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 MTD Ranch King plus 18/46

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MatthewD
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Wed Sep 07, 2016 11:51 am

Yeah 2" is wayyy too small. I'd go for atleast 4" rear for no slippage.
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Wed Sep 07, 2016 3:56 pm

The only reasons i went with a 2" on the back was:
lack of time to do something better, at least for the meantime
lack of patience, because my buddy has had one done for quite some time
that was the only pulley i could find to fit (the input shaft is wacko..its 1/2 inch with 1/8th inch keyway. not a whole lot of options, the only pulleys i can find in 1/2 inch bore are set screw.
I wanted to at least get it running and driving before the weather turned nasty, which its likely to do here in a month or so, and with marching band (i have contests every Saturday from now until the end of october)
leaving a 2 inch on the back would allow me to keep the current clutch config on the front, i wouldnt have to buy a belt, and i wouldnt have to buy anything yet. cause so far, this build has costed me nothing. if i get lucky, it wont cost me more than 30bucks.

Hopefully this winter is an early one and gets the cold and snow out of the way, at least to the point the salamander can heat the shop. The shop is literally a toolshed. nothing between us and the outside but sheetmetal. there gets a point when the salamander just cant keep it warm, even by it. If this winter goes the way they are calling for it to go, i wont be able to work very much during November, December, and January Mad

before i go all switching it around, i want to see how well it handles in the snow. ill be putting 8 inch on the front and either 23 or 24s on the back. i have an old cub cadet 1440 with 4 of the good s pattern tread tires. they have good wide gaps between the tread, they will last me for a little while. or i may run the ones on it into the ground. they are good tires too, except the one back one that has big cracks along the sidewall.

Dang this thing is gonna be way better than i ever expected it to be. One more thing...the air flow is truly awful in that engine compartment, especially if i am going to be deleting the governor and running it slightly higher. should i do away with the side panels, make my own hood/front panel mounts, maybe do a custom hood and front panel thing, or maybe...idk what else i would do, but i need something for better air flow. i really like how it looks now, but the air flow problem gotta be fixed
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Wed Sep 07, 2016 5:05 pm

Yea...my buddy and i have more lawn tractors than we know what to do with. theres quite a few people in my area who build these things...i say we head to the next town over and take it. The beginning of the mower crusades, led by the mowrons. They wont know what hit em...
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Wed Sep 07, 2016 8:04 pm

The only reasons i went with a 2" on the back was:
lack of time to do something better, at least for the meantime
lack of patience, because my buddy has had one done for quite some time
that was the only pulley i could find to fit (the input shaft is wacko..its 1/2 inch with 1/8th inch keyway. not a whole lot of options, the only pulleys i can find in 1/2 inch bore are set screw.
I wanted to at least get it running and driving before the weather turned nasty, which its likely to do here in a month or so, and with marching band (i have contests every Saturday from now until the end of october)
leaving a 2 inch on the back would allow me to keep the current clutch config on the front, i wouldnt have to buy a belt, and i wouldnt have to buy anything yet. cause so far, this build has costed me nothing. if i get lucky, it wont cost me more than 30bucks.

Hopefully this winter is an early one and gets the cold and snow out of the way, at least to the point the salamander can heat the shop. The shop is literally a toolshed. nothing between us and the outside but sheetmetal. there gets a point when the salamander just cant keep it warm, even by it. If this winter goes the way they are calling for it to go, i wont be able to work very much during November, December, and January Mad

before i go all switching it around, i want to see how well it handles in the snow. ill be putting 8 inch on the front and either 23 or 24s on the back. i have an old cub cadet 1440 with 4 of the good s pattern tread tires. they have good wide gaps between the tread, they will last me for a little while. or i may run the ones on it into the ground. they are good tires too, except the one back one that has big cracks along the sidewall.

Dang this thing is gonna be way better than i ever expected it to be. One more thing...the air flow is truly awful in that engine compartment, especially if i am going to be deleting the governor and running it slightly higher. should i do away with the side panels, make my own hood/front panel mounts, maybe do a custom hood and front panel thing, or maybe...idk what else i would do, but i need something for better air flow. i really like how it looks now, but the air flow problem gotta be fixed
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Mon Oct 03, 2016 11:11 am

Well...we got us a problem. The coil died on the king, and since it was dead, i decided to yank the heads and check the cylinder walls, clean the carbon, all that stuff. the cylinders arent bad, but this oppy has a lotta hours on it. the cylinders both need rehoned. on the upper cylinder, the intake port has a bunch of grit in it. all of it appears to be stuck to the port, but its nasty nonetheless. The intake valve and seat have also been burned. not awful, but bad enough its noticeable. the exhaust valve is also very loose. i can take a finger and move it in a slight circle around. its not burned, but last time i checked valves shouldnt wiggle in their port. also, it doesnt have the replaceable bushings for the valve stem, its casted directly into the block, and it has been worn. badly. and on the lower cylinder, the exhaust valve doesnt seat correctly. im guessing the intake valve/port problems are the reason why it wont run without the choke. i did try adjusting the carb to fix that problem. So, at the moment, the plan is to pull the oppy. i am going to trade it to my neighbor for either a 16hp single cyl kohler command ohv( pressure lube ) or a 14 or a 16hp briggs vanguard vtwin. or, he has onan opposed twins overflowing, so if i bought one of those, i would have plenty of parts, and ive heard good things about the onan engines. i could also go with a briggs l head single, 12.5hp, a briggs 14.5 ohv, or a kohler vtwin. there are probably other options, but i dont know them off the top of my head. whichever engine i get, i will probably trade my opposed for, since i have 2 others laying around. i like the idea of having a single cylinder, so that there is more room in the engine compartment and a simpler exhaust, but i also like the idea of doing a vtwin. please help!
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AllisKidD21
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Mon Oct 03, 2016 11:23 am

If it was me, I would go for a flathead Briggs 11 or 12 horse. Such great engines, simple and reliable. An Onan would be cool, but remember they are horizontal shaft, so they wouldn't directly work in your tractor. But they are cool engines (unless you need parts for them $$$$$) but whatever you choose good luck!
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TheGreenHornet
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Mon Oct 03, 2016 2:32 pm

how hard is it to twist the belt? more work than its worth? i was kinda liking the idea of the vanguard or the command vtwin
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CraftsmanQuad19
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Mon Oct 03, 2016 2:37 pm

yea don't twist the belt. most tractors that come with a twisted belt (usually a vertical shaft engine and a peerless 633) eventually get converted to a standard vertical or standard horizontal belt
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AllisKidD21
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Mon Oct 03, 2016 3:34 pm

Yeah I did some welding on my shop teachers mower, it had a twisted belt and rubbed on practically every thing. Personally I wouldn't do it.
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Tue Oct 04, 2016 10:06 am

so avoid the onans. gotcha. i kinda want to do a flathead briggs, because i could make the front lighter, make it more fuel efficent, and i could tune it up with a cam and heavier valve springs that i already have laying around. on the other hand, i could go with a vtwin that will have the low end power that the oppy had, and have a pressure lube oil system, and those vanguards are capable of 5000+ rpm stock. not that i would go that high, but its nice to know you have an engine that can do that. idk what the kohler command is capable of, but i was kinda leaning toward the vanguard vtwin. Or, i could go with the single cylinder ohv courage. it is also fully pressure lube. i dont know much about those kohlers, but ive heard the older ones are good engines. this one is out of an early 90s john deere. im pretty sure the vtwin will fit in the engine compartment without any side panel modifications, and i like the idea of an ohv. less gas consumption, better flow. but the flathead engines offer better torque at lower rpms. im so torn. I guess ill take whatever he offers me for trade.
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AllisKidD21
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Tue Oct 04, 2016 3:49 pm

I still stand by the Briggs flat head singles, but it's your rig man.
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Tue Oct 04, 2016 6:40 pm

im so very torn...the briggs flathead singles are easy to build a pull start on, and i know they are ridiculously reliable. on the other hand, the vtwin has its advantages too...
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Fri Oct 07, 2016 5:21 pm

well, i figured out my spark problem. the kill wire had shorted out or something along those lines, so that the key switch was basically off. which kept it from sparking. got that problem solved, and it runs halfway decent. decent enough that im gonna keep it around until it blows, rather than take the down time to swap it out. i estimate in 5th gear running wide open it goes about 30mph. maybe a little more, maybe a little less. i got some weird looks as i passed a sunday driving car on the road lol!
but i got my exhaust system figured out. 1 1" pipe on each cylinder. it goes down, where i have an elbow on it that points it sideways and slightly down. it ends up right in front of the running boards. sounds sick too, especially wide open.
i also got the governor assembly off. the governor is still there internally, but the throttle is directly hooked up. i wanted to do a foot throttle, but i tested it out and the way the shifter is set up, i kept hitting my shin on the shifter guide, so i just hooked it up to the dash throttle. i prefer the dash throttle, a foot throttle is how the bushings in the butterfly valve on the carb get worn, all the movement back and forth.
one of the tires blew, and i put another one on. but is slightly smaller, which makes it look a little funny as its going down the road, because you are slightly slanted toward the right side.
no speed shakes at top speed, which is good. the tires dont wobble on the spindles, the steering doesnt shake back and forth and try to rip out of my hands, and the tierods are all solid.
the last thing i have to do is fix the electrical system, build a pull start, and get the side and front panels and hood back on, and itll look like a complete mower again!
the bonus of the exhaust system i set up is that i dont have to notch the side panels, both sides exit right in the gap between the panel and the frame. and without that giant muffler bolted to the block and that massive heat source right next to the engine, it runs much cooler now. i could touch the flywheel after and hour of running, which is unprecedented!
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Sat Oct 08, 2016 8:38 am

Man you gotta show us a few pics/vid of your exhaust. If I were you I'd go for the V-twin, just because it's a V-twin and you get that lovely 'Harley Davidson' sound.
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Mon Oct 10, 2016 3:56 pm

Quick update-
So blew a tire, swapped it for one i had laying around. turns out the one i had laying  around is about 2 inches smaller, so from behind it looks kinda funny
secondly, i decided to leave the opposed. it kinda gives the same sound. i took steel piping, screwed it into the threads, and used an elbow to shoot another pipe down. it ends a few inches short of the footrest, angled down. i kept 1 inch pipe, and it sounds awesome. CraftsmanQuad19 will verify this. it gives it that nice deep sound while idling.
lastly, my rear pulley grenaded, and mostly took the belt with it. it happened when CraftsmanQuad19 came up to my house. we were screwing around with the king and his mini chinese 4 wheeler, well about a mile from home, the 4 wheeler decided to die. so i towed it back, and about 50 feet from the driveway, the engine revved up noticeably from having the load taken off and i coasted to a stop. i thought it had maybe jumped out of gear, but no such luck. i killed it and poked my head under it, and there is the belt dangling with a decent sized chunk out of it. the pulley basically took the entire top off and split it down the middle. im impressed at how badly it broke, actually. i guess thats what i get for using die cast aluminum. Either way, until i get around to ordering another pulley and moving the clutch back, and getting a new front pulley, the king is done. she sits behind the shed with a bag over the engine, probably where she will sit until i get free time.
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Mon Oct 10, 2016 7:55 pm

While I was sitting on the TaoTao mini atv (carb issue is why it died BTW) and he was taking the cart back and getting a chain, I thought it sounded like a small plane. And that ranch king outruns the quad, so it probably goes 30
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Wed Dec 14, 2016 4:21 pm

Little update on the king. tore the opposed out, packed the transaxle with grease since it was leaking out of about every place possible and am currently working on a double pulley clutch. CQ and i went and bought a pulley. 4 inches. once i get an engine pulley i will measure belt length and get a belt. plan is to put a 6 inch on the front. I also hope to get new tires soon
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Tue Jul 18, 2017 9:53 pm

What does anyone think about the idea of using an electric clutch to drive the mower?
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AllisKidD21
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Tue Jul 18, 2017 10:04 pm

I would think it would be a really jerky take-off. Not really all that smooth.
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Tue Jul 18, 2017 10:05 pm

Seems to me electric clutch is engaged "NOW", you cant let it in easy. I think you would have issues with it breaking something?
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Tue Jul 18, 2017 10:23 pm

plus to properly connect it up requires a little bit of wiring and would be prone for failure over time.

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AllisKidD21
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Tue Jul 18, 2017 10:31 pm

Thats true as well, you would have to really keep the wires up to prevent snagging them on anything. There was a thread started on this same topic a while ago and I think the conclusion was that the jerky-ness of an electric clutch made it a bad idea to drive a transaxle...
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Wed Jul 19, 2017 3:53 pm

I ran an electric clutch for a drive pulley on mutt for a while. Still had the stock clutch though. Pretty much just used it for a parking brake and so i didn't have to have the belt running all the time. Not for clutching.
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Fri Jul 28, 2017 7:18 pm

Okay. Heres the thing. i wasnt worried about the jerky takeoff. The other day i was mowing, and of course most modern mowers have the blades driven by an electric clutch, right? Well, i was mowing with my mower, and i mowed over a large dirt pile too low. It killed the engine. it killed a 28hp briggs vtwin without the clutch slipping. im using an even heavier one for the drivetrain on the king, so i figure i wont have to worry about breaking anything there. yes, jerky takeoff, but i also have the shift on the go, and i always used to bang it from neutral to first without clutching. so i can engage the clutch, lower the engine rpms, and bump it into gear. thats what im thinking anyway. ive already got the electric clutch setup. the main reason i am doing this is that there is just not any good way to put a clutch under it. the stock one was too close to the engine pulley to put anything bigger than stock on. MTD is a pain in the butt. this is why im building a sears after this, so i can have a work tractor.
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Wed Aug 09, 2017 8:42 pm

Not really any kind of update, just a funny story. so with the King still incomplete, i have no mower to ride, other than the one i use to mow my yard (surprise surprise, yes i have a mower that actually mows) Anyway, i got bored, so i ended up doing a little offroading with the mower i use to mow my yard. (i only got stuck 3 times ) i did some rock crawling (no huge rocks, just a tiled area with rocks over it ) did some hill climbing, ditch driving, and just general exploring. Unfortunately, its top speed is about 6 mph. very slow. Unfortunately, i popped my left front tire and had to drive a half a mile home on a complete flat. amazingly, never broke the bead. Got lucky there. For anyone who is wondering, it is a stock JD lx175. 26hp briggs intek vtwin (it loves to rev) a sealed hydrostat, turfs, and a 54 inch deck. it is truly a wonder i didnt get stuck more than 3 times
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PostSubject: Re: MTD Ranch King plus 18/46    Wed Aug 09, 2017 8:52 pm

Yeah it sucks not having a tractor to mess with, suffering from tractor withdrawl is not fun haha. I always like to have at least one tractor that's operational all the time so that when I break something on one and can't fix it, I can hop on the other one and go for a drive! Hahaha.
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