Weasel tracks redeux 2019

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signsup
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Re: Weasel tracks redeux 2019

Post by signsup » Fri Jan 04, 2019 3:37 pm

I'm going to research as many avenues as possible, but I do have a set of tracks that need restoration, so I am going to proceed down the road of trying to acquire replacement conveyer bands and using my original cleats and grousers. At least until I hit a dead end.
I have made contact with a belt supplier in the Atlanta area and he has requested pictures and some rough dimensions to see what they can do. The only track I have here in GA is attached to my weasel and in one piece. The other track I have is in CO and will be here in the next week or so. I can cut off a grouser and samples of the bands to provide to him from that broken track.
Here is a photo of the tracks I have. It is my understanding that these are type 3 tracks. My M29C is 1945. 4 bands with two road blaocks on the outside of each grouser located just outside the hole for the sprocket tooth.
I am going with the following dimensions? 253 and 5/8" in length, two outer bands approx. 2 x 3//4 and two inner bands approx. 2 x 1/2. If anyone has different dimensions, know is the time to share them. I have contacted Liberty Auto Restoration and Snake River, but due to the holidays, I have hard nothing but crickets chirping in response.
toplesss 1.JPG
toplesss 1.JPG (34.06 KiB) Viewed 668 times
track 1.JPG
track 1.JPG (37.29 KiB) Viewed 668 times
Robert Brough
Winston, GA
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President, GA MVPA
Jeeps, trucks, trailers and Weasels


clintm20
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Re: Weasel tracks redeux 2019

Post by clintm20 » Fri Jan 04, 2019 4:17 pm

I don't have a Weasel but this thread that was updated in Nov. 2018 says Mike Howard is making 20 sets:

viewtopic.php?f=24&t=228975
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Re: Weasel tracks redeux 2019

Post by 70th Division » Fri Jan 04, 2019 6:38 pm

Hello Robert,

I sent a message to BAIV in Holland to ask where they got their NEW, oem style, rubber tracks bands.
They look very much like the originals .

Hopefully they will have some great answers !!!

Best Regards,

Ray

Also :

The do it your self repair project conveyor bands according to the snake river post should have two thicknesses.
Outer band material is 1/2 " thick and is 700 foot pound test material.
Inner bands are 3/4" in thickness.

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Re: Weasel tracks redeux 2019

Post by Weaseler » Fri Jan 04, 2019 11:04 pm

You need 1” inner and 1/2” outter inner band thickness is very important outter not as much . If u use anything different then 1” it will throw off ur sprocket grouser timing

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Re: Weasel tracks redeux 2019

Post by signsup » Sat Jan 05, 2019 8:01 am

So what I am hearings is that the two bands closest to the outer edges of the grousers need to be 2" wide and 1" tall when mounted to the grouser. And the two inner bands need to be 2" wide and only 1/2" tall when mounted on the grousers. All four will be the same 253 and 5/8" length.

And, it looks to me that the cleats are molded into the actual bands or vulcanized between a band and another thinner band to secure the cleats to the bands. I presume the thickness of the cleats when attached is included in the overall thickness or height of the bands. Correct?

Are we all in agreement?

Again, I am going from feel of the bands attached to my current track. I will not have a loose grouser with cut off sections of band in my hands until next week. Does anyone have any loose sections of original bands that they can measure or send to me at my expense?
Robert Brough
Winston, GA
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President, GA MVPA
Jeeps, trucks, trailers and Weasels

Don Shaffer
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Re: Weasel tracks redeux 2019

Post by Don Shaffer » Sat Jan 05, 2019 9:13 am

We Stopped at Star Point on Friday and Greg said they they got the Go ahead from a big Weasel supplier. to start working on the molds for the track banding . I hope to have more news soon. Don Shaffer N.E. Ohio

clintm20
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Re: Weasel tracks redeux 2019

Post by clintm20 » Sat Jan 05, 2019 9:51 am

Don Shaffer wrote:
Sat Jan 05, 2019 9:13 am
We Stopped at Star Point on Friday and Greg said they they got the Go ahead from a big Weasel supplier. to start working on the molds for the track banding . I hope to have more news soon. Don Shaffer N.E. Ohio
Don,
Any chance you can ask for an update on the Halftrack track situation? If/when they might go into production? As far as I can tell they have only made one set.
Clint
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Re: Weasel tracks redeux 2019

Post by Weaseler » Sat Jan 05, 2019 9:55 am

The guy who was going to get them made he pulled out saying money return wasn t there so i am wondering who the so called big suppier is now

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Re: Weasel tracks redeux 2019

Post by 70th Division » Sat Jan 05, 2019 11:12 am

Hello Robert,

No, the 2 inner bands on the home made style new bands, that the bogies roll on, would be 1 inch thick,
and the outer 2 bands would be 3/4 inch or 1/2 inch.

There are two different ideas going here :

The reproduction, do it ourselves, measurements using available surplus conveyor belt materials that
Snake River 4x4 listed that basically are replacing the originals and retrofitted onto the grousers.

4 conveyor belt bands were made for each track, the Home Made style.
He said he used 3/4 inch thick conveyor belt material on the the 2 inner bands closest to the bogie wheels,
that the bogies actually ride on,
and he used 1/2 inch thick conveyor belt material on the two outer bands, left side and right side, closest to the ends of the grousers. He also had flat metal strips made, that the bolts go through for the nuts tighten down on.

Now, with that said, he looks like he has had success with that plan.

Weaseler has mentioned that it would be best to get 1 inch thick conveyor belt material for the 2 inner bands that the bogie wheels actually roll on.
That makes sense !!

On my Norwegian made, original style bands, that look like the exact original type, the
two inner "bogie wheel" bands are 1 inch thick x 1 3/4 inch wide and the outer are 1 inch thick x 1 1/4 wide.
The rubber is that dimension, and also have the metal clips vulcanized inside them which are riveted to the grousers.

The new home made bands have to be wider, so that there is conveyor belt material available to drill
to accept bolts to be attached to the grousers . Basically wide as the metal clips on the original bands.

NOTE : On the 2 new inner " drive" conveyor bands, that the bogies roll on,
you drill 1 hole and put in 1 bolt to attach the conveyor band bracket to the grouser.
This is because you only drill out 1 rivet from the original rubber band belt metal clip, and grind the metal clip
off flush from the inner side,against the track drive hook, as it is riveted under the center track drive hooks !!!

Note the pictures on Snake River site.

Also I am guessing he used the 3/4 inch and 1/2 inch conveyor belt materials as that may have been what is available to do the job. I am looking forward to your reply back from him as he has valuable experience on rebuilding the weasel tracks !!

An example of conveyor belt material I found on ebay, looks like he can cut it to width as well.
Looks pretty affordable as well !!

https://www.ebay.com/itm/1-2-x-4-RUBBER ... 0005.m1851


Best Regards,
Ray

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Re: Weasel tracks redeux 2019

Post by 70th Division » Sat Jan 05, 2019 11:13 am

Hello,

That is great news Don !
Let's hope they can do it, and do it affordably for all :D

Ray

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Re: Weasel tracks redeux 2019

Post by signsup » Sat Jan 05, 2019 2:10 pm

Yes to all this. If Snake River can provide something affordable and something us shade tree mechanics can bolt or weld or rivet to our current grousers, I think we all agree that is the best end result. If, however, their end product is priced where someone feels thay can acquire something "off the shelf" in a conveyer belt, than that would continue this research project.

I had my son measure my original BFG US Military stamped bands and they are basically both 1" tall with the two inner bands that the Bogie wheels ride on as being 1 1/2" wide and the two inside and outside bands being 1" wide. This measurement includes the thin rubber material that vulcanizes the metal clips to the bands.

Sounds like the incorporation of the clips into the bands is the obstacle.
Robert Brough
Winston, GA
2018 MVPA Honor Service Award
President, GA MVPA
Jeeps, trucks, trailers and Weasels

signsup
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Re: Weasel tracks redeux 2019

Post by signsup » Sun Jan 06, 2019 10:43 am

OK, it's Sunday, can't contact any vendors, so let's attack another potential issue with full track restoration, and that is the road pads. On my type 3, 20" grousers, I've got two blocks of hard rubber on each grouser, located either side of the center tooth. I first thought this was only for road preservation like not havng the tracks tear up concrete roads, but if they were installed on the original tracks, I would not have thought this was a priority.
As mine sit atop the width long raised "blade" on the outside of each grouser, it appears to me that these pads are the only surface that propels the tracks through mud and water, so they must take a lot of abuse and wear. I'm surprised that I have as many left as I do after 74 years. In fact, it looks like dry rot and cracking is causing me more road pad issues than actual wear and missing.

So, if I want to replace all these pads on our restored grousers, what are we thinking? I presume they would have to be some sort of tire rubber so as to not mark up rete like a hard nylon or hockey puck type rubber would do. Even if it is getting old truck tires and cutting them up for the tread rubber area, I think getting new pads made would not be extremely difficult.

But, how are they attached to the steel grousers? Someone mentioned vulcanizing, but what I can determine from that process is that it is used to bond rubber to rubber, not rubber to metal. It appears that my road pads were attached to metal grousers and not through holes in the grousers to the bands on the underside of the grousers. Is this a correct presumption? And, if so, I am not feeling any bolts or rivets to hold the road pads to the grouser surface. Are they just glued on? And, if so, what type of glue would hold up under the stress and srain of transporting a 4,000 lb vehicles at 35 mph?

I see some photos of the Snake River track restorations, but it looks to me like their tracks have no road pads on them, so it doesn't look like they tackled this problem. If I want to do any driving on city streets for parade or to just move around display areas, I would like to have the road pad option.

Thoughts?
Robert Brough
Winston, GA
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President, GA MVPA
Jeeps, trucks, trailers and Weasels

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Re: Weasel tracks redeux 2019

Post by 70th Division » Sun Jan 06, 2019 12:01 pm

Hello Robert,

That is an interesting cat to skin , even the expensive new tracks didn't appear to have the rubber pads.
My pads are just about shot, with many missing.

I just studied them, and have some loose ones to look at as well.
They appear to have been vulcanized to the track grouser plate like magic :D

I am guessing that some adhesive could have been placed on the pad to attach to the grouser and then a thin rubber coating over the whole grouser.

Whatever it was, it was amazing stuff, I have some residue that looks like it was over the entire grouser at one time.

Now, for ideas.
1.) Lets say we get chunks of rubber cut to the same dimension as the original pad, I think old industrial rubber conveyor belts cut up in little squares may work great.
2.) We find some industrial/dot adhesive that actually holds to steel. Sort of like the adhesive they use to
glue reflectors on the highway asphalt surfaces.
3.) Next step ...... our buddy Phil Swift with his Flex Seal spray on black liquid rubber stuff.
(I have used the stuff, and it is very impressive. I sprayed some on a pick up truck door jam that had some rust holes starting. the flex seal sealed it and is rock solid.)

Perhaps Flex Seal can be our "vulcanization process" ?

After the old grouser is restored, primed and painted, pads glued on, spray or brush the entire grouser with Flex Seal with the new pads attached. Put on a couple coats per grouser.

The correct adhesive is a must for the pads !!

I think this concept may just work !

This stuff is made in USA as well.


https://www.flexsealproducts.com/produc ... gI0m_D_BwE


PS- It looks like they make some glue as well .....

https://www.flexsealproducts.com/product/flex-glue/

Best Regards,

Ray

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Re: Weasel tracks redeux 2019

Post by signsup » Sun Jan 06, 2019 12:25 pm

Ray,
I think we are invisioning the same end result. When I talk to my conveyor belt contact, I will also discuss old belt material the correct size of the road pads and his suggestion for adhering rubber to steel.

Well down the road (pun intended) I was thinking about going an step above painting the grousers and using some sort of bedliner or undercoating material. I had not thought about sealing the road pads with anything as I picture it just scuffing off the first test drive on concrete. But if it only scuffs off the road surface area and stays on the sides and mating surface, it may an option. I was also thinking pder coating the grousers prior to belt assembly and the heat used in the powder coating process may help set the adhesive used to attach the road pads. I know my dentist uses some sort of unltra violet light to set the material she uses to bond my teeth, so there may be an adhesive technology out there that will set the road pads to the grousers for life.

And, if we are just gluing rubber pads to the grousers, we hay not want to limit ourselves to the original size and shape and give us as much traction and road surface area as possible.

And, along those line, it may be an option to use larger road pads and connect them to the grousers using several of the rivet or bolt holes that the cleats currently use. Just replace those with longer carriage or socket button head bolts with recessed holes in the road pad and it's the best of both worlds. Permanent attachment of the road pads, a larger surface area for them and if one gets trashed, a new one can be bolted on.

Man, I got to get a single loose grouser in my hands so I can envision this process.
Robert Brough
Winston, GA
2018 MVPA Honor Service Award
President, GA MVPA
Jeeps, trucks, trailers and Weasels

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Re: Weasel tracks redeux 2019

Post by Wolfen » Sun Jan 06, 2019 2:31 pm

Interesting discussion.


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