small lever, without getting off of the tractor. Thanks anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Willie
I gave you the model # it's "1050" Just follow what I said before 1st page sonnys home page click on "mauals" at top of page, 2nd page click on "tubeframes" on upper left side of page. On 3rd page look for "1050 download" on the right side. I'm on dial up also it's not that big of a file. Do you have adobe acrobat reader?
And there is no need to get off the tractor, simply reach down inside the wheel and spin the knob to the desired degree.
As for bolens technology, they were way ahead of their time and didn't skimp on anything. These tractors are shaft driven to the tranny through an automotive style clutch and pressure plate brake and all pto attachments are shaft driven through gear boxes. There were over 30 attachments available for these 8-12hp tractors of the late 1960's. Attachments that most wish they could find today. There was a Johnson FEL with full hydraulics, a Danuser post hole digger, trenchers, mid mount graders, all the things you need for the job at hand. Don't be so quick to dismiss these as some older underpowered equipment. With the proper attachments they will do far more with the 10hp than anything made today unless you were to get into a CUT.
 

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sixchows,
Yes, that's the page and place where I was( on Sonny's website). I keep trying to open the 1050 file, it unloads, but it keeps telling me it's in Kodak EasyShare tif. My computer can not, will not, open it. I'm sure it's my fault due to the fact that I'm computer ignorant. Yes, I have Acrobat Reader, and I've opened many files previously.
Please be aware that my analysis of the Bolens hub adjuster is not an analysis of the Bolen legacy. Obviously, you're a major fan of Bolens, just as much as some are major fans of Gravely, or Wheel Horse. I'm not loyal to any brand. I just want a locking differential with an hydro tranny, and I want on-the-fly capability that doesn't take more than 5 seconds to engage or disengage.
If there is no such animal, or if for some reason I can't have it, I will have no choice but to keep on working at the slower pace that my tractor is limited to(due to its limited traction).
 

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willie & 6 chows..
i tried to open the downlaod under manuals, tube frame, 1050 and only got one page looks like the title page of the manual.. nothing else..
 

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sixchows,
Something else came to mind. There's no way that someone my size, my age, and with my physically challenged condition could reach a rear hub without falling out of the seat. I'm not so sure they meant for you to do the adjusting that way. Does yours have that feature?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
That's the way it's done, there's no reason to get off the tractor. You simply reach over to the left wheel and turn the hub, really not a big deal or anything difficult. I guess for anyone whose physically challenged even the simplest of tasks can present a problem.

Anyway the purpose of this thread was to shed some light on a simple yet extremely strong series of tractors that can be found for not a lot of money and be used as real workhorses. I'm familiar with your situation and fully understand about not having the room or need for two tractors. I'm also not suggesting you replace your husqvarna. In fact this thread wasn't aimed at your specific situation, but rather meant as an informative option for others looking for used equipment that really is more than capable of performing with far less hp then the box store brands. To those unfamiliar with these tractors they appear to be underpowered and useless which couldn't be further from the truth.
If anyone is interested look around the photo section at sonny's and then click on links. Try jacques lacasse page and the photo there.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
SJ
I'm only getting the first page now also but I have downloaded from there in the past. Sonny's is a strange place at times, most times they're too busy to even answer the phone so who knows if they are maintaning the site.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Here's alink to the 1969 Bolens brochure featuring the specs for the 1050, notice the controlled differential photo
http://jacqueslacasse.tripod.com/Bolens/Brochure1969/page10.htm

From there, click on page 4 for a better description of the the controlled differential. Then go to pages 18 & 19 for the attachments that were available including photos of each. Keep in mind that most of these are for the tubeframe series, the large frames actually had less available.
 

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sixchows,
I read the brochure. With regard to the adjustable hub, I don't like my conclusion. They use the words "adjustable traction", and they say the adjustment works on a brass cone that ties the left wheel hub to the right wheel hub. In my view, the only way you could have adjustable traction is if the axle was solid, the left hub was free-wheeling, and you had the capability of incrementally securing the left hub to the axle. This means the tractor would begin with only the traction afforded by the right tire, then you could start bringing in the traction of the left tire until both tires are locked together.
This implies that this tractor does not have a conventional spider gear differential. If it did, then I don't see how the brass cone would be necessary, or how it would bring both half-axles together. Does anyone know?
 

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sixchows…

Your right about how much power these old lower hp tractors can
deliver to the rear wheels. When I first got my 1250 (12hp Wisconsin)
I positioned it with the FEL bucket flush against a curb and nudged the
hydro peddle forward. The tractor would easily spin BOTH 26x12x12
turf tires on clean asphalt.

Willie….
For less than $761.00 you could put your Husky in storage for 12 months
AND buy a good used 1050.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Willie
Let me try to explain, the axle is a solid shaft that runs from one side to the other. In the center there is a 22tooth bevel gear an upper and lower 10tooth pinion gears, a worm wheel, connected to another22tooth bevel gear which is then connected to the drive hub on the right side. Another way of looking at it might be that it's a solid 2 wheel drive axle that you loosen up to allow only one wheel to turn. Not sure if any of this is making sense, but if you could see the diagram it would really clear things up.
 

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Originally posted by sixchows
Willie
Let me try to explain, the axle is a solid shaft that runs from one side to the other. In the center there is a 22tooth bevel gear an upper and lower 10tooth pinion gears, a worm wheel, connected to another22tooth bevel gear which is then connected to the drive hub on the right side. Another way of looking at it might be that it's a solid 2 wheel drive axle that you loosen up to allow only one wheel to turn. Not sure if any of this is making sense, but if you could see the diagram it would really clear things up.

I get it sixchows. So the left hub has the brass cone, that works like a cone clutch, or a syncrnizer . Seems like a simple soulution to a complex problem. Normal use you could leave it loose, suspect aeras you could put a little load on it, to give the wheel grip, but still let some slip in turns. Or you could lock it up tight for max traction.

Some times it takes a step back in time to find a fresh idea for a problem.
 

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It has become apparent to me that we are divided in how we see the old and the new. For instance, to me, a new spider-gear differential with a quick lever to engage/disengage a differential lock, is head and shoulders better than this old technology.
Look, I've been around classic/fully restored machines of all kinds, and I've really enjoyed them. Almost all of them(I can't remember an exception) were owned by people who drove around, or flew around, in modern machines with all the modern conveniences. It's almost like a double standard. Yeah, we really thing the old classics were the best, but let me enjoy the modern conveniences.
Clearly, you need to have a passion for the old classics in order to come up with the patience to find them and to hunt for parts and to operate them. I don't have this kind of passion. I like the new stuff. Tractorwise, I'd love to have a Simplicity Prestige. And, since it's not in the cards, I'll have to settle for second or third best. I guess I don't really belong in a forum of tractors which are no longer in production.
 

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Seems like a good idea. On a garden tractor, in my opinon, if there is any slippege of a single drive wheel,[ie around a corner, wet ground etc] they would be better locked. About the only advantage spider gears would have in a GT app, it in streight line/eaquil traction, bulth drive wheels put the power down to the ground. In an open diff with spiders, and unloading of wheels, would leave to loss of traction. At leat in this case the right wheel will always turn, and if it's that bad, lock it.

IMHO a spider gear diff is one way to do it, but in a GT, it is not the only way. Thanks for letting us in on this Sixchows.
 
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