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Discussion Starter #1
New to Me: Identifying the Tractor

Just picked up a sears suburban 12HP (part#?) with a sickle bar mower (917.253120), mower deck (part#?), and snowblower (part#?). The tractor wasn't working when I got it, it was believed to need carb work. I'm trying to figure out exactly which model of tractor I have here so I can find the right replacement plugs, belt, and pulley. (I’ll update the part#’s as I discover them.)

The gearshift plate is pretty worn and the only embossed numbers I can find on it say "1355" on the bottom right. The engine plate reads
Code:
MODEL  143.589032
 SERIAL 8138
              08499
There does not appear to be a fuel pump, just gravity feed.

I took a few quick snapshots of the tractor this morning as I was leaving for work, I'll take better ones later when I have more time.

Getting her Running

I dug into it yesterday and found that the fuel tank was very rusty and, pulling the fuel lines, observed no fuel coming out of a tank with half a gallon of fuel in it. So I pulled the tank and lines, shook some bb's in the tank (in the fuel) and cleaned out the fittings and lines with compressed air. Drained the tank (and set aside the very brown fuel, which you can see in the background in one shot, in a coke bottle) and put new fuel in it and she started right up, with the air cleaner off. Put the air cleaner on again and she stutters and complains, so I just picked up a fresh filter and I'll put that on tonight.

I'm beginning to think rusty fuel tanks are the most misdiagnosed problem out there, since my other one also had a rusty fuel tank issue that was suspected to be a carburetor issue there, too. Trust me, cleaning out a fuel system is a *lot* faster. And if you see rust when you look inside, very worth it, even if you don’t get all the way into hooking it up to a battery and de-rusting it and coating the inside of the tank with a sealer.

Sickle Bar Mower: Need Part Specs

I'm working on setting up the sickle bar mower now. I had to get a new belt for it, which is 7/8" shorter than spec, but I figure with the adjustment screw on the mule drive and the fact that it has to go around two pulleys, that's less than 1/4" of extra slack I'll have to give it, so it should interchange just fine. I have to replace a couple of the teeth, but there's a spare bar with some teeth on it that I'll pull and mount onto the installed bar.

My other problem, though, is that the pitman tube and rod ends for the sickle bar mower have been replaced with a block of wood and some apparently home-made sheet steel rod ends. I'm wondering if anyone has any specs for what the length of the 9242H pitman tube and 9244H spherical rod ends listed in the manual should actually be. These parts have long since been discontinued. If anyone can take some measurements off of theirs, I'd appreciate it. The unit is model 917.253120 and I found its pdf manual already.

Needed: Engine Pulley

One other note. The previous owner was using it and somehow the engine pulley had a piece shatter off of it. They replaced the pulley (the one with three grooves) with another one off of a slightly larger engine, and the shaft is not exactly the same diameter, so with the key wedging it on it spins ever so slightly off center and makes the belt jump in a rather worrisome way. Can any identify which pulley this tractor is supposed to have and, ideally, point me to someone that has one?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
The belt I got was still way too long. I presume because it has a replacement engine with the pulley in a different spot. I'm going to have to try and figure out just how long the belt should be, now.
Also determined, based on the wooden pitman arm, that the mower is actually 917-60656.
 

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Strip mine has the manual for 917.60656 sickle mower:

http://www.stripmine.org/sears/

Left column click on "Attachment Manuals", scroll down to "SEARS Other" click on that selection. In the next box below on left your PDF manual will be the third down.

You may find your Suburban tractor manual at the same link??


Many Thanks to Stripmine for the free manual site!!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Yep! Already found that, right after I figured out the model number from the parts breakdown on the sears parts page.
Much thanks to Stripmine!
 
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