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Troy Bilt 27 Ton Splitter - Bad Weld Alert

Post in 'The Gear' started by bsticks, Aug 3, 2010.

  1. fidiro

    fidiro New Member

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    Finally got a response from Troy Bilt customer service and it seems that I will be going around in circles with them.

    Here is the reply I got from them:

    As a manufacturer, we provide a limited warranty with each of our products. The written warranty can be found in the owner’s manual. We ask that customers utilize a local Troy-Bilt Factory Authorized Service Center for determination of the cause of the failure of the product. The service center would be able to gather the necessary information and provide it to our Customer Service Department to determine the best course of action.

    For further assistance with this issue, please contact one of our authorized service centers in your area.

    Title: Where can I get Troy-Bilt service?
    URL: http://troybilt.custhelp.com/cgi-bi.../std_adp.php?p_faqid=262&p_created=1035203510

    We certainly expect our equipment to operate for a number of years before requiring unusual or expensive maintenance. Our policies are established to be fair to all owners and we apologize for any inconvenience that has been experienced in this matter.


    I was hoping for a happy quick fix from them but now I guess I have to take it to my local service center to have them assess my problem and see if Troy Bilt will take care of me. I will be going there tomorrow and I will post what the service center has to say.

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  2. fidiro

    fidiro New Member

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    Well now I contacted the local TB service guy and being that it's almost 6 years old he says I'm pretty much stuck with buying a replacement as Troy Bilt, that is built to not last, will probably not cover it. He's not even willing to try.

    Their product is what the pictures show and their service is just as bad. I'm staying clear of any future MTD or such related products.
  3. bsticks

    bsticks Member

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    In this day and age, the customer no longer is priority #1. I hope your eyes get clear and keep trying a saline solution to keep your eyes moist and tearing. That should wash out residue inside the eye.
  4. TMonter

    TMonter Minister of Fire

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    I had a horrible experience with an MTD mini tiller a couple years back. I bought an Echo mini-tiller last year and haven't looked back. I simply won't buy MTD products any more because of their poor customer service.
  5. fidiro

    fidiro New Member

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    This one looks like an exact match. Thanks for the find. It looks so much alike that I hope it's not the same manufacturer.

    First I am going to try and figure out how to take the piston apart from the cylinder and attempt to weld it this weekend.
  6. Gooserider

    Gooserider Mod Emeritus

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    I would STRONGLY advise severe caution in regards to welding on hydraulic cylinders...

    Hydraulic cylinders and especially the trunnion mount points on them are highly stressed areas, and if the welding on them is not done with extreme care, one is running a considerable risk of leakage at best and catastrophic failure (and injury) as bad or worse than what we've seen earlier in this thread - this is not a suitable project for teaching yourself how to weld.....

    Obviously I don't know what anyone else's experience and / or equipment credentials are, and so if you are an expert welder w/ pressure vessel experience, and so on, feel free to ignore me on this, otherwise... My own feeling is that unless I did pressure vessel welding for a living, I would sooner spend the relatively small cost for a replacement cylinder, rather than trying to mess with a DIY repair (and if you have to pay for a pro welder, it will probably cost about as much as a new cylinder anyway...)

    Gooserider
  7. ANeat

    ANeat New Member

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    Well they are obviously getting some failures now. I think the worst part of re-welding the cylinder would be dis-assembling and re-assembling, then you would still have the same questionable cylinder with a new weld. I wouldnt recommend welding the cylinder assembled as there would be the potential for some scale to develop on the inside contaiminating the hydraulics.....not to mention the possibility of the heat destroying any seals.

    Still tough to tell from the pics if its just a poor weld or some type of material/design flaw (or a combination)
  8. ANeat

    ANeat New Member

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    If possible while I was welding on stuff I would try to add some type of shield/guard to keep any oil off of me when (if) it happens again ;)


    Ive had a few hot oil baths over the years working on various machines, its not the end of the world but I try to avoid it.. :lol:
  9. fidiro

    fidiro New Member

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    Thanks gooserider for the advise. Although I own an Ironman 250 mig I am not a professional welder. It's OK I'll hold Troy Bilt responsible for the outcome since their customer service is so great I'll definately get a new cylinder for free from them after I weld this one.LOL Before I start I'm going to take more pics with a digital camera as the ones I uploaded were taken with my phone and are not perfect. I want to have clean looking memories of why I should stay away from MTD products.

    I'm going to attempt the weld still and keep my blury eyes on the cylinder for the first few rounds of split testing.

    Thanks again for the tips and your concern but really don't want to dish almost 300 w/shipping on this thing right now, It'll still be partial Troy Bilt if I replace the cylinder and I don't want to see that name on anything I own.
  10. Tackleman24

    Tackleman24 New Member

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    Although they have only had the contract for the last 5 yrs or so and I am not aware who had it before I previously (but no longer) worked at a company called Waltco Truck Equip in Tallmadge OH in their hydraulics division. We made these cylinders for a company that in turn assembled the splitter except the engine and other finishing touches and then MTD installed the engine and rest of stuff after painting them red & black for Troy Bilt, yellow for Cub Cadet and so on. As previously stated do not weld on a high pressure vessel if you do not know what you are doing, basically if you are not a pro you are risking your life by using the cylinder after welding on it. Also, the inside of the cylinder will most likely be ruined by welding on it again, those cylinders are honed to exact dimensions accurate within 0.0005” or less and welding on it causes a scale and distortion or warp in the metal and seals will be ruined and fluid will gush out. Honestly the design is pi*s poor and our engineers told the customer (MTD) that the design was flawed and prone to failure on a significant percentage of cylinders which figures out to about 1 out of every 250 will suffer catastrophic failure, however MTD demanded the design remain the same. An acceptable rate of failure is usually somewhere in the ball park of 1 out of every 500 at a minimum. Normally Waltco would warranty failures on large quantity accounts even if it is past the stated coverage term and even a failure on something 6 yrs old but on that account/ design they would not warranty it past the stated term. Now if this becomes an issue and a recall is performed it will be MTD’s responsibility as they were officially warned that the design was flawed and prone to failures. Now I am not bashing MTD, I own a Troy Bilt model but have had no problems with the cylinder but keep an eye out for them. I bought it because I can get a cylinder from friends that work there if an issue should occur. There is another design flaw in the design of the splitter itself, the log cradles are weak and tend to bend themselves or break bolts all together and the mount for the cradle tends to damage the low pressure hose that returns the fluid from the top of the cylinder to the filter and then into the tank. I have replaced at least a dozen cradle bolts and the return hose twice now, 2nd time was last week. Although those are relatively cheap and easy to fix it is still a major flaw and should be fixed under warranty but Troy Bilt say that happens due to negligence and/ or abuse which is BS. When I bought mine 3 yrs ago I bought one that I personally welded (yes I can tell by my numbered stamp on the cylinder) and take care of it. So far 3 yrs old with about 30-35 cords of wood and no major failures.
  11. bsticks

    bsticks Member

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    I welded my cylinder by keeping the entire area around the weld point very cool. I didn't take forever in getting the new weld completed because I was concerned about the packing inside the cylinder.

    So far, so good. Everything is holding true.

    I do wear safety goggles since my incident and gloves on my hands. At least I can protect my eyes and hands, god forbid this lets go.
  12. fidiro

    fidiro New Member

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    WOW, it is a pleasure to have someone come here that knows the background of this problem firsthand. Thank you for the support. This splitter was not a rental, not used to split and sell wood, it was used to split about 8 cords of wood per season to keep my family warm in the winter and it almost finished splitting the 6th season. I hear stories of peoples' great grandfathers handing down their equipment to the great grandchildren, you know where I'm going with this. Troy bilt splitters I guess will never get to be handed down and talked about 20 years from now if they don't step in and fix the problems they know about. I really thought this was a tough machine but bought it without doing any internet searches, I saw a honda engine and saw a great splitter I was sold on the Honda. Sad decision.

    I am no engineer but If that cylinder was double walled just in that area, I think it would make a world of a difference. Instead of being 1/4 walled the whole length make it 1/2" just about 10" in from the end, to strenghten that area where the pins get welded. Again I'm no engineer but the double thickness of the wall and properly welded would probably make this cylinder a hand me down one day, it'll probably outlast the honda motor.

    Hey Tackleman, how about setting up a supper deal on replacement cylinders with your friends for us members here. But don't set up the cylinders with Troy Bilt stickers on them, instead make a sticker saying 'TACKLEMAN SUPPER SPLITTER The hand me down king of splitters' LOL
  13. fidiro

    fidiro New Member

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    I didn't see a reason for goggles but do wear gloves and those big ear muffs to keep some noise out. The cycle time is so slow that I didn't see any reason for glasses but since this happened I guess I should start using them since I don't trust the rest of this pile of soft metal.
  14. DanCorcoran

    DanCorcoran Minister of Fire

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    If you really want some action on this issue, I strongly suggest that you file a formal complaint with the Consumer Product Safety Commission. You need to highlight the safety risks associated with these failures.
    They can force manufacturers to issue recalls and/or product re-design.
  15. fidiro

    fidiro New Member

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    HMMMMM. I didn't know I would have a chance or power to do such a thing but I guess it's worth a shot. I really didn't want it to get to this though, but if it has to I'll try it.

    I actually got another response from TB and it says:

    Our experience has shown that the most fair manner in which to make any warranty service decision is to have an independent third party gather all of the information and make this decision based on what is fair to all parties involved. Our network of independently owned and operated authorized warranty service centers are the persons that our company has entrusted to make these determinations.

    These independently owned and operated authorized warranty service centers are entrusted to physically inspect any product service issues and then fairly determine if all or any portion the service required is applicable under any of provisions of the product warranty.

    Our warranty payment centers support these warranty applicability decisions made by these authorized service centers and issues all valid and applicable warranty service payments, submitted to us by these service centers, directly to the servicing center.

    To assure a fair an unbiased decision is made by these independent service centers our company generally reimburses these service centers the following payments for warranty services performed by their staff:
    A) The service centers contracted shop labor rate.
    B) The price of any service parts and supplies specifically required to perform any warranted service.
    And
    C) An additional warranty claim processing fee (to cover any additional time required by them to process and submit any warranty claims for payment).

    These policies and procedures are common for most companies that utilize independently owned and operated authorized warranty service centers to perform warranty service.

    Please review the specific product warranty for a detailed explanation of product warranty coverage and limitations.

    Please utilize the Service Center locator link within this support site to generate a list of local authorized warranty service centers.

    NOTE: Consumers that disagree with any warranty applicable decision made by these independently owned authorized warranty service centers are welcome to consult with another independently owned authorized warranty service center for a second opinion.


    I guess I should first try another service center to see what they say. I'm going to take some more digital pics first, powerwash the oil off so that I don't get it all over myself and take it in for inspection. If it doens't go my way I'll go file with the safety commission.
  16. fidiro

    fidiro New Member

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    I think that your cylinder could be a bigger risk now at anytime. Because TB didn't honor you a replacement you did what anyone would do that has a welder on hand. But did the heat create a weaker cylinder like it is being mentioned here, hope not but do use caution. I still say that the cylinder should be beefed up to 1/2" around the pins from factory not homemade. Even the welded on fitting should be beefed up just in case.
  17. fire_man

    fire_man Minister of Fire

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    Pelletnubi: Can you please explain where you were standing when the oil sprayed in your eyes - how far from the cylinder and how far it sprayed? After reading this I am no longer going to let my 11 year old kid anywhere near this thing when it's running (he usually helps bring logs to near the cradle area). I guess goggles are a must - how are your eyes doing??
  18. fidiro

    fidiro New Member

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    I was holding about an 16-20" round on top of splitter with my left arm. Right hand on control handle and I guess I was looking down at the wedge going into log with my face too close to cylinder maybe 20" away, never really thought about heavy metal losing against firewood so I basically hug the whole machine and just keep my hands off the runway and pinch points, then it all happened in seconds. I have a 7 year old son that I take once in a while as well and also keep my eye on him near the machine but now I will keep him a few steps farther. He likes to watch so I'll get him binoculars.LOL

    Eyes are fine now and residue and smell of hydro on skin washed away, mostly on my arms. I was wearing short sleeves and jeans so mostly harms and some soaked into shirt chest area. It probably traveled at most 4 ft in other directions.
  19. squish

    squish New Member

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    Don't give up ! you should not have to repair problems that were not your fault,not even that,but i think that this company need's to look over there equip a little bit better,so hopefully nobody else get's hurt.Keep on bugging them till you get the answer's you deserve! good luck!
  20. scojen

    scojen New Member

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    I'm a little worried now as I just bought this splitter not too long ago. So far no problems. I do appreciate those that had this issue, bringing it to attention, so that now I can be mindful of it and keep an eye on it. please keep us updated with any developments so other owners will know what to do.Thanks!
  21. ANeat

    ANeat New Member

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    Its always a good idea to have safety glasses on anytime youre around a splitter. There are some really nice/inexpensive ones out there. Not just from your cylinder exploding (LOL) but just stuff flying around in general when wood gets split.

    Get a nice pair of safety/sunglasses.
  22. DanCorcoran

    DanCorcoran Minister of Fire

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    FYI...the Consumer Product Safety Commission doesn't take action based on individual complaints. They open a file on a product and collect reports as they are submitted. If it appears there is a problem affecting multiple consumers, then they launch an investigation. Everyone who has a safety-related issue with any of these splitters should file, for the common good.
  23. fidiro

    fidiro New Member

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    Looks like this has to be my next step and hope others with the same problems do the same.

    I struggled to pull the splitter onto a trailer to take it in to get an opinion. The service guy looked at the cylinder/piston and basically said H-ly $h!t. He said he'll call TB and explain to them the situation. He went in the back to call and came back to tell me they said it's out of their 2 year warranty and can't do anything about it. NO $h!t TB, I already said how long it's been around. I know it's out of warranty. He even said that they said that it got damaged because something else caused it and not a bad weld. I know exactly what caused it, it was me splitting wood. It got damaged doing exactly what it was made to do and nothing else. Face it, it was a bad cylinder and there are more out there looking for the same outcome. I'm looking to show that this is a defect and needs to be addressed. How many more pics do I need to show that the weld was weak. 1/16" is not enough to support the pressure this puts out.

    To make matters worse I thought that the holding bracket was bolted on to the I-Beam and it's welded. Both sides twisted up some one worse then the other. When I thought it was bolted on I was going to pull them off and straighten but now I will have to heat & straighten them in place, but will that weaken it. They will never be perfect and may even cause more problems later on.

    This thing was purchased from a dealer not Lowes. If it was bought at lowes it would have been a few hundred less, enough for me to buy a new cylinder with a different name on it.
  24. oldspark

    oldspark Guest

    I now know what splitter I will NOT be buying.
  25. fidiro

    fidiro New Member

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    Just want to add more pics to show in more detail the damage.

    Attached Files:

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