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Guys,

I've been doing some pretty heavy loader work this winter - pushing snow plow furrows back and up into piles to maintain roadway width. I noticed my loader making an occasional noise or movement that disturbed me so I checked the 9 bolts on each mast. The 3 outer bolts on the left mast were slightly loose. I tightened them using a 24mm socket on a 1/2" drive breaker bar.

Just one more thing for you guys to be aware of in case it happens to you.
 

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It's mentioned in the loader manual to re torque those bolts every so often. This should be done probably at least annually in my book. Change the engine oil? Check your lug nuts and loader mounts. Give the entire machine a good looking over while greasing it as well. All good PM. :thumbup1gif:
 

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Larry, thanks for the heads up. Did you torque those bolts, or did you just tightened them up as much as you could? Last I remember, when I was doing my first 10 hour "re-torque" everything PM, my 150 ft-lb torque wrench didn't go up high enough for the mast bolts. I think I did a "as tight as I could" with my 18" breaker bar.

What does everyone else do? I priced out a larger torque wrench, but couldn't justify spending a couple hundred dollars for a tool I'll only use once every few years.

Just my 2 cents.
 

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I wouldn't crank down on an 18" bar as hard as you can. Example, a 180 lb guy lifting himself by the end of that wrench can put as much as 270 ft lbs at the bolt. A descent torque wrench can be had for 50-80$ that can service from ~35-250 ft lbs and it can be used on your regular vehicles wheels, etc. I have a husky one before they went to china. It has served me well.

Jim
 

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Guys,

I've been doing some pretty heavy loader work this winter - pushing snow plow furrows back and up into piles to maintain roadway width. I noticed my loader making an occasional noise or movement that disturbed me so I checked the 9 bolts on each mast. The 3 outer bolts on the left mast were slightly loose. I tightened them using a 24mm socket on a 1/2" drive breaker bar.

Just one more thing for you guys to be aware of in case it happens to you.
So, did tightening it down stop the symptoms? Re-torquing is just another regular maintenance item for bolted together stuff that gets twisted and worked hard.
 

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I wouldn't crank down on an 18" bar as hard as you can. Example, a 180 lb guy lifting himself by the end of that wrench can put as much as 270 ft lbs at the bolt. A descent torque wrench can be had for 50-80$ that can service from ~35-250 ft lbs and it can be used on your regular vehicles wheels, etc. I have a husky one before they went to china. It has served me well.

Jim
I agree with your reasoning, and thinking back, my "tight as I could" was a good estimate for me. I weigh in at 150-155, and the mast bolt torques should be 230 ft-lb (I just looked it up). So my 18" breaker bar and my weight should have been "just about right" :laugh:

Thanks for clearing that up. I'm usually anal about torquing everything I can find a number for, (broke too many bolts in my youth). :laugh: and my 40 year old 150 ft-lb beam torque wrench has been enough for 99-44/100 of everything I needed to tighten. I also like tools, and didn't want to buy something cheap, guess it's time to buy a new wrench :yahoo:.
 
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Good accidental torque there man. :) Not sure what the downside of over cranking these too tight would be. I know mine have rotation and slip side to side even when torqued to spec.

I've broken a lot if bolts in my lifetime too. :beer:

Jim
 

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Great reason to buy a new tool-a torque wrench. It doesn't have to be the best, if your off by a few pounds either way no biggie-at least they all be consistent. They are great for the wheels also, on your tractor and you car/truck with aluminum wheels.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Larry, thanks for the heads up. Did you torque those bolts, or did you just tightened them up as much as you could? Last I remember, when I was doing my first 10 hour "re-torque" everything PM, my 150 ft-lb torque wrench didn't go up high enough for the mast bolts. I think I did a "as tight as I could" with my 18" breaker bar.
Tom,

Well, it turns out you and I weigh in at the exact same poundage. Those are big bolts (no doubt high-strength too) and I knew there was no chance of snapping one off. So I just pushed down with about 90% of my weight. The 6 bolts that bolt the mast flange to the tractor frame were all tight - I couldn't tighten those even a smidgen. So, with those bolts that tight, I figured I could tighten the 3 outer bolts the same way.

I assume that flexing of the tractor frame when raising the bucket is what would cause these bolts to loosen. I've been jamming the bucket into ice/snow at the side of the road and then curling to break the stuff loose and then lifting and pushing ahead to push it back from the roadway. Sometimes the bucket would catch harder (in the ice) on one side than the other to the point where the opposite side rear wheel would lift up. That twisting/flexing could be responsible for the bolts loosening. I certainly know I'm not responsible for it. :lol:
 

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I picked up an inexpensive 3/4" torque wrench and sockets since I bought the tractor, I figure they are necessary with the tractor and the loader mounts. I now have torque wrenches from very small inch pounds up to the 300 foot pounder.
 
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