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AC808

Briggs vs. Kohler AND Tecumseh

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AC808
From what ive seen, Kohlers tend to break connecting rods...Ive seen too many of them. Several of you have suggested to stay w/ Briggs if i acquire a 912H. No one has mentioned using a 12hp Tecumseh. I saw one the other day on a Wheelhorse. Just not sure of the reliability/durability and parts availability. Can any one clue me in on this? Acquiring this is a possibility also. Just dont know if it would be worth putting it on a 912.

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RayS
I personally have never heard anything good about a Tecumseh from anyone I`ve talked to but I have never owned one my self. I personally would stick with the Kohlers or Briggs. Another thing to think about is if the crankshaft to driveshaft if it would line up with each other, like on the kohler and briggs. I don`t think that Simplicity ever used a Tecumseh in any of their tractors. Maybe that would explain how they felt about them.

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PatRarick
I have never been impressed by Tecumseh engines. With the exception of walk behind snowblowers, and low end discount store "throw away" walk behind lawn mowers, they don't have much of a following. Don't believe there's any that use them in lawn or garden tractors anymore. Pat

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maxtorman1234
I've heard tecumseah's are supposed to be the best for snowblowers. Also, with the Kohler connecting rod idea, I think if theyre used properly and not abused, they will last. I have 10HP,12HP,14HP,16HP, and 17hP Kohler engines, and have never had any troubles with them apart from carberurators. We've used them for everything, and they just keep going. Havent had much luck with the briggs, the one on the 725 is alright, but I like my Kohlers better. I find briggs tends to use alot of plastic. Oil level check plugs, starting gears, dipsticks, this is just another reason i like the kohlers better.

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patrician12
The Briggs are the best.I see all the time like you Kohlers with thrown rods.2 myself.The Tecumseh motors are very good for the money and 10 hp engines are plentiful,I don't know about 12hp and bigger.The only problems I have with Tecumsehs is that they use much less fuel than Briggs or Kohler but this is due to precisely set carburetion.A half turn or a full turn or 2 full turns on the jet mixture screw and the Briggs will run no matter how far off you are.The Tecumseh I find 1/4 or 1/2 turn is critical.I always wind up putting brand new carbs on my Tecumseh powered equipment.Old, worn and restricted carbs will make them stall,surge and lack power where Briggs the gas syphoning in their carbs is so sloppy they always run.The good news is Tecumseh carbs are cheap to buy especially on ebay.A HM100 or HH100 is a nice motor.I only blew 1 Tecumseh engine and that was through racing a 10hp go kart without a governor.The chain slipped off the engine must have done 7000 rpm and let loose.I must say that engine at time was 20 years old!

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goatfarmer
Sears used to use a lot of Tecumseh's in their tractors,and other equipment.Key word being "used".I remember a story on 60 minutes I believe,where they said Tecumseh moved their engine production from Georgia?,to out of the country.

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Leroy
quote:
Originally posted by patrician12
The Briggs are the best.I see all the time like you Kohlers with thrown rods.2 myself.The Tecumseh motors are very good for the money and 10 hp engines are plentiful,I don't know about 12hp and bigger.The only problems I have with Tecumsehs is that they use much less fuel than Briggs or Kohler but this is due to precisely set carburetion.A half turn or a full turn or 2 full turns on the jet mixture screw and the Briggs will run no matter how far off you are.The Tecumseh I find 1/4 or 1/2 turn is critical.I always wind up putting brand new carbs on my Tecumseh powered equipment.Old, worn and restricted carbs will make them stall,surge and lack power where Briggs the gas syphoning in their carbs is so sloppy they always run.The good news is Tecumseh carbs are cheap to buy especially on ebay.A HM100 or HH100 is a nice motor.I only blew 1 Tecumseh engine and that was through racing a 10hp go kart without a governor.The chain slipped off the engine must have done 7000 rpm and let loose.I must say that engine at time was 20 years old!
I never heard that before. Seems like the only available folks for larger engine repairs are in the equipment rental shops. The standard repair manuals are for 8 horse and smaller. It's good to hear these pros and cons on engines issues. So it is possible to find a Tecumseh that is not worn out but needs a new carb because of the settings being out of adjustable limits. I have a 3.5 horse Troybuilt tiller and the last guy who worked on it said it was a Tecumseh. I can't keep that engine running for one season. It was a spring, then it was a filter then it was a check ball. It was only three years old. I am worn out with it's problems and it sits where it last broke down. Needless to say i won't buy another Troybuilt. Folks walk buy and ask about it at times . I offer to sell it to them for 100.00 and they never come back.

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thedaddycat
I have a 10 horse Tecumseh in my chipper/shreader. Though it doesn't see much use, I've never had a problem with it with the carb or anything else so far.....

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D-17_Dave
Worked on about anything that runs off gas or diesel and the only thing I can say and still be nice is I'll never, ever, own anything wit a TECH. engine. That's my 2 cents worth.

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MDB
A friend brought me a 912H with a dead Kohler in itxx(... It didn't take much to put a 12HP Briggs in it, which IMO made it a much more reliable tractor..... http://www.simpletractors.com/club2/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=28934 The way I rate them is #1 Briggs #2 Kohler Distant #3 Tecumseh

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bigcountry
I'd have to say the Kohlers are better, mine still pulls great even at low rpm. They also have a very unique sound to them that no Briggs has. I have not had a Vertical shaft Briggs, but I can say that the horizontal shaft I/C's with the cast iron sleeves are the best small lawn tractor engines I've ever used. Before I had a garden tractor, I used a '77 Montgomery Ward 38/10 with a 10hp Briggs I/C, it ran until 1999 when it started smoking really bad and running rough, at which point we bought a Honda HT-3810, and sold the Ward for parts to a local mower mechanic (before I got into the business). Tecumsehs are all boat anchors with the exception of the HH-100.

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maxtorman1234
I like my Kohlers better than the briggs, they sound nice, Very relaible, and they are reall workhorses. Just give it the gas, and it'll handle anything. I myself have worked on both kohlers and briggs, and the kohlers are much easier. They are simple, and when looked after, will last forever. I much rather have a Kohler than a briggs. Never had much luck with them, Kohlers are great. I would put a Kohler in your 912, if you keep the rpms lower, less chance of anything breaking.

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Karl_Brandt
The Briggs & Stratton;)engines are the best. Briggs last forever and ever.:D Tecumseh engines are either blowing connecting rods on snowblowers,in lawnmowers they strip the teeth plastic on the camshaft or break the camshaft. Kohler engines make more noise:(than a briggs. Karl

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MikeES
2 years ago, I bought some Simplicity parts from a guy, and he threw in a 16hp vertical shaft OHV Tecumseh engine in the deal. I did not have any use for it but I took it. One day a stopped at the local Simplicity dealer (he also repairs MTD and Murrays) and told him about the 16hp OHV engine (I had started it and it ran great), I thought that at least the starter would be worth something. He took me to his back warehouse and he showed me at least a 20 Tecumseh engines, all replaced under warranty. Tecumseh did not even want to spend the shipping money to get them back!

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Bunky
I would have to say I too would stay with a Briggs I think the Kohlers run good and All I too have seen quite a few Kohlers with Broken rods.. My other problem with Kohlers the parts are a lot more then Briggs...

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rokon2813
Just another thought to throw out there. I would imagine that like any other industry, dealers have to keep a certain amount of parts in stock from each of their manufacturer's supplier. With that thought in mind, I've bought 3 "piles of parts" recently. Each supposedly came from dealers that closed. In all 3, the vast majority of the NOS stuff was Briggs, then Tecumseh, followed by very little Kohler. Could it be they sold All the Kohler and most of the Tecumseh to customers, while the Briggs parts remained on the shelves?? :D:D It makes one wonder why the oldest stuff, ie the stuff that has sat around the longest, apparently unneeded, is almost all Briggs. [:0];)

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Tim_S
I am now working on a Kohler 6 hp OHV engine for my leaf vaccum. The parts do seem expensive more so than briggs. I found out that the engine is made by Yamaha in Japan. Could this be the case with the larger Kohlers? The parts are enough that I might be looking for another engine,at least I'm thinking about it.

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HubbardRA
Dan, Have you found an ignition for the Tecumseh 12 Hp that I gave you? This is why I hate Tecumseh engines. "Planned Obsolescence" When the ignition died on this engine, I found out that Tecumseh had quit selling the electronic ignition module two years earlier with no cross referenced replacement available. No one in the area could find a replacement. This is why I hate Tecumseh. I can buy parts for B/S and Kohler of the same vintage and older.

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rokon2813
Honestly Rod, I hadnt looked for one. I got a bunch of NOS tec stuff here and I hope there is one in there. I'd actually kinda forgotten about that engine.

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Agricola
I think that though they are not equal, each type of engine has its place in society. You left out Honda and others. From what I have heard, the Honda is about the best. Do others have any opinion?

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powerking_one
John (AGRICOLA) sums it up best saying each manufacturer has had good and not so good engine designs in their historical lineups'. Some of my observations are... Tecumseh LAV and H series engines: (prior to going to aluminum bores and non-adjustable float carbs). An overall great design, unless you got water or really stale gas totally gumming up the carb's idle circuits. Vericals had oil pumps. All have always had good mechanical governors. Keep the oil full/clean and cooling system debris clean and they'll run forever. Steel flywheel keys should have been aluminum though (IMHO). All Briggs, Kohler, Tecumseh "C.A.R.B. standards" late generation carburetors which are non-adjustable make any of these engines miserable. Briggs 2-4.5hp "classic" vertical lawnmower engines not so hot. Lousy air vane governors, lacking caburetor design, poor gear slinger lube system, very wear prone "Cool-Bore" aluminum cylinder bores. Smart flywheel saving idea using those aluminum keys; in use since anyone can remember. Tecumseh HH100-120: great motors, but as Rod stated, the early solid state ignition parts are NLA; not so for late systems. The OH120-180 series are derived from them. TEC was way ahead of the pack back in the early 70's with this very compact and powerful design(the OH's). Problems were/are oil leaks due to clogged cooling fins and dropped valve seats, not seen if maintenance is good(on the OH's). Both 0.010" and 0.020" US rods still available. Tecumseh HM80-100 & VM80-100: I am not a fan of this series engine or it's design. Seems like they tend to blow more than run. Lots of them on snowblowers though. Briggs 10-16 cast iron singles: No question about their legacy into greatness. The updraft Flo-Jet carbs are perhaps their biggest weakness (IMHO). How about a Carter(Kohler) side draft design retrofit? There might be a obtrusion problem with the air filter though. Kohler K-Series singles: Also a great venerable enduring engine design. Lots of cheap aftermarket parts all luckily available. Kohler replacement parts prices are from another planet though. Example: last list price for a K91 (4 HP) stellite exhaust valve-- $54.00! As always, opinionated, Tom(PK)

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Chris727
I wouldn't use a tecumseh on a simplicity. I have a number of them on other old tractors, the HH100, 120 etc series which had cast iron blocks were okay, I haven't had trouble with parts too much, they run all right but I've never seen one used on a driveshaft driven tractor, I'd go with a 16 HP briggs.

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TimJr
Skip the Tecumseh - all the above reasons are good. Kohler is good, I like my Briggs. It was suggested above that the Kohler will live a happier life if the RPM is kept lower. As true as that may be, that is lame. The engine was designed to run at 34 - 3600RPM, and should handle it. The tractors equipment is designed for that speed also. If the engine can't handle it, forget it. That's like having a 'Vette, no speed limits, and being told to keep it at 55. Above all though - proper maintenance and all can be reliable. Oil is everything, especially to a Kohler. That's my input.

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