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Discussion Starter #1
Hello! I'm relatively new to the forum but not to tinkering with this thing. However, I have gotten to a point where I need to ask advice from those who probably know more about this machine than I do.

I have a Craftsman DLT2000, 1998 I believe (it has a 1998 emissions sticker on there). It has the 20 HP V-Twin Kohler engine (the best part of the machine) with a 48" deck and HydroStatic Drive. Overall I really like this mower. The engine is a beast, and I just replaced all three blades, all the belts, and one idler pulley underneath that exploded.

We bought the mower with the house three years ago. The first season it was driving pretty good, the second season it started to slow down. So I decided to take it upon myself and do a fluid change on the transaxle to try to preserve its life.

I went through the trouble of removing the transaxle, and tipping it upside down overnight to let it drain almost completely. I filled it with fresh synthetic 20w50 and after purging the air out, it drove almost like new.

Last year it ran great all season. This year the first few mows it ran just fine. But the last couple times it has been struggling more and more to climb these few little hills in the back yard.

I have several questions. The mower has the hydrostatic drive, and from experience removing it, it looks to be way too light duty for the size of the mower. Is this hydrostat doomed for eventual failure? If so, is it replaceable, rebuildable?

My other question which I am more interested in pursuing.. is what other transaxles will fit this mower? I have to believe that this frame is shared by other mowers, and that perhaps a hydrostat or a 6 speed off of a better model will fit in there. Even if it means customizing some parts. I do not mind switching things over and if it requires some minor welding I could do that too.

Any advice will be welcomed. I like this mower and know it's going to need some work, but I can't justify $2000+ on a new mower just because of a mechanical issue.
 

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you may find another hydro that you cna make work, how easy that is depends on your modification skills and luck of the draw.

i doubt you could fit a manual in it. or at least easily.

the hydro is not rebuildable, basically it is a throw away. teh cost of a new one from a dealer or Sears would be half the cost of a similar new machine, if not more!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Figures. I was hoping to find a similar mower with a blown engine that I could do some sort of frankenstein and make one good out of two not so good.

The way it looks is if I were to get a 6 speed I could swap it in, and eliminate the F/R foot pedals, cruise control... and replace the cruise control area with the gear selection. I may be wrong...

Yargh.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
No way to get a 6 speed out of a close year LT2000? I think those had the same frame... one was painted grey, the other red??
 
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