How good are the 26hp briggs on Scag tiger cubs??

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Sydenstricker Landscaping, Jun 19, 2007.

  1. Sydenstricker Landscaping

    Sydenstricker Landscaping LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,281

    I was at my Scag dealer today and saw a 26 hp Briggs extended life engine on a 48" tiger cub rider. Has anyone had any experience with these on mowers?? Are they any good or do they pale in comparison to the Kawasaki and Kohler? Thanks, Tom
  2. LLandscaping

    LLandscaping LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,016

    The Cub with the Briggs doesn't have the Donaldson air filter and it doesn't come with the foam filled tires or adjustable steering levers. The Cub with the Kohler and Kawasaki come standard with the above. The Cub with the Briggs is Scags promotional mower this year I believe. I have had several Tiger Cubs with the 19 Kawasaki with no problems. On air cooled engines the air filter is the life of the engine the Donaldson help out especially during leaf season.
  3. ncls

    ncls LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 442

    I've got that engine on a Bad Boy 50". Just got it this year. 125 hours and counting. Two oil changes. More than enough power.

    If you're looking at the Freedom Z, be careful, I think the ground speed is only like 7 mph. You want to spend the money and get the Tiger Cub. 10 mph ground speed.

    Were you at Best Truck??? I was there today around 11:30.

    The Cub you should be able to get for around 57-5900. That works out to be 1400 more over 3 years. Divide that by 3 seasons(25 cuts x 3=75). That comes to 18.66 per cutting week. With the Cub, your ground speed will allow you to do a few more lawns a day. Which will more than pay for the cub.
  4. Envy Lawn Service

    Envy Lawn Service LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,087

    It's a good engine and unlike kawasaki, it has good stock air filtration.
    The kawasaki's need the aftermarket canister filters.

    For the price and the HP gain (7hp) I have recommended this option for the 48" Tiger Cub since it came out. A lot of guys took my advice. Only one has ever been back to complain. He had something go wrong, but he never did elaborate at all, although I asked, and I've heard no more from him. So I assume Briggs fixed him up.

    If I needed a new 48" ZTR and had a nearby Scag dealer, that 26/48" is the one I would buy.
    No question....

    For the money it is a no-brainer.
    Even if the engine let go right outside the warranty...
    Well you saved enough on the purchase price to re-power with whatever you want.
  5. JimQ

    JimQ LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,139

    Use caution with the 26hp ELS. We are currently experiencing a high number of infant mortality crankshaft bearing/seal failures on machines equipped with it. No problems with the 22's or 24's though. We're currently working with Briggs to identify the root cause. Can't offer anything more. I would suggest asking around at several dealers to see if anyone else is having issues with it.

  6. Willofalltrades

    Willofalltrades LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,000

    Why are babies dieing around these? lol Jk I just thought it was a wierd way to word it lol
  7. rainman14624

    rainman14624 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 20

    How about a little more information on the problem. I recently bought a Scag Freedom Z with that 26 ELS engine. I'd like to know the symptoms of those failures so I can be aware of any problems in their "infancy." (Couldn't resist) In all seriousness, please elaborate if you can.
  8. Juan_Deere

    Juan_Deere LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 301

    I think it's funny, that you guys think the term infant mortality is funny. I perform data analysis for reliability centered maintenance on helicopters, and we use the term quite frequently amongst the engineers.
  9. Juan_Deere

    Juan_Deere LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 301

    There aren't really any symptoms you can look out for when you get that type of failure. Those parts are internal and you won't know they are going until they go. You could tear the engine down every once in a while and look for the failure, but how would you determine an interval to tear them down when the failure can occur in a matter of minutes and probably seconds? Another option would be to pay for oil sample analysis, but once again, by the time you start showing evidence in the oil, the bearings are pretty much shot. They may not have failed yet, but they would still need to be changed. Either way, you are out of business until the repairs are made, or the engine is swapped out with a good one.
  10. JimQ

    JimQ LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,139

    Yah, yah, yah, let me take my Test Engineer hat off....

    OK.... so

    After the engine is installed in a new machine and it is started and run for the first time, we've seen both seal and/or bearing failures before the machine made it off the end of the assembly line.

    We've also had several reports from dealers of similar failures with very few hours on the machine / engine.

    Again, 26hp only. We've had no issues with any of the other ELS engines.

    Keep in mind, there is no true crankshaft bearing in this engine. The crank runs on a film of oil in a machined aluminum race. With the belt tension that is required to run the hydro pumps and drive a large deck, this might just be "too much" for that bearing type.

    I've heard that Briggs may discontinue this engine for use on commercial and "prosumer" type machines next year, however, I can't substantiate this.

    I post when I know more.


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