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AC710

K241 coughing and choking

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AC710
My 10 hp Kohler starts and runs well, but once warmed up it tends to pop or stutter randomly but regularly. I don't notice any loss of power or effects to the driveability, just "pop...pop,pop....pop...pop, pop, pop...etc." Yesterday it lost power and stopped running momentarily. I stepped on the clutch and it coughed a couple of times, then started running normally again for another half hour of snow plowing. I have not done anything to this engine except fuel filter, and regular maintenance because it runs so well, but am wondering about the popping. Any ideas would be appreciated.

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osenga
I had that happen once thought it was my carb . Did a total rebuild on it . Started the old girl back up on my 916 . And turned out where and how I have my condesor mounted came loose tightened it back up and it runs like it should once again and never failed since then.

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HubbardRA
I have had a couple of Kohler engines that acted this way because of a worn throttle shaft bore. Bought the shaft and bushing kit and installed it. Cured the problem. The random spitting is caused by the shaft vibrating around in the bore and the amount of air leakage is constantly changing.

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GLPointon
I would do the Carb kit for sure and as stated above double ck float settings. If that engine has a fuel pump (I think it does) than I'd put a new diaphram in it too, or at least ck it for press/flow sm01

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HubbardRA
Easiest way to check for major leaks around the throttle shaft is to start the engine then spray starting fluid or carb cleaner around the area where the throttle shaft goes through the carb body. If there is a significant leak you will be able to tell by the change in the way the engine is running. It will either speed up significantly or end up flooding. Also, since you say you have changed the fuel filter, make sure it is one of the filters made for garden tractors. Automobile filters are more restrictive since they all have fuel pumps that will produce 5 to 7 psi which will push the fuel through these filters. Gravity drain or garden tractor fuel pumps do not produce enough pressure to force enough fuel through these filters.

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AC710
I put in the fuel filter when I got the tractor a couple of years ago, just because I had no idea of past maintenance. It is a small engine filter and made no change in how the engine runs. I should separate out the cough and die scenario from the popping. The cough and die thing happened once only and it seems to be running fine,now. The popping is erratic and continual, but only after the engine has been running a while and is good and hot. The popping doesn't affect engine power or tempo, it just "pops". Now that I've started this thread, I need to start working on the problem, but have been busy with Christmas preparations, so it might be a bit before I can really work on it.

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AC710
I did a little troubleshooting today. Spark plug was the wrong one - too short, but was in OK condition. I replaced it. It could probably use some points, but they weren't too bad. Tightened up and cleaned all the ignition connections, but found none loose. I tried the carb cleaner trick. The throttle shaft has no noticeable play and carb cleaner made no change whatsoever in how it ran, so that should not be a factor. I'm thinking the carb float setting and needle valve may be the culprit, or the fuel pump. It seems to be running short on fuel, popping, then smoothing out. You can see the throttle/governer linkage dip when it pops. Also, good idea about the valve clearance while the carb is off. Thanks.

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sammiefish
as far as the fuel pump... just bypass it with a male male nipple on the gas line... you dont really need the pump and it could be restricting the fuel flow.... at least you could eliminate that as a possibility as for throttle shaft "play" any more than .010" is too much... 10 thousandths of an inch might be hard to tell by hand if it moves easily its probably bad... when installing a bushing the first time it is usually not necessary to replace the shaft itself as the new bushing rides higher on the shaft where there would be no wear... (just a suggestion if you wanted to spend as little as possible) the bushing itself is ~ $5, a throttle shaft kit is more like ~$40

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AC710
quote:
This may sound stupid at this time, but did you re-adjust the carb?
Not stupid at all. I think you may be right, especially for the first troubleshooting steps. The throttle is a little sluggish, too - some hesitation when speeding up, but not enough to make me change anything. That also points to simple carb adjustments. Sorry, but I have been doing this piecemeal and haven't had time to really get into it, hence no solution, yet.

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AC710
First: Thanks Rod - I turned the high speed screw 1/4 turn and now everything's fine! At least in a test run it smoothed out and the throttle hesitation improved. Second: I have a confession - a lot of this thread was a kind of fishin' trip to get ideas on how to deal with these old Kohlers. I don't have much experience with them. Having a new project tractor, I had read the manuals to try and determine where I am at with this thing. I had envisioned everything from valve adjustment to carb and fuel pump kits to carbon removal on the cylinder head, but it runs so well I have been reluctant to do much. Anyway, thanks everyone for all the ideas, and they will help as issues develop. Third: by way of introduction. I used to manage forest fire crews and we ran several fire engines, chainsaws, equipment, etc. I developed a reputation as a troubleshooter who could come out of the office and diagnose engine problems in a matter of minutes after the kids on the crew had tried and agonized for hours. It became almost a game to see if they could fix it without giving up and asking me for help. I guess I'm a little rusty or lazy for not adjusting the carburetor right off. fourth: this is a great website and I have gotten lots of ideas and help here. The Simple TrACtors are great machines and lots of fun to work on and outfit. I am expecting to use the 710 for a bunch of landscaping work next summer and it is my main snowplowing machine. Merry Christmas everyone!

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sammiefish
BTW, for your future reference... there is no longer a diaphragm kit for the fuel pump... you either bite the $100 kohler price tag for a new pump or go with the aftermarket $35 pump.... you can try to find the diaphram kit... I did try... and try... and try... nodda....

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Eugene
A good tip is to pay close attention to your spark plugs, they can tell you a lot about what your engine needs just by the color. Heres a quick example [url]http://www.motorcycleinfo.co.uk/resources/6795/assets/images/FAQs/electrics/check_spark_plug_condition.jpg[/url].

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