It has been quite a time since we had this thread out! Surely some of you have been having some frustrations out in the sheds this winter??
So here I am again with a grump born out of very recent experience. My MF 165 with Perkins 203 engine - my regular workhorse - had developed a leaky water pump and also a bit of oil was coming out of the front of the crankshaft. So I thought best fix the two together.
What a performance!! Come back Harry Ferguson with your simple tip up hood (bonnet!). What a fiddle it is getting the hood and grill off. Tedious small screws round the dashboard and small studs everywhere in miserably poor accessible places. OK when new I suppose but even then tedious - there must be 30 or so in all just to reveal the radiator. The top of the hood - what they call the "coffin" in the trade is quite heavy and awkward on your own to lift off and subsequently get back on. I believe that if you had a new tractor it would be impossible to get on and off without scratching paintwork. Using the Grey Ferguson model let us recall that there were only two studs fixing the bonnet on at its swivel point and the same could easily have been designed into the 165.
The water pump was OK to get at once revealed. However the crankshaft oil seal requires the bottom pulley to be pulled off. Easy enough to undo with the tractor in gear but when you come to pull it back it will not clear the front subframe. So the next job is to undo the 6 or is it 8? big studs and nuts and bolts so that you can shift it forward sufficiently for it to clear - a matter of only half an inch or so. One has to undo them right to the last thread and jack up the belly of the tractor to take the weight off them, then lever it apart from the engine mountings - all highly precipitous with it hanging on by threads only! Longer studs and bolts, or a more hollowed out sub frame would have removed the need for this performance.
Then having got the pulley off you would have thought that it would be possible to pick the seal out of the timing case. But NO - you have to remove the timing case as the original one is retained in an imperceptibly thin collar (removable as we were to find out). We did not realise there was a collar in there so back I went to the dealer to say that the supplied seal would not fit. He scratched his head and was about to send a query to AGCO with a photo. Then when he had finally got a splinter in his fingers from his head he decided first to consult with the fitters. 5 minutes later he came back from the workshop saying that in fact the collar was old design and had now been done away with! (of course no mentuion of this on the computer parts lists!). So the supplied seal was correct after all. Got home and the collar punched out quite easily with a thin screw driver. By now of course we needed a new timing cover gasket as it is so large that one needs a hell of a large sheet of gasket paper to make one. Two days later this came into stock and we were on to reassembly and everything is now back together - much to my 4 year old young garndson's relief!
I have just awoken from a snooze by the log fire so I felt I really must report my anguish to the world!!
Looking forward to hearing from some of you on your trials and tribulations.......