|Click on Photo
||After deciding I wanted an older PUG for my next
“product machine” I called Richard at Route 6x6. These
old workhorses are not easy to find but as usual Richard came
through and located a worn out early 1970’s unit that had
been used on a farm. A few of these machines were manufactured
with hydraulic dump beds (vs. personnel carrier beds) which this
one had making it an even better find.
Once back at the shop I cleaned the layers of “cement”
hard manure and grime from the PUG and found it to be rust free
under the protection of all that crust. The fiberglass body was
broken up and missing sections, but repairable. The first thing
I noticed after beginning the tear down was how well the PUG was
built compared to some of the other machines of this era. The
3 speed transaxle and rear end are massive as are the frame sections,
Pugs were defiantly designed with hard work in mind. The transaxle
came apart easy enough and looked new once inside. After hot tanking
all the parts it was reassembled using all new bearings and seals
as a precaution. Most all the drive train parts are standard ag.
components which were easy to locate. After learning that the
brakes are from a 1964 Ford Fairlane a trip to NAPA provided me
with all the necessary parts for a complete rebuild. The original
engine was either a 10 or 16 HP Briggs. After some thought whether
to rebuild the engine or replace it I decided to go the latter
route. The modern air cooled engines of today are just too good.
The 12 HP Kawasaki is incredibly smooth and provides plenty of
power, especially in the ultra low 1st gear.
One issue that sometimes has to be dealt with when replacing an
older engine with a modern one is the fact that the new engines
idle faster. This is because the older engines were splash lubricated
vs. the pressure lubricated modern engines. The faster idle supplies
the needed oil but due to belt drag sometimes spins the transmission
just enough to grind gears when shifting from neutral into gear.
Shifting from a gear to neutral if the transmission is still spinning
is not a problem. I addressed this by installing a small motorcycle
brake disc on the output shaft of the transmission. A go-kart
caliper on the disc and bicycle cable/lever attached to the shift
lever actuate the brake for shifting and provide an additional
machine brake that actually stops the PUG instantly.
The PUG is a fun machine to drive even though the speed sensitive
driven clutch (vs. a torque sensitive clutch) and articulated
steering take some getting used to. Besides the articulated steering
both body halves also pivot independently on a front to rear horizontal
axis. This feature allows the PUG to crawl over very difficult
terrain while keeping the tires in contact with the ground. Even
with open diffs it gets amazing traction.
With regular maintenance and inside storage this machine should
easily last another 35 years.
Some of the work includes:
-Complete disassembly of entire machine
-Transaxle rebuilt, new bearings and seals
-Driveline completely rebuilt
-Installed disc brake on output shaft of transmission
-New Titan 6 ply tires
-Rebuilt master cylinder
-New brake cylinders and lines
-Al new brake hardware
-All bushings at body half pivot points replaced
-All steering parts replaced or rebuilt.
-Combination roll cage, bumper and winch mount fabricated.
-3000 lb winch installed
-Shortened dump bed for a better departure angle
-All new electrical
-Installed new seats that fold up for engine/trans access.
-Installed a larger steering wheel for easier steering
-Added mud flaps front and rear