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Engine swap needed earlier than expected

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Well, maybe I jinxed myself since I bought the Kohler MV18 engine to change to a horizontal shaft for my AC 917H. I was hoping it would be a winter project, until I mowed yesterday. As I was mowing, with about 10 minutes left, the engine starting rattling and running rough, and power dropped off severely. I lowered it to half throttle and slowed my ground speed to a crawl, and babied it through the rest of the yard. I could also smell raw gas once in a while. I was thinking maybe a valve issue, or a piece of carbon broke loose and is stuck in a valve seat. I parked it in the garage, and finished trimming the yard and blew off the driveway and back patio, and changed the oil in the truck. Then I went back to look at the tractor and found the oil on the floor. Then I found the oil on the frame, and then looking up at the exhaust right above the frame, found where the oil was dripping from. I had raw gas smell when it was still running, now I have oil in the exhaust, so I think my suspicion of a valve or carbon issue is likely?






Rather than spend my time diagnosing it, I'll spend my time converting this one to work.


I'll try to document this conversion, as I know some others are interested in converting a MV18 to run horizontal as well. Just wish I had more time available to get it done. I'll probably have to borrow a mower for a couple of weeks, and I won't have my nice stripes. Boo Hoo!

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Actually, it isn't that bad. This Magnum is a dual flange motor, so the mounts are already there. I have to change the intake, the oil dipstick and tube, and relocate/replace the oil pick-up tube for the pressurizer oil system. I've been communicating with a gentleman on the Kohler group on Yahoo!, and if I'm careful, I can bend the oil pick-up tube to relocate it to run the engine horizontal. The dipstick tube from the KT17 will fit the Magnum, and the intake will likely fit as well. Of course, I also have to work through the wiring. When the rest of the Craftsman parts tractor sells this weekend that this engine came off of, I'll have $150 into this. For that price, I can't justify not doing this work to make this engine run horizontal.

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