My 440 rebuild

Show us pictures of your JD crawler and attachments.
Post Reply
kosoca
MC crawler
MC crawler
Posts: 5
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2016 11:35 am

My 440 rebuild

Post by kosoca » Thu Jul 28, 2016 7:14 pm

When I was a wee lad, my dad and I would go out hunting and we would find ourselves on some logging cut-block trail. He mentioned more than a few times that he would love to have a small dozer with levers and foot pedals and he could fool around with and build some trails of his own.

Well, flash forward to 2.5 years ago, and I was in the preliminary stages of setting up a family placer mine (we're in gold rush country, BC), and had in my mind that I wanted to help my dad with his "bucket list" item of running a small dozer.

Kept scanning for deals, most were out of my budget, or looked like basket cases. Last fall, I came across a buddy that wanted a hand installing wall panels to the inside of his shop, and was willing to give me his small dozer in exchange!

So I got a running 440 IC dozer and a loader parts machine (no motor, tracks or grille on parts machine, and I already had a JD 444 wheel loader, so no real use for the track loader parts).

Image

He had blown up one of the finals on the dozer and replaced it with the last working one off the loader. Unfortunately, the gear set ratios were off (didn't know until he fired it up and it drove in a slow arc). So I had some work to do on it, but figured, what the heck, I got the winter to get it working well, and I needed a winter project anyhow (my parents head to the Baja for 5 months every winter, so I thought this would give me enough time to fix it up to give to my dad when he got back). Luckily, the UC measured out at 70%, and it ran well, so I had a good base to start with.

Well, having it back at my place sitting in my shop, I was flip-flopping back and forth on just fixing it to good running shape, or totally paint it up as well. On one hand, I kinda liked the "patina" of the original, weathered finish, but somebody had repainted the hood, gauge pod and grille, so it looked kinda silly with the bright yellow on the hood and faded/rusty elsewhere. So disassembly and painting was in order.

On recommendation of torching out the centre of the master track pins, they came out reasonably easy. Took it all apart (left transmission and clutch housings attached to frame rails and track frame). Replaced all clutches and brakes. Broke the main clutch pedal shaft free from the brake pedal shaft so work independently, as per the original design. Had local Deere shop put my new parts into the older, higher geared final, so both now matched with the lower ratio gear sets. Repaired the typical crack between valves in the head and re-valved. Found out reverser only had the shaft coupler, and in the parts machine, someone had welded the snot out of the reverser spider gears, so unfortunately, no reverser, and no good assemblies to work with (really wish I had one, but I make do without it). Added new gauges + tach + ignition key, and front lights (already converted to 12v alt). A friend did a beautiful job re-upholstering the seat. PO lost the side cover for the Gearmatic 8A winch, so that will have to wait until I can find one, I made up a cover to keep the dirt out for now. Took the hydraulic tensioners out of the parts loader and installed them on the dozer. Fabbed up some missing front filler plates (where the "440" is typically located).

I can definitely tell this unit has had a hard life before I got it. Grille attachment plates were installed, as some of the tabs have been broken off. Centre tubes to track frame bolts had been sheared off and the snot welded out of them. Rails for mounting the sprocket guards had been cut off and welded on the front of the track frame to replace the worn out idler rails. Carrier rollers have had the snot welded out of the attachment. Blade has had some sort of toothed edge welded on top of it (I assume to increase capacity? I really like it, as it keeps a lot of brush and trees from coming over the top into the grille).

So on to painting. I painted most with JD's old construction yellow, and I had flat black "zero rust" paint left over from another project, and I really like how easy it cleans, so I opted to paint the UC and belly pan flat black. Hard to see in my photos, but I like how it turned out. I added custom sorta-80's era decals, I was also missing the hood emblems, so I figured "what the heck". Note I am not going for originality, but my own spin on it.

Image

I frikkin' love this thing. Starts as soon as I pull the lever. Purrs like a kitten. Low fuel use. Steers and brakes excellently. Grading is a snap. Not much of an overburden pusher, but for pointing into the bush and building trail, immense fun (really why I got it, as part of my claim is on a ~20 year old cut block, so pushing over 12'-30' spruce and fir trees). I engineered a remote lever for the blade control so you just put her in bull low and sit back and operate the blade with arms on rests.

Gave it to dad this late spring. He was amazed what it turned out to be, and couldn't believe I remembered our conversations about it from 25-30 years ago.

Big thanks to Lavoy for supplying me with the majority of the parts.

And while it was a cheap dozer when I first got it, it wasn't cheap to restore. But well worth it. :) I've also learned, tracked=expensive. :)

Some working pics (wish I had video of me pushing trees over):
Image

Image
(dad and brother in this last pic)
Last edited by kosoca on Thu Jul 28, 2016 7:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Paul Buhler
350 crawler
350 crawler
Posts: 916
Joined: Wed May 21, 2008 6:25 pm
Location: Killington, VT

Post by Paul Buhler » Thu Jul 28, 2016 7:27 pm

Neat story. I can relate with some of your challenges and the feeling of accomplishment. Thanks for sharing the pictures too.

So has it helped you find any gold?
Paul Buhler
Killington, VT
420c 5 roll with 62 blade, FOPS, and Gearmatic 8a winch

User avatar
jtrichard
350 crawler
350 crawler
Posts: 1891
Joined: Sun Jan 11, 2009 9:48 pm
Location: Joshua Tree CA

Post by jtrichard » Thu Jul 28, 2016 10:13 pm

I know where the GOLD is .... Its Yellow and he is sitting in it :D :D :D
2010 with 622 dozer with mod. 35 ripper and a 2010 with 622 dozer bought in 1969 and a 2010 loader with drott and mod. 36 ripper

User avatar
Tigerhaze
350 crawler
350 crawler
Posts: 2275
Joined: Thu Jul 06, 2006 12:13 pm
Location: West-Central MO

Post by Tigerhaze » Mon Aug 01, 2016 4:07 pm

I like the custom paint and decal scheme- probably causes more than one CAT owner to do a double take ;)
(1) JD Straight 450 crawler dozer with manual outside blade; (2) JD 2010 diesel crawler loaders; (1) JD 2010 diesel dozer with hydraulic 6-way blade; (2) Model 50 backhoe attachments, misc. other construction equipment

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests