You can connect a tractor to various implements with Power Take-Off driveshafts, more commonly known as PTO shafts. Sometimes you would need to detach the PTO shaft for removing an implement or adding a new one.
In this write-up, I’ll show you how to remove a PTO shaft from a tractor.
How To Remove A PTO Shaft From A Tractor: Step-By-Step
You can remove a PTO shaft from a tractor by undoing the pins or any other locking mechanism that secures the PTO shaft to the tractor.
At first, switch off the tractor and disengage the PTO. Lower the implement so that it gently touches the ground. In some cases, you might have to use a stand to support the implement.
The next course of action is to look for the pins or buttons that keep the shaft attached to the tractor. A gentle push with your hand should be enough to unlock the said pin or button. Now, with a little maneuvering, move the shaft in a few directions, and it should slowly begin to come off the spindle.
Disengage any safety chains or shields responsible for securing the shrouds to the tractor. Once the shrouds are free, slowly push them back along the shaft to find the concealed universal joints.
To separate the universal joints from the implement, it is necessary to undo the bolts, pins, or clips that hold them securely in place. Disengage the shaft from the implement after removing the fasteners and carefully set it aside.
This is the usual modus operandi you need to follow to remove a PTO shaft from a tractor. However, the shaft might get stuck sometimes and when it does, the aforementioned method won’t work. Here are some tricks you can try instead:
Hammer It Out
If the PTO shaft stubbornly remains attached to the tractor, you can try using a hammer to get it off. That said, we would not recommend pounding the shaft as hard as you can until it comes off. A few gentle taps should suffice in most cases. Also, make sure you put a wood block underneath the shaft to soften the blow.
If gentle hammering fails to do the trick, you need to put in some extra effort. However, when applying additional force, it’s crucial to exercise caution and take appropriate measures to prevent any harm to the delicate parts of the shaft, such as its bearings and other vital parts.
After all, the goal is to successfully free the PTO shaft without causing any damage.
Try Some Lube
If corrosion is the culprit behind the stubborn jamming of your PTO shaft, worry not! A can of lubricant might bail you out. Moisture and lack of grease can lead to rust creeping in, especially if the PTO shafts are left exposed for extended periods.
The shafts will be highly vulnerable to rusting if you keep them outdoors for a long time.
Lubricate the shaft generously. The fluid should break up the layer of rust and free up the shaft. Wait for a while so that the oil can take effect. Try to pull out the shaft afterward.
You should be able to remove the shaft with far less effort than before. If the shaft still doesn’t move, try some light taps with a sledgehammer.
It still won’t budge? Time for a physics hack, then! Try to heat the outer areas of the coupler so that they expand and the shaft gets more room to maneuver. You can nudge it a bit with the sledgehammer to make it come off faster.
The shaft should give in and disconnect from the tractor. Instead of lube, you can also try WD-40.
A Pry Bar Should Also Come In Handy
In my opinion, the pry bar is the most effective tool for detaching the PTO shaft from the tractor. Clear out the pits, create sufficient maneuvering space, and remove the PTO shield.
Take a pry bar then; move around as you try to pull out the shaft. Adding a bit of lubricant might make it easier to pull out.
How To Remove A PTO Shaft From Gearbox?
Sometimes the tractor implement might come with a gearbox that connects to the PTO shaft and then connects to the tractor. Gearboxes can alter the speed and rotating motion of an implement and also takes some load off of the tractor engine so that it can function more efficiently.
To remove a PTO shaft from a gearbox first park your tractor and switch off the engine. Head towards the back of your tractor, and look for the PTO shaft. It should be right between the pair of rear wheels.
Now, you will have to unlock the locking mechanism to get it off the gearbox. It should be secured by either a button or a pin. A simple push with your fingers should suffice.
Undo the safety chains or the shield to release the shrouds and reveal the concealed universal joints. Undo the joints and carefully remove the PTO shaft. That’s how you have to detach a PTO shaft from a gearbox.
If the shaft is stuck, try using a hammer, lubricant, or a pry bar to extract it.
There you have it, folks! I tried to break down how to remove a PTO shaft from a tractor in some simple steps. It’s barely a difficult thing to do, however, sometimes you will have to put in some extra work if the shaft gets jammed.
I also tried to explain how you should deal with a shaft that is unwilling to budge. Removing the shaft from the tractor and the gearbox are similar processes. The gearbox sits on the shaft and then it goes to the tractor.
You can apply the same tricks to remove a PTO shaft from a tractor and a gearbox. Be careful when using extra force using a sledgehammer or a pry bar, otherwise, the shaft might get damaged.