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Old Western Isarmatic Mark III - no up/down or angles

Discussion in 'Western Plows Discussion' started by zarandle, Dec 15, 2007.

  1. zarandle

    zarandle Junior Member
    Messages: 7

    Older plow only used for personal driveway (800') plowing. Seems to have gremlins.

    After startup the plow does not go up/down or angle. Then if I drive it say 50' with the plow down the plow moves again (up and angles). Then it will work for 10-15 seconds and then it is stuck down again and won't move. Very intermittent but seems to only work very sporadically otherwise it is frozen in position. Sometimes it helps if I drive up to a snow bank which forces the plow up, sometimes that engages something and then I can angle the plow again, but then a few seconds later the controller does nothing again.

    Any ideas?
  2. zarandle

    zarandle Junior Member
    Messages: 7

    FYI - I've checked the ATF fluid and only had to add a 1/4 cup or so. Still doesn't help. Also, the plow lights work fine.

    I noticed so corrosion on the positive battery terminal but truck and lights still work without problem.

    Finally, if anyone knows of a good plow mechanic in the north central MA area please let me know. I'll probably have to call JC Madigan's (in Ayer) on monday if they still service western plows.
  3. linckeil

    linckeil PlowSite.com Addict
    from CT
    Messages: 1,272

    when the plow doesn't work, can you hear the electric motor on the pump run? listen for it. let us know this and we can do from there.
  4. GreenKingL&L

    GreenKingL&L Member
    Messages: 36

    Last edited: Dec 15, 2007
  5. zarandle

    zarandle Junior Member
    Messages: 7

    Sometimes I hear a faint click sound and the battery charge meter goes toward 0 until release. Other time the battery charge stays constant and I hear practically nothing under toward the motor.

    I'm thinking the relay is shot, it is at least 10 years old and the smaller terminals are a bit corroded.

    Given I only use it for my own driveway I don't mind spending a few hundred dollars to get it fixed rather then spending several thousand for a new one.

    It is just completely goofy as sometimes the plow lifts and angles fine (never at startup though) then you plow or move the truck then it stops . . .then a few minutes later it might work again.
  6. linckeil

    linckeil PlowSite.com Addict
    from CT
    Messages: 1,272

    it may be an electrical issue. find the solenoid under the hood. there will be a small wire running from the solenoid to the joystick controller in the cab. get a jumper wire and go from the terminal on the solenoid that this wire attaches to and touch the other end of the jumper wire to the negative terminal on the battery for a few seconds. the motor should run. if it doesn't then the solenoid is likely bad. if it does run, then try angling or lifting the plow and listen for the motor to run. if it does not run when operating the joystick, then the problem is either the wire running from the joystick to the solenoid, or the joystick itself.

    and i would also disconnect and clean all contacts and grounds on the pump motor, solenoid, and battery.
  7. packey

    packey Member
    Messages: 97

    Here are a few things I have learned about my mark III and it's initial problems.
    1. even though the pump has fluid the pump screed could be covered with sediment
    2. Make sure the unit is grounded well some people skip this
    3. Check the sylinoid to see whether it is good.
    4. check the wireing to make sure it is not correded and insulation is not burnt through.
    5. Make sure your battery and altenator can keep up with the pump motor.

    Every one of these things will cause you to have intermitted issues.
    now as far as what you are describeing I would agree with the above and say it is either a sylinoid or maybe even a the pump motor. but more then likely the sylinoid.

    What is strange is once I corrected my problems I have been running the plow hard on commercial accounts and she is working great.
  8. zarandle

    zarandle Junior Member
    Messages: 7

    So after much troubleshooting I first replaced the solenoid relay because it was heavily rusted. After putting in the new one I did here it clicking when the control was engaged but sill no motor.

    I followed the troubleshooting to jump the terminals, etc to try and force the motor to engage, but nothing, just silence. I finally took off the motor and the pump was fine (shaft spins using finger pressure).

    I am 99% sure it is the motor so I placed an order for a new one. The one I have is an original and is 14 years old. The plow was sometimes working (angles and up) and other times not then finally just stopped completely. I'm hoping that with a new motor it is good to go again.

    Are there any tricks to lining up the pump shaft to insert into the motor opening before bolting it back on and tightening it all up?