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  #1  
Old 11-19-2012, 09:47 PM
C Jovingo Landscaping C Jovingo Landscaping is offline
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Giant Vac Leaf Loader engine swap questions.

Just purchased a Giant Vac leaf loader with no engine for $150. Original engine was 16hp. I am going to watch craigslist for 16hp or bigger. What is the biggest engine I can go with? Also I have a commercial gas paint sprayer with 12hp Honda. Will the 12hp Honda bolt up as temp til I find a deal on bigger engine? The paint sprayer is in storage at a friends abt 45 minutes away so don't wanna go get it if the Honda will not work. I know it will be under powered but I am solo & will feed it what it will handle.
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Last edited by C Jovingo Landscaping; 11-19-2012 at 09:57 PM.
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Old 11-19-2012, 11:37 PM
BDLandscapes BDLandscapes is offline
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I'm not sure what model honda you have, but I'm assuming a GX model 340 or 390. The "11hp" gx340 or "13hp" gx390 have identical measurements anyway.

You will have to see what shaft size your paint sprayer engine has - most likely it is a straight 1"x~3.5"L - then compare it to the I/D of the giant vac impeller. Many are 1", but 1-1/8" is also common on Giant Vacs. If it is 1-1/8" the Honda will not work out as the gx390s and smaller don't offer 1-1/8", but again you have to measure to confirm.


IF the impeller will work out - You may run into another issue when actually mounting the Honda on the Giant Vac frame, particularly if an older unit. When trying to use the stock engine mounting holes the Honda's muffler and/or muffler pipe/manifold may hit the truckloader's 'bulkhead'
Fuel tank clearance on front seam edge will also likely be tight
Re-drilling holes further back can solve this, but you need to mock it up with the impeller on (or measure impeller depth on crankshaft and make a mark on crank for reference) to make sure you keep adequate clearance. You probably will have less than 3/4" of room to work with here.
You may also have to swap to a smaller muffler in place of, or combo with re-drilling the holes. The *standard* muffler found on most gx340s and gx390s is big and protrudes far in front of the engine as the inlet is near the center of the muffler. There are smaller OE mufflers for 8/9hp gx240/270s, that use a much smaller oblong muffler shell with far forward inlet (pulling muffler tighter to engine) and bolt right on to the 340/390s. If it has the big square heat shield on the muffler it will likely have to be removed or just trim off the front portion. The small form-fitting shield will work as-is. The 'standard' gx240/270 muffler will provide almost no more clearance, it must be the small oblong shell type with offset inlet (e.g. Honda#18310-ZE2-W00)

I've done this repowering a couple older Salsco truckloaders with gx390s. A note, the smaller 8/9hp muffler on the 11/13 Honda will be a little louder and the muffler itself will get a bit hotter than the big fullsize 11/13 piece. We have had no issues, though.
Good luck

Edit: One more thing, pay attention to the shaft height from engine base. The impeller should be pretty close to center of the housing/inlet. If it looks noticeably off and/or shaft won't even pass through bulkhead with engine base on frame, you will have to use some spacers to position the engine higher. If this is the case, it will probably be 1"

Last edited by BDLandscapes; 11-19-2012 at 11:43 PM. Reason: More info
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  #3  
Old 11-20-2012, 05:27 AM
C Jovingo Landscaping C Jovingo Landscaping is offline
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Thanks for the info & it's the GX340 11hp. Don't know why I was thinkin it was 12hp. I was trying to avoid making the 1.5. Hr round trip & taking it off sprayer, just to find out it won't work. Was the original Giant Vac 16hp a B&S Twin? I'll have to measure impeller & if it is 1", I may make the trip & give it a try. If It's 1 1/8" I will just wait. Anyone else have opinion?

There is a Kohler 23hp 1 1/8 shaft on Craigslist $575 firm. Says low hours but who knows. What's your opinion on the price? Here is link to ad http://akroncanton.craigslist.org/grd/3419153339.html
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Old 11-21-2012, 04:49 PM
C Jovingo Landscaping C Jovingo Landscaping is offline
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K, measured impeller & it is for 1 1/8" shaft. So Honda 11hp is out! Found Honda GX620 20hp for $600 or trade. Asked what he was lookin for. Nothing I had but I threw out Commercial Gas paint Sprayer (worth more than $600) & he is interested & contacting me when he gets off work. I love Honda, I used Honda powered paint sprayers (4.5hp-13hp) for 12yrs & ran them hard & put them away wet, with hardly no maintenance.

What your thoughts on 20hp Honda to power Giant Vac leaf loader? 10" inlet with 8" discharge
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Old 11-21-2012, 07:58 PM
BDLandscapes BDLandscapes is offline
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The 20hp Honda will be more than enough with a 10" inlet hose, even with heavy and wet leaves - especially since you are currently solo. Really anything 16hp+ will do good with a 10" hose, of course the more the better! As I said before I've repowered our older Salsco units (which also have 10" intake but a 6" square discharge) with gx390s, and even with only 13hp they do just fine - nearly comparable to our newer 16hp/10" Salscos(Lesco). Only time it seems like more power would be beneficial is trying to suck up grass clippings, just have to back off and go slower.

Unless you find a better/cheaper deal, there would be little reason to go for more than a 20hp. Anything over that would provide no real performance change unless installed on a bigger machine with 12" intake and larger impeller (in which case 23-25+ would be ideal)


As for that kohler engine you found - that muffler setup obviously won't work. Will either have to cut/fab/modify it, or ideally just buy a muffler assembly that will work. These engines have been used in several brand truckloaders before, and there are mufflers assemblies available that put the 'can' on one side of the engine (side outlet) and route the piping over (which allows engine to be mounted flush or near flush to flat surface/bulkhead)
The 2 3/4" shaft length sounds short, though. I seem to recall most calling for ~3.5" shaft. If the shaft is too short the impeller will contact the bulkhead when fully seated. You can measure through the back of the impeller how deep it will slide onto the crankshaft. The engine crankshaft will often need to be about 1" longer than this.
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  #6  
Old 11-21-2012, 08:55 PM
C Jovingo Landscaping C Jovingo Landscaping is offline
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Location: Canton, OH
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When I measured diameter on impeller, I also measured depth for shaft & it was 3.5". At 2:30 the guy with Honda 20hp was interested in trade & said he'd text after work. At abt 6:30 i texted to see if he was still workin. No reply....must have changed his mind. I'm asking $1300 OBO (wanting $1000) for a commercial paint sprayer that is $4000 new. He wants $600 or trade for ATV or stump grinder. Told him sprayer would give him more trading value.
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