Anyone Re-Power a mower??

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by Elwood #8, Sep 1, 2004.

  1. Elwood #8

    Elwood #8 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 12

    718K Grasshopper, 400 hours, 18hp Kohler Air Cooled (toast).

    Looking to re-power. I would prefer Honda or Kawi, not too fond of Kohler.

    Found an exact replacement 18hp Kohler for $1800 and I thought that was a bit too high. I am in search of a place (online) to get a new engine. Also, I would like a bit more power. 20hp or 22 hp would be great as this mower has a 61" Deck.

    Have you done this before?

    Would you do it again?

    What brand engine do you prefer and why?

    Any and all advice is appreciated!!
  2. Lawnchoice

    Lawnchoice LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 781

    If you are still looking I found a couple of places online that you could check out for more pricing.

    I did find a place that had a 20hp Kawasaki for a couple hundred LESS than the Kohler you found.

    I run all Hondas. They are quite a bit more usually but I have minimal problems with them.

    I repowered one of my older Scag hydros with a 18hp Honda last year. Fairly smooth changeover and well worth it. I take good care of my stuff and it's worth it for me to repower if necessary.

  3. fixer67

    fixer67 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,098

    I am not going to tell you what brand engine to use because everyone will tell you something different, what I am going to tell you is a few things to keep in mind. Electric system change over, this could be from the simple rewire to a wiring nightmare. Mounting interference, is there any thing that is going to get in the way of the new engine. Exhaust routing and muffler, a lot of the time the exhaust system is custom made for that engine and mower set up so you may have to home make an exhaust system. Starter set up, will the new starter be the same type, fender mount solenoid or starter mount Bendix/solenoid. And the most inportant thing of and where most people mess up, the crankshaft size and type. Every thing else can be made to work but this is the one thing that has to be right. The new engine has to have the same size, lenght and type crankshaft to work. I work in a small engine shop and have people bring in mowers that they have did a engine change out and they have problems getting it to work and you would be surprised at the number that have forgot all about the crankshaft until they had it all mounted and hooked up. There are 100s of people who do this every day with no problem but for each of them there is a guy who has flipped out and rammed his head though his work shop wall becaused he messed up. Take your time when getting a new engine or you may have a new window in your shop.
  4. l1011100

    l1011100 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 96

    I agree with fixer67, you need to lookout for all that. I put a new engine on my exmark 36 this spring, I replaced a briggs with a briggs. I got it from Jacks Small Engines online I saved money over anyone else I found, and got a brand new engine that slipped in and works great. They can help you out with measurements and differences between the two engines.
  5. Elwood #8

    Elwood #8 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 12

    Thanks for the replies. Crank size has been considered. From what I have found with my limited searching is that I can only go up to about 22hp without going to a larger crank. Currently, I am at 1" keyed. If that was a non-issue, I would get a 500HP engine?? LOL

    The engines I have seen so far will fit deminsionally and the muffler is usually extra, but I do have the space for whatever they call for.

    If you are familiar with a grasshopper front mount mower, the engine bay does have confinement, but there is plenty of room with the current engine in there. I would think (and from what little looking I have done so far) that only increasing 2-4 hp would keep the engine to a size that would still fit easily.

    Thanks for the replies and the link!!
  6. wriken

    wriken LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,154

    done it before, If I was to keep my 28 hp, generac, and it blew up, I would look at a kohlor to repower it with.
    here's a pic of a recent repower, from kaw to briggs

    36 frankinmachine 003.jpg
  7. BladesAway

    BladesAway LawnSite Member
    from Ok
    Messages: 74

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