NH 54A Thrower Flywheel rolled into the woods...


Well-known Member
When we had about four loads of hay left last night, I was baling the backswath; and, as a bale kicked into the wagon, I heard a bang. I looked back to see the flywheel from my baler's thrower zipping into the woods.

Good news/Bad news

Good news:
It came clean off the shaft, even left the bolt that holds it. Also, I found out that I could still bale and kick bales onto the wagon, although I took it easy on the thrower. At least we didn't leave any hay in the field for the rain that's in the forecast today.

Great news is that it happened with nobody around, and the flywheel rolled harmlessly into the woods.

Bad news:
I looked for a couple of minutes, but I have no clue where that sucker rolled to. As it is, I don't suspect it will be useful. All that I can figure is that it's made of cast iron and the center cracked out of it.

I imagine the center cracked out of it, because I had to remove it last year to get to the pully behind it. It took some heat to get it off. Cast iron and heat aren't friends. I must have cracked it.

This is also bad news, because my option for replacing it is taking one off of an old baler. So, I'm going to need to figure out how to pop it off without heat, apparently.

As I was baling, the thought experiment was... what was getting stressed by not having the flywheel? My guess is that baling without that flywheel, over time, will either wear out the belts that drive the thrower or stress the driveshaft that runs down the side of the baler.

Just an example of cascaded failures that I'm sure many of you have experienced. One thing fails (the pulley that failed last year). Then, you have to take a bunch of things apart to get at one thing; and, that disassembly/reassembly process, if it isn't done perfectly, can leave a time bomb for another failure.
(quoted from post at 20:17:21 06/22/22) I would go looking hard for it. It is on there for a design reason. Maybe buy a used one. Good luck.

For sure. I'm going to replace the flywheel. It's there as a rotational inertia "lowpass filter", to use an analogy from electronics.

Without the flywheel, there will be added stress to the driveline.

So sure, I was able to bale three loads of hay without it to get it picked up, thank the good Lord... but I'm sure that running day in and day out without it will cause premature failures somewhere along the thrower driveline, that, according to my good Irish friend Murphy, will happen another day when I have much more hay on the ground.

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