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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I traded a small 2007 Poulan Pro with a BS motor for this Craftsman GT and I am having some problems trying to identify the true model number and a couple of missing or confusing parts.

This is my first post. I have been waiting since 2008 to locate a GT for my yard that was cheap (or even trade). Any advice will be appreciated. I plan on trying to get a small collection of sleeve hitch attachments to help break, scrape, level my landscape and plant a garden (harrow, disc, what ever else).

We don't seem to have a big selection of used GT's in the south ... they all seem to be reserved for the snow blowing north but occasionally the snowbirds bring them down when they relocate for retirement communities with small yards.

Anyways ... here is the model number: 917.273100 and it is listed as a 22hp 50" GT with a Kohler Pro 22 V-Twin. It came with the air filled Carlisles on the back! That was the icing on my cake. Now to decide about those farming front tires with the ribs in them. I am not too worried about using the 50" mower deck.

I am 5'7 and this is not a height challenged persons GT for using the brake. With the seat slide 50% forward I can barely reach it to lock the parking lever. If I go all the way forward I am almost belly to steering wheel and there is not foot room to slide your foot in front of the seat to get off. Now its like getting on a horse.

If you can't tell I like to rant. OCD issue I guess ... lol

I have not had the moment to clean it so the photos are as I got it.

The deck lift lever on the right (BAD placement for people who like to get near things and go under trees) not only lifts the deck but also moves the sleeve hitch looking part on the back. Now where is the sleeve hitch? Was there a special kit for this? The Sears parts guy today looked totally lost. He couldn't figure out why I had that since its not in the parts manual plus there is no left and right bezel for the dash above the steering wheel in the parts manual either. Did it have anything for it? I can see the slots where one was supposed to go and it looks like the unit may have had a bunch of idiot lights but there is not group of plugs hanging around (plus the schematic didn't show anything extra except the optional hour meter).

I may have found my answer about the lift if it is really part number 917.252313. Not sure. Kenny mentioned this from a 1981 model.

And you thought this was going to be a simple question?

Hey ... how do you know when the fuel tank is empty? I guess its when I run out of gas? There is not fuel gauge anywhere. Back in the 60's (I was a wee little fellow) I remember my dads had one of those cool fuel cap gauges that had the float that went up and down on the twisted center to power the fuel gauge needle.

Can this thing really do a decent job pulling a turn plow? I worry about newer units compared to the beast from the days of yesteryears.

One day I will get a GT with a real frame. I missed a Wheel Horse D160 today with 3pt, hydraulic lift and a rear PTO ... wow .. $471.00. I want to be a believer and stop thinking about the old models but back then low horse power and good rear ends were all you needed.

Now to search the forum to see if sleeve hitch is usable or a waste of money and time as far as strength and control go.

On the good note ... this GT can pull my heavy 7x10 steel decked trailer around the yard.

I look forward to reading any answer to any of the questions so please help.

Attaching photo of the GT
 

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Mine is a earlier 20 HP 46" Deck.917.273023 I took the one arm bandit bar off and put a electric motor in its place. I posted a DIY on it. Goes under trees better, deck still floats.

Get a owners manual from SearsPartsdirect.com . It has all the part numbers and primative diagrams showing what the parts do and where they go. Enter the 917.XXXX number and select model number to get a list of what is available. Gas gauge cap is PN 161493

It does a good job of plowing , no problem turning sod over

Model Of GT I cant answer. I dont know my GT number, may not have one.:Welcome1:
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the welcome ... 5 years and never a post ... sad sad sad ... well here I am now. Looks like a lifetime of information here.

I will check on the fuel gauge gas cap. That would make my day!

I will look up the DIY on the winch. I have seen the electric version Sears has. Not sure about the bolt pattern on it compared to mine. What were they thinking on the deck lift lever? Personally I don't like the 50" deck .... too wide for my ob-stak'l filled yard ("Oh Brother Where Art Thou" word (love that movie:fing32:))

I saw a Wheelhorse that had a Harbor Freight winch added on uTube to do his up and downs on his weighted rear attachments. Pretty darn cool. So how do you lower the deck on yours? I actual thought about giving mine a pipe bend to the left but I need to see what it might hit. Maybe I can make it look like an old hurst T shifter or something ... hahaha

I did get the manual and it has none of the info needed. The operators manual doesn't mention my questions and the parts lookup doesn't either. Like I said ... even the parts guy at Sears was scratching his very young and under experienced head.
 

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Man w/skills
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That thing'll do just fine with ground engaging implements. You have part of the sleeve hitch. The rest of it is just a frame that goes around the back end and an adjustable lift link that ties that frame to the lift bar you already have. If you can't find pics let me know; I have two tractors with that same style sleeve hitch.
Can't answer the dash questions.

Enjoy the new GT, and welcome!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
skils4lou ... how did you know I love photos? Well, I am a photographer. Don't worry, I never critique photos unless I have been misrepresented in a purchase online.

So do you think there is any chance of my getting the parts for that to finish the hitch unit?

The thing I don't understand about this design is how do you roll (or drag)your attachment without engaging it so you can work quickly. I understand that a Brinley plow would need to be lifted but what keeps it from slapping over to the left or right of the GT when its raised? What about a box blade / scraper? Do you actually lift these items with this sleeve hitch (even weighted devices)? It just doesn't look like the leverage and strength would be there. Just call me clueless.

By the way ... do you use your sleeve hitch? What do you put on it?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
BRP27 ... where is the DIY? I have been searching the forum for a DIY section ... I must be missing something.
 

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Man w/skills
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Chances are pretty good that you can find the rest of it. Might have to pay a bit in shipping, but you can find 'em. I'll take some pics this week of mine.

Yes, you can lift implements, even with a bit of weight, but the heavier they are the harder to lift. I have a disk, a couple of rear grader blades, a plow and a tiller. The tiller is too heavy for manual lift IMHO, the rest of them are OK. As for the plow, the hitch has a couple of bolts on either side of the main pin that you tighten against the implement to keep it from swiveling, if needed. When you see the rest of it (pics) it'll make a lot more sense.
 

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Larry Garmon
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Can you contact the person you got the tractor from?
It is possible that he has the rest of the sleeve hitch laying around.
Worth a try anyway.

Wher in NC are you?
I have an extra sleeve hitch that I would sell.
 

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