Sunday, November 16, 2008

Need A Little More Space

As I've struggled to restore the OC-3, I've been a mechanic that has had to split time between two work areas. I had a nice heated garage with all of my tools and a nice new air compressor. However, the bulk of the OC-3 has remained in the cozy confines of the backyard shed.

When I have brought parts out of the shed and into the garage there have been two barriers. I can't make a ton of noise in the attached garage (especially during nap time) and I really need to clear the mess by the end of day because the cars need to come inside at night.

Well, I've decided to solve that problem. I bought this really nice 24 x 26 Morton shed. It is heated, insulated, has water, and a floor drain. The catch is my wife wanted the matching house that goes with it. . .This tractor restoration hobby is getting expensive!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Outsourcing Some Work

A few other things have been in the works this summer regarding the restoration of the OC-3. I found a place south of town that is willing to clean, test, and repaint the old radiator. For the most part it is in pretty good shape. I'm excited to see what it looks like when its done.

I've also found a guy that is supposed to be a crackerjack generator, alternator, starter repair guy. I stripped it completely down to the metal before dropping it off. The inside parts were "crispy" and when I opened the inspection cover, black & burnt flakes fell out. . .Good luck repair guy.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

New Air Compressor!

We have a new addition to the garage. I got a spanking new Porter Cable 60gal / 7 hp / 135 psi / 12.1 cfm @ 40psi / 9.7 cfm @ 90psi - air compressor!

The new air compressor will be a welcome addition to the OC-3 Restoration project. It was very apparent that the little craftsman compressor wasn't up for the job of needle scaling and sandblasting an entire OC-3.

I have a bit of work to do before I can put the new Porter Cable to work. I need to bolt it to the floor, route a 240V - 20 amp circuit out to the garage, wire it up, install a shut-off valve, and snap on a regulator/filter/oilier.

After the prep work, I should have ample pressure, ample CFM, and plenty of capacity. And, it will all be happening in the relative quiet that comes from an oil lubricated, twin cylinder. In stark contrast to the earth shaking racket of the oil-free craftsman.

Oh, and in an attempt to generate more blog readership. . .another picture of the Porter Cable with cute kids welcoming it to the garage.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Spring has Sprung: Back at It

We finally got a nice spring day and I found some time to go out to the shed. I installed a regulator on the spare air tank and did some needle scaling on the frame. This was the first time I've really used the spare air tank. It does add some extra capacity but my little air compressor is still working way too hard to keep up with the volume going out. I got about 1.5 hours of needle scaling in on the frame. While waiting for the air compressor to catch up I would go over the scaled areas with 80 grit flapper paper on a grinder loaned out from my dad. It works fairly well and brings the metal to a nice shine.

Friday, April 4, 2008

April Fools!

The post on April 1st was directed toward my wife. However, I apparently "fooled" a few other people as well. I am not the proud new owner of two more OC-3's. . .but I'm working on it!

Rest assured if you see a posting in the future about an acquisition. It will be the real thing.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Got the Call!

I got the call this morning. I'm the proud new owner of two more OC-3's!

I'm real excited about the potential of these two machines and can't believe I got two OC-3's for the price of my first one. . .Now I just got to get them hauled out of the North Woods. I will be anxiously waiting for spring to work its magic, melting the snow and drying things up enough to the point where we can pull them out without getting stuck.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Scouting Trip

I went on a little Sunday afternoon Scouting Trip to look at two OC-3's. You know what they say, "There's always room in the shed for one (or two) more OC-3's."
I had a brief eletronic conversation with a guy on the forum in November. His uncle died and he was trying to deal with his estate. He wanted to know what OC-3's were worth. He had two machines. I of course told him they range from scrap metal to $4000 depending on condition. I asked the location of the machines. They happen to be in Northern Wisconsin. I said if one was a parts candidate to let me know.

Three months went by and out of no where he emailed me some pictures and a more detailed description of the machines. So, took a drive north to check them out.
The green one is a 1952 OC-3 (42 inch width & 8 inch wide track pads). It has a Ware HGH loader with a 41" wide bucket. It also has a pto with belt pulley. It was described as the better of the two machines. Apparently both machines were running about two years ago before "uncle Tom" got sick. The green OC-3 had "transmission problems" around this time and it was removed and taken to the shop. The parts were "lost" during this long period of time so it was missing a "transmission". I discovered the missing transmission is really a missing clutch unit, bellhousing and gas tank. The tin work is a mess but the undercarriage looks fairly good.

The yellow one is a 1955 OC-3 (42 inch width & 10 inch wide track pads). According to the serial number it was originally a 68 inch wide machine and it was converted to 42 inches somewhere along the way. It has a 77 inch dozer blade that appears to be homemade. It also has a rather odd contraption on the back that I have come to learn is a cable jammer. It was used for skidding logs. The yellow OC-3 has a pto as well. The pto operates the winch on the cable jammer. The sprockets look good. The grousers (the paddles that stick up on the track pad for traction) have been rebuilt via weld. This machine was described as seeing a lot more use and in worse shape. Apparently it had a habit of throwing its tracks. I think I know why. It appears one of the track frames is bent - but I can't be sure because it is sitting in 18" of snow. Lastly, the tin work on this machine is a disaster as well.
If you could combine the two units, you might end up with a functioning crawler. It was a nice day for a drive and it is always fun to look at "The Finest in Farm Machinery". I'll send the guy an email telling him they are less than desireable machines. However, for the right price, I'd find a way to drag them home! We'll see what happens. . .