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Kohler or Kawasaki?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by DaveinVa, Mar 28, 2001.

  1. DaveinVa

    DaveinVa LawnSite Member
    Posts: 28

    Ok fella's - which would you choose on a Lazer - a 23hp Kohler - or a 23 hp Kawasaki? - The quote I have is that the Kaw is $85 more than the Kohler..... I'm more concerned with the performance rather than the minimal cost difference.
  2. turfguy33

    turfguy33 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 121

    Going on just personal perferences, I like the Kawi better. Now don't get me wrong, the kohler is a good engine, but I think that the quality is better on the kawi
  3. Mowingman

    Mowingman LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Texas
    Posts: 4,662

    I agree! I run both engines and feel both are good, but Kawi may be a little better. However,some thread on this list recently,discussed how poor Kawi is about warranty support. Apparently engine problems are NEVER their fault according to reports. I have never had a warranty problem with Kohler. :D
  4. 65hoss

    65hoss LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,360

    I was one of the people that have had bad support problems from kawi. They suck! I have 3 kawis, 2 kohlers, 2 hondas, and 1 briggs. I can tell you, I plan to go back to Kohlers next time. Now my new 23 kawi has is having carb problems. Hesitates real bad coming off of idle, and when you look into the carb while sitting it has a puddle of fuel sitting there. When the kawis are running they are great, but getting parts and warrenty work are terrible. 3 small engine shops around here said the same thing. You can be down several days with a kawi, and only hours with a kohler.
  5. ETturfman

    ETturfman LawnSite Member
    Posts: 25

    I just bought a 48" Lazer with a 21 Kawi. I debated between the two because I heard the same things as 65hoss and Mowingman. However, after talking to several mechanics I've been told that in general Kawi's last a little longer and perform a little better.

  6. TLS

    TLS LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,937


    I'm assuming that you are comparing air cooled engines. Because Lazers now come in a 23hp LC AND a 23 air cooled. Anyway, the aircooled Kawi 23hp has more torque than a Kohler 25hp, let alone a less powerful 23hp. Overall, including the warranty claim problems, go with the Kawi. After all, I get a loaner on all warranty claims, and after warranty period expires, I get 1/2 price rentals and first dibs on rental equipment. All machines will break, some break without our help, some break with a LOT of help from us. Let your dealer fight with warranty problems with Kawi, thats his job!

    I say Kawasaki!

    [Edited by dixie1 on 03-28-2001 at 12:59 PM]
  7. Richard Martin

    Richard Martin LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 14,700

    That all depends on where you measure torque. If you look at the max torque numbers you would see that the Kaw <i>barely</i> makes more torque than the Kohler at 2400 rpm. Unfortunately this is not where we run these engines. We run our engines at 3600 rpm and greater. At 3600 rpm the Kohler has about 35 ft. lbs of torque vs. the Kawasaki's 33 ft. lb of torque. That is why the Kohler is a 25 horse and the Kawasaki is a 23 horse.
  8. TLS

    TLS LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,937


    Not to start a pissing contest, but...

    The Kawi FH680 Horizontal shaft is 675cc's. Makes just over 40 lbft from under 2000 rpm to 3000 rpm's. It then slightly drops after 3000 to a final 34 lbft at 3600 rpm's. Thats a pretty flat torque curve if you ask me. Meanwhile it makes 23hp at 3600, and is still climbing at that rpm.

    The Kohler CH23 horizontal shaft is really a 22hp as it is 674cc's just like the CH22. It makes a maximum of 33 lbft at 2600. This is a max figure as I dont have a torque rise chart for the Kohlers. I can only assume that it also has a rather flat torque curve. But nevertheless, its MAXIMUM is the MINIMUM of the otherwise equal Kawasaki. 6 lbft is a lot, regardless of where it is at in the rpm range.

    Then you have the CH25 Kohler with its 725cc's thats 50 more cc's than the Kawasaki. It has a maximum of 40 lbft at 2200 rpm's. Also, all I can do is assume that its torque curve is similar to the Kawisaki's. This engine develops 25hp at 3600 rpm.

    If I had to choose between the 23hp Kawasaki and either the 23 or 25hp Kohler, I would choose the Kawisaki hands down.

  9. Richard Martin

    Richard Martin LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 14,700

    I can understand your allegence to Kawasaki, that's fine with me.

    The torque curve of the Kohler is not like that of the Kawasaki. It is flatter. This is why it is a 25 and not a 23. It is my understanding that torque is the only thing that is actually measured when power readings are taken. Horsepower is merely computed using torque and rpms. So if you have 2 engines that turn the same rpm and one has more hp than the other wouldn't it make sense that it would have more torque also?
  10. John DiMartino

    John DiMartino LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,555

    I dont care what it looks like on paper-in the thick grass,or climbing hills,the 23 Kawi will blow the Kohler 25 hp in the weeds-hands down no comparison.Ive seen this twice-so i doubt we had to strong kawi's and 2 weak kohlers.The kohler 25 just drops rpm's,and bogs,the kawi just keeps on screaming.I would buy the kawi,just because it is much less likely to give you trouble.you'll get tired of the hard starting kohlers,they are very cold blooded,clackity clack from the the kohlers lifters ,if you dont mind listening to tick ,tick,and want to save 85 bucks-buy the kohler.

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