Bucky II - Garden Tractor Class Puller Build

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Lowgear
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Bucky II - Garden Tractor Class Puller Build

Post by Lowgear »

This is the build thread for the garden tractor class puller I've been working on. It comes with a bit of a backstory that I touched upon in the "bored" thread in which I'll reiterate here.

Back in July I happened upon a garden tractor class puller on Facebook Marketplace that I just had to have. There were only two pictures but it seemed to be in decent shape, and the price was as well. Since I don't use Facebook, I got the seller to converse with me over email. I didn't want to annoy them by asking a million questions, and for more pics as I didn't want to risk losing it, so I just bought it. That ended up being a huge mistake as I got completely screwed over on the deal. I don't want to go so far as saying I was scammed but the puller was essentially worthless. It was one of the biggest pieces of junk I have ever bought which is saying something. :x It forced me to clean my hobby table off of my other puller project as it bothered me so much that I had to deal with it immediately.

The only parts from the original that can be reused are the body, and rear tires/wheels in which I plan on replacing down the road. My main goal is to try and use as many 'Made in America' parts as I can or at least those from other reputable countries. I want to avoid using Chinese or similar countries parts on it as much as possible. I'm also doing the same thing with my other puller project. It's an interesting journey as it's really difficult to do so, and an incredibly expensive undertaking. For example, buying the front wheel bearings from Avid would be more than sufficient and cost around $4.00. Instead, I'm using SKF Explorer bearings to the tune of $25.00 that are made in France. You get the idea. Just a totally unnecessary superfluous build.

I'd like to publicly thank and acknowledge member jwscab for making this all possible. He graciously took on the task of reverse-engineering and machining everything! He also did it under a bit of a time constraint in which I'm eternally grateful for. As those of you know who have obtained his services in the past, he does beautiful work, and actually pays attention to what you need done. Even when you bombard him with a novels worth of text like I did. :oops:


This is where I'm currently at with it. The starting point:
GTP1.jpg



Some of the parts I'll be using:
GTP2.jpg


The first order of business is to refinish the aluminum. I'm after a matte or brushed type one but I don't want it too dull. I've read that a red Scotch-Brite pad and WD-40 is a potential solution. I have a test piece I'll try a few different methods on to see what I like best.

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Re: Bucky II - Garden Tractor Class Puller Build

Post by Lowgear »

Why do I have to become so consumed with insignificant details? :| Who in their right mind spends 4 days completely engulfed in trying to find nylon washers that precisely fit M3 screws? *raises hand*

Ultimately, none exist with the specs that'll work for me. I came to the conclusion that I'd buy ones that are close, and then modify them to meet my needs. After sleeping on it though, the thought occurred to me that if I can't match any washers to fit the hardware I was going to use, maybe changing the style of hardware will match the available washers. That's where I'm at now.

This is all because I hate the sloppy fit of stuff you're just supposed to live with. Take any screw or bolt, then take the washer that's specifically meant for said screw or bolt, and combine the two. You'll see how loosely they fit together.

It doesn't end there either. Have 1/4" ID bearings you need to run a shaft through? You would think you'd simply buy a 1/4" shaft right? Oh no no no no no! Due to various manufacturer and manufacturing tolerance differences, it's a crapshoot if the two will fit properly together. They either won't go together at all, or will be a super sloppy fit that's "good enough."

Sorry for the rant but running into problems that shouldn't be has made me a bit miffed.

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Re: Bucky II - Garden Tractor Class Puller Build

Post by jwscab »

Looking forward to seeing the complete project!!!

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Re: Bucky II - Garden Tractor Class Puller Build

Post by juicedcoupe »

The best fitting washer that I've found for a M3 screw is the old Associated aluminum 4-40 washers. Not perfect but much better than most.

If you can find true 4-40 washers (not repackaged M3), they should be decent.

For 4-40 screws, I use M2.5 washers. The fit is tight but it works. I only use them with small pattern nuts and at screw heads.
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Re: Bucky II - Garden Tractor Class Puller Build

Post by Lowgear »

Alright, here's where I'm at with the fastener situation... The whole debacle with them revolves around the fact that I'm trying to prevent a problem (galvanic corrosion) that's not likely to occur. It's simply for my own piece of mind. I thought I'd use a thin nylon washer with each stainless steel button head screw so I'd never have to worry about a reaction happening between them and the aluminum. Simple right? What I thought would take an hour or so of my time turned into days of looking for specific washer sizes that apparently don't exist at the consumer level at least. :?

I quickly found that inch washers did in fact give a tighter fitment on the metric screws so that's what I was after. I wasn't dead set on one particular washer size either. I had a little bit of wiggle room since we're talking about a thousandths of an inch range here but still nothing would fit the way I wanted it to with the M3 button head screws I planned on using.

Then I came up with the idea of using stainless socket head screws instead of button head ones since the head diameter is different. Maybe I'd be able to find a washer that fit them better. I did but I ultimately decided to not go that route either! I really wanted to use button head screws as I felt they would give a better appearance being a lower profile. I don't think a socket head screw with a washer under it would look that good.

So, the solution I'm at right now is to use aluminum screws since they won't react negatively to being used with the same material. This way a washer won't be necessary. I tried to find American made aluminum button head screws but came up empty-handed. There's plenty of Chinese ones out there but I don't want to go that route as I wouldn't trust them to hold, and it goes against the theme of this build anyway. So I settled on some American made 7075-T6 aluminum socket head screws I found on McMaster-Carr. They came today, and look like they should do the trick with a little refinishing. Decisions... Decisions...

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Re: Bucky II - Garden Tractor Class Puller Build

Post by juicedcoupe »

Just to be clear. You are looking for American made, metric hardware.

Thats just wrong on so many levels.

Was 4-40 an option?
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Re: Bucky II - Garden Tractor Class Puller Build

Post by Lowgear »

Yeah! :lol: I mean we have our own standards we cling tenaciously to but America uses metric as well. Just look at the G-bodies which were the muscle cars of the '80s... Metric. What's more American than my 87 El Camino SS? You know, the car with the Spanish name that was made in Mexico? :lol: :P

But seriously, the original design used all M3 hardware, and I have several 'assortment' boxes of it so I kept it the same. I wasn't initially planning on doing things the way I ultimately decided to or I would likely have gone Imperial for ease of finding domestic hardware. It's not as prevalent of course but there are American hardware manufacturers that do metric. Before I decided to buy this aluminum hardware, I was going to go with the offerings from Holo-Krome. I'm still going to use their stainless socket head screws for the steering linkage.

I placed several orders from McMaster-Carr over the past week. Nearly everything I got was US manufactured in origin. Some of it came without a manufacturers identity so I innocently asked them who the makers were. I received a snotty response from a women telling me that they aren't going to disclose that information. :roll: I don't know if that's a new policy or what but I've continually read over the years that if you want to know, you just have to ask them. The reason it's not given on the product pages is due to regularly changing suppliers. Who knew it would be a breach of national security now. To be fair, I can see why they maybe don't want to give out the info as you can bypass them to get the stuff cheaper elsewhere once you know where they're getting it from.

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Re: Bucky II - Garden Tractor Class Puller Build

Post by jwscab »

Don't stress over that. You won't see any significant galvanic corrosion unless you are soaking it in saltwater. Just build it man.

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Re: Bucky II - Garden Tractor Class Puller Build

Post by juicedcoupe »

If I were worried about corrosion, I'd treat the metal and/or hardware with Corrosion X, Corrosion Block, or other similar treatment.

I use them on my outboard motor and fishing reels (aluminum bodies) with excellent results.
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Re: Bucky II - Garden Tractor Class Puller Build

Post by Lowgear »

jwscab wrote: Thu Sep 21, 2023 3:21 pm Don't stress over that. You won't see any significant galvanic corrosion unless you are soaking it in saltwater. Just build it man.
Thanks for this. Coming from you, it actually helped me to clear my mind of unnecessary worry. It's something I really needed to hear... er... read. :) :)


juicedcoupe wrote: Thu Sep 21, 2023 5:49 pm If I were worried about corrosion, I'd treat the metal and/or hardware with Corrosion X, Corrosion Block, or other similar treatment.

I use them on my outboard motor and fishing reels (aluminum bodies) with excellent results.
I considered that as well. A number of years ago after seeing Hornady One Shot come out on top of many extensive comparison tests, I bought a can, and it worked amazingly. That was on bare steel though. I don't know how it fares on galvanic corrosion caused by two very dissimilar metals contacting each other over time.

I realize I'm looking waaaaaay too far into this. I also bought the right anti-seize lube that prevents galling between aluminum and stainless threads which is far more likely to occur than galvanic corrosion. Now there's something I've actually experienced happening before with R/C pullers, and would like to prevent. I should be able to apply a tiny amount to each screw and call it a day.

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Re: Bucky II - Garden Tractor Class Puller Build

Post by jwscab »

Good, glad that helped. Anti-sieze is always a great idea with stainless steel, regardless of the other material.

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