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Proud Wheel Horse Owner
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3,213 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Couldn't resist dragging home a 1980's era Grass Handler tonight. It's a pig-in-a-poke because it's been sitting outside for its entire life, and hasn't been run in so long that the seller couldn't remember.

It's got a big Briggs 18hp (I think...it was dark and raining) twin and 44" 3 blade deck.

The seat is shot, but the paint and decals are amazingly nice. Nice as in; use some cleaner/wax and it'll look very nice. The wheels are super nice, and still white.

I'll post some photos once I get it unloaded tomorrow and play with it a bit.

I'm going to crack up if it runs. I couldn't pass it up for 50 bucks.

If I wasn't so in love with my Wheel Horse 212-5, I'd consider keeping this. It's a really big tractor and looks to be well built.....I'm guessing by MTD. Reminds me of a smaller "Coast-To-Coast Hardware" decaled tractor that saved about a year ago. Same design for the nose and hood, in steel.
 

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Couldn't resist dragging home a 1980's era Grass Handler tonight. It's a pig-in-a-poke because it's been sitting outside for its entire life, and hasn't been run in so long that the seller couldn't remember.

It's got a big Briggs 18hp (I think...it was dark and raining) twin and 44" 3 blade deck.

The seat is shot, but the paint and decals are amazingly nice. Nice as in; use some cleaner/wax and it'll look very nice. The wheels are super nice, and still white.

I'll post some photos once I get it unloaded tomorrow and play with it a bit.

I'm going to crack up if it runs. I couldn't pass it up for 50 bucks.

If I wasn't so in love with my Wheel Horse 212-5, I'd consider keeping this. It's a really big tractor and looks to be well built.....I'm guessing by MTD. Reminds me of a smaller "Coast-To-Coast Hardware" decaled tractor that saved about a year ago. Same design for the nose and hood, in steel.
sounds like my 85 yardman 800 series
 

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Proud Wheel Horse Owner
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3,213 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
This one is a 1984 according to the Warranty decal that's on the rear panel.

Trying to post the link the parts diagrams on MTD's website, but it won't link to the actual pages for the tractors. So, go there and look it up as a "MTD Legacy Model 1985-1987 and it will only give you 1987 in the Garden Tractor area, and then select: 1860D/811-3797 Garden Tractor" All the diagrams with part numbers show up, inlcuding the trans.

I put those numbers into the partstree site and got nothing.

Here are some "as found" photos. I've included the ID numbers for the tractor and engine in hopes that it helps others when the search for parts.



















 

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Proud Wheel Horse Owner
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3,213 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Not looking good for this engine. Put a jumper box directly to the starter today and the starter could barely move the flywheel. Tried to rotate the flywheel by hand after that and the crankshaft turns like the main bearings are destroyed. It's fairly stiff to rotate, and very "rough ball bearing" feeling.

Darn, I was hoping for a freebee. Looks like I'll get to explore the world of the 18hp twin in the near future.

Parts Diagrams at partstree.com for the 422707-0179-01 are located here: http://www.partstree.com/parts/?lc=briggs_and_stratton&mn=422707-0179-01

The factory parts book is on pdf at outdoordistributors.com: http://www.odref.com/briggsandstratton/model-42/422700-ms9493-0602.pdf
 

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Proud Wheel Horse Owner
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3,213 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Finally got some time to play with this.

Rocked the flywheel back and forth a few times and the roughness went away, and it felt like it did when I first purchased it. Mmmm.....starter hanging up?

Pulled the top sheetmetal and sure enough, the starter gear was still resting against the ring gear on the flywheel. Gave the starter gear and nylon spiral some love with PB Blaster, rocked the flywheel and the gear retracted. Pulled both spark plugs and with a good battery installed, hit the key (same key as my Wheel Horse 212-5). Engine cranked over nicely, had fat spark at the plugs, and the starter was functioning in normally.

Popped the plugs back in, gave a hit of starting fluid, and the engine fired right up and would run as long as I kept giving it little blips of starting fluid.

Time to go buy a battery, some new battery cables, some 1/4" fuel line, drain the fuel tank, and then put 'er all back together.

I think I've got a runner here!!
 

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Premium Member
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5,700 Posts
Pretty cool. I like the Penney badged machines.
 

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Proud Wheel Horse Owner
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3,213 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Working on the drive system right now. Engine-to-center drive spindle belt was pretty tired and causing the belt and the brake lever to bounce back and forth. Trying to find the correct belt locally right now. Just tried a slightly smaller belt and all of the transmission gears are working, but the belt just won't get loose enough not to keep dragging the transmission pulleys. So....back to the search.

It's starting right up now with just a blip of the key and just runs beautifully. If it wasn't for the drive belt situation I'd be driving it around right now!

Some part numbers incase it helps others. Looks like I'll be getting the belts from NAPA by size for about $11ea instead of the $28ea or more from MTD or similar sources.

Engine-to-center drive spindle: 754-0245 or 954-0245 or 1/2" x 59"

Center drive spindle-to-trans: 754-0244 or 954-0244 or 1/2" x 40"

Gas cap with built in gauge: 723-0346A

Ammeter: 725-0925 or 925-0925

Knob for Blade Clutch: 720-0329 or 920-0232

Just placed an order through outdoordistributors.com for the last 3 items. They had better prices than MTD and PartsTree.

Now to find a seat.

BTW, I don't see any mower deck info even on the MTD site. This is the deck with the tiny little 3rd blade in the middle front area. Anyone have parts source info for this? Mine's complete, but I'm sure it'll need pulley's/spindles/blades/idlers/belts, etc. I'm assuming this deck was used on quite a few MTD models/versions.
 

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Premium Member
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3,839 Posts
That Briggs has some pretty extensive ducting on it!
 

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Proud Wheel Horse Owner
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3,213 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Yeah, fully ducted, all the way down over the muffler. I'm betting they built this engine to do some serious work and still stay cool.

With that top shroud off, I poked all the dirt down through the cylinder head fins and then blasted the whole engine out with 100-something psi air pressure.

Found the ID tag on the mower deck.....but it torn off on the left side. Can anyone fill in the blanks on the left?

44" deck: _ _ _35-000-1026D
 

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4,208 Posts
44" side discharge is 190-935
rear discharge is 190-931
have pic if you need them
and for the front belt remember to twist it the right way. If not you can really fly in reverse (using 4th gear)
 

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Proud Wheel Horse Owner
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3,213 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
Thanks! This is the side discharge. So the number would be: 190-935-000-1026D

Engine-To-Deck Belt: 754-0230 or 954-0230 or 1/2" x 56"
Deck Belt: 754-0293 or 954-0293 or 1/2" x 74"
21.88" Blades: 742-0295
6.50" Blade: 738-0252

And yeah, I saw that about the engine-to-drive spindle belt. The correct routing (again, to help future readers out) is for the belt to come down the left side of the tractor (left side, when you're sitting in the seat) and go under the spindle pulley, then up over the top of the spindle pulley, and up the right side of the tractor to the right side of the engine pulley.

Can't wait to drive it tomorrow. Blows my mind how stout this thing is......cast iron transmission!! This entire mower is just built like a tank. Would have never suspected that with the JC Penney decals. Just figured it would be cheap junk.

That smaller version I had, labeled "Coast-To-Coast Hardware, was the exact same build quality. When I found it it was 10 times worse than this, but with exactly the same ease, came back to life so fast I just stood and laughed. I even repainted that one, but was able to save the metalized decals. It looked fantastic in that "canvas white" with the black grill. Looking forward to using some rubbing compound on this yellow monster!
 

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Proud Wheel Horse Owner
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3,213 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Just gathering a bit more info for future readers.

The transmission is a Tecumseh/Peerless 2351
 

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Finally at 1k!
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1,518 Posts
It means its a real garden tractor. It can pull plows and stuff.
 

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Proud Wheel Horse Owner
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3,213 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Oh, I see!

Just spent more time looking up, and ordering parts. Gonna be like xmas around here in about a week. So far, all the mechanical stuff is available, and even cosmetic stuff like the cap in the center of the steering wheel, the dust caps for the rear axles, knob for the mower deck engagement lever, etc.

The challenge right now is finding a seat. They're $268 plus shipping because they have a safety switch built into them!! @#$%!!! The bolt pattern on the bottom is just 2 bolts on each side, 1" apart from each other, and 9-1/2" apart left-to-right.

Anyone found a suitable generic that'll fit?
 

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Proud Wheel Horse Owner
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3,213 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
It's alive!! Moved under it's own power for the first time in a decade.

Time to mount the hood and start polishing paint while I wait for the deck parts.
 

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392 Posts
Maybe for the seat you could just find a seat you like and build adapters to adapt the seat to the tractors suspension?
 

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Registered
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4,208 Posts
Oh, I see!

Just spent more time looking up, and ordering parts. Gonna be like xmas around here in about a week. So far, all the mechanical stuff is available, and even cosmetic stuff like the cap in the center of the steering wheel, the dust caps for the rear axles, knob for the mower deck engagement lever, etc.

The challenge right now is finding a seat. They're $268 plus shipping because they have a safety switch built into them!! @#$%!!! The bolt pattern on the bottom is just 2 bolts on each side, 1" apart from each other, and 9-1/2" apart left-to-right.

Anyone found a suitable generic that'll fit?
mine was missing seat and I found one on another old mower that was adaptable. No evidence of a seat safety on mine. Nothing in the wiring schematic either. Mine is a 1985 and seat switches cam after that I think.
 
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