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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Over the winter months, I installed new axle seal on my JD 1948 Model B.

While I was at it and had the Power-Trol off, I cleaned it up, replaced the rotted leather piston seal on the Power-Trol unit along with the seal between the transmission and the Power-Trol oil pump and the oil seal on the user end of the PTO. After getting it all back together and adding all of the fluids back, everything worked. I could raise and lower the rock arm with no problem.

I added all of the 3/4 point arms and mods, even a trailer hitch for the 3/4 point. Just about every month, I started the tractor up and ran the Power-Trol by standing on the hitch. Sort of fun to having it all working.

This past weekend, an old friend came by and I wanted to show it off the work I did and the Power-Trol didn’t work. It would not go up at any engine speed. It was up, just a little and did go down when I pushed the lever towards down, but would not go back up. Yes, the PTO shaft was turning so the oil pump must have been turning. I checked the oil levels in both the transmission and the Power-Trol. The transmission was topped off and I did add about 1 cup of 30 weights to the Power-Trol. It still didn't work.

Before I just start taking things off and wondering what to do next, I was hoping that I could get some suggestions on what to check first & next.

Maybe someone has a real service manual for the Power-Trol that they would share with me. What I used before was the parts manual blowup to get the right parts.

Right now, I don’t have much to go on. Googling the internet did not give much direction. In the past, you guys have been the best help.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
A couple of things that I discovered last night.

1. I get more search hits if I spell it Powr-Trol and drop the e. Seems Deere spelled it that way.
2. without a manual, I do not know where the pressure relief valve is. Also, there are adjustments with covers on them. I don't know which is up or down with out things working.

Using the correct spelling, I am able to find manuals. Some are original Deere manuals. Others are books and notes made by others. In the past I bought books that I really wondered if the author knew the subject.

I am still looking for a digital version of the original Deere SM2011 manual.
 
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-Willy-
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I believe it is turn clockwise to increase pressure.

According to the manual for my 60......
One knob changes the rate of how quickly the hydraulics raise (pressure out). Turn clockwise to make it go faster.
One knob changes how fast / slow the powr-trol releases.. Turn clockwise to increase speed of descent. Turn counter clockwise so the powr-trol descends slower.

By this it sounds that you have backed the raise one off and it is now sluggish.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I made no adjustments. Even after I put in the new seals and leather piston seal, I did not change things in the valves or adjustments. I put it back together and started the engine and it worked. I was taught to not fix it if it is not broken. It worked for some 3 months.

I think a broken spring or an O ring let go. If it was an O ring, I should get some lift of the rock arm. I removed all of the 3 point stuff to see if there was even an attempt to move the rock arm. Nothing!

This may help some (may not). I pushed the control arm forward (lift position), then rotated the rock arm to the up position. Then I pulled the control arm to the neutral position and the rock shaft stayed. Felt spongy, like is sucked in some air.

I think the oil in the system was drawn into the piston and the valves held the pressure.

It is like the pump isn't working or the oil is being blocked.

By chance, is there an oil pressure regulator in the system? Maybe the spring gave out and all of the pressure is bypassing the valves. I had a lawn tractor that didn’t have any oil pressure. It turned out being the spring for the oil pressure regulator.
 

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Note: If there are no remote hydraulic connections the system is called power lift.
the relief valve is located on the right side of the valve housing, near the control shaft it is the hex head (looks like a bolt head) plug, not the square head pipe plug, under the bolt type plug is the relief valve, spring and a washer stack (book says 5)
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Yesterday, not knowing what else to do, I checked to see if any springs were broken or missing. The thought is that something is allowing the oil to leak back to the reservoir.

Both check valves looked clean and the springs and oil looked good (not really knowing what good is). The spring in the relief valve looked big beefy and good. At the time, I did not count the washers that apply more tension to the spring.

I did play with the throttle and operating valves some while the engine was running but that did not seam make any difference.

It is like no oil is getting to the rockshaft cylinder. Again, like all of a sudden.

I found this picture of the Powr-trol oil paths. At least it gives me names of components and the path.

The web site bakerg mentioned. Nice site, but it didn't help with my problem.

I'm still needing ideas.

Text Line art White Organism Diagram
 

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-Willy-
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Do you have a way to test for pressure?
Another wild thought I just had..... Has the temp recently dropped below freezing (yes I realize your in Texas)? Just wondering if the pump intake has had some ice form and is making the pump starve for oil.

The only other thought I have (I dont know how your pump works so I am guessing here), is it possible (presuming you have no pressure) that what ever pick up tube let go and is sitting in the sump not delivering oil?
 

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I was going to ask if the pto had been engaged during freezing weather, it appears that the pump drive gear is connected to the pto shaft via a woodruff key, this would act as a shear point to prevent major damage in the event that the pump was rotated with ice in the housing. The check valve (S) could be a source of bypass in a power-troll (auto spell won't let me use 1 L) but there shouldn't be any bypass other than the relief valve in a power-lift. At this point I would remove the pressure relief plug spring and valve. place a drain pan near the hole and gently engage the pto, to see if oil flows from the relief port, the other possibility is that the release valve may be stuck in the down position letting the oil flow back to the tank, but you got the arms to hold position after you lifted them, so this is doubtful.

From the information you have given, my money would be on either pump not being driven by pto shaft, the test where you were able to get the arms to hold (spongy) after manually lifting them seems to indicate oil flowing from the sump to the rockshaft cylinder
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
We live just 60 miles north of Galveston and it didn’t freeze here this past winter weekend. Cold isn’t the issue.

As all knows, the Powr-Trol is cast iron with holes drilled in the right places (no tubes to speak of). At the locations where the holes were drilled from the outside into the casting, Deere put threaded plugs.
I was thinking of removing the plug that plugs the line from the oil pump and placing a pressure meter there, just to see if there is any pressure.

Ordered a book the first of the week and hope it comes before the weekend so I will have it to check on things. The book is supposed to have a trouble shooting section.

Grizz, the woodruff key came to my mind also. Before I started taking stuff off, I wanted to look at the easy things first.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
As I had hoped, my book came Friday. There was a section in it called ‘Trouble Shooting’

Here is exactly what it said for my issue.

Group 5
PowrTrol

WILL NOT RAISE

Cause ------------------------------------------------ Remedy
Low oil supply. ------------------------------------- Refill.
Too light or too heavy oil. ------------------------ Use correct weight
Pump scored housing, cover, or gears.--------- Repair.
Relief pressure too low. -------------------------- Adjust to correct pressure
Pump not engaged. ------------------------------- Engage
Relief valve stuck in open position. ------------- Remove & clean
Piston ring leaking badly. -------------------------Replace
Load too heavy. ----------------------------------- Decrease load or adjust auxiliary spring
Woodruff key sheared on pump shaft. --------- Replace
Gasket broken or blown out at pressure passage. Replace
Inner steel ball missing. -------------------------- Install ball
Upper check valve bleed clogged. --------------Remove & clean
Sand hole in pressure passage. ----------------- Repair or replace casting
Gasket leaking badly between cylinder housing and
end cap. ---------------------------------------------Replace
Gasket broken or blown between rockshaft cylinder
and basic housing. ---------------------------------Replace

My Powr-Trol still doesn’t work. I checked the pump, Woodruff key, scoring, oil weight, inner steel balls and rockshaft cylinder & housing and it still doesn’t work after putting it all back together.

This book taught me a few things: 1[SUP]st[/SUP]. There is no way to get to the Relief valve without removing the Powr-Trol from the tractor. There are carter pins too deep to get from the top. Also, there is no way to put the Powr-Troll back together with it being on the tractor. There is a woodruff key in the actuator arm that is under the shaft and can only be inserted from the back of the unit when it is off of the tractor. Taking it off means sacrificing a gasket.

As a backup, does anyone know who rebuilds these units? If I get it apart and still can’t figure it out, maybe someone that has done it before can service the unit and mail it back to me. Always nice to have a plan B.

If anyone would like to have a PDF of the manual, …
 

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-Willy-
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It should be fairly straight forward. I am thinking as you had it apart before, you may have missed something when reassembling it and it fell into the dump reservoir. It just took a while to get sucked up into the screen, making the pump starve for oil. Since you had it apart, doing it again should pose less of a headache.

However. If you still feel you must send it out for repairs, there are a couple of places I would recomend. Tho they usually require the whole tractor to make sure it is assembled for proper repair.


Steiner Tractor Parts has done some vids on John Deere repairs, so I would think they may do it or know of others whom can do the repair.
The other person I know of is Lavoy Wilcox. He mostly deals with crawlers yet I do know he will do a odd job of the rubber tired tractors.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks for the info Lovesthedrive. You are a good friend.

Yes, testing the Powr-Trool off of the tractor would not be easy.

Actually, I did not take the hydrolic controlling part of the Powr-Trol appart. I just cleaned and flushed it out. I took it off to get to the piston to replace the leather seal there. I took apart and cleaned the oil pump and replaced the seals on both ends of the PTO shaft.

This morning, I ordered a gasket for the Powr-Trol just in case the one on it gets torn when I remove it. I'll plan on taking it off, tearing it down using the book and getting to that hard to get to Release valve that I think is stuck (not to be confused with the Relief valve). The Release valve requires the control lever and cam latch to be removed.

Boy, am I learning a bunch!!!

More to come.


At the tractor shows, I see a bunch of restored Model A & B tractors with Powr-Trols without the remote cylinders. There must be a remote cylinder hanging in a bunch of barns. I wonder if anyone would be interested in selling one to me. I'm thinking it would be nice to have. I could put it on that 3rd point I built and use it without the rock shaft.
 

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The cylinder is a over glorified hydraulic top link. You could ask John Deere for it. What I suspect is that few people liked using them and put them to use some where else.

I am glad my info is helpful to you. There is a poster here (Wizard) that posted something about tractor work in his shop. Maybe he has some insight?
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
OK all. True confessions time. Confessions hurt but are good for the soul.

The first time I looked at my oil pump in my hydraulic system, I was too quick to judge and made a wrong assumption. Yes, I took the pump apart to look at clearances. The drive gear for the pump was stuck to the shaft so I didn't force it off (maybe too much work).

What I didn't do to check was the woodruff pin. I guess I thought that since it was working before, the pin was there. Seems that I didn't ever install it when I assembled the pump. It was laying in the pile of extra stuff I keep in a tray.

Grizz, you were right. Thanks for the reminder. What you posted kept sticking in my memory, so I did check it again.



The only reason it was working in the past was the PTO shaft isn't polished and just happened to stick hard enough that it worked till enough force was put on it causing it to let go.


I put the pin in and now all is well.

However, through all of this, I learned a great deal about the Powr-Trol system in the Model B. I can now take the system apart and have figured out many tricks to the several springs and pins in it.

If anyone would like to tackle their Powr-Trol, just maybe I can help.
 
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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
This weekend, my wife and I tore down an old wooden cedar fence that was supported with 4X4 treated post cemented in the ground. The gate posts were 4X6 3 feet in the ground. The clay around here is so hard when dry that you can hardly drive a nail into it, but when wet, you can’t walk on it. To my fortune, it has been damp the past 2 weeks with scatterd showers.

I had this great idea to use the hydraulics that I just fixed to pull the post out of the ground. I backed the Model B up to the post, triple wrapped a log chain around the post and then to my hitch on my hydraulics. Pushed the raise bar and the first thing it did was to pull the slack out of the chain. Lowering the hitch, I readjusted the chain and hit the raise lever and out it came, just as slick as you would want, concrete and all. We did 14 that way and only one post broke at the ground.

Also, for those interested. To remove bamboo, just wrap the base of the bamboo with a heavy strap, about 3 times around and just pull in low gear and out it all comes, root ball and all.

OK, Yes, I turned my parade queen into a working tractor for a weekend. I just love this tractor!
 
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