50" deck - strengthening ideas?
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Thread: 50" deck - strengthening ideas?

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    Erik's Avatar
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    50" deck - strengthening ideas?

    My 332 came with a 50" deck that is pretty beat up on the discharge side. The front lower edge has been pushed back to the point where the blade has made contact with it. The lower support bar is completely gone. After looking around for a while for a possible replacement, it seems to be a very common problem. Most are in just as bad condition, if not worse. So I was thinking that if I was going to spend time repairing it, why not figure out a way to strengthen it to avoid future problems. I obviously don't plan on running it into things, but it really seems to be an inherent weak spot. So I guess my question is has anyone done anything to strengthen one before? Or does anyone have an ideas to strengthen it? My 60" deck off my 4110 has sparked some ideas in my head, but I thought I just put it out there to see what ideas others may have. Thanks.
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    2003 JD 4110, FEL, 60"MMM, 54" Blade, 46 Backhoe, MCS, BB2060
    1989 JD 332, 50"MMM

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    glc
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    If you just straightened things out to where they should be,you probably wouldn't have anymore problems. But if you wanted to strengthen that front edge,you could weld a piece of flat bar,like 1/4" x 3" or 4" acrossed it. Maybe even something 1/8" thick will do just fine.

    I guess I was a lucky one,my 316 came with a 50,and it didn't have a dent anywhere.

    That thing was really abused. You know,it doesn't matter how old something is,there is no excuse for that kind of treatment. Then again,maybe age had nothing to do with it, and everything they had was run hard.

    Greg
    Greg from western pa



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    Erik's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by glc View Post
    If you just straightened things out to where they should be,you probably wouldn't have anymore problems. But if you wanted to strengthen that front edge,you could weld a piece of flat bar,like 1/4" x 3" or 4" acrossed it. Maybe even something 1/8" thick will do just fine.

    I guess I was a lucky one,my 316 came with a 50,and it didn't have a dent anywhere.

    That thing was really abused. You know,it doesn't matter how old something is,there is no excuse for that kind of treatment. Then again,maybe age had nothing to do with it, and everything they had was run hard.

    Greg
    Thanks for the ideas Greg. I understand that it was taken very good care of most of it's life until the owners son got a hold of it. He clearly ran it into a few things until he got a zero turn to beat the hell out of. The tractor was just put into storage after that, hence the low hours. Getting back to the deck, it does seem to be a weak design though because I've seen so many with the same kind of problems on that same side. That might be personal observation over hardcore fact, but I would imagine it's caused a bit of metal fatigue in the deck. Also, since it seems to be common, I'm just kind of interested in seeing if i can come up with a good solution for it (think of it as a "what if?" project). Most people I've communicated with about it say the just beat it back into place if they catch it on something. I'm just looking for an alternative to that in the case I catch a root or something the wrong way once i put it back into service.
    2003 JD 4110, FEL, 60"MMM, 54" Blade, 46 Backhoe, MCS, BB2060
    1989 JD 332, 50"MMM

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    rgd
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    Good grief! That is bad! I remember what started me on the road of buying John Deere years ago was the fact ...Deere made some of the heaviest /well built decks around. They ,of course, werent quite as heavy of gauge as the newer built up commercial decks of today...but they were alot better than 99% of the offerings back then. It took some serious effort to distort that deck that bad.
    If it was me fixing it,I would beat it back into shape if possible ,if not,then cut out and weld in patch panels. I would also weld in a 3/8" x1-1.5" bar stock along the bottom,heating and bending it to conform to shape...copying my Exmarks deck.I would then blend any welds in,sandblast,and have it powdercoated. But...I can be too much of a perfectionist some times...
    Take pictures of the fix ! I'm sure most here would love to follow along!
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    eepete's Avatar
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    yeah, the deck on my 318 was all beat up after 20 years. Mowing a few rocks (3" or so) didn't help. A few times I had to re-adjust with a sledge hammer. I ended up buy a new 48" deck from my dealer, it was left-over stock, got a good price on it. The old deck was on it's 3rd set of spindle bearings.

    The new deck just cuts stuff that's already been leveled and is clear. And it's just around the house. The old deck cut everything, and now that's cut by an MX-6 which, unlike my old 318, tends to win if there's a tie.

    I think you could beat it back into shape and just beef up the sides with some welded on bar. The outside edges where the worse. If I had a welder, that's what I'd do.

    I'm probably going to just give my old beat up deck to a local guy who's got 3 300 series old Deeres. He can restore.

    Pete
    '09 JD4520 Cab (60HP), '97 KubotaB21 TLB (21HP), 400cx loader, MX6 rotary mower, SB1106 6' Sickle Bar, BB3272 6' box blade, GradeMaster 7' Landplane, Frontier AF11E Front Blade, 4' Pallet Forks, 6' landscape rake, ballast box, Woods GTC 40" tiller, PHD 9" auger, 4' x 8' chain harrow, '16 X755 (23HP Diesel) w/front PTO, 60" deck, 72" front blade, '90 JD318 (18HP gas) with 48" MM mower, 54" front blade, 47" snowblower.
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    Erik's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rgd View Post
    Good grief! That is bad! I remember what started me on the road of buying John Deere years ago was the fact ...Deere made some of the heaviest /well built decks around. They ,of course, werent quite as heavy of gauge as the newer built up commercial decks of today...but they were alot better than 99% of the offerings back then. It took some serious effort to distort that deck that bad.
    If it was me fixing it,I would beat it back into shape if possible ,if not,then cut out and weld in patch panels. I would also weld in a 3/8" x1-1.5" bar stock along the bottom,heating and bending it to conform to shape...copying my Exmarks deck.I would then blend any welds in,sandblast,and have it powdercoated. But...I can be too much of a perfectionist some times...
    Take pictures of the fix ! I'm sure most here would love to follow along!
    I, like you, tend to go over the top with things once I get into them. I like your way of thinking and ideas though. Make sure to send me your address and I'll get it shipped out to you next week.
    2003 JD 4110, FEL, 60"MMM, 54" Blade, 46 Backhoe, MCS, BB2060
    1989 JD 332, 50"MMM

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    Erik's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eepete View Post
    yeah, the deck on my 318 was all beat up after 20 years. Mowing a few rocks (3" or so) didn't help. A few times I had to re-adjust with a sledge hammer. I ended up buy a new 48" deck from my dealer, it was left-over stock, got a good price on it. The old deck was on it's 3rd set of spindle bearings.

    The new deck just cuts stuff that's already been leveled and is clear. And it's just around the house. The old deck cut everything, and now that's cut by an MX-6 which, unlike my old 318, tends to win if there's a tie.

    I think you could beat it back into shape and just beef up the sides with some welded on bar. The outside edges where the worse. If I had a welder, that's what I'd do.

    I'm probably going to just give my old beat up deck to a local guy who's got 3 300 series old Deeres. He can restore.

    Pete
    Is your replacement deck the newer 48C Pete?
    2003 JD 4110, FEL, 60"MMM, 54" Blade, 46 Backhoe, MCS, BB2060
    1989 JD 332, 50"MMM

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