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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am a novice Ingersoll 448 owner who is looking for a utility blade to plow snow and grade my driveway with. There is a Case H54 blade for sale about an hours drive from where I live, the seller says that it fits all Case and Ingersoll 400 series tractors. I see the H54 has the lift link that goes over the front axle and the later models K,J, and L have the lift link that goes under the front axle. Can the H54 be used on my 1988 448 or would I need to make modifications?
 

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It will work just fine. I have both types and the only advantage I see to the newer ones is you can get a little more down pressure but that is not something I find particularly useful, particularly for plowing snow.
 

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The H blades were made before 1972 when Kohler K's were the only engine used by Case. Then along came the Onan opposed twin with the large, flat-oval mufflers that hung down each side of the engine. That's when the J model blade was introduced with the control arm that went under the front axle.

Obviously, if there were no clearance issues with the engines and the lift arm that went over the top of the axle, then there would be no need for Case to come up with a different blade design.


However, while I have not done this myself, I have read posts from H-blade owners who have performed minor mods to that lift arm to get the needed clearance. It really comes down to what that H blade is going to cost to get it home along with how hard it is to find a J or later blade in your area. Only you know about those things. Another factor would be your own skills and how well equipped your shop is, when it comes to mounting this blade on your 448 and then figuring out how to solve this issue. As I said, my understanding is that the problem isn't huge. All that MIGHT be needed is for you to bow the lift arm outward so that it does not hit anything. Keep in mind that those large pancake mufflers that were used from 72 to early 76 are no longer there.

If I were you and the price for that blade was too good to pass up, I'd go for it and then deal with any issues when I got home. :thumbsup:


The H-blade DOES NOT require the adapter plate for it to work. It fastens directly onto the existing bell crank with nothing else needed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Bart said:
It will work just fine. I have both types and the only advantage I see to the newer ones is you can get a little more down pressure but that is not something I find particularly useful, particularly for plowing snow.
Thanks for the quick response, Bart. Could I ask if you had to change anything with the H54 lift arm to make clearance. It makes sense that if they didn't need to change anything they wouldn't have come up with the J,K, and L series.
 

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Bart said:
It will work just fine. I have both types and the only advantage I see to the newer ones is you can get a little more down pressure but that is not something I find particularly useful, particularly for plowing snow.
There's a disadvantage to the newer ones: I have a UB54 and I wish I had the older type bar. I was pushing some brush piles this spring and that low bar kept catching on roots & vines and ripping off the Case-style "safety pins" ($3 each). I finally bent up a nail until I can get the correct size cotter pin. Plus the older ones don't need that adapter plate. I got mine without it (didn't know better at the time) and had to buy one - $40.
 

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448Gregg said:
Bart said:
It will work just fine. I have both types and the only advantage I see to the newer ones is you can get a little more down pressure but that is not something I find particularly useful, particularly for plowing snow.
Thanks for the quick response, Bart. Could I ask if you had to change anything with the H54 lift arm to make clearance. It makes sense that if they didn't need to change anything they wouldn't have come up with the J,K, and L series.
My blade came without an OEM lift linkage so I fabricated one from an old piece of water pipe and added a few washers to provide good clearance in the engine area. I suspect that the OEM linkage may have a slight bend in it to increase clearance but it's really not much of an issue--washers are cheap.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the input, Bart. I got to thinking last night that all I would have to do with the lift link on the H54 was get it around that oil return pipe and I figured I could make my own replacement link like you had to. That makes me feel better that there are others out there who have been successful in mounting the old Case blade to a newer Ingersoll. Should I get this blade for sale, I will post what modifications I had to make to the link in order for it to work properly. :thumbup:
 

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Bart said:
My blade came without an OEM lift linkage so I fabricated one from an old piece of water pipe and added a few washers to provide good clearance in the engine area. I suspect that the OEM linkage may have a slight bend in it to increase clearance but it's really not much of an issue--washers are cheap.
And at $100, the OEM lift bar is not.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I purchased the H54 blade last weekend. Unfortunately, I have been working a lot of overtime at work lately so I haven't been able to play around with it until just tonight. The blade frame mounted up to newer tractor just fine without any trouble. The lift link that was sold with the blade was already bent, the seller said he got the blade package with an old Case that he bought used but it was a 200 series. So, someone had "adjusted" the link to work for a smaller tractor than what it was intended.

The link COULD be used on my 1988 448, however, the clearances with the bell plate, oil return line, and the angle that the link operates is not ideal. There is enough clearance to use it to plow but my guess is it would wear out prematurely. I still plan on making a new lift link that is appropriate for this tractor where the transfer of force from the bell plate is straight forwards to the lift arm rather than pushing with an awkward and potentially binding angle. (it would be easier to explain if I could figure out how to post pictures in here) To use the existing bent link, I would recommend inserting washers for spacers between the lift link and the bell plate (as mentioned earlier in this thread) and I would also bend the end of the link at the blade lift arm so it wasn't crooked on the pin.

When I build the new lift link, I will share the design at this thread. Hopefully before September.
 

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448Gregg said:
I purchased the H54 blade last weekend. Unfortunately, I have been working a lot of overtime at work lately so I haven't been able to play around with it until just tonight. The blade frame mounted up to newer tractor just fine without any trouble. The lift link that was sold with the blade was already bent, the seller said he got the blade package with an old Case that he bought used but it was a 200 series. So, someone had "adjusted" the link to work for a smaller tractor than what it was intended.

It is not my intent to take issue with your wording here but rather to just clarify a point for anyone else who reads this thread. A 200 Series Case should never be considered a "smaller tractor". The only difference between a 200 and a 400 is that it does not have as much ground clearance. Therefore, the entire tractor sits 4 inches lower than the 400. And yes, width-wise it is a bit narrower. The H-54 was designed to be used on the 400 Series tractors but it was an OPTIONAL blade for the 224. The only reason it was not recommended for the 210, 220 and 222 had to do with the engine HP. Even though the 222 and 442 shared the same 12 HP engine, the larger displacement hydraulic motor on the 442 provided a bit more torque to the wheels.

What you have discovered regarding the clearance issue comes as no surprise but as I said, the problem is not insurmountable. The H-blade's Mule bracket is considered by many to be stronger in design than the J and later bracket. Most of the blade thrust is placed directly on the Mule assembly and not on the lift arm. Your primary concern should be with constructing an arm that gives good clearance through the entire range of travel so that accidental contact with the hood cannot be made. Heavy wall pipe should be more than adequate but a length of angle iron welded to the outside of the arm to create a V laid horizontally will stiffen that pipe to the point of zero flex.


The link COULD be used on my 1988 448, however, the clearances with the bell plate, oil return line, and the angle that the link operates is not ideal. There is enough clearance to use it to plow but my guess is it would wear out prematurely. I still plan on making a new lift link that is appropriate for this tractor where the transfer of force from the bell plate is straight forwards to the lift arm rather than pushing with an awkward and potentially binding angle. (it would be easier to explain if I could figure out how to post pictures in here) To use the existing bent link, I would recommend inserting washers for spacers between the lift link and the bell plate (as mentioned earlier in this thread) and I would also bend the end of the link at the blade lift arm so it wasn't crooked on the pin.

When I build the new lift link, I will share the design at this thread. Hopefully before September.
 

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I got an H54 blade as part of the deal with my latest 444 "resurrection" (1976 model). I was puzzled when I realized it included a standard Case lift arm plus a 29 1/2" steel strap with 3 mount holes. When I finally got the blade sandblasted, painted and put back together I discovered the issue. With the Case lift arm mounted I only got about 2" ground clearance with the blade fully lifted and lowering the blade could actually lift the front wheels off the ground. Mounting the steel strap and using the shorter mount hole distance solved the ground clearance issue, but dragged on the bottom of the hood and couldn't apply down pressure to the blade.

First, I tried making a replacement link from 3/4" steel conduit. Probably ok, but it felt a bit flimsy. Then I used 1" conduit with much better results. Closed up one end, packed it with sand and bent the tube to the desired curve with a 4# sledge. Then emptied the sand and closed up the other end. 3/4" mounting holes 25 1/8" apart "as the crow flies" finished the job. A coat of paint and someone might confuse it with "the real thing".
 

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