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M29C 10629 Tracks


F-D Zernia
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FD949DE7-09AF-45EE-9F4F-EEB97AA01FCF.thumb.jpeg.626bb62d79e440ede385acb803b135b5.jpeg1ED93CD7-00FA-4F12-B773-76316643F44F.thumb.jpeg.5432f2a8e0c7a682351ae48ec4bcc1e8.jpeg6543E90E-1EED-4738-9A7B-015B97B77677.thumb.jpeg.67c14f8a3dc9c913907ebbb57e254006.jpeg1811F37F-B3DB-482E-A1EF-EE40111C446A.thumb.jpeg.875223a0968d32c56e277cb658aff8f8.jpeg    I’m waiting on engine news so moved to suspension and tracks. Many things are going on and many of the steps have been written about already by others. 
    Lately I have been working on the track idler assembly. When I removed the tension leaf spring the bends and damage were obvious. If the spring is damaged and not allowing the idler to move freely this may cause suspension problems down the line. My option was to build a new spring. 
    The springs dimensions are close to the parts on a cargo trailer and they are plentiful in all kinds of price ranges. What I found at a spring shop surprised me at how well it worked out. I was lucky to find a spring that the mounting eye on one end turned down like the one I am replacing. No one at the shop could tell me what trailer this was for. This part has been on the shelf for way to long and they we’re happy to have somebody take it off there hands. 
    The pictures show an original spring and another cut up with the leftovers. I made the main leaf a little longer so the adjusting bracket would sit on the spring better. 
    The springs cut well with a small grinder using cut off wheels. I drilled the new holes for the center bolt with a cobalt drill bit on the slowest available speed and used cutting oil. Ends up it’s just like working with stainless steel. It worked best to drill through in one pass. 
    Now there is a little arc to the spring, it’s all brand new and should have a  good adjusting range. 
     Before installing I plan to spread a thin layer of grease between the leafs and wrap them with duck tape to keep dirt out. This worked well on dirt short track stock cars years ago when the cars were close to stock. The reason for this step is we plan to drive this one regularly and it will not be in military colors. The next weasel will have that distinction. 
Fred

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  • 2 weeks later...

    I learned so much while installing the first track on this machine and made many mistakes and miscalculations. This is my attempt to pass on some information. 8508E84C-A682-4399-9CE4-D34CBDD85602.thumb.jpeg.195783ca31d3d5d308309fd237486d3f.jpegWe decided to begin with the LAR tracks. It made sense for me and the Liberty folks are a wealth of good information. Although there are enough good grousers in our collection for one rebuild this is not the only Weasel we have. At some point in time new tracks were in the plan so now is as good a time as any. And I can get to their shop and back in less than a day to pick tracks up in person. 1652E066-BC63-42BE-93B0-A38DFAC1AD03.thumb.png.d8490aa519a994d4c66db8922926e772.png1D44C272-9FC8-4C25-ACCF-9A07258D6F26.thumb.png.bb12a817658c2cd136844bf354dbfcda.png    We needed to build a tool to lift the boggie assemblies. I used this all through the process. I made this from left over material from other projects. Mike Howard explained the tool to us and how it works with a floor Jack. I will be changing my design soon. It worked fine without a track. But is to tight on the assembly next to the return roller after the track was in place. 

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Next is making the boggies straight in alignment. 
Mike Howard and Troy at Liberty made it very clear how important this step is. The track guides will not wear prematurely and the Weasel should drive as smoothly as can be. B323C3EA-499A-455F-B712-1E1C71404D38.thumb.jpeg.cd001f3313ae0b927e1f1c338d405353.jpegThe way to check alignment is with a 1 inch wide piece of metal. This gauge needs to slide through all of the bogies. This was no simple task at first. Some of my bogie support arms were bent. I replaced those first. 
Next there are shims behind the support arm bracket where it bolts to the hull. That will tip the wheels from left to right and change the clearance. At this point two sets gave me some trouble. The fix was to lift the assembly with the home made tool and shift the support arm in the spring yoke. The bolt thread would engage with the yoke in different positions left to right. 
That worked on one assembly. The other we removed and turned it 180 degrees in the yoke and that did it. DD0C6586-EA02-4860-8821-F6F71EB8514C.thumb.jpeg.f45cdcf44aa8dd4dcd5309edee52d75e.jpeg

During all of this I also checked with a bar on the outside of the bogies. That should be the initial thing to check. It made sense to me if the outside is straight it should be close on the inside. Also you will know what direction to adjust without guessing. 
The steel I used happen to be 1” x 7/8” solid bar. It was possible to get the 7/8” bar through and not the 1”. At least then I knew it was getting close. 

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F73CBB11-F71F-4E51-AF73-FAB8C68A94C5.thumb.png.510400767e6582792b0b93ef083e0494.png
All of this adjustment is done on a flat floor. We keep our Weasel on a dolly set so the adjustment is on boards in the dolly cradle. I did make extra shims for the support arm bracket in order to adjust bogies. Another shortcut I learned was to unbolt the support arm bracket and let it hang loose on the bolts. At that time I could tip the bogie back an forth to find the sweet spot. Then you can stack shims sideways to determine the right amount and install them.     Very important. DO NOT use the impact to tighten these bolts. I learned the hard way and mashed up two bolt threads. 67E79236-9786-480F-9685-29CED4AE637D.thumb.png.9fbe9337e0a682411c95251f9c0e08c8.png

I did go with new sprockets. It seemed to make the most sense. These are pretty heavy and will spread the load better. 09318837-AA63-4F04-9F1F-73531B7839DA.thumb.png.93beef370bf892a74efc54e315cacde6.png
Like the manual states we took off the outer Idler Wheel to pass the track on. Eventually dish soap was spread thin on the rubber surface to help the track slide in place  I hope it doesn’t come back to bite me later  31183F4B-F0F5-484B-A426-59F064A741BE.thumb.png.575317b37b1d30c2afca4bd2724a35b9.png

This I learned the hard way. I had to put a punch in the top hole for the spring stop bracket. Next time it will be a bolt. Otherwise the weight of the track will pull the idler down and lift the end of the spring until it hits the bottom of the hull. The track has to pass over the spring. As you can see I am not concerned with paint right now, but if it was all finish painted there would be plenty of touch up. 
Fred

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Fred @F-D Zernia they are certainly robust sprockets. Attached is a photo of your sprocket where I have highlighted an area of concern.

Can I ask, Is the highlighted edge 'Sharpe'?

If so, this may cause metal chaffing/shaving of the track guides as they feed into the sprocket. See attached second photo. That edge should have a radius.

I too have fitted LAR tracks and sprockets to my weasel and I did spend a lot of time and effort modifying the LAR sprockets to prevent this very problem.

Just a thought.

Cheers

John

Sprocket.png

guides.JPG

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John. Thanks for the response on sprockets. Mike does not provide sprockets any longer. He did not recommend anything but suggested we look around. These I found from a vendor in California. 
I remember in the past that you posted about excessive guide wear and how your sprockets were modified. I used that information as a reference of what I would look for. These had the chamfered edge on the ring and offset teeth. It seems to clear without adding the spacer from the return roller but I was willing to do that if need be. 
I have been holding out promoting this sprocket until I see if there is excessive wear. As of now rotating the tracks while the hull is in the air all looks good. The real test is when we actually drive the Weasel hopefully later this year. As of right now I am cautiously optimistic. 
FredE2DDB165-E35A-4FA0-923A-635A66BC41F5.thumb.png.b3c0e32932ddda719fef88b5cf3f3373.pngAF66A6D9-75BC-4E84-9428-7F9D9DD8A9B6.thumb.png.f172b364dfd39f5bbc791f0d846a028b.png

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  • 1 month later...

Hi all,   I have been working on refurbishing hubs for the return roller and drive wheel on the other side. I had used the 1/4” thick inner seals that John identified. I doubled them up to create the 1/2” seal width. 
The hub I’m working on now had quite a lot of water in it and turned the grease to mud. Incredibly the bearings and races are looking good. The only issue is the inner seal surface where the leather rides is pitted. My seal vendor had ina seal in stock I have not seen in any posts. This seal presses into the pitted surface of the hub and the rubber then turns on the spindle. I figure the spindle should probably be a good surface in most cases. I am testing these seals in different corners to assess performance. 
At this point I am experimenting with different products to find out which I favor. I did try to locate the Caterpillar seal but the dealer seemed to think it was an obsolete part, so I moved on. 222C1D9F-D15B-4790-8224-2F18A48D17D7.thumb.jpeg.b8b5e4fe2d69a970a1cd658014be7917.jpeg0990A9FE-A8C6-4449-B3E7-F34BC7C6E20B.thumb.jpeg.ebec56d35d6a21a2aa54e66102ac370d.jpegB9020D7D-0A27-4FE9-ACC9-6F4C5FE7255D.thumb.jpeg.e544b1fdcf6bddd722912b5829eba27f.jpeg63B41ACA-92E8-4A63-AD87-1CE4E7A2D1F8.thumb.png.fc7ac5a2bc503b35c46bcdaab0ae49c2.png

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  • 2 weeks later...

Lately I have been working on a way to replace the nonexistent rubber on some return rollers. I noticed some of these parts had previously been replaced with rubber strips and adhesive. It seems it bonded well only thing the years were not kind to the rubber. I have material and adhesive on order so now we were touching up a slightly bent and dented rim. 
 

I cleaned the rim with the wire wheel then with plumbing flux and 50/50 solder tinned the rim in the area of the dent. Very much like how Patrick filled the imperfections on his Weasel hull. After filling and smoothing twice it is close enough for now. I think the contact cement will fill the small voids left. 
 

FredD8CCB66A-D5AB-48FA-8D13-2F579E9CD6F1.thumb.jpeg.de6a7f2c5233bae6513f084c480b960b.jpeg0BA32A6E-CE77-4E53-8CBA-D5137066671A.thumb.jpeg.597408626d62445ae1715f64323443f3.jpeg612C3887-4619-4167-A595-CF1AA3E66938.thumb.jpeg.a9aaeef8e210341e8b710a840900a9be.jpeg1950D060-0C0A-46BB-A31E-59CE685F7084.thumb.jpeg.5d1cc3e1b1e14a7d7968ec1c107584dc.jpeg

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  • 9 months later...

Hi everyone,

    I recently applied rubber to the return roller. It is a project best attempted in times of warm weather  to be certain of good air circulation with doors open. 
    I ordered material from Granger supply. It seems to be a good combination and it cured an extra month plus to be certain of a good bond. 4654C33D-0C4B-407C-9334-ADD5CFEEAD51.thumb.png.064aa76dbc7cdd593732fe56d1d41cbd.png
this is my adhesive. It was recommended to me by a friend that is involved with building big electrical transformers. They use it to apply rubber seals to covers. 
    Granger also deals with sheet neoprene that I cut into strips. I purchased the hardest rubber I could. The neoprene I used was 1/2 the thickness needed so we applied 2 layers. 7430806A-A4B1-4C50-A16D-C07D949D06D5.thumb.png.a832d2bf6fa808015a10297b076195cb.png

everything was scuffed to rough up the surface. Kind of like patching an inner tube. Treat this like contact cement and apply to both sides then let it get tacky dry. 
    Do dry fit before applying the cement to be certain no extra trimming will be necessary. B3C07FB5-7DCA-4751-8E32-BE47FE9A1AF3.thumb.png.246b613e0c6e336b034db7d15f9554ae.png

beforehand I already had fabricated a compression band of galvanized sheet metal. You need to compress immediately to squeeze out all air bubbles.  Pay attention to the circumference of 1 and 2 layers of neoprene so the band will work both times. The neoprene seams are on different parts of the roller so that the overlap reinforce each other. 
    The part of this that caused a little domestic troubles at home was baking the completed assembly in the kitchen oven. There will be a smell that airs out quickly.  250 deg F for about 30 min. with the compression band still on. I recommend the outer edge face down on tin foil, resting on a baking sheet. Some adhesive will squeeze out with the heat and it seemed the neoprene slips a little when heated. That being the case it might be best to slip towards the outer edge. The baking sheet will hold it in place. Keep the steel band on for a minimum of 1 day while cooling. 
    As it cools the bond improves. Even 2 weeks or more created a tougher  seal. 
    I installed the hub today and if all goes well should be testing by winter. Still plenty of work to go. 
 
Fred

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hope it works out well for you.

I wonder what it would cost to have it done by a rubber roller shop. When I lived back ln Wi, I had a buddy thar worked at one, they would make or fix the rubber on rollers from inches to 20 ft wide. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Fred, that is an awesome fix you have found. Years ago I used 2 part poly urethane rubber pigmented black with a duro-hardness of 90 and a soft silicon mold of the idler half. I made the pour and things worked out very well. I like this fix for the return rollers. 

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