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Thread: John Deere 450 issues

  1. #1
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    John Deere 450 issues

    Hey Guys,
    I am looking at a JD 450C dozer. Here is the problem with it.

    It is a power shift model. It started with the steering getting weak. Then it got to where it wouldn't pull in higher gears. Now it will barely move and the hydraulics are very slow. The owner said he did some checking and some people said it might be a charge pump. I am not sure. I have worked with tractors and trucks but not on tracked equipment. What would I be looking to fix it if I got it? It has about 500 hrs on an overhaul and 60% on the UC and a 6 way blade.

  2. #2
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    The blade should be a separate system from trans.
    Handle every stressful situation like a dog.
    If you can't eat it or play with it,
    Just pee on it and walk away.

  3. #3
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    I've had lots of experience running them, but I never could figure out their transmission. It's a lot different than Cat.

    That hydraulic system is separate from the transmission though, sounds like more than one problem.

    I'd say it's got worn steering clutches in the best case scenario causing the lack of steering and then not pulling in the higher gears.

    If the tranny has some bad clutch plates, that would cause it to slip in the higher gears and would be a lot more time and money to fix.

    I'd say you need to check trans pressures first to see if they're OK. I've got the service manual on it if I can scan something for you or look it up, I'd be glad to. Like I say, I've ran several but never worked on the transmissions or the steering clutches. I'm just thinking out loud.

    The lack of steering could be caused by the brakes being out of adjustment too, but can't tell from the info provided.

    Let me know if you need something out of the service manual.

  4. #4
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    Thanks for the reply. I just am not sure if I want a crash course in JD dozers. The way it was relayed to me was there is a charge pump that feeds the steering, tranny and the main hydraulic pump. If that is the case I can believe it. I am just not sure if he knows what he is talking about. He is asking 5k for it. I just don't want a 5k chunk of iron that needs another 5k to be usable.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seafarer12 View Post
    He is asking 5k for it. I just don't want a 5k chunk of iron that needs another 5k to be usable.
    Like the adult undergarment, it depends. If you can get a usable JD450 for $10K, that is a good price. Would not take much work to amortize the purchase/repair. At $40/hr that works out to 250 hours run time, or a little over 6 weeks.

    However if there is more things wrong to repair before it is a working machine that changes the economics of it. Or if the repair parts are unobtanium that changes things as well.

    BTW in my experience, no used small dozer in the $10-$15K range is without problems. If they are mechanically perfect they go for a bit more.

  6. #6
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    If it is a John Deere 450C it is not a powershift. It has a four speed gear type transmission which has a shifting lever for selecting one through 4. A second shift lever is for high foreword, low foreword, low reverse and high reverse. There is a conventional disk type clutch in the system which is activated by the clutch pedal with the operator's foot. The high/low/foreword/reverse shuttle is a hydraulic type clutch separate from the standard clutch.

    To start it sounds like the steering clutches may need to be adjusted. (simple procedure)
    The clutch may also need adjusting. (simple procedure but harder than the steering clutches) Takes a pressure gauge to to the transmission clutch. Best to get a tech manual which will give the details to do both.

    If you have to go inside of the transmission and change the clutch good luck. These little bit--es are a real stinking nightmare to work on.

  7. #7
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    Thanks, for the help. I think I am going to pass on it. I am in the middle of building my house and I have enough on my plate. I will just have to make do with my Massey 65 till something else comes along.

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    Hi Seafarer12,It's been awile since I'v had a 450c tore apart but if memory serves me right there is a hydraulic valve on the clutch linkage that controls oil flow to the clutch packs in the power shift side of the transmission.There is an access port on top of the bell housing to adjust the valve.The valve could be bypassing oil if its not adjusted properly or it could just be bad,I dont know but it's a place to start looking.The way I remember on a 450c you partly depressed the clutch peddle to shift the "power shift" gears on the dozer and fully depressed the clutch to shift the maual side.When the clutch is partly depressed the hydraulic valve opens killing oil flow to the clutch packs.Good luck with it and that Massey 65 with a box blade will move allot of dirt

  9. #9
    Senior Member stumpjumper83's Avatar
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    that aint too bad of a price for a 450c, up here in northern pa, 7500 starts and they seem to top out 15 - 16k

  10. #10
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    I made a mistake it is a 450B

    Thanks for the information. I might write the guy. I am wondering if the pump is getting weak too since the blade is slow too. I imagine the pump isn't the easiest thing to change. I have found them for the 500 dollar range. I am just not sure where in the guts they are.

    This one is just so cheap because it will hardly move and with the economy in the tank nobody is real interested in it. The only ones I have seen close are Komatsu dozers. I saw a real nice 450 loader with a clamshell bucket and rippers in good shape but it was in the 15k range.

    The Massey is good. I have a Massey roll over box blade too. It is a real stout one. I haven't seen many new ones close to this one. I just need to do a lot of dirt work on my 31 acres and the Massey is a bit slow.
    Last edited by Seafarer12; 07-11-2010 at 05:51 PM.

  11. #11
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    450b's have dry clutches and require more attention than the c's with the wet clutches. On a c the hydraulic pump is up front on the motor down low, and doesn't look too bad to change. Before I ordered the pump thought, I'd change the hydraulic filters and change the hydraulic oil.

  12. #12
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    Some misinformation going on here.I've owned and operated a bunch of small JD dozers,still have a 450D.The transmission is NOT a ''power shift'',it's called a shuttle tranny and it comes with a reverser.You put the tranny in gears 1-4 and simply use the reverser to change direction.You only need the clutch pedal when changing gears,NOT when using the reverser.The beauty of the system is that you can shift direction ''on the fly'',without slowing down at all and like I said,without using the clutch pedal.
    Just remember when the old lady laughs at your expense for trying to sell what she thinks is a worthless piece of garbage"There is an a** for every toilet seat ever made"
    Formerly Skull-Finder-{found the skull to the famous mastodon in Hyde Park,NY in 2000

  13. #13
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    JD 450 C Transmission

    One word of caution on shifting from forward to reverse "on the fly" without comming to a complete stop on a 450 C dozer.They have a weak spot on the transmission casting back at the pinion bearing housing.The chamferd edge that holds the bearing away from the ring gear is only about an 1/8 inch thick .My buddy found this out the hard way slamming the gear shift forward & backward.I got a call from him to pick up the 450 & fix it.We ended up installing a new transmission case.The Smaller JD dozers are built pretty much like a 4020 farm tractor with the transmission structurally holding the framework all togather.I'll put it this way...It aint a 15 minute job swapping a 450 tranny case.
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  14. #14
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    Trans housing

    Amen, I've seen 4 of them do that when I was around them 7-8 years ago. It ain't cheap to fix either. They're a fantastic spreading dozer, but don't overload them.

    You have to adjust that main clutch so it grabs well but doesn't slip. For contracting purposes, I got away from them because they have a lot more power than they have sturdiness, for lack of a better word. We stripped finals, blew trannys and twisted other stuff by doing stuff they weren't meant to do. I found the D4 Cats to be a lot better suited for our main function, which was clearing cedar trees.

  15. #15
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    The pump on a 450C is a real bit-- to change as is everything on a 450C. They are the worst machine to work on I have ever seen. Even the Deere Dealer techs say so.

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