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Old 12-19-2010, 10:05 PM   post #1 of 17
EstrellaStables
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Default L Model Gravely

hello peoples!!

ok gonna get to the point: I got this L Model Gravely. not sure on exact year but i believe its in the 60s somewhere (i can look at the numbers sometime this week)

looks like the one on the right with the mower attachment (no these are not mine)



been searching the forum and have a few ideas but i figure i would just ask outright. i can walk out right now and she will start up fine, and run solid. take it out to the field, stop it to engage the death blade, and she wont start again. if i leave it for a few hours she will start right back up, sometimes. had to tow it 1/4 mile back to the barn the other day. it drove itself out just fine. when i tried to restart her, it seemed like there was not enough battery power to get it to crank over. it would start to try then drop off and when i pushed the starter a second time i get nothing.

ideas and or other similar post i can read??
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Old 12-19-2010, 10:51 PM   post #2 of 17
Jimmy in NC
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Default Re: L Model Gravely

Have you charged the battery? These tractors do not have a charging system built in and require you to charge the battery with a separate 110v charger. Put a good charge in the battery and I bet your problems are solved.
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Old 12-19-2010, 11:07 PM   post #3 of 17
EstrellaStables
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Default Re: L Model Gravely

battery has not only been charged but also replaced. the above issue happened a few times over the past 6 months. have so much other stuff to work on that i just let it sit. its now back at the top of the list. Batt was the first thing i replaced. still showed the same symptoms. with that being said i will update that aside from the batt nothing has been replaced on this machine
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Old 12-19-2010, 11:23 PM   post #4 of 17
DJ in WV
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Default Re: L Model Gravely



Welcome to the forum. Great to have another Gravely nut around.

Those are both very nice looking machines. Looks to me like they have been used, but taken care off too.

OK, now to the problem. It sounds to me like the timing might be an issue. I have had this happen a couple of times. When mine is a little out of time, it will start well on a cold start but not on a "hot" start.

Since the battery is, hopefully, ruled out, the first thing that I would do is install a new plug, wire, clean and set the points, and set the timing. The plug and wire together will run you around $20 if I remember correctly.

For parts, call up Richard over at Richard's Lawn and Garden. Here's his web site: http://www.gravelyparts.com

He is great to work with and is very fair, not to mention an encyclopedia of Gravely.

Good luck and let us know how all this works out.
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Old 12-20-2010, 12:12 AM   post #5 of 17
Fla Don
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Default Re: L Model Gravely

Won't start when warm seems to be the problem. So lets work from there. For one it could be a weak starter, or starter switch. The warm engine could be loading down the engine. It also could be due to a problem with the piston. If someone has ever taken the piston out, it could be in backwards. That would cause extra friction when hot.
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Old 12-20-2010, 09:37 AM   post #6 of 17
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Default Re: L Model Gravely

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Originally Posted by DJ in WV View Post




OK, now to the problem. It sounds to me like the timing might be an issue. I have had this happen a couple of times. When mine is a little out of time, it will start well on a cold start but not on a "hot" start.

Since the battery is, hopefully, ruled out, the first thing that I would do is install a new plug, wire, clean and set the points, and set the timing. The plug and wire together will run you around $20 if I remember correctly.
plug and wire have been replaced. i'll clean the points next time i head out and see if that fixes it. i got a ton of vines and brush along about a 1/4 of fence line i need to clear out so i need to get this monster running. otherwise its up to me and the chainsaw..........
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Old 12-20-2010, 09:38 AM   post #7 of 17
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Originally Posted by Fla Don View Post
Won't start when warm seems to be the problem. So lets work from there. For one it could be a weak starter, or starter switch. The warm engine could be loading down the engine. It also could be due to a problem with the piston. If someone has ever taken the piston out, it could be in backwards. That would cause extra friction when hot.
got this machine 3rd hand. no idea on its history. I just know its more temper mental then a small child
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Old 12-20-2010, 11:13 AM   post #8 of 17
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Default Re: L Model Gravely

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I just know its more temper mental then a small child
That seems to sum up the L's quite well.

Well, we should be able to eliminate the plug and wire. Have you checked the timing?

If not, and don't have the owner's manual, they and the parts lists and about anything else you would like is available thanks to Chip Old over at http://www.oldgravelys.net

Let us know what you get into next.
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Old 12-20-2010, 12:27 PM   post #9 of 17
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Default Re: L Model Gravely

If you suspect the timing as I and others do, try cranking the hot engine with the ignition turned off. If it cranks OK, you probably found the problem.
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Old 12-20-2010, 03:02 PM   post #10 of 17
george_lehr
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Default Re: L Model Gravely

Check all the battery/cable connections, both positive and negative (including a ground path for the starter). In your first post, you described the symptoms of a bad connection in the starter circuit.

I recall a post about a sparking starter chain; apparently it was the best path to ground from the starter.

George
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Old 12-20-2010, 08:17 PM   post #11 of 17
Fla Don
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Originally Posted by DJ in WV View Post
That seems to sum up the L's quite well.

.....
There's tempermental and then there's tempermental. With all things the same, two Gravelys will always be different in how they start.
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Old 12-20-2010, 08:31 PM   post #12 of 17
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Default Re: L Model Gravely

Quote:
Originally Posted by EstrellaStables View Post
hello peoples!!

take it out to the field, stop it to engage the death blade, and she wont start again. if i leave it for a few hours she will start right back up, sometimes. had to tow it 1/4 mile back to the barn the other day. it drove itself out just fine. when i tried to restart her, it seemed like there was not enough battery power to get it to crank over. it would start to try then drop off and when i pushed the starter a second time i get nothing.

ideas and or other similar post i can read??
A little clarification please, do you turn it off to engage the mower then try to start it back up?
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Old 12-20-2010, 08:48 PM   post #13 of 17
EstrellaStables
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A little clarification please, do you turn it off to engage the mower then try to start it back up?
yes. i found that leaving it running while trying to engage the blade would cause it to stall.
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Old 12-20-2010, 08:56 PM   post #14 of 17
Fla Don
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Originally Posted by EstrellaStables View Post
yes. i found that leaving it running while trying to engage the blade would cause it to stall.
That is beginning to sound like a frozen planetary. With both levers in the neutral position, you should be able to put it in gear without stalling. Or else the engine is really lacking in power. What happened if you put it in gear while cold? Have you set the valves at .015" clearance when cold?
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Old 12-20-2010, 09:02 PM   post #15 of 17
EstrellaStables
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Originally Posted by Fla Don View Post
That is beginning to sound like a frozen planetary. With both levers in the neutral position, you should be able to put it in gear without stalling. Or else the engine is really lacking in power. What happened if you put it in gear while cold? Have you set the valves at .015" clearance when cold?
now that could be part of that problem. it should still restart though so there are more issues but i'm not gonna lie. never thought about putting it into neutral. been driving 5spd trucks my entire life and that never came into my mind
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