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38993 Views 47 Replies 13 Participants Last post by  chex313
I bought this older Steiner. My plan is to fix it up, give it a paint job then work it. The p.o had said it leaks real bad oil and smokes bad and he only used it to tow cars up his steep incline driveway, He had said the tractor was never under any cover for its hole life just sat in the open. But had said the guy he got it off put a new engine it?
I had bought the tractor it had such a bad oil leak the hole tractor was coated, and had its own smoke cloud that would follow you around.

I had give it about 3 different engine degreaser baths to see where the leak was coming from but it still would hardly clean up. But it was better than it was. I had put on my spare mower deck that i have for my newer Steiner and i mowed with it.

Seems the oil leak was the crank seal, I pulled the motor gave it some more engine degreaser baths. After the motor is simi clean I can see all newer gaskets hiding under the covers/ Pull the covers and see written in crayon (REBUILT IN 2001) Turns out the had put a wrong crank seal in it when they rebuilt the motor. fixed that, no more oil leak.
Now i started to give it a paint job, Painting it with Valspar IH red, from TSC. I only painted the hood so far and the wheels.

I building a snow blade for it to, i am using a rusted up cub cadet blade. going to cut the wear edge off of it. then weld a newer but longer edge on it then I'm going to put aluminium over the blade part and bolt the two together so i have a smooth blade part.

New fast hitch built for the blade

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I knew about the neutral trick. I used it many times before I rebuilt the motor unfortunately. :crybaby:

As for the deck, it is a bit of a PITA and since it spent practically a decade in a scrap pile needed a ton of TLC to get back up and running. I still need to adjust the blade heights as they have a set screw on each shaft for height adjustment and well it is a lot of work tearing it apart setting, re assembling and trying just to find one blade is slightly off. My deck is in bad shape so I mostly only use it to cut where I am not trying to make it look nice and is more a rough "ditch" mower for me. It is on the todo list to get the deck back into "new" condition. But I have two other mowers that do a fine job. a 08 JD LA145 and a Gilson both with very large decks so having a 3rd would just be greedy.:1287:

The hubs on this unit are a 1 piece so that must be where the confusion is.

I am very curious to see this loader, I think I saw a picture of one on a much newer 430. The bucket I made that you see in the picture is a design I saw on a much newer Steiner that I copied and it works amazing but I could improve on the design.

As for the tiller I do have mine kicking towards the Steiner. I did it this way because as you described I did not want tire tracks. My tiller weighs maybe 80~100#. Cant be much because I man handle it to get it attached to the Steiner very easily. But like I said before it used to be a self propelled unit with a 5hp, very quickly I learned that 20hp was way to much and was breaking shafts on the tiller. I found if I ran the motor at 1/2 throttle RPM less than 2.4k it worked fine and nothing broke so that is what I do.

I am a little concerned about the motor as when rebuilding I got the factory briggs rebuild book and it specified that two dippers are required for loaded operation under WOT. Mine only had 1 dipper and that is how I rebuilt it. Tempted to add the 2nd dipper but it ran 3k hours on 1 dipper and IMHO with the hydraulics this thing was loaded often in part throttle. Any thoughts on that?
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I have a old Steiner as well. I have no idea what model or year but the briggs 18hp has a manufacture date of 1982.

If anyone has more information on this steiner I own, like model I would sure be glad to know. Also you said you were getting new decals for your steiner. Where were you getting those from? I would be interested in getting some for the day I re-paint again. :)
If i were to guess a year i think early 80's is about right, Because i noticed that you have the newer style transmission hydro motor that mounts on the front of the housing. Unlike mine that mounts into the side.

For the Decals i had a local sign/sticker company make them all i did was take the sticker outer dimensions (length, width) and then took a picture of the old sticker and then they made a new copy that looks similar to the old one. I only had the decals on the tool box made, i didn't have a hood one made because it did not come with any and didn't have any pictures to match up to.
update picture of the Old Steiner outside and the new stump grinder


I like that stump grinder! How much do one of those cost?
I like that stump grinder! How much do one of those cost?
I believe new is around 2800, the one I bought only had about 1 stump cut with it, bought it at a auction 1/3 of the the price new. I already chewed one stump up already. does a great job, very handy.

If you didn't know that, Some Steiner and Ventrac dealers do rent attachments out for public use on the users Steiner, The dealer i bought my last two Steiner's off of had Steiner and Ventrac attachments that you could rent out.:fing32:
Unfortunate for me, the nearest dealer for me is a six hour drive. I have a real continual use for a stump grinder, maybe if I get some time I will look at making or adapting something down the road.
I know this is Necro post but....

If anyone still has one of these ancient Steiner's ...could you give me a heads up on the Hydraulic oil?

I have a widowed neighbor who has asked me to to get her deceased husband's Steiner running and show her how to use it (Yeah no she is not capable of running it...). I'll have it running today, but I want to change the Motor oil right way, and the hydraulic oil. The motor oil I can see. The Hydro oil not so much...No manuals to be found. I have to learn how to operate it before showing her how.

To run it just needs inflated tires and a new battery...Than an air filter and oil. It needs a lot of seal's in various places but not to run. I would only do that if she sells it to me...I already told her I would mow her grass and plow her drive as I have been since last December 2020.(JD 1026R)...but she is independent.

This machine is beast and a fun project...but isn't going to match up to my JD 1026R SCUT. So I do not want to put much time into it until she sells it. It's easier to just run my JD on her property.
On the one hand, it's good that you're researching before asking, but your question really should be a stand-alone thread. Ventracs (same driveline) use Hydro-Torq XL, SAE 5W-30, btw.
The type of oil I can find(but thank you)...I was looking for things specific to this 40 year old model...Like is that the transmission filter down under the steering column. Maybe a quick how to on the controls. Working in this shed where its at is like the American Pickers exploration. Once I get it running I'll take it over to my garage and get after it.

I have it cranking and it starts with gas in the carb....but the fuel isn't flowing to from the Gas tank petcock to the carb...for starters...I had to quit for today...I will be at it again Tue thru Fri.

Took me a few minutes to figure out neutral before it would start. lol

Here are some pics of narrow space to work in...(Can you say Hoarders?) How old is that fuel filter? I was going to replace it with standard see-thru....

Wood Automotive tire Gas Auto part Metal
Vehicle registration plate Tire Automotive tire Wheel Motor vehicle
Automotive tire Amber Automotive lighting Orange Motor vehicle
Tire Wheel Vehicle Automotive tire Motor vehicle
Does anyone know the starting procedure for a 40 year old 420, in case I missed something simple?

Neutral , Gas petcock open...? Anything else? Again it cranks good, runs on ether at the carb, but no indication gas is getting to the carb...So I'll start with the filter and than replace the gas and before I fill it up with new gas run a new fuel line from the petcock. It looks worn out but only 575 hours on the clock....Which is pretty low for 40 years....My neighbor used it less than 20 hours a year mowing and plowing.

Does the Sunstrand Hydro Transmission Plate # indicate 1983 as the year of build?

15-3037 MF
I would suggest disconnecting the fuel line from the carb, putting it in a pot and seeing what kind of fuel flow you get out of it. If it has a mechanical pump, you'll need to crank the engine, electric just turn the key on. If you don't get good flow, then work back to the tank, if you do, then work on the carb.
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Call Ventrac. Steiner tractors became Ventrac. Both very similar and stout machines. I'd bet money that the people at Ventrac could help you. Ventrac Compact Tractors & Attachments
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Thanks for the replies.

I can't see Ventrac helping out, even tho that family made them and Signing up for Steiner's mailing list isn't high on my list...Pretty sure they would just be looking for customers...I won't rule them out. They would be last resorts if an actual owner doesn't post by Tuesday when I can go work on it again. I am fixing it for free so my neighbor can wait....

I also posted at a couple of other tractor site's I am a member at...Has to be an owner somewhere.
I would suggest disconnecting the fuel line from the carb, putting it in a pot and seeing what kind of fuel flow you get out of it. If it has a mechanical pump, you'll need to crank the engine, electric just turn the key on. If you don't get good flow, then work back to the tank, if you do, then work on the carb.
Thanks Dave, I'll do that when I replace the fuel line and the fuel filter. I am 90% percent sure by the way it ran the carb is fine...Once it gets fuel it should fire right up. One of the original posters in this thread has the exact same tractor...Unfortunately he has moved on...I'll trial and error the controls until I figure it out. It has a lot of controls....Knowing how to put it in reverse would be really useful...LOL
See if these help you at all:

Sometimes folks are pretty good if you contact them! Got these from the company by registering for the contact info. I've sent you a PM with additional info as well.


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That Operators manual is just what I needed thanks for the extra effort you were right.

Interesting it doesn't list the B&S 18HP engine. I would guess that it it was swapped but the other poster in this thread had one. Must be a different manual.(But operation looks the same)
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Just an update...It is either the fuel pump or the line to the fuel pump. I now have to get it to my garage as I need to lift it. I did learn where the brake is (Not working) and how to disengage the mower on the front. Going to try to blow air back to tank in case there is debris clogging the fuel line.

500' downhill and around a curve on her drive straight up 300" and a curve on my drive. I'll need to put it on a trailer and have another person. Should be fun. Just about ready to cut this loose...After assessing it, I wouldn't pay for this...
Blowing air through the line got the fuel flowing...did it a number of times...eventually the fuel stopped flowing. Tomorrow I'll bypass the fuel petcock and anything that may be blocking it. I'll take the fuel out of the top of the tank to get it running.

First I'll pop the bottom out of the pipe from the tank...It looks like a cleanout that you would have in a house drain line.
It is threaded right below the petcock. Not sure how good the pic shows it. Hope it comes off.


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Glad to see you're making some headway on it!
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