Galion 104H

Nolbyone

New User
Hello all! Excellent forum you've got here. I was hoping I could lean on a few of you to help with information on a Galion 104H grader that my dad and I have saved from the jaws of the scrapper?!
The unit in question has a serial number of 104HB-GC-07982. Any information anyone might come up with would be great. Such as year of the machine from the SN? Or if that's not possible maybe the years that the 104h was produced? The advertisement said it was a 1979 but I kindly kindly doubt that. I'm thinking more late late sixties to about 73ish maybe? It's all hydraulic. Except for the blade tilt, not the circle, the circle is hydraulic and took some persuasion to work correctly after all the sitting and corrosion, but the tilt angle is adjustable only with what looks like pinch bolts that need to be loosened manually and tightened back up when the operator has the angle they want.

Fun story for anyone interested. The grader popped up on a local classifieds site for $2000. The photos showed six flat tires, next to no glass left in the cab, and orangish/reddish paint job that was barely hanging on. A sad looking machine for sure! I've wanted a grader ever since my dad sold his Caterpillar 99e on an oilfield sale in 1995. So I called on it.

I ended up talking to the mayor of a small town in Kansas. The grader belonged to the city and was last run in 2005. Both the mayor of the town and the last guy that ran the machine told me that the engine was seized, the hydraulic pump was shot, all the tires were ruined. The guy that ran it last, his exact words to me verbatim were, "I wouldn't wish that machine on my worst enemy." So I took them at their word and decided to let them scrap it. But it kept pulling at me... So I had a day off a few days later, and I called again and asked if I could drive the hour from my hometown to come see it. He of course said yes.

Upon my arrival I threw a hot battery in it and turned the key... click,click, click. So I shrugged my shoulders and thought, ok it's locked up. Was about to load the battery up, but tried it again. It cranked!! Only for a few seconds...I looked up... And white smoke from the exhaust! In only a few seconds! This thing wants to live! Well I was completely unprepared aside from a hot battery, albeit a very undersized battery. So no ether, no big battery. Only my diesel Colorado filled with oilfield tools and tiny tiny jumper cables. Needles to say... Thirty minutes later with a little finessing and a set of jumper cables probably on the edge of melting and that 471 Detroit was singing!! Luckily no stuck open injectors as it idled down almost immediately after starting. I idled it back up and tested all the hydraulics, and drove it forward ten feet in first gear on flat tires and then ten feet in reverse. Everything works!

So I shut everything down. Called the mayor, who to this point still thinks the engine is locked up, and he immediately invited me to his house. Right there over his dinner table I kinda low-balled their asking price. To which he told me my offer was the EXACT price he'd been authorized by the city council to sell it for. I wrote him a check and as he laughed he asked me what my plans were, scrap it, yard art, part it out? I simply said I might just air the tires up and road it home! He was absolutely blown away that it ran. He was so happy about it he ran over to the machine with me and used the gas powered air compressor on his flatbed to air up all the ratty old tires. We had a good laugh about it and he very genuinely told me he was happy to see it was going somewhere where it'll be used. And it has! I've had it home two weeks now, and without brakes of course, I've graded my driveway, my dad's, several of the neighbors, and a couple of very local to me oilfield lease roads!

All this after doing my due diligence of course. Such as, service, oil change, filters all the way around, enough grease through the grease gun to wear it three Milwaukee batteries, shining up the circle gear with a wire wheel to reduce the drag, soaking it in oil. I'm just shocked and stoked at the same time! For $1200 bucks plus filters and fluids and $375 dollars to a friend with a drop deck equipment trailer for getting it home and my dad and I landed an awesome old grader that we think will do a ton of work for us in the future! We're not wanting to go into business with it or anything but we're just elated to have lucked into such an awesome old machine! And save it from the scrapper in the process!!

Currently attempting to pull the wheel hubs to get to the drum brakes. I've got a really really talented parts guy that's just sure he can find all the bits we need to restore the braking capability of the old girl, which would be very handy!

I apologize that this turned into a novel but I'm just really excited and want to learn more about this old grader. Funny enough I've already ordered a vintage Galion grader hat off eBay that I only wear when I'm running the machine. Though the only real drawback is my wife is gonna kill me if I ever try grading the driveway while the baby is trying to nap ever again!! That Detroit is not conducive to sleeping babies!! Any help is greatly appreciated! Thanks much!!
 

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Hello all! Excellent forum you've got here. I was hoping I could lean on a few of you to help with information on a Galion 104H grader that my dad and I have saved from the jaws of the scrapper?!
The unit in question has a serial number of 104HB-GC-07982. Any information anyone might come up with would be great. Such as year of the machine from the SN? Or if that's not possible maybe the years that the 104h was produced? The advertisement said it was a 1979 but I kindly kindly doubt that. I'm thinking more late late sixties to about 73ish maybe? It's all hydraulic. Except for the blade tilt, not the circle, the circle is hydraulic and took some persuasion to work correctly after all the sitting and corrosion, but the tilt angle is adjustable only with what looks like pinch bolts that need to be loosened manually and tightened back up when the operator has the angle they want.

Fun story for anyone interested. The grader popped up on a local classifieds site for $2000. The photos showed six flat tires, next to no glass left in the cab, and orangish/reddish paint job that was barely hanging on. A sad looking machine for sure! I've wanted a grader ever since my dad sold his Caterpillar 99e on an oilfield sale in 1995. So I called on it.

I ended up talking to the mayor of a small town in Kansas. The grader belonged to the city and was last run in 2005. Both the mayor of the town and the last guy that ran the machine told me that the engine was seized, the hydraulic pump was shot, all the tires were ruined. The guy that ran it last, his exact words to me verbatim were, "I wouldn't wish that machine on my worst enemy." So I took them at their word and decided to let them scrap it. But it kept pulling at me... So I had a day off a few days later, and I called again and asked if I could drive the hour from my hometown to come see it. He of course said yes.

Upon my arrival I threw a hot battery in it and turned the key... click,click, click. So I shrugged my shoulders and thought, ok it's locked up. Was about to load the battery up, but tried it again. It cranked!! Only for a few seconds...I looked up... And white smoke from the exhaust! In only a few seconds! This thing wants to live! Well I was completely unprepared aside from a hot battery, albeit a very undersized battery. So no ether, no big battery. Only my diesel Colorado filled with oilfield tools and tiny tiny jumper cables. Needles to say... Thirty minutes later with a little finessing and a set of jumper cables probably on the edge of melting and that 471 Detroit was singing!! Luckily no stuck open injectors as it idled down almost immediately after starting. I idled it back up and tested all the hydraulics, and drove it forward ten feet in first gear on flat tires and then ten feet in reverse. Everything works!

So I shut everything down. Called the mayor, who to this point still thinks the engine is locked up, and he immediately invited me to his house. Right there over his dinner table I kinda low-balled their asking price. To which he told me my offer was the EXACT price he'd been authorized by the city council to sell it for. I wrote him a check and as he laughed he asked me what my plans were, scrap it, yard art, part it out? I simply said I might just air the tires up and road it home! He was absolutely blown away that it ran. He was so happy about it he ran over to the machine with me and used the gas powered air compressor on his flatbed to air up all the ratty old tires. We had a good laugh about it and he very genuinely told me he was happy to see it was going somewhere where it'll be used. And it has! I've had it home two weeks now, and without brakes of course, I've graded my driveway, my dad's, several of the neighbors, and a couple of very local to me oilfield lease roads!

All this after doing my due diligence of course. Such as, service, oil change, filters all the way around, enough grease through the grease gun to wear it three Milwaukee batteries, shining up the circle gear with a wire wheel to reduce the drag, soaking it in oil. I'm just shocked and stoked at the same time! For $1200 bucks plus filters and fluids and $375 dollars to a friend with a drop deck equipment trailer for getting it home and my dad and I landed an awesome old grader that we think will do a ton of work for us in the future! We're not wanting to go into business with it or anything but we're just elated to have lucked into such an awesome old machine! And save it from the scrapper in the process!!

Currently attempting to pull the wheel hubs to get to the drum brakes. I've got a really really talented parts guy that's just sure he can find all the bits we need to restore the braking capability of the old girl, which would be very handy!

I apologize that this turned into a novel but I'm just really excited and want to learn more about this old grader. Funny enough I've already ordered a vintage Galion grader hat off eBay that I only wear when I'm running the machine. Though the only real drawback is my wife is gonna kill me if I ever try grading the driveway while the baby is trying to nap ever again!! That Detroit is not conducive to sleeping babies!! Any help is greatly appreciated! Thanks much!!
Welcome to the forums.

A web search turned up a couple videos and images. One video of a 104 for sale from a govern ment agency showed it as a 1957, another picture labeled another as 1966.
 
Welcome to the forums.

A web search turned up a couple videos and images. One video of a 104 for sale from a govern ment agency showed it as a 1957, another picture labeled another as 196

Welcome to the forums.

A web search turned up a couple videos and images. One video of a 104 for sale from a govern ment agency showed it as a 1957, another picture labeled another as 1966.
So anywhere from late fifties to late sixties. It's interesting... I've been all over this internet and haven't found much of anything different than what you did. I was really hoping there was someone out there that could decode the SN like one can do with the old John Deere units. I mean I'm not disappointed either way because the old machine is still pretty cool but it just seems there's very little information on these old things.
 
Heck of a neat story that needed telling. Good save!
The story of getting my '53 model 118 is far less interesting. I have the big IH engine.
Quite right, information on the net is scarce like you found.
Your 104 seems like an updated version of the 118 with many similarities yet a bunch of differences.
104HB your basic series-GC the GM engine power-07982 the serial.
Hope we can find the serial info we wish for someday. I've never reached out to Dresser or Dresser/Komatsu.
I'm almost jealous the master cylinder is right there on your 104 plus MAYBE, the rear wheel hubs MAY stay in place when removing the wheels to get at the brake cylinders and shoes. The older 118 has the master cylinder underneath and the wheels must slide off the drive shafts to fix wheel cylinders. My wheel cylinders are stuck tight.
Seems a lot of GM Diesel powered Galions out there.
 
Heck of a neat story that needed telling. Good save!
The story of getting my '53 model 118 is far less interesting. I have the big IH engine.
Quite right, information on the net is scarce like you found.
Your 104 seems like an updated version of the 118 with many similarities yet a bunch of differences.
104HB your basic series-GC the GM engine power-07982 the serial.
Hope we can find the serial info we wish for someday. I've never reached out to Dresser or Dresser/Komatsu.
I'm almost jealous the master cylinder is right there on your 104 plus MAYBE, the rear wheel hubs MAY stay in place when removing the wheels to get at the brake cylinders and shoes. The older 118 has the master cylinder underneath and the wheels must slide off the drive shafts to fix wheel cylinders. My wheel cylinders are stuck tight.
Seems a lot of GM Diesel powered Galions out there.
Hey Duey! Thanks for the reply! You kinda confirmed one of my thoughts in that the 104h is just a slightly upgraded 118. I just have trouble understanding Galion's model numbering. Seems to be all over the place. Neat side though, at one point Galion ironworks was so integral to the city of Galion Ohio that they named their highschool mascot the Galion Graders!

Anyhow... About the brakes. I had it in my mind I was attempting to pull the hubs off but what I was really pulling was drums themselves. I had my welder buddy build a puller out of 3/4" plate and between him and me and my tired old Case backhoe we got the drums pulled. Just like your 118, the wheel cylinders on my 104 are stuck tight, however luckily for me there's over a half inch of brake lining left on both sides. Looks darn near brand new actually. Taking one of the cylinders into my parts guy to see if he can find new ones this morning. Wish me luck!
 
Uh huh! Someone out there has a handle on model numbers and we'll find him someday.
Woohoo! You got the drums off. A pic or it didn't happen. ;) Kidding of course but would love to see a pic of yours after drums are off.
Good luck but don't I think it should be a trouble to find at least the cups and springs for the wheel cylinders especially if there's a name cast in like Wagner Lockheed or...
Someday I'd like to try the brass sleeve bore repair for wheel and master cylinders.
Gosh, if you ever get up to central MN in September, there's a similar grader to yours at the showgrounds that smooths out the parade route. I think it's also Detroit powered. Stuck in a building so I never get to see it up close.
Dang, that hoe was handy for lifting I bet.
Hope this is OK to show.
1. This is all I get with my serial number. And it's a higher number on an older machine but then again yours is a 104.
2. My rear wheels. Less fun than your newer one.
3. Older scarifier (or vee plow) mount. You have the flat plate out front. Older have the rounded cab corners verses your square corners.
Go Galion Graders! That was neat find!
 

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Uh huh! Someone out there has a handle on model numbers and we'll find him someday.
Woohoo! You got the drums off. A pic or it didn't happen. ;) Kidding of course but would love to see a pic of yours after drums are off.
Good luck but don't I think it should be a trouble to find at least the cups and springs for the wheel cylinders especially if there's a name cast in like Wagner Lockheed or...
Someday I'd like to try the brass sleeve bore repair for wheel and master cylinders.
Gosh, if you ever get up to central MN in September, there's a similar grader to yours at the showgrounds that smooths out the parade route. I think it's also Detroit powered. Stuck in a building so I never get to see it up close.
Dang, that hoe was handy for lifting I bet.
Hope this is OK to show.
1. This is all I get with my serial number. And it's a higher number on an older machine but then again yours is a 104.
2. My rear wheels. Less fun than your newer one.
3. Older scarifier (or vee plow) mount. You have the flat plate out front. Older have the rounded cab corners verses your square corners.
Go Galion Graders! That was neat find!
If I ever make it up that way I'll be sure to check that machine out!! And yes you're correct that backhoe is a lifesaver! Always has been! My dad started running a backhoe in 1973 and we've always had one around since! Also the wheel cylinders that came out of the drum assemblies did have the part number on them though it was the same as what was listed in the parts manual. My parts guy was able to find them but not through his channels. He found them on brokentractor.com and they actually cross to a Dresser part number. I'm not positive what year Dresser took over but maybe my machine isn't too far before that. I'll include a few pics of the drums and the puller and the brakes themselves. I sure hope I can figure out how to adjust them properly before reinstalling the drums! The adjusters are really a pain to get to with the chain case so close to the brakes.
 

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If I ever make it up that way I'll be sure to check that machine out!! And yes you're correct that backhoe is a lifesaver! Always has been! My dad started running a backhoe in 1973 and we've always had one around since! Also the wheel cylinders that came out of the drum assemblies did have the part number on them though it was the same as what was listed in the parts manual. My parts guy was able to find them but not through his channels. He found them on brokentractor.com and they actually cross to a Dresser part number. I'm not positive what year Dresser took over but maybe my machine isn't too far before that. I'll include a few pics of the drums and the puller and the brakes themselves. I sure hope I can figure out how to adjust them properly before reinstalling the drums! The adjusters are really a pain to get to with the chain case so close to the brakes.
 

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Excellent photos! I found the big keyway. Thank you! The shaft is tapered isn't it?
Bendix brakes! I know this goes without saying but get the threads on the bottom adjuster loosened up.
Then you can back up, hit the brakes and click them closer.
Goll dang it, anti seize dries up over time. Is grease a better thread protector?
They used to use monster simple calipers to check brake shoe fit against the drums. ?
 
Yessir it is tapered. All we did was get that puller mounted and initially tried pulling on it without any heat but it only just tightened up like crazy. Fired up the weed burner and set it on the middle of the drum and about five minutes later it popped right off that taper. Then chained it up and pulled it off supported by the hoe. New wheel cylinders should be in on Friday. Hopefully I can get those adjusters freed up really good. I'll get them soaking in some diesel and acetone or something like that. Thanks for the advice! I've never really messed with drums much. I can do disk brakes with my eyes closed but this is a new ball game for me! Thanks again!
 
Well all... Just a quick update. With the addition of new wheel cylinders ordered from broken tractor, brand new lines from master cylinder to wheel cylinder and several exhaustive one man attempts at bleeding the brakes, I now have brakes in the old Galion!! I had no idea how to properly adjust them so I just kept screwing the auto adjuster in until the brake shoes would go back inside those 400 pound drums and when I finally got everything reassembled and got her fired up she has brakes!! They're still a hair squishy because one man can't hardly bleed brakes alone! But I used the machine to spread 25 tons of crushed concrete yesterday afternoon on my driveway and my goodness what a difference it makes having brakes!! I think after this even the wife will appreciate that noisy old monster! 😂

I'll get a buddy out soon to help with a legitimate brake bleeding process and get them really dialed in!

Currently down to replacing one wheel bearing in the middle axle and rebuilding a couple of cylinders and this old machine will be tip top as far as old Galion Graders go in my area. Thank you all for all the comments and advice! It's all much appreciated!!
 

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