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New Member from NC - Cub 1864

IH Cub Cadet Tractor Forum

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Joined
Sep 27, 2022
Messages
14
Location
Fuquay-Varina, NC
Hello IHCubCadet!

My name is Kenny and I just inherited my childhood, early 90's, cub cadet 1864 that I used to run a lawn care service as a kid/teenager. Unfortunately, My father parked it about 10 years ago without covering it and the poor old Cub has suffered from exposure.

I've have begun a bit of the restoration project as the tractor wouldn't run as it arrived.

Work Completed:
- Cleaned carburetor, replaced gaskets, cleaned the jets
- replaced spark plugs
- cleaned fuel lines, replaced one line, replaced fuel pump (the small black apparatus), fuel filter
- replaced choke line (rusted solid)
- oil change, filter
- purchased some tires (turf master), mounted tires on old rims, yet to put back on
- replaced battery

The Cub now fires up and sounds great!

Work to be completed:
- I've taken apart the hydraulic lift lever as the lever was rusted solid. I've cleaned it and it appears to move more freely now. Need to put the lift back together and reattach.
- Restore the hydraulic lift
- Change the hydraulic fluid and filter
- Restore the 42" deck?? (can the parts be saved or do I purchase new parts? Or a new deck entirely?)
- Overhaul the brake lever. It doesn't spring back once depressed

Questions for the Cub owners:
1. Is it worth restoring the tractor? I find the mechanical repair fun and interesting. The prices are high for parts and this project doesn't make economic sense. (new OEM spindles for the deck are $250 a piece!?!?)
2. Any other owners of the 1864 that could reach out would be greatly appreciated. I'm a newbie but have ambition and drive to learn.

Thanks for reading!
 

1811Cub

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Jul 13, 2020
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750
Location
Elkland, PA
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1811Cub
First, welcome!

Second- you already have put a bit of time and effort in this machine. It holds sentimental value. Your initial buy in was low, so you are ahead of the game. This is one of the last of the great ones! I wouldn't think twice about bringing it back.

I am currently refurbing a 1997 New Holland GT18 garden tractor for a customer. While it is a decent machine, parts availability is poor and what is out there is cost prohibitive! MTD has done a far better job still supporting their very old machines.
 

Cubbie

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Oct 4, 2019
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458
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Porch lover
Welcome to the forum, Kenny. We love seeing pics, can you share some of your Cub Cadet?
 

gary noblit

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Joined
Jul 22, 2020
Messages
1,107
Location
jonesville,mi.
Ken, I've got a thing about older machines.The quality in most (not all) was great.Consider what a similar machine would cost new today .$5000-$8000...IMO that's how I justify repair costs.You can refurb a machine that will last another 20 yrs less than the cost of new one and without too many electronic devices you can't repair...Some folks like new,I'm not one of them...
 
Joined
Sep 27, 2022
Messages
14
Location
Fuquay-Varina, NC
Thanks for the replies!

I agree Gary, this tractor was the premiere back in the 90's. Loved driving it. I worked my tail off when I was a kid. Mowed every neighbor's yard that would allow it. My mother purchased a 1042 about 8 years ago and that mower is no where near the quality of the 1864. I've done some maintenance on it and it feels like a toy.

@Cubbie, I should be detailing with more pictures. :(:( I'll snap a few photos to share the progress. I did take a video of the first time I got it running. I can upload that video although not too exciting. I need to make a clickbait youtube title of, "Will it run after 10 years in the bush?!?"

I spent a couple of hours previously removing the hydraulic lift lever. The chain-link looking attachment ($14 new) on the top of the lift handle was rusted solid. I removed these, cleaned them with wire brush and sand paper. I looked at the actual hydraulic lift and it looks like the outside case has been with the titanic since it sunk. The external case of the hydr lift is rusty and corroding. I was very doubtful it would work. I spent about 2 hours last night taking apart the hydraulic lift lever. Removed the lock ring, pushed the entire cylinder out, and attempted to clean everything very gently. I put everything back together and wanted to put the lift back in the machine to see if the hydraulics work at all.

I also replaced the choke cable. Since it was getting late and I wanted to see if the hydraulics would work. After 10 pm (kids already asleep), I fired up the tractor and the new, functioning choke cable made the engine purr. I was very pleased with the sound of the engine. I then pushed the hydraulic lift arm down and to my astonishment the lift actually worked! I then raised the lift up and I watched the lever on the side spin to show the level. The actual level gauge on the side is missing but everything appears to be working!! 😁😁

This made me so happy that I didn't destroy the lift lever. Few on ebay but glad to save a few bucks.

Work to be completed:
- I've taken apart the hydraulic lift lever as the lever was rusted solid. I've cleaned it and it appears to move more freely now. Need to put the lift back together and reattach.
- Restore the hydraulic lift

- Change the hydraulic fluid and filter
- Restore the 42" deck?? (can the parts be saved or do I purchase new parts? Or a new deck entirely?)
- Overhaul the brake lever. It doesn't spring back once depressed

Thanks for reading!
 

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mgonitzke

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Wichita, KS
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Matt Gonitzke
The spindles on that deck should not need more than bearings and seals unless it has been seriously neglected. Those parts are inexpensive; the bearings in particular are very common.
 
Joined
Sep 27, 2022
Messages
14
Location
Fuquay-Varina, NC
@mgonitzke, Unfortunately they appear that they have been seriously neglected. All of the bolts are completely rusted. I attempted to do some removal and started to break out the grinder before calling it quits. The deck is the 42".

I ordered the hydraulic fluid and filter so that I can perform that change.

Any ideas on how to remove the blades? I don't have a socket that big (> 1"). Are they reverse threaded?

Any other maintenance to perform while the wheels are off? I cleaned the brake areas of debris. One of the items I'd like to fix is having the brake lever return to its normal position and being depressed. At this point it goes down with some resistance and just stays there. I believe the springs are still in place and in tact.

For forum hygiene, is it better to post maintenance questions in a specific location or is it fine to post here?

Thanks for reading.
 

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gary noblit

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Jul 22, 2020
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1,107
Location
jonesville,mi.
Ken, a huge percent of blade nuts are 15/16, if you have to heat the nuts with a acy torch,remember there are seals behind the blade but if your changing bearings it won't matter much. You can buy a cheap 1/2 drive impact for around a 100.,Some rust doesn't bother me but I'm seeing a lot of pitting which means metal thinning and weakness and eventual failure...The guard that has rotted edges is right over a spindle where the pressure is on a deck...If that area is rotted it won't take much to bend what metal is left. Have to admit I would be looking for another deck.Having said that it can probably work for awhile. Can't see the top of spindles but most can be driven out the bottom when top end is removed(leave blade on)..Most spindle mounting bolts go into an alum housing .The odds are 99.9% they will break off if you try to remove housing...
 

Doug Rusk

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Joined
Sep 15, 2022
Messages
50
Location
Iowa
Welcome. Newer member here too. 1864 is a good machine and worth saving imo. Power steering and hyd lift. Who doesn't like that?
I agree from the pictures that deck would probably run a while if spindles are ok. Keep an eye out for another deck tho and if nothing else you will have a spare.
As for not being a true ih, maybe not but it is still basically a 782 chassis, all the same attachments fit tho the pto clutch size changed. Really it is ih designed with some mtd tweaks imo. The next style after with metal hoods again is all mtd as far as I can tell.
A deere 700 series is $12000 more or less now so I wouldn't feel bad about putting yours back in shape.
 

jstewart

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Joined
Jun 6, 2007
Messages
139
displayname
jon stewart
The only complaint that I had with the 1864 was the size of the front tires, with the snow blower on there, they didn't have enough flotation. This summer I put on a set of 5 rib......................thought it might be too much, but they look fabulous and are as wide as could possibly go on stock wheels.
 

Doug Rusk

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Joined
Sep 15, 2022
Messages
50
Location
Iowa
Guess I've not encountered any conditions yet where I thought I needed more flotation with thrower on. I also havent had a 451 on anything so i may change my mind? But I bet the 5 rib do look good on there.
 
Joined
Sep 27, 2022
Messages
14
Location
Fuquay-Varina, NC
@Doug Rusk Welcome to you too! This forum has been great and it's only been a few days. Says a lot about this awesome community.

@gary noblit Thanks for the reply. I have some hobo-freight breaker bars and impact sockets up to 1" standard. They wouldn't fit over the top of that nut. I'm planning on tearing into that tonight. Might have to break out the torch, the grinder for those rusted bolts/nuts that hold on the covers, and lots of penetrating oils to loosen everything.

All documentation says 15/16 but this is much larger than that. :unsure:
 

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gary noblit

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jonesville,mi.
Wouldn't be suprised if it was 1 1/8 or maybe 1 1/16 socket to take blades off....
Ken, when I use "most" or "usually" it means there are exceptions to every rule .I'm pretty sure I've been wrong before...Check top nut as well and usually they are the same But...I've never worked on a 1864...My point before of leaving blade on is "most" spindle shafts can be driven out from top and then the nut is accessible and can be held in a vise by the blade..An 1864 might have a snap ring or key that I'm not aware of...best of luck
 

CӞ.

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Jul 24, 2022
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Kansas
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Chris “CӞ” Claussen
@Doug Rusk Welcome to you too! This forum has been great and it's only been a few days. Says a lot about this awesome community.

@gary noblit Thanks for the reply. I have some hobo-freight breaker bars and impact sockets up to 1" standard. They wouldn't fit over the top of that nut. I'm planning on tearing into that tonight. Might have to break out the torch, the grinder for those rusted bolts/nuts that hold on the covers, and lots of penetrating oils to loosen everything.

All documentation says 15/16 but this is much larger than that. :unsure:
Having on hand six+ 12-oz units of tasty lager 🍺 will help your Friday-evening wrenchfest go smoother, happier, and satisfyingly.
 

mgwin

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Sep 3, 2009
Messages
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Reidsville, NC
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Marty A. Gwin
Welcome Kenny from another tar heel!
What part of NC are you located? I live just north of Greensboro.
As Matt stated, you could probably refurbish that deck. If not, you could probably find another one locally and combine the two to make a nice one. :bluethumbsup:
By the way, your father did the best thing by not covering it. It would have rusted ten times faster covered up!
 
Joined
Sep 27, 2022
Messages
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Location
Fuquay-Varina, NC
@mgwin thanks and I'm located south of Raleigh in a little town called Fuquay-Varina. I believe the John Deere factory is just south of our place.

If there is an excuse to meet up and work on something, let's do it!

I wish my dad would have taken the deck off when he parked it. I think the deck was collecting pine needles, leaves, and water. I'm going to try to refurbish as much as I can. If I can get lucky enough to find another deck I'll try to combine them. I saw one in Pennsylvania for 250 on ebay. Not sure I can justify the drive. I'll keep my eyes out for one.

Of course if I can score some more tools while working on it, I'll be happy too 😁

Happy Saturday all!
 
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