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rsnik

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rsnik
My '92 Sovereign 18 Hydro has a loud clattering noise when moving forward which does not seem to involve the engine. There are also no loose bolts on the drive shaft. I have a factory repair manual and the tractor has a recent front-to-back PM, replacing the drive belt and adjusting all linkages including the hydro "cup" linkages. The noise sounds internal and transmission related. With wheels on the ground, it is best heard at 1/3 throttle and while pushing the Hydro lever about a quarter or better ahead; I suddenly hear this clattering sound which does not sound like immanent destruction but like something major is shot. I put the tractor up on jack stands and the noise can be heard immediately and loudly. I place my hand on the hydrostatic transmission and do not feel a vibration that matches the clattering sound. I place my hand on the bottom of the transmission and do not feel a matching vibration. I can not place my hand on the spinning limited slip so I wonder if that is it. With the wheels on the ground the tractor only makes the clattering sound when going forward. It does not make the sound when reversing. However, dang it, I did not check to make sure the sound does not happen in reverse when the tractor is up on jack stands. The sound is way louder with the seat pan up and the tractor on jack stands and you can hear it at any throttle setting and hydrostatic lever setting. I do not think this is something loose vibrating or hammering on tin. I think it is something internal. The hydrostatic transmission fluid is relatively recently changed and not low. The filter has a dent in it from the deck release lever snapping back and hitting it but I doubt that is it.

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MPH
Reminds me of the "rock in a hubcap" noise my 4040 was making a year or so ago. As I started to take things apart to find something a rock rolled out from behind the wheel wts, when I removed them. I could pin point mine to the left side of the tractor. Any chance your so luckie?

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OrangeMetalGuy
I'm kinda with Ray on this one. There's not much inside a hydro transaxle so I doubt that's it, especially since the tractor moves fwd and rev ok (albeit noisily). If the differential was bad, I don't think you'd hear it with the tractor up on stands because (due to zero ground friction) I would think both wheels would turn (meaning the differential wasn't doing any differentialing but just turning as one unit). I'd wipe down the axle tube really well between the right side of the transaxle and differential, and inspect it (use a good light). I had one that I had held together with a muffler clamp for a year. When I finally fixed the tube, the old one was barely holding together. Also, check the collars on the axles (left side is between the wheel and the transaxle; right side is on the far outside of the axle tube) to make sure the axle isn't sliding out of the tube, towards the right. That could cause noise if the differential gear is not making proper contact.

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HubbardRA
I don't have any idea of what it may be in the transmission. After taking many of the differentials apart and putting them back together, I don't see any way a fluctuating noise could be made inside the differential. I would check the differential mounting bolts that hold it to the torque tube. I suppose it could be made by a wobbled out axel keyway in the forward direction that still has basically a square shoulder in the reverse direction. Jack it up and check for play between the right side wheel and the torque tube. Also check for major amounts of play between the right wheel and the left wheel. If there is no play to amount to anything, then the noise definitely has to be inside the tranny. Next, I would jack it up and put it in forward where it makes the noise and use an automotive stethoscope to try and find the noise location. You need to know if it is in the upper (pump/motor) section or lower, (gear reduction unit). The reason I say this is that the pump section can be pulled with the transaxle still in the tractor. If it is in the lower section, then the transaxle needs to be pulled out of the tractor. I did without a stethescope for many years, but finally bought one, and wow it is much easier to find noise locations. Good luck. I hope you can easily locate the problem.

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MikeES
Check your hydro linkage and your drive shaft clearance. Maybe when you push the lever forward the linkage might be rubbing on the BGB flex disc. This is the only thing I can think of that would be in a different position in reverse than forward.

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rsnik
Well, I see what y'all did on New Years Eve. My wife and I are New Age Revelers and were determined to be asleep and not watch the ball drop yet again. C We failed and turned on the TV and watched the ball drop. Again. :O There are an estimated 1 million people in Times Square watching the ball drop and a minute later they are all gone. That's because there are no bathrooms and they have been suffering for hours. &:) Good guess on the brake drum. I had that problem years ago on this machine. This is not that noise. I sure wish it was. wah Today would have been a great day to start all over again from the top and using all this input check everything again. However, it was sunny and in the mid 50's, possibly the warmest day ever for this date. I got press ganged into more winter prep instead. If you go into hard winter with no snow cover it can kill shrubs like boxwoods unless they are protected. I sure learned that the last time this kind of weather happened. Thank you all for the excellent input; I will use it.

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