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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2020
    Location
    ACT
    Posts
    23

    Default Forks for Deere Tractor

    Hi All,
    A while back I needed a light weight but strong carrier and forks for my small JD 1 series tractor. The lift capacity on these machines is not huge, and while quite a bit higher than the equivalent Kubota every kg counts. The lightest forks I could buy at the time was around 140kg including the carrier. I really wanted a set of Artillian forks from the USA but the cost of getting them here was prohibitive.
    So, I decided to make something that was pretty close to the Artillians myself. Here's a few photos of the build process and the finished product all painted up in Deere green (grey on the forks). The total weight of the finished forks came in at 54kg which I was very happy with. They have lifted well over 400kg many times without issue.


    IMG_5366.JPG IMG_5365.JPG IMG_5364.JPG

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Murray Bridge S Aust.
    Age
    68
    Posts
    4,646

    Default

    Nice work, what did you use for the tines/forks?
    Kryn
    To grow old is mandatory, growing up is optional.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Location
    Geelong, Australia
    Age
    53
    Posts
    1,003

    Default

    Nice work !!
    What did you use to make the forks themselves, and did you do anything special at the bend from vertical to horizontal?

    Steve

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2020
    Location
    ACT
    Posts
    23

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by KBs PensNmore View Post
    Nice work, what did you use for the tines/forks?
    Kryn
    Thanks Kryn,
    I used 1018 RHS I think it was 75 X 35 5mm wall. If I did it again I'd probably use 4140 for a bit better tensile strength, I did put a bit of a bend in one once (trying to get under a log that I reckon weighed in at about 600kg!). But that really was abuse on my part.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2020
    Location
    ACT
    Posts
    23

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by OxxAndBert View Post
    Nice work !!
    What did you use to make the forks themselves, and did you do anything special at the bend from vertical to horizontal?

    Steve
    Thanks Steve,
    I used 1018 RHS, I think it was 75 X 35 5mm wall. I'd probably use a similar section again but go for 4130 as I did manage to bend one fork at one stage due to abuse on my part. I was lifting a massively heavy redgum log out of a creek bed and tried a repositioning lift on a single fork. It was a minor bend but annoying to fix. At the right angle intersection I butt welded the RHS and placed a 6mm L bracket (with a 50mm radius) along each side of the RHS. The bracket probably extended 100mm each direction.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2020
    Location
    ACT
    Posts
    23

    Default

    A Couple of shots, one showing the fork right angle intersection, the other showing the firewood laden crates I used to move around the property with the forks. These crates weighed in at around 430-450kg each. Typically we were moving them around on pretty bumpy ground so they didn't have an easy time of it!

    IMG_5369.pngIMG_5368.png

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Location
    Geelong, Australia
    Age
    53
    Posts
    1,003

    Default

    Out of interest, did the fork bend at the joint, or on either the horizontal or vertical straight section?

    The extension tynes/slippers they have at work are about 6mm thick, and fabricated from an upside down C section with flat welded across the open side (the bottom when in use). Not sure of the material but likely some alloy steel as it looks and machines like that.
    I've got the remains of one here that was scrapped after one of the forkies managed to jam a lump of pallet timber up inside that couldn't be extracted
    Only mentioning the construction method as it allows for different thickness top and bottom, albeit with a bit more welding required. Also allows easy access to the inside of the section prior to welding up the open side if you wanted to add additional material at a stress point.
    More design thought and fabrication, but stronger product for same or less weight.

    I'm pretty sure Duragal is 450Mpa so that might be a reasonable option if you did need something slightly stronger in the future - without going to full on 4130 etc.

    Damn nice job you've done with those ones though!!

    Steve

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2020
    Location
    ACT
    Posts
    23

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by OxxAndBert View Post
    Out of interest, did the fork bend at the joint, or on either the horizontal or vertical straight section?

    The extension tynes/slippers they have at work are about 6mm thick, and fabricated from an upside down C section with flat welded across the open side (the bottom when in use). Not sure of the material but likely some alloy steel as it looks and machines like that.
    I've got the remains of one here that was scrapped after one of the forkies managed to jam a lump of pallet timber up inside that couldn't be extracted
    Only mentioning the construction method as it allows for different thickness top and bottom, albeit with a bit more welding required. Also allows easy access to the inside of the section prior to welding up the open side if you wanted to add additional material at a stress point.
    More design thought and fabrication, but stronger product for same or less weight.

    I'm pretty sure Duragal is 450Mpa so that might be a reasonable option if you did need something slightly stronger in the future - without going to full on 4130 etc.

    Damn nice job you've done with those ones though!!

    Steve

    Thanks Steve, That sounds like a really good option. I didn't realise that Duragal had a better tensile strength but that makes sense through. I made the uprights at the ends with Duragal RHS (150 x 50 I think). I made the tapered shape by cutting a 'cap' off the edge of each section and removing a wedge shape from the sides (with the plasma), I then welded each edge section back on the the reshaped RHS. When I took the 'caps' off the section opened up madly! Heaps of stress in Druagal RHS i found out!

    The fork that bent (about 5 degrees) actually took quite a bit to do so, it had about 1.3 ton's of moving tractor behind it and was lifting at the same time! It bent about 150mm out from the edge of the L bracket on the horizontal section. I ended up straitening it in the press and never had another issue. I think I was a bit lazy that day and really should have pulled the log out of the creek with a drag chain first. We are talking redgum about 500mm diameter and about 3m long!

    Craig.

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