Scag TT Spindle seal leak fix?

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by flashbang, May 12, 2013.

  1. flashbang

    flashbang LawnSite Member
    from ny
    Messages: 32

    Hi all,
    2004 OEM Advantage spindle is leaking from the bottom seal on to the blade and drips on the ground. Not a lot but it leaves a a small stain in a day or to on concrete. I guess sooner or later the bearings are going to go bad so I want to get to it before they fail.
    Looking to here from anyone that has done a seal replacement. I do not wish to get a new assembly or bearings. I had the spindles out during the deck rebuild and I didn't notice any cracks in the housing and the bearings felt tight and smooth. Running the blades sound good so I'm guessing the bearings are still good.
    Now without taking the spindle out of the machine and then ordering the parts, due to down time, what parts beside the seal would most likely need to be replaced? Could it be as simple as a seal failure or would the shaft be the root cause?
    Also what is the spec on the preload if any?
  2. herler

    herler LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,139

    From my own experience I can tell you that since you will have to pay for shipping either way I would go ahead and order up the bearings anyhow so that you have them...Otherwise you end up having to pay the shipping twice, sooner or later you will need the bearings and it might not be so bad, ordering just the seal(s), but I would definitely comparison shop and with the cost of shipping.

    That having been said, and if you still want to save money you can test for bearing wear by grabbing the blade and trying to wiggle it, unfortunately if you feel any play at all I would go ahead and replace the bearings as well. Here again it is about cost savings, either way you're removing a spindle and you're into some labor...

    Careful considerations, however if there is no play at all, I would certainly replace only the seal and see how it holds up.

    Last but not least, I have found the use of a rubber mallet or a block of wood to be of great assistance when putting in the new seal.
    Sometimes a rod and even a flat head dowel of sorts, but slow and soft, methodical tapping.
    Make sure when it first starts to seat, that it's going in nice and even, that is crucial.
    Last edited: May 12, 2013
  3. TLS

    TLS LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,943

    I wouldn't touch it. Nothing wrong with grease coming out. Older mowers never had seals. Grease will protect dirt from entering bearing.
  4. djagusch

    djagusch LawnSite Platinum Member
    from MN
    Messages: 4,345

    First off you will need a thin wall socket. I had mine turned down on a lathe. Otherwise you will be stuck from the get go. After you spend the time to get everything apart I don't understand why you wouldn't spend the money to replace the bearings also.

    Typically if you count your time involved replacing the parts and the parts cost its a break even job compared to replacing them with aftermarket.

    I have 2 rebuilt ones (done in the offseason) from ones I replaced in the past. I haven't needed to use them yet.

    Most likely the seal went bad from something wrapping around the spindle.
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  5. flashbang

    flashbang LawnSite Member
    from ny
    Messages: 32

    Good info. I will buy the seals locally so shipping is a non issue. If I do the bearing test with the blade and find it unacceptable I'll go forward and order online the seals and bearings. I understand bearing races can be a bear to remove and was trying to avoid removing the races but they must go in a set.
    Any idea of the preload bearing torque and bearing/seal numbers that I can cross into Timken?
  6. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,190

    I kinda think TLC has it right don't touch them. Might look at what kind of grease you are using and step up to synethic. I didn't think they had a seal in them either and local shop says some levels are very difficult to get apart.

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