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Mini Combine Made From Riding Mower
"Kids love it," says Tom Hart, Rochelle, Ill., about the mini combine he made out of a riding mower.
Hart bought a used mower from an implement dealer for $100. He reversed the steering wheel and turned the seat around and widened the rear axle by 8 in.
To determine how big to make the cab and where to locate the controls, he had Matthew sit in the seat and measured around him. He used 1 1/2-in. angle iron to make the cab frame and corrugated steel on the roof. He used sheet metal off a junked combine to make the grain tank. The cab windows are 1/4-in. plexiglass and the two unloading augers are PVC pipe.
He made a pulley and belt-drive steering system by running a belt from the bottom of the steering column to the mower's front steering axle.
He used sheet metal to build a ground-driven "floating" header with a reel that's belt-driven off the mower's axle, so the reel turns only when the combine's moving. The header mounts on gauge wheels off an old Cub Cadet riding mower. He used 1 by 4 boards to make wood reel batts and mounted them on a length of 3-in. dia. PVC pipe. Each end of the pipe rides on saddle bearings.
"The operator can use a lever to raise the header over obstacles. It moves up or down 1 ft. and is hinged and spring-loaded so it can bounce up without being damaged if it hits something.
"It has a clutch drive so it only moves when the operator pushes the clutch pedal. Leting up on the pedal engages the tractor's parking brake. The mower's original reverse gear is now the only forward gear so the operator can't drive too fast. Also, the belt that drives the header is set real loose so the reel will stop if anything gets caught in it."
The gas tank mounts under the grain tank. Hart cut a 3-in. dia. hole through the bottom of the grain tank to refuel.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Tom Hart, 7388 S. Locust, Rochelle, Ill. 61068 (ph 815 384-4003).

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1996 - Volume #20, Issue #2