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Wow, $75 is a tough nut. But, you may find the frustration of looking through piles of specs to find a replacement so frustrating $75 becomes a "deal" :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Already spent enough on this old tractor i picked up not running with blown head gasket ,headgasket,water pump,timing belt. and $500 later not even sure if it will run.Can i run it with no thermostat?
 

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Already spent enough on this old tractor i picked up not running with blown head gasket ,headgasket,water pump,timing belt. and $500 later not even sure if it will run.Can i run it with no thermostat?
Not a good idea. An engine that runs too cold is almost as harmful as one running too hot. Also believe it or not it can also cause severe "hot spots" in the cyl head as well due to too much circulation and cavitation.
 

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...it'll be fine to run it briefly, if you want to first make sure the engine is functioning ok, before putting out the money for a new thermostat...
 

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...it'll be fine to run it briefly, if you want to first make sure the engine is functioning ok, before putting out the money for a new thermostat...
Yeah for testing purposes but not if you're actually going to put the machine to "work". That is when you could see trouble
 

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'81 Gravely tractor, 50's 60's 70's 80's 90's Gravely tractors Various Honda Power equipment
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If it runs without a thermostat it will overheat. The thermostat slows the water circulation down enough so it can transfer the heat out of it, but that takes time in the radiator to do that.
Without the thermostat installed the water will pass through the radiator too fast to shed enough heat out of it and it will eventually overheat.
It will take a little longer for the engine to warm up to normal operating temperature, but it won't be able to maintain a consistent temperature, and the heat will just keep rising until it overheats/boils and you will know when it does that, just like in a car when it overheats, and you can cause some serious engine damage when that happens.
The thermostat slows down the speed of the water circulation to the point where it can absorb the heat in the engine block and shed off enough heat in the radiator and cool itself before re-entering the engine again to absorb more heat and carry it away to be dissipated away in the radiator again.
 

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I use scissors! Twice a week.
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Oh yeah, just remembered, if you still have the old one, even if it's not working, you could hack the thermostat so that it just stays open all the time. It's not ideal, but it does help with a bunch of problems related to not having a thermostat installed at all.
 

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'81 Gravely tractor, 50's 60's 70's 80's 90's Gravely tractors Various Honda Power equipment
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Are there aftermarket or other brand name thermostats for the Honda 4514 ?I don't feel like paying $75 for a Honda one
Look up a thermostat for a Honda Gold wing motorcycle. Some of the older Honda cars used the same thermostat. That's where you can find an aftermarket one, but you are better off using the genuine Honda part. They are a lot better, even though they are a lot more expensive, they are more accurate temperature wise when operating and built with higher quality materials so they normally last longer.
 

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'81 Gravely tractor, 50's 60's 70's 80's 90's Gravely tractors Various Honda Power equipment
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Usually when the thermostat goes bad on them, it stays open and won't close off enough to regulate the water flow enough so it can cool itself enough, then that's when it will overheat. They rarely ever stay completely closed, they normally get stuck in the open position or open up too early or too much when hot so they don't regulate the circulation.
 

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'81 Gravely tractor, 50's 60's 70's 80's 90's Gravely tractors Various Honda Power equipment
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Believe it or not, a lot of times you are better off running the 190 degree temp than a lower temp, like a 180 or lower. That way the water stays in the radiator longer and cools itself more before it goes back in the engine.
The thermostat usually never closes completely, it varies how much it opens to keep water circulating and that regulates how fast it circulated. The faster it circulates, the less time it has to transfer heat, and the hotter it will run.
 

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Remove the thermostat and put it in your parts box. Reattach the hose and housing, then work on confirming you can cost effectively get the tractor running first.

Once you have decided if it is worth the cost of the engine parts, and actually get it running, replace the thermostat with a new one as a last step.

At some point in your rebuild you will make a go/no go cost/benefit decision on this project. A thermostat, while frustrating, certainly is not a go/no go decision point. IMHO

Honda thermostats can be had for 1/3 less than $70.

Good luck on it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
i found one at Napa for $12 .It's a gates thermostat .Same heat range and diameter.From the 80's lol . I did try it with no thermostat till the thermostat comes in in a couple of days.It ran ok and got the blades turning then shut it down .Still a few bugs to iron out but no leaks anywhere. Does anyone know what blades are used on this?It's a 42 inch deck.Surely they must be available somewhere else than Honda
 

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i found one at Napa for $12 .It's a gates thermostat .Same heat range and diameter.From the 80's lol . I did try it with no thermostat till the thermostat comes in in a couple of days.It ran ok and got the blades turning then shut it down .Still a few bugs to iron out but no leaks anywhere. Does anyone know what blades are used on this?It's a 42 inch deck.Surely they must be available somewhere else than Honda
Be prepared to spend lots of $$$ I had the same deck. Tried to buy blades. I can buy 3 OEM Kubota blades for my 60" Kubota belly mower for the cost of one Honda blade. Best of luck. See of you can find blades from Predator. Outstanding blades and may be cheaper than Honda as well
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Should probably change topic or start another but finding more bugs with the tractor.None too serious so far.
I can get the idle to 1300 RPM but the manual says 3600 RPM wide open.Is this when the PTO is running that it picks up to this?Asking because when i open up the throttle it barely goes up to 1700 RPM .I even moved the spring to a another hole to try it but no real change.
 

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I'll tell ya the throttle linage and governor setup on that engine is a royal PIA to work with. One thing I did (though for get the actual steps I took). I added a choke linkage and knob to mine. (I have always hated having to start the engine on full throttle). So my mod allowed me to set the throttle to a fast idle position, pull the choke and fire it up. Much easier on the engine IMO. I also reset the governor to top out at 2800 to 3k IIRC and then set it up to go up to 3500 in the former "choke position". I found this much more desirable and IMO easier on the motor. I am not one of those people you hear with the engine winging out at top RPM putzing along. Even now with the Kubota. I only run it out at about 2k. I never take it up to full throttle
 

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Guess will have to fiddle with governor arm.Didn't expect this from a Honda
IDK that I would blame "Honda". These things get into certain ages and over the years people who have no business even touching a tool are into them and doing who knows what. That's the worst part about getting used equipment.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I bought it from original owner and was garage kept .He said he bought it new for $4200 in 1993 and never had an issue with it until now.Typical Honda .Quality lawn tractor
 
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