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I'm looking at a 4 year old high bale count MF 1840 that ran ahead of a bale baron, I've been reading trying to find the wear points to look at. I've not been around the in lines much at all but interested in trying one out as we work our way towards owning a Bale Baron one day.

More interested if there are any frame cracking, gearbox issues, pickup getting tweaked type things. I'm fairly sure there's not a multi luber on the MF's as well so check for knotter wear. Assuming the stuffer gets sloppy first too as I see recent stuffer work in a lot of big square baler ads.

My background is in JD 336/348 and also old MF224/228 balers, have torn most parts of them apart but never touched an inline.
 

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My experience is with the Hesston 4590's which I believe to be very similar the 1840. I was using a 336 prior to getting the Hesston as well. It's still here but may get retired completely this year.

I'm not aware of any inherent frame or gearbox issues. The pickup heads are built very solid, and would not have any issues in most normal haying conditions, but they can get tweaked if someone straddles a rock to the point of taking weight off of one or both wheels. Check that the pickup moves freely downward when it is lowered (either hydraulically or manually). If it binds at all and needs help to lower all the way down, that would be an indication that the head is tweaked.

Otherwise, in terms of looking for excessive wear, take a close look at the plunger rails, plunger bearings, and knives. Also look at chains and sprockets. All maintenance items which can easily be addressed, but it would be nice to know what you are in for up front before making a purchase.
 

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Was able to speak with the owner more, the needle frame pivot had a crack that was repaired at a professional shop. Also the axles/spindles were replaced at same time as one was cracked.

He replaced this machine with a brand new MF1840 with the hay producer kit or whatever its called to get the automatic luber, heavier axles and heavier wagon hitch on the rear. Kept this as his backup baler intending to run two when he could but that didn't happen.
 

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He said it’s at approximately 150,000 bales. I know what that looks like in a JD348 and in the older MF balers just more concerned about packer forks etc.
 

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Was able to speak with the owner more, the needle frame pivot had a crack that was repaired at a professional shop. Also the axles/spindles were replaced at same time as one was cracked.

He replaced this machine with a brand new MF1840 with the hay producer kit or whatever its called to get the automatic luber, heavier axles and heavier wagon hitch on the rear. Kept this as his backup baler intending to run two when he could but that didn't happen.
Yeah, due to the vintage a good look at the wheel and spindles is a good idea since it was pulling a baron. I don't recall hearing about many spindle problems, but the 1840 first came out with a 5 bolt wheel and they had a tendency to crack out with a bale baron behind the baler. I'm not sure why the 1839 never had a problem, but the 1840 did get a longer bale chamber and rear hitch to match.

Otherwise in the frame, take a look at the adjustable hay restrictors and the corners in the frame for them. Any cracks there aren't a big deal, but still wise to weld up. As you stated, stuffer fork bushings are the next hot spot; expect some play there, but if you can hear the forks ticking against the plunger when the baler is spun up while empty it'll be due for new bushings.

Other things to check for are bent or cracked augers and it sounds like they've already pointed out the needle rack/mounts.
 

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Well I brought home an 1840 for 10,500$ Canadian which is about what 7000$ USD?

It's not in as good of shape as my 336 and 348 which is expect at that price and acid use it's entire life. It bales well as is though and with 300-500$ will fix some of the things I didn't like.

3000 km trip to get it, so around 2000 miles? Trailer brakes quit on the way back as I entered the busiest freeway in Canada, Toronto 401 at rush hour. Went well though drove home last 10 hours in heavy snow / slush which wasn't fun but was ok once all the other cars got off the highway.
 

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Well I brought home an 1840 for 10,500$ Canadian which is about what 7000$ USD?

It's not in as good of shape as my 336 and 348 which is expect at that price and acid use it's entire life. It bales well as is though and with 300-500$ will fix some of the things I didn't like.

3000 km trip to get it, so around 2000 miles? Trailer brakes quit on the way back as I entered the busiest freeway in Canada, Toronto 401 at rush hour. Went well though drove home last 10 hours in heavy snow / slush which wasn't fun but was ok once all the other cars got off the highway.
Looks nice & clean, must have been kept indoors. Good Buy I think.
 

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Had more time to look this thing over so I've got a list of faults together for someone else looking at this thread in the future:

-Hydraulic bale tension pump was updated on the newer 1840's, mine has the old one and is leaking like a sieve.

-Pickup sheet metal covers on the end got banged up then the pickup was raised crumpling more sheet metal where they interleave.

-Baron chute wore the tail end holes

-The 5 bolt spindles broke, and dealer didn't know about 6 bolt update so owner was sold 5 bolt spindles again. He unfortunately had the welder install them welded to axle instead of bolted to the flange so hopefully they don't fail again.

- Needle frame on the left side cracked and fail leading to a broken needle and damaged the needle guarding beyond repair.

-Crack in the flywheel service door sheet metal

-Damaged guard over the top of the main crank.

-Wagon hitch damaged from the load of bale baron behind, been repaired several times based on the welds. I would always run a safety chain if you're thinking of pulling that much weight / $$$ behind one of these.

-Pickup needs a dozen teeth and a couple of new bands.

Other than that seems to be in good shape! Looking forward to running it against my JD 348 and my friends MF 228 this summer! JD 336 being put up for sale I think.
 

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I think the white stuff (wart) in the first picture will most likely disappear by say July 1st, on it's own. :lol: :lol: :lol:

Larry
 
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-The 5 bolt spindles broke, and dealer didn't know about 6 bolt update so owner was sold 5 bolt spindles again. He unfortunately had the welder install them welded to axle instead of bolted to the flange so hopefully they don't fail again.
Looking in the parts book, it looks like the 6 bolt spindles didn't go to a bolt-on design until the J model year (2018); so welding would be expected.
 
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