rear transaxle reinforcement

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thebuildist United States of America
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rear transaxle reinforcement

Post by thebuildist »

I'm in the process of adding a detachable loader to my 4020. Based on good advice from Gordy at the "other" CCI site, I've decided to add some additional bracing on the bottom side of the transaxle too. I think that others who have a 3pt hitch might benefit from this approach:

The main "plate" for my 3 pt hitch (homemade) is bolted to the back of the transaxle, like the factory unit would. All the torque applied by weight on the lift arms is transmitted to the transaxle, trying to rotate the back of the transaxle downward. The transaxle itself is only bolted to the top of the frame rails. It's a fine setup for suspending static weight from the center of the frame, but it isn't ideal for heavy weights (500lbs +) applied out behind the tractor on the 3pt hitch arms.

I understand from Gordy that when frames break, it's usually right in front of the transaxle, right where the frame rails thin down to go around it.
2021-09-06 14_03_21-DeltaCad - [LOADERB.DC _].png

So my initial plan was to weld some vertical tabs to the rear face of my new crossmember, and bolt in 1" round steel bars from those tabs down to the sleeve hitch lugs on the transaxle. That would give a triangular point-to-point member which would brace the bottom of the transaxle from moving forward.
2021-09-07 01_11_55-DeltaCad - [LOADERB.DC _].png
Reality got in the way, though, because the hydraulic motor blocks a straight line from the sleeve hitch lugs up to the crossmember. So the reinforcing bars will have to be bent to go around the motor. No big deal.
But I didn't like one thing about this: The lowest point under the transaxle is now 2 steel "barbs": If you're in deep stuff, the angled round bars will act like skis to ride up over dirt/rocks/mud. But if you try to go backwards, they're going to dig in. I just thought it would be better if I extended the bars rearward, so that they're not just sticking down like two sore thumbs.
2021-09-07 01_21_58-DeltaCad - [LOADERB.DC _].png
And that led to the "aha" moment: I can extend the bars back to the bottom flange of my 3 pt hitch "plate" and bolt them to it.
2021-09-06 14_31_31-DeltaCad - [LOADERB.DC]b.png

Now I get not only the strength of a triangular point-to-point member, but with the round bars tied to the transaxle in two places, the bars act now like levers, stabilizing the transaxle even more. And the bars are attached to the transaxle at two different points, lessening the chances of breaking off the sleeve hitch lugs.
2021-09-06 14_31_31-DeltaCad - [LOADERB.DC].png
Being bolted on, the bars are removable for heavy maintenance. And with them in place, the torque is eliminated at the point where the transaxle meets the frame rail. With this setup, I wouldn't hesitate to put whatever load on the 3 pt that it's capable of lifting, up to the point of whatever weight limit there is for the axle tubes themselves.

Just sharing for the benefit of anyone who's interested.
"Never be afraid to try something new. How hard can it be?"
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DavidBarkey Canada
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Re: rear transaxle reinforcement

Post by DavidBarkey »

I have been running the same lower reinforcement links on Frankie for over 3 year now . Wise idea take a lot of the twisting force off the back of the frame .
Mad Tractor Builder
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