Qualcast Cultimatic De luxe cultivator / rotavator - pulley sizes Please help!

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Gardener1

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Hi
On the cultimatic the idler can slide along the steel rod so without a flange I think it would soon disengage

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smud6ie

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If the the idler can slide then it may self line with the two other pullies on its shaft rather than come of it, friction between belt and idler keeping it in place.
smud6ie
edit: you could even pack either side so it can't slide even using washers large enough to act as a flange,if it can slide then there should be space to do this.
Of course these suggestions are  a get out jail card in case you can't
 find the proper job.
« Last Edit: April 22, 2012, 16:39 by smud6ie »

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Mr C.

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I'm sure the last post is right for the idle pulley. It doesn't have a flange and can move about
on the rod around 1/2" or so once the belt is off. As the pulley never disengages from the main drive belt, I reckon that's what keeps it in allignment.
It has a washer and a circlip at the end to keep it on, but it shows no sign of ever running up to the circlip.

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smud6ie

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Gardener1

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Hi
I think Mr C may have misunderstood about the flange.  This is on the pulley and means the back of the belt does not leave the slot and so doesn't leave the pulley.  There are lots of flat flanged idler pulleys that tension the belt from the outside on ebay but only in plastic. Thanks smud6ie for the illustration.  I can see how it works because the two jaws act as the flange.  Might be possible to modify the cultimatic in this way but as designed the idler pulley is on a rod which swivels when the handlever is operated.

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smud6ie

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I may have missunderstood when you were refering to "plastic" i thought you meant plastic bearing.If its a plasic pully for a ride on mower or similar it will have a steel bearing in the centre which will be fine.you just need to ask the seller what size the pivot hole is.
If they are too large they can be made to fit with small bush.
smud6ie

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Gardener1

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It was a plastic pulley with a steel bearing, and I was thinking of using an oilite bush to get to the old imperial size used by Qualcast.  But I had discounted using a plastic pulley because several sellers said they were not usable to replace an alloy pulley

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Gardener1

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Oh I feel such a charlie!  I spent the morning getting to the cultivator behind the piles of roof tiles I have collected for an extension, with a view to checking the measurements of the shafts for the idler and reverse pulleys.  Much to my embarassment my memory has let me down.  The belts weren’t there as I knew and nor was the reverse fibre drive disk.  I knew the engine had melted to a very small puddle of alloy with a tiny crankshaft and one valve.  But the metal pulleys were in fact still there as they are steel rather than alloy!! Unfortunately the large mild steel vee pulley is quite distorted but might come back into shape in a vice if I can get it off, which I can’t!
OK the reverse pulley flopped around on the shaft and the idler pulley was totally seized on the shaft as was the rotating arm.  The circlips and washers for both were there but very rusty, and the grease nipple for the reverse pulley was still there too as was the spring clip to hold the disk on. After an hour of heating with a blowtorch and soaking in WD40 it still wouldn’t budge.  Took a while with a hammer and chisel to force it off but the welded pin about which the bracket rotates sheared off.  The oilite bush has broken up with some left inside the idler pulley and the rest bonded to the shaft but I can get the dimensions for replacements.  There is a puddle of bronze on the shaft for the reverse pulley after the oilite bush melted.
I will upload some pics of the pulleys including the shaped piece for the reverse disk which I am sure I can fabricate from brake lining material. I can now see what Mr C meant about how it was held on!  Will be tricky to cut out the shaped hole – I guess I will have to use a fret saw
I am sure I can get this back in working order.  Knowing I can reuse the two original pulleys means I can now order replacement belts knowing they will fit. 
Does anyone happen to have a spare pair of handlebars and grips? And a  pair of plastic wheels??
Sorry to waste people’s time
IdlerPulley0.JPG
IdlerPulley1.JPG
OiliteIdler.JPG

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Gardener1

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Reverse pulley pics
The second one shows the shaped shaft and you can see the spring clip at the step which holds the disk in place on the pulley
ReversePulley0.JPG
ShapedReverseDisk.JPG
GreaseHole.JPG
ReverseDiskCirclip.JPG
« Last Edit: April 23, 2012, 12:47 by Gardener1 »

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Mr C.

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Well, that's excellent really, is it not? You have most of the parts you were after, and even if not servicable, it makes replacements a damn site easier.

I'm not sure exactly which thing you could not get off and took a chisel to. but it's all fairly basic and so should be fixable.

I'm glad you have the shape of the reverse friction piece now - the tricky thing with that one is to make sure the shape you cut is exactly centered or else you will end up with a slight oval rotating instead of a round disc. However, if you clean up the pulley shaft, you can make it bang on by constantly offering the replacement friction disc up to it as you go.
Don't forget that the parts from Chester Hudson are already round discs and have a central hole (albeit too small) to get you going. And you get two of them for £11.

I could not find a way of removing the grease nipple as it has no flats on it, so I think it may be pressed in rather than screwed in. I don't know. But if you put a grease gun on it and grease eventually comes out of the small hole, then I guess you don't need to do anything else.

Have you considered taking the large final drive V pulley to a fabrication shop (if there are any left in the country) and handing them the old one as a template to make you a new one up? I can't see it costing the earth. I do think you're going to need a bearing  puller to get it off though as it appears to have a notch in it for a woodruff key of some sort.

I would have thought that any old wheels would do. Try looking at golf trolley wheels, for instance. I'm not sure about handlebars though - I think I'd be off back to the local fabrication shop myself.

Anyway, good luck and let us know how you get on.

Mike C.

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Gardener1

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Hi Mike
Thanks for all the help.  I would like to see a pic of your reverse pulley with disk when it comes back.  I am taking my pulleys in to Ipswich to see if East Anglian Bearings have the right oilite bushes and will report on the sizes when I know them.
I spent part of the afternoon doing more dismantling. Took an age to get the rotavator slashers off and had to write off the clevis pins and will have to find a stockist.  The large vee pulley wont budge, but it should as it has the usual woodruff key - will try again later.  There is nothing to attach a bearing puller to and the pulley is far too flimsy.  More pressing is the fact that now I have the rotavator slashers off I cant turn the axle or large vee pulley.  Have now greased the top axle so maybe that will help.
The fire was very hot as I know from hiding behind a bush holding a half-frozen hosepipe and pointing it at my oil tank!  Everything plastic on the qualcast has gone and there is no oil in the casing.  It would have been easier to buy one in an auction but I like a challenge:)

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Mr C.

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I appreciate you like a challenge - and you're doing exactly what I would because I'm a stubborn b*gger.
Your puller should have a central stem that will sit on the end of the drive shaft, and then the arms go behind the large V disc and drag it forward as you turn the thread down.
I did notice that the main drive shaft from the engine has a cone shaped hole in the centre to take a pullers' central stem and stop it from slipping as well as keeping it centralised.
I presumed the final drive shaft would also have one.
Can you borrow a proper puller from somewhere?

I appreciate that after sitting together for 35 years the woodruff key/shaft/disc may need a lot of persuasion before they part company.

I don't like the sound of you not being able to turn the axle. I've wondered how we are supposed to get in to the chain case - mine appears to be 2 halves welded together. But maybe you need to go in there?

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Gardener1

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Hi
The engine shaft does have a dimple but the final big vee pulley doesn't.  I can't see how the arms would go behind the big pulley.  I couldnt put them on the pulley because if I just pull hard I can distort this.  I can't turn the big pulley by hand but not sure I should be able to.  The engine rotates at 3000 rpm and even allowing for the gearing down from main engine pulley to vee pulley, perhaps 3:1, there would be a lot of torque to turn the big vee pulley. 
I have cleaned out the slasher axle recesses. Just solid flanges of about 50-60mm diameter. I don't know what is behind them, presumably oilite bushes with oil seals. The sump is supposed to hold half a pint of SAE30.  I wouldn't expect to be able to turn this axle by hand as the gearing would be very high.  What would be nice is if you could check if you can turn your pulley by hand (without a forward belt or slashers!):)
The chaincase is welded so not serviceable.  The pity is that when I bought my cultivator the oil leaked out through a small hole in the weld so they send a replacement chaincase.  I kept the old one for about 10 years before binning it.....

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grendel

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I would use a 3 leg puller like this - http://www.screwfix.com/p/laser-reversible-gear-puller-2-3-leg-100mm/48634
but for the sze of the pulley, I have a set of 3 sizes.
you put the puller on, tighten the centre spike, use a penetrating oil on the shaft, then tap the nut at the end of the puller shaft sharply with a hammer - this should shock the two pieces apart, if not tighten a little more then leave overnight, by morning it may well have seperated, otherwise, a little heat on the pully while it is in tension should pop it off,  a puller isnt a brute force tool.
Grendel
we do the impossible daily, miracles take a little longer.

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Mr C.

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Hi again,
Sorry I've been bimbling about with other stuff and haven't checked this site for a week or so.
The advice from Grandel regarding the use of a pulley sounds about spot on to me.
As for the large final drive pulley, the bad news for you is that I can easily turn it by hand.
Even with the drive belt and slashers still on, I can turn it about half a rotation before the slashers want to start to turn over and it gets too hard to do by hand. (There's probably a bit of slop in the final chain drive to take up, and there's also a bit of slop between the slasher drive shafts/clevis pins/slashers to take up). But it turns quite freely.

Off the top of my head, could your final drive chain have welded itself solid with the heat?
Either way, it looks like you're going to have to strip down all drive assemblies to their component parts, if only to ascertain that they are going to be OK to go again.

Mike



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