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post #31 of 46 Old 07-15-2019, 11:42 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Can I make the clutch slip a little?

I think I'll try the wax. If I don't like it I can get a new belt for $13 dollars. Oh, OEM belts are indeed fabric ones.
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post #32 of 46 Old 07-16-2019, 09:47 AM
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Re: Can I make the clutch slip a little?

[QUOTE=yekrats;12306775]I just got it and that's the way it is. Trying to figure it out cuz It's really a pain. Possible belt too short? Hmmm, I don't know, I have to let the clutch pedal almost all the way out for it to engage. Wouldn't a shorter belt engage sooner/with less pedal out? Seems logical but I could be wrong. Not sure how to check the belt on it to see if it's right either.[/QUOTE
OK...so it does not "grab" until the pedal is way up and then it does engage suddenly?....get the tractor up on jack stands and check the spring on the idler pulley to see if it can be adjusted
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post #33 of 46 Old 07-16-2019, 11:48 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Can I make the clutch slip a little?

[quote=MARK (LI);12307039]
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Originally Posted by yekrats View Post
I just got it and that's the way it is. Trying to figure it out cuz It's really a pain. Possible belt too short? Hmmm, I don't know, I have to let the clutch pedal almost all the way out for it to engage. Wouldn't a shorter belt engage sooner/with less pedal out? Seems logical but I could be wrong. Not sure how to check the belt on it to see if it's right either.[/QUOTE
OK...so it does not "grab" until the pedal is way up and then it does engage suddenly?....get the tractor up on jack stands and check the spring on the idler pulley to see if it can be adjusted
I'll take a look, thanks
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post #34 of 46 Old 07-16-2019, 01:18 PM
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Re: Can I make the clutch slip a little?

One thing no one has mentioned here - If you have never driven a manual transmission car with a clutch you would not know it.

You must let out the clutch until you hit the engagement spot ("sweet spot" - different on every machine). Then move the pedal extremely slowly - feather the pedal - until it engages, then let out the clutch the rest of the way. If you don't do this, it doesn't matter what you do to the belts, it will jolt into gear. Belt drives are more touchy than an automotive clutch, but the same principle applies.

Also, "riding the clutch" - keeping the pedal just above this sweet spot will allow quick disengagement when approaching obstructions. Everything happens in that micro-space with a clutch. You shouldn't ride the clutch while mowing straight stretches though, because it will wear out clutch parts and belts prematurely.
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post #35 of 46 Old 07-16-2019, 10:08 PM
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Re: Can I make the clutch slip a little?

No joking... I've had a lot of tractors over the years and a few had smashed grills from a touchy clutch. Canon wax fixed the problem every time. It does not make the belt slip under normal operation. I hate a clutch that jumps you forward two/three feet at a time. Soothe as butter with the wax...


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post #36 of 46 Old 07-16-2019, 11:04 PM
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Re: Can I make the clutch slip a little?

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No joking... I've had a lot of tractors over the years and a few had smashed grills from a touchy clutch. Canon wax fixed the problem every time. It does not make the belt slip under normal operation. I hate a clutch that jumps you forward two/three feet at a time. Soothe as butter with the wax...
I agree with the canning wax recommendation, too. It could be considered a form of clutch adjustment or fine tuning.

Proper clutch operation still needs to be practiced, though. There are lots of techniques that manual tranny operators learn - like double clutching to help balky shifting, hill holding by slipping the clutch, and more than anything, selecting the right gear and engine speed - usually a lower one, etc. All take practice, unlike automatics and hydros that do a lot of the thinking for you.

Hydros and automatics are nice and I don't dislike them, but I do like getting to know the old-fashioned quirks of a manual transmission machine.

One thing that can happen is - HYDRO: push down to go; CLUTCH: push down to stop! My shed wall can attest to what happens when I pushed the Hydro down to stop.

Last edited by ZTT42; 07-16-2019 at 11:09 PM.
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post #37 of 46 Old 07-19-2019, 01:41 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Can I make the clutch slip a little?

OK...so it does not "grab" until the pedal is way up and then it does engage suddenly?....get the tractor up on jack stands and check the spring on the idler pulley to see if it can be adjusted[/QUOTE]

Took a look and not adjustable. Great idea though, thanks
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post #38 of 46 Old 07-19-2019, 08:15 AM
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Re: Can I make the clutch slip a little?

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Originally Posted by MARK (LI) View Post
Did you buy the tractor new...and it always had that problem...or did you just get it and it is like that?...someone may have replaced the belt with one that could be just a half inch too short,,,check what is on there and see if it is actually the specified belt
In my case I have owned this Ariens since new and it has been this way since day one. Same with my brothers LA105.

It has to be the design of the linkage. I mean, this is a very simple clutch mechanism... two pulleys and a spring loaded idler pulley controlled by the foot pedal. My guess is the way the pedal linkage is designed there is rapid movement of the idler in the final inch of travel, right before the belt grabs. As opposed to smooth slow movement of the idler throughout the entire arc.

It's just odd that almost all newer gear driven tractors suffer from this clutch characteristic whereas gear driven tractors 30 years ago were silky smooth.
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post #39 of 46 Old 07-20-2019, 01:25 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Can I make the clutch slip a little?

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In my case I have owned this Ariens since new and it has been this way since day one. Same with my brothers LA105.

It has to be the design of the linkage. I mean, this is a very simple clutch mechanism... two pulleys and a spring loaded idler pulley controlled by the foot pedal. My guess is the way the pedal linkage is designed there is rapid movement of the idler in the final inch of travel, right before the belt grabs. As opposed to smooth slow movement of the idler throughout the entire arc.

It's just odd that almost all newer gear driven tractors suffer from this clutch characteristic whereas gear driven tractors 30 years ago were silky smooth.
Yeah, I don't remember any of them having this problem either. Does seem odd.
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post #40 of 46 Old 07-24-2019, 08:50 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Can I make the clutch slip a little?

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Easy fix.... Take a block of canning wax and touch the belt. Works great...
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I'll state again.... Wax the belt... You will be surprised how well it works....
I gotta tel ya Kbeitz, I'm well past surprised and clear into delighted. Works fantastic and no more wheelies! Or plowing into the fence either.
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post #41 of 46 Old 07-24-2019, 09:37 PM
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Re: Can I make the clutch slip a little?

That's great! I'm glad it's working better for you, and thanks for letting us know. It's always interesting to learn new solutions to problems, thanks Kbeitz.
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post #42 of 46 Old 07-26-2019, 06:42 AM
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Re: Can I make the clutch slip a little?

Glad I could help... It surprised me the first time I did it.


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post #43 of 46 Old 08-01-2019, 11:15 PM
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Re: Can I make the clutch slip a little?

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That's great! I'm glad it's working better for you, and thanks for letting us know. It's always interesting to learn new solutions to problems, thanks Kbeitz.
Well... chalk up another believer. I picked up some paraffin wax at the grocery store and rubbed it on my Ariens drive belt. That baby takes off now like it has a hydraulic clutch! If you pop the clutch in 3rd gear it will still take off like a jack rabbit but if you ease out the clutch normally it takes off smooth as silk. After several years of "jump starts" it feels kind of weird to start out smoothly.

I'm not sure how long the paraffin will last on the belt but for $3.25 I got enough to last 50 years.

Thanks again for the suggestion.
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post #44 of 46 Old 08-03-2019, 12:15 PM Thread Starter
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Oh I forgot to mention, I figured out the 30 to 40 shots of grease thing. The tube was empty. Oops 🤭
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post #45 of 46 Old 08-03-2019, 01:26 PM
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Re: Can I make the clutch slip a little?

I assume the L100a has a hydro and that the hydro has a neutral position. If so, release the clutch while in neutral and then use the hydro controls to initiate forward/reverse motion. That is what I do. I use the clutch only twice, once when I get in the seat and then again when I want to leave the seat.

I've but given up trying to get the wife to do that. After decades of her driving school bus with standard transmission, she always wants to move the hydro out of neutral before releasing the clutch.

Try thinking of the clutch as a parking brake rather than a clutch.

I don't suffer from insanity. I enjoy every minute of it!
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