Lighting up the rear of the tractor
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Thread: Lighting up the rear of the tractor

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    BOBL's Avatar
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    Lighting up the rear of the tractor

    New to the forum, so hello to all. I used to work my sisters farm as a kid 50 some odd years ago and had the opportunity to run JD, IH, and Ford tractors. Came back from Vietnam, bought a 100 year old house and a Sears GT18. The GT18 lasted almost 40 years and was till running when I gave it away. That's what brought me to JD and the X series. Couldn't get enough use out of an X7xx to justify the cost. so I bought an X580 which now has just over 24 hours on it.

    I have plenty of sleeve hitch attachments and having to do 1/2 acre of lawn I decided to go for the JD mounted electric spreader, which has turned out to be an incredible option. Well built, and works as advertised. I also picked up a 3200lb rear mounted winch. What bothered me was having to lift the hood and plug/unplug connectors or run cables.

    To eliminate the problem I manufactured a rear mounted distribution box with a 250A circuit and breaker for the winch, 20 amp circuit for the spreader, and additional 15/20 amp circuits for other accessories. My biggest need though, was for lighting on the back of the tractor.

    I had considered buying the JD utility light kit(s) with the tractor then decided not to just because of the expense ($80ea.), and my particular needs. So I came up with a rear mounted distribution box that's fully water proof, connectors that are water proof, and fully fused circuits. The box can be whatever size suits your needs, but must be small enough so that the seat will slide, and in my case so that the seeder mounts. The lights are all LED and can be separately switch, but ate tied to the main lighting circuit controlled by the switch. Switch off, rear lighting is off.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails front2.jpg   side1.jpg   backbox2.jpg   rearlights.jpg   lightson.jpg  


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    First, thank you for your service to our great country.

    I've considered LED lights like that so I could mount then to the bush guard to give me some extra rays when the snow comes. You should do a separate write up on how you constructed the components in the box to power everything up. I believe that there are plenty of people that would have a need and interest. Nice work.
    joshn3448 and JD4044M like this.

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    Boonie's Avatar
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    +1
    The box containing the electronics looks to be a mil-issue first aid kit. Rubber gasket. Nice re-purposing
    JD4044M likes this.
    2018 X739 w/54HC MMM & Mulch Kit
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    BOBL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cms1528 View Post
    First, thank you for your service to our great country.

    I've considered LED lights like that so I could mount then to the bush guard to give me some extra rays when the snow comes. You should do a separate write up on how you constructed the components in the box to power everything up. I believe that there are plenty of people that would have a need and interest. Nice work.
    Thank you. I never know what to say when thanked for my service. I spent 8 years in the navy, 3 years recon in and out of Vietnam, and there was no thanks when I got home, certainly not then. But times change and so do people. Today I can only say thank you, your welcome, and I'm proud of my service to our country.

    I can post some pictures of the construction when I dig them up. Basically the box is a BUD box, with gasket and sealed, made from a combination of reinforced resin/fiberglass. You can get then from Amazon in many sizes starting at about $18.

    And to reply to Boonie, it was a mil issue first aid box that gave me my initial thought. (My oldest daughter was a combat medic.) Good eye Boonie!!!

    The circuits are all fused as I had said and after the initial construction a number of changes were made. The winch wiring is direct from the battery using #8 copper, as are all of the other circuits. You can see the power coming from under the seat using the hole where the safety switch is routed from, and all of wiring is tie wrapped above the hydraulics inside the chassis so that there can't be and rubbing, pulling, or binding on the circuits.

    Inside the box is where the winch relay and fuse block is mounted and where all of the rear power terminates. I'll post a picture of the trial wiring below.

    The lights were $32 for the pair, and it's like sunlight when they're on. They can be switched independently but will not come on unless the switch is in the light position

    The rear light is a trailer light I picked up at an auto parts store for $8 and it just stays on when the lights are on. Plowing snow at night is my big concern and as long as I can light up the rear end I'll be all set, and the plows will see me in the road.

    I bought the winch to work storm damage and to move heavy objects. The trailer connector is for the winch which attaches to the sleeve hitch and 2" receiver adapter. I'll post about that later.

    The coiled cable inside the box is the winch control cable which plugs into the side connector.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails box2.jpg   box1.jpg  
    Last edited by BOBL; 08-21-2018 at 08:17 PM.
    North585, posi, joshn3448 and 3 others like this.

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    jws338's Avatar
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    Looks Great. Where did you get the lights?
    JD4044M likes this.
    John from Plainfield, IL
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    Thank you for your service!

    The coffee hadn't taken affect when I first saw this thread title. I first saw it as "Lightening up the rear of the tractor" so was going to suggest helium in the rear tires.

    Nice looking lights. Great job.
    JD4044M likes this.
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    BOBL's Avatar
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    You're welcome. Just one of many.
    JD4044M likes this.
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