My Tractor Forum banner

1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone! I've been a reader here for quite some time, but now need some advice. I have a model #149-818-312 18hp 46" deck. It doesn't say ranch king but when I bought it 20 years ago that's what the salesman called it.
The problem: the variable speed pulley won't close up for the higher(4-7) speeds. BTW, it's 14 speed,7 highrange,7 low. This is causing too much slack in the belt and the idler starts hitting the trans pulley. I took the var.speed pulley off, re-greased the small bearings(they ride on what they call a pivot bushing). On the bottom of the pulley there is a flat washer,then a thrust bearing(looks like a flat copper washer) then another flat washer and finally a small cup,lockwasher and 9/16" nut. I don't know how all this is supposed to work, but a friend who does dirt bikes said the washers and thrust bearing should be dry. The belts were replaced as a set a few years ago.

I have a new deere x360, but there's too much good machine here to scrap. Local hardware quoted $270 for variable speed pulley assembly. Too much to sink into a 20 year old machine.

any advice would be greatly appreciated

thx Timmy g
 

·
was born to pimp tractors
Joined
·
172 Posts
jmo, what ever you do, dont scarp the tractor













Remember everyone, Just say NO to scrapin tractors, or anything with an engine for that matter :thThumbsU
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Don't need to rush this repair,so there'll be no scrappin'. I'm retired now and this tractor will run right again....eventually.haha. In the process of trying to narrow down the problem,and reading here, I've learned a lot and enjoyed going over the whole tractor greasingg and cleaning and taking apart.
 

·
15,000 +posts!
Joined
·
20,436 Posts
I have a few of those variable pulley setups,that came off older Sears & Craftsman riding mowers,("LTV" series?) ..not sure if they would work for you or not though..I cant post photos with my computer,but if you can,or can get any part numbers off your old one,I'll look at mine and see if they match up..dont junk it yet!..
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,547 Posts
Hi everyone! I've been a reader here for quite some time, but now need some advice. I have a model #149-818-312 18hp 46" deck. It doesn't say ranch king but when I bought it 20 years ago that's what the salesman called it.
The problem: the variable speed pulley won't close up for the higher(4-7) speeds. BTW, it's 14 speed,7 highrange,7 low. This is causing too much slack in the belt and the idler starts hitting the trans pulley. I took the var.speed pulley off, re-greased the small bearings(they ride on what they call a pivot bushing). On the bottom of the pulley there is a flat washer,then a thrust bearing(looks like a flat copper washer) then another flat washer and finally a small cup,lockwasher and 9/16" nut. I don't know how all this is supposed to work, but a friend who does dirt bikes said the washers and thrust bearing should be dry. The belts were replaced as a set a few years ago.

I have a new deere x360, but there's too much good machine here to scrap. Local hardware quoted $270 for variable speed pulley assembly. Too much to sink into a 20 year old machine.

any advice would be greatly appreciated

thx Timmy g
----------------------------------------------------------------------
It sounds as if the center section of the variable pulley is stuck. With no tension on either belt or with the belts removed the center part of the pulley should move up freely with a little force of your fingers and fall back down with its own weight pressure.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Maybar,
The center section moves freely,so does the pivot bushing and needle bearings. maybe there's too much play in center section and its cocking and binding.
Thanks though

T-holic pulley # is 717-0946 listed as 6" dia. thank you too.TG
 

·
15,000 +posts!
Joined
·
20,436 Posts
I
ll measure mine,but I'm pretty sure they are more like only 4" or 5" pulleys,maybe Sears didn't use the same ones,but similar..Ill see if they have ny part numbers and post back here sometime this weekend..
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,547 Posts
Maybar,
The center section moves freely,so does the pivot bushing and needle bearings. maybe there's too much play in center section and its cocking and binding.
Thanks though

T-holic pulley # is 717-0946 listed as 6" dia. thank you too.TG
--------------------------------------------------------------------------
Since all of that seems to be in order, all I can think of at the present time is for some reason the springs on the two idlers aren't working in conjunction with each other to hold the correct tension on the belts. Maybe binding idler pivot, wrong spring(s), springs attached in the wrong place etc. Just a shot in the dark and I mostly stay in the dark.
 

·
Landscaper
Joined
·
153 Posts
Hi Tim,

Had the same problem with my MTD 604, first time I took it to the shop for stripping the vari-drive system down to clean and re-build it it didn't make a difference.

However the second time I took it away for a going over, the guy found part of a fir cone wedged in the vari-drive pully system, preventing the 5th gear from slipping into action. With that matter removed I'm now zooming up and down the lawns yet again.

So my advice would be to give it a real good strip down and inspect every nut and cranny for anything that shouldn't be there.

Dave
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for the reply Dave. I've had the pulley out and completely gone through it. I'm starting to wonder if I did replace both belts at once. I've heard that is important. Suppose I need to find out about the thrust bearing. I'll have some pictures soon. The more I look at this, I realize this tractor will be fixed right. Then I probably will want to keep it. Except for the fact that it also has a snowblower and deck and I don't really need two snowblowers.

thanks again Dave
 

·
15,000 +posts!
Joined
·
20,436 Posts
I've learned you can never have too many snowblowers,plows,or other snow removal equipment!..I'd not only keep the one for your tractor,I'd have a spare walk behind one too,if you get snow like we do here some winters..

More than one 3 day Nor'easter has "killed" my truck's plow,AND a snowblower,from the beating I had to give them to keep up with the snowfall..
Often it will start off snowing here,then after 6-12" accumulation it'll change to sleet or rain,and the snow becomes more like wet cement,very tough on plows and many snowblowers just clog up ,so you'd better be able to keep ahead of the storm,otherwise you'll need a BIG loader to remove it!..


my neighbors look at me funny when I had a "fleet" of snowblowers,a tractor with a plow,AND my 4x4 truck with a plow,saying "why do you need ALL that for?"...well,I have a 25 foot by 110 foot long driveway that is like a "Y",so I'd darn well better have a means to get the snow off of it,because I sure cant SHOVEL that much!..and the heavy slushy snow here busts things up pretty fast..most of my snowblowers and plow tractors were cast off junkers others had tossed in the dump or pushed to the curb I got for free anyway..

Its nice to be able to just grab another one and keep on fighting the storm,instead of having to stop,and fix one,and watch snow pile up deeper and deeper,making it twice as difficult to remove later!..usually your tired enough from blowing the snow and plowing,and are in no mood to be repairing something..usually we get a few days "rest" between storms to recover and get things fixed up for the next beating..A tractor with a snowblower is a lot more fun to use than a walk behind,but anything beats shoveling !..
 

·
Landscaper
Joined
·
153 Posts
Yeah my MTD seems quite a sturdy little machine now the speed issues regarding the pesky fir cone are sorted, probably does at least 10 hours hard-graft mowing for me every week. Don't thinkg I'll be getting rid of it untill i've worked it totally to the ground.

Regarding whether the belts need changing, a measure i've heard of is if they're flush with the pulleys or not. Look at where the belts run through the pulleys...if they're slightley proud then they're fine, if they're flush they could probably do with changing but will prob do the job, but if they're sunken into the pulley then they're too worn on the inside to function at their best...and need changing.

I've not had to change the belts myself yet, so can't verify that method for you, but the guy who advised me of it seems to know his stuff.

Hope that's some help,

Dave
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
This post is only 6 mo late. Dave(pristine gardens), I finally received the belts I had ordered in late june. That was the problem. Works great. thanks. I'll try and get a pic posted soon

thanks again to all tim
 

·
Retired Super Moderator - Deceased September 2015
Joined
·
26,679 Posts
Glad you got it going! I wouldlike to find one out here, but they all seem tobe back East or way out of my price range.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Here are some pics of this little red machine. I'm thinking of selling it, but don't know the value.In fact it's on CL for $750( that's high I'm sure) but I figured "heck, a new blower,weights and chains, you're looking at $1100-$1400". Plus 46" mower deck. But I'm probably FOS, right?(laughing) Let me know how full.
,
,
 
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top