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379 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Good morning:

I purchased a used 4200 w/ a 420 loader and 60" mid-mount mower last fall. The few times I used the mower, it felt like something wasn't correct; when I removed it to install a plow, I discovered the front draft arms for the lift system were not locked. I figured it would be easy to fix when I re-attached it this spring. Not so much so - when I re-attached the front draft arms I discovered they couldn't be locked - the arms are way too short.

(Before going on, I must confess the online manual I found on JD's website does not match the serial number of my deck. I spoke to the dealer; he had a packet of CDs and couldn't find a manual that matches the serial number for the deck. He did ask if I had a "green deck" or "yellow deck." I have yellow and he was sure it was the right one. The dealer/mechanic said there were a few differences in the green and yellow decks but he was fairly certain the attachment details are the same.)

So, I go to the online manual and discover two seemingly conflicting pieces of information:
1. The instructions for preparing the tractor show the control arms middle support brackets have two holes for attaching the control arms. This is consistent with the parts diagram.
2. The instructions for attaching the control arms show three (3) holes and state "for 4200 use middle holes, for 4300/4400 us front holes." This is not consistent with the parts diagram.

(This confuses me; I know the distance between the loader mounts and the front of the tractor are identical for a 4200/4300/4400 because a 420 loader will fit all these models. Maybe I'm missing something.)

I press on. I discovered the lift arm links are also not adjusted correctly.

I removed all the links (front and rear draft arms); adjusted them according to the online manual (probably the one for a green deck), got out my handy leveling tool it after some adjusting, it SEEMS to fit and operate perfectly.

But, now the frame for the right front wheel on the deck will touch the right front tire if it isn't perfectly straight and I turn the steering wheel. If the wheel rubbed and not the frame, I wouldn't worry so much; I'm afraid the wheel frame will shred the tire.

I removed the deck, moved the control arms to the rear holes and now the front wheel clears but I had to unthread the draft arm ends all the way to get it attached and lock. There wasn't enough thread to level the deck. In addition, the piece on the deck that hits the bracket on the tractor to prevent the deck from hitting (and damaging the tractor) is no longer aligned to hit the bracket.

The dealer has reviewed the tire sizes, serial numbers and checked every manual and parts catalog they can see - they are at a loss. The dealer was servicing a 430 w/ a 72" deck and the control arms were installed in the front holes.

I guess I can remove the deck front wheel, or remove the control arm mounts and drill "a middle" hole but that doesn't seem like a good idea.

The dealer jokingly suggested I buy a new 72" deck and promised to do some more research.

If you have a 4200 with a 60" MMM, or have expertise on this topic, I'd be grateful if you have any suggestions.


22,246 Posts
I'm going to move this to the MCUT forum. It seems like you may get more responses there since this is more of a tractor specific mounting thing.:good2:

60 Posts
Hi, jallen,

Have you fixed this problem yet? If not, you might look at the bracket on the front of the tractor that the front draft arms swing up and lock into.
This bracket, I believe, has 3 sets of holes where it bolts to the front of the tractor frame. It should be bolted in different positions on a 4200 vs a 4300.
I can't remember exact positions but the reference you made to the different holes I believe is this bracket. Also, the position of the front of the rear draft arms is different for a 60" vs a 72". I have both of these mowers and tractors. If this does not help, let me know and I will try to be more specific and
maybe send some pics.
Good luck, and let me know how it turns out.
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