new to the site with an old m-371

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dano

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Jan 7, 2007
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10
Hi guys, great information on everything you'd ever need to know about skidsteers. I'm new on the site, and have recently purchased a 1975 m-371 bobcat for use in landscape construction. It's old, but it has a new 16 horse kohler gas engine with a lot of power. Does anyone else belong to the 371 fan club? Thanks, Dano
 

skidsteer.ca

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Jan 20, 2006
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Welcome Dano
I had one of those that I bought, fixed up and resold. It was a good basic little loader. I think they run forever. the only major thing that ever really seem to get done to them is a engine transplant. Mine had been bored out and rebuilt. I repacked cylinders and cleaned out the rusty fuel tank, installed hour meter, fixed lazy starter (one bad brush), adjusted the hydraulic press from 900 to 1500 lbs, (spring gets weak and pressure drops) adapted a 5' (tractor) bucket to it for snow. With a set of tire chains, it pushed that 5' bucket in high with no trouble. And once the pressure was reset it would lift it full of snow with easy to.
Ken
 

dano

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Joined
Jan 7, 2007
Messages
10
Welcome Dano
I had one of those that I bought, fixed up and resold. It was a good basic little loader. I think they run forever. the only major thing that ever really seem to get done to them is a engine transplant. Mine had been bored out and rebuilt. I repacked cylinders and cleaned out the rusty fuel tank, installed hour meter, fixed lazy starter (one bad brush), adjusted the hydraulic press from 900 to 1500 lbs, (spring gets weak and pressure drops) adapted a 5' (tractor) bucket to it for snow. With a set of tire chains, it pushed that 5' bucket in high with no trouble. And once the pressure was reset it would lift it full of snow with easy to.
Ken
Yep, when we bought it it was not pretty, but after a bunch of coats of paint and a bunch of tlc (badly needed), we were able to get the old girl running really nice. You can fix almost everything yourself on this machine, which is great. It only had a material bucket when we bought it and that was rotted out and in piss-poor shape, since it previously belonged to a turkey farmer, and he'd just leave the bucket full of manure. We had the bucket repaired, had pallet forks made up (only cost me $50 at the scrap yard), and made up a toothbar for the bucket that bolts on easily. We haul it with a 2006 f150 on a single axle trailer, since the machine only weighs 1900 lbs. It's a slick little rig and it digs pretty good. Take er easy, Dan
 

customkare

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Apr 1, 2008
Messages
4
Yep, when we bought it it was not pretty, but after a bunch of coats of paint and a bunch of tlc (badly needed), we were able to get the old girl running really nice. You can fix almost everything yourself on this machine, which is great. It only had a material bucket when we bought it and that was rotted out and in piss-poor shape, since it previously belonged to a turkey farmer, and he'd just leave the bucket full of manure. We had the bucket repaired, had pallet forks made up (only cost me $50 at the scrap yard), and made up a toothbar for the bucket that bolts on easily. We haul it with a 2006 f150 on a single axle trailer, since the machine only weighs 1900 lbs. It's a slick little rig and it digs pretty good. Take er easy, Dan
Dan, Have you had any history with working on the steering? My 371 is loose as a goose and is very sluggish for turning. Have you worked on the turning clutch at all? if so, hard to get to? Thanks
 

jmmillerfzr

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Joined
Nov 6, 2008
Messages
6
Dan, Have you had any history with working on the steering? My 371 is loose as a goose and is very sluggish for turning. Have you worked on the turning clutch at all? if so, hard to get to? Thanks
"I had one of those that I bought, fixed up and resold. It was a good basic little loader. I think they run forever. the only major thing that ever really seem to get done to them is a engine transplant. Mine had been bored out and rebuilt. I repacked cylinders and cleaned out the rusty fuel tank, installed hour meter, fixed lazy starter (one bad brush), adjusted the hydraulic press from 900 to 1500 lbs, (spring gets weak and pressure drops) adapted a 5' (tractor) bucket to it for snow. With a set of tire chains, it pushed that 5' bucket in high with no trouble. And once the pressure was reset it would lift it full of snow with easy to." I'm interested in how you adjusted the Hydraulic press from 900 to 1500lbs??
 

skidsteer.ca

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Joined
Jan 20, 2006
Messages
3,853
"I had one of those that I bought, fixed up and resold. It was a good basic little loader. I think they run forever. the only major thing that ever really seem to get done to them is a engine transplant. Mine had been bored out and rebuilt. I repacked cylinders and cleaned out the rusty fuel tank, installed hour meter, fixed lazy starter (one bad brush), adjusted the hydraulic press from 900 to 1500 lbs, (spring gets weak and pressure drops) adapted a 5' (tractor) bucket to it for snow. With a set of tire chains, it pushed that 5' bucket in high with no trouble. And once the pressure was reset it would lift it full of snow with easy to." I'm interested in how you adjusted the Hydraulic press from 900 to 1500lbs??
The relief valve adjustment screw is on the main hyd valve the foot pedals connect to. Look for a acorn nut theaded over a screw on the hyd valve. Afterremoving the acorn nut the screw should have a screwdriver slot as well as a jamb nut to hold the screw in place. You need to check the pressure first to see where its at then turn the screw clockwise to raise the pressure if needed. Sorry its been a couple years so I don't recall exactly how it looked. But look the valve over or mabey email me a pic or two of it and I can point you to the right part
ken at skidsteer.ca
 

Bobcat371

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Joined
Oct 13, 2008
Messages
5
The relief valve adjustment screw is on the main hyd valve the foot pedals connect to. Look for a acorn nut theaded over a screw on the hyd valve. Afterremoving the acorn nut the screw should have a screwdriver slot as well as a jamb nut to hold the screw in place. You need to check the pressure first to see where its at then turn the screw clockwise to raise the pressure if needed. Sorry its been a couple years so I don't recall exactly how it looked. But look the valve over or mabey email me a pic or two of it and I can point you to the right part
ken at skidsteer.ca
I'm new to the site and bought a 371 recently and have been going through it to get it in good running shape. I'm also new to working on equipment so hopefully between the manuals and this forum I'll be able to get all the problems fixed. First problem was water in the gas - turned out to be a rusty tank sitting in water that wasn't draining because the tank well holes were plugged with mud. Got that replaced and found a leak in the carburetor bowl - also from the water - replaced that also. Engine is now running good but had oil leaking from the governor cross-shaft. I cleaned the crankcase breather and replaced the cross-shaft bushing nut - also put an O ring on the shaft in front of the bushing nut. It stopped the leak there but I've still got oil coming from somewhere on the front or PTO side of engine but I can't see where it's coming from - any ideas on where to look without pulling the engine again? The bucket lift is also slower than the manual says it should be. The guy I bought it from put a new pump in it and I replaced the lower hydraulic line to the bucket lift which also had a rust hole in it. The fluid appears to be red so it may be transmission fluid - should I replace this? The control valve is a Cessna I think - it doesn't have separate sections for the foot petals, that can be rebuilt like the manual shows. Could I have a bad control valve? The bobcat dealer told me if I replaced the valve I'd have to replace the metal hydraulic lines also because the fittings are different. That sounded pretty expensive - am I overlooking anything?
 

skidsteer.ca

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Joined
Jan 20, 2006
Messages
3,853
I'm new to the site and bought a 371 recently and have been going through it to get it in good running shape. I'm also new to working on equipment so hopefully between the manuals and this forum I'll be able to get all the problems fixed. First problem was water in the gas - turned out to be a rusty tank sitting in water that wasn't draining because the tank well holes were plugged with mud. Got that replaced and found a leak in the carburetor bowl - also from the water - replaced that also. Engine is now running good but had oil leaking from the governor cross-shaft. I cleaned the crankcase breather and replaced the cross-shaft bushing nut - also put an O ring on the shaft in front of the bushing nut. It stopped the leak there but I've still got oil coming from somewhere on the front or PTO side of engine but I can't see where it's coming from - any ideas on where to look without pulling the engine again? The bucket lift is also slower than the manual says it should be. The guy I bought it from put a new pump in it and I replaced the lower hydraulic line to the bucket lift which also had a rust hole in it. The fluid appears to be red so it may be transmission fluid - should I replace this? The control valve is a Cessna I think - it doesn't have separate sections for the foot petals, that can be rebuilt like the manual shows. Could I have a bad control valve? The bobcat dealer told me if I replaced the valve I'd have to replace the metal hydraulic lines also because the fittings are different. That sounded pretty expensive - am I overlooking anything?
How much slower is your lift? Doubt its your valve, but you could temporarily swap the tilt with the lift to see, make sure the pedal linkage is moving the valve spool full stroke too. Belts are tight and don't slip? Lift speed about the same with bucket full or empty, or does it slow way down when loaded?
After that, I think you should check your main relief pressure to see where its at. 1400 psi if mem serves, bobcat.com should have the pressure listed if you look up your machine under “historical specs” or your manual may say. Often the spring in the releif gets weak after all these years and the pressure screw needs to be turned up to the correct pressure again. You need a guage to set this correctly as setting it too high will blow hydraulic components and too low will result in the bucket lift and tilt breakout being lazy.
Ken
 

Bobcat371

Member
Joined
Oct 13, 2008
Messages
5
How much slower is your lift? Doubt its your valve, but you could temporarily swap the tilt with the lift to see, make sure the pedal linkage is moving the valve spool full stroke too. Belts are tight and don't slip? Lift speed about the same with bucket full or empty, or does it slow way down when loaded?
After that, I think you should check your main relief pressure to see where its at. 1400 psi if mem serves, bobcat.com should have the pressure listed if you look up your machine under “historical specs” or your manual may say. Often the spring in the releif gets weak after all these years and the pressure screw needs to be turned up to the correct pressure again. You need a guage to set this correctly as setting it too high will blow hydraulic components and too low will result in the bucket lift and tilt breakout being lazy.
Ken
Thanks for the info Ken. I haven't checked the pedal linkage yet but will do that. The belt is tight and not slipping. The lift speed is pretty good with no load but slows down with a load. The bucket stays up with a load with the engine running - haven't shut it down with a load to see how long it holds. The Bobcat website doesn't list pressure - only shows Auxiliary High Flow 4.4 GPM. I don't have the manual but believe it says 1200 psi at 3100 rpm. I don't know what the rpm's are because I don't have a tach. I hope to find one I can borrow. Is a hydraulic flow gauge expensive or something I can rent. Don't know when I'll be able to work on the hydraulics, today the engine wouldn't turn over - just get a click when I turn the key. I put a charger on the battery so I will try again tomorrow but I think the battery is charged. Don't know what's changed since yesterday, I ran it for about an hour. All the wiring needs to be replaced - looks original and in bad shape with cracks in the insulation - haven't had time to work on this yet. Any thoughts on the engine oil leak? Sorry about the long paragraph - I've tried doing separate paragraphs and adding extra spaces after each paragraph but they're not going thru - is there a trick to this.
 

Tazza

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Thanks for the info Ken. I haven't checked the pedal linkage yet but will do that. The belt is tight and not slipping. The lift speed is pretty good with no load but slows down with a load. The bucket stays up with a load with the engine running - haven't shut it down with a load to see how long it holds. The Bobcat website doesn't list pressure - only shows Auxiliary High Flow 4.4 GPM. I don't have the manual but believe it says 1200 psi at 3100 rpm. I don't know what the rpm's are because I don't have a tach. I hope to find one I can borrow. Is a hydraulic flow gauge expensive or something I can rent. Don't know when I'll be able to work on the hydraulics, today the engine wouldn't turn over - just get a click when I turn the key. I put a charger on the battery so I will try again tomorrow but I think the battery is charged. Don't know what's changed since yesterday, I ran it for about an hour. All the wiring needs to be replaced - looks original and in bad shape with cracks in the insulation - haven't had time to work on this yet. Any thoughts on the engine oil leak? Sorry about the long paragraph - I've tried doing separate paragraphs and adding extra spaces after each paragraph but they're not going thru - is there a trick to this.
For your paragraphs click profile and check the box that says "use html editor (free text box)" and your paragraphs will show up rite.
Don't be too worried about engine RPM for measuring hydraulic pressure, just run it 3/4 to full throtle and check what it reads. Even at 1,500-2,000 it should provide full pressure as the vanes in the pump will be fully out at that speed (i assume it runs a vane pump and not a gear pump).
 

Bobcat371

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Oct 13, 2008
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For your paragraphs click profile and check the box that says "use html editor (free text box)" and your paragraphs will show up rite.
Don't be too worried about engine RPM for measuring hydraulic pressure, just run it 3/4 to full throtle and check what it reads. Even at 1,500-2,000 it should provide full pressure as the vanes in the pump will be fully out at that speed (i assume it runs a vane pump and not a gear pump).
I was told by the person I bought it from that he put in a new small gear hydraulic pump. Does this change anything. Also - 2 questions from my previous post. Is a hydraulic flow gauge expensive or something I can rent? Any thoughts on the engine oil leak? I also changed my profile as you suggested but then couldn't enter anything in the message box - even tried logging off and opening a new session - had to uncheck the box to post a reply. Is there a website problem?
 

Tazza

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I was told by the person I bought it from that he put in a new small gear hydraulic pump. Does this change anything. Also - 2 questions from my previous post. Is a hydraulic flow gauge expensive or something I can rent? Any thoughts on the engine oil leak? I also changed my profile as you suggested but then couldn't enter anything in the message box - even tried logging off and opening a new session - had to uncheck the box to post a reply. Is there a website problem?
Are you using internet explorer?
I have found it doesn't like firefox very much....
Not sure where you'd rent a flow gauge, i know they aren't cheap to buy though.
The gear pump shouldn't be a problem, as long as its rated for the same flow as the old one.
 

Bobcat371

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Oct 13, 2008
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Are you using internet explorer?
I have found it doesn't like firefox very much....
Not sure where you'd rent a flow gauge, i know they aren't cheap to buy though.
The gear pump shouldn't be a problem, as long as its rated for the same flow as the old one.
Firefox was the problem - thanks and thanks also for the help - I'll report back as I get things working.
 

skidsteer.ca

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Jan 20, 2006
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3,853
Firefox was the problem - thanks and thanks also for the help - I'll report back as I get things working.
I wonder if he replaced it with the same volume of pump? Hopefully.
Pumps are rated in cubic inches per revolution. and a small misculculation here can result in a significant flow drop also.
You need a flow meter to confirm your gpm (gallons per minute) output, especially if you want to check it at higher pressure. These are not cheap, would be best to have a hydraulic shop check it if you must go that far. Our local shop here could do this in 20 minutes. Not to big of a deal.
First I'd check your pressure as low hyd pressure (psi) can cause slow lift speeds to. All you need to do this is a $20 pressure guage from www.surpluscenter.com or simular place and a hose . couple fitting maybe $50 total or see if you friendly local mechanic could help out with a 2500 psi or so guage If it lifts ok empty but is slow under load, I'm still thinging low pressure.
Ken
 

Bobcat371

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Oct 13, 2008
Messages
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I wonder if he replaced it with the same volume of pump? Hopefully.
Pumps are rated in cubic inches per revolution. and a small misculculation here can result in a significant flow drop also.
You need a flow meter to confirm your gpm (gallons per minute) output, especially if you want to check it at higher pressure. These are not cheap, would be best to have a hydraulic shop check it if you must go that far. Our local shop here could do this in 20 minutes. Not to big of a deal.
First I'd check your pressure as low hyd pressure (psi) can cause slow lift speeds to. All you need to do this is a $20 pressure guage from www.surpluscenter.com or simular place and a hose . couple fitting maybe $50 total or see if you friendly local mechanic could help out with a 2500 psi or so guage If it lifts ok empty but is slow under load, I'm still thinging low pressure.
Ken
Thanks Ken!
 
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