Kohler 29 EFI?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing Equipment' started by MOturkey, Dec 28, 2012.

  1. weaver

    weaver LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,393

    Hey what mower did you replace when buying this one? Did you get that cool suspension seat on it ..
  2. JDGlandscape

    JDGlandscape LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 514

    does anyone have much experience with these motors with what they are rated for? I know GMLC has the gravely 52" cut with the smaller engine and it is fine.. I am more wondering about the gravely 460 with either the kohler efi or the kawasaki 850..

    I have heard they have had trouble with the 850?.. I just dont want to be underpowered bagging with it on hills
  3. retrodog

    retrodog LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,429

    I ordered my first 29efis for stock cause i heard so many good things about them. I will let you guys know how they hold up. $8500 retail for 61" puts it up there a little for us with no suspension, but we'll see how they go...
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  4. puppypaws

    puppypaws LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,177

    Take my word for it, electronic fuel injection is far superior in every way to conventional fuel delivery, and Kohler uses the best (Delphi, same as in your vehicle) components for their system.

    This does not mean you can't have problems, because anything mechanical is prone, but it does mean you will get the best fuel economy, the best ease of starting, and the best performance from your engine. You will achieve more feel of power due to no throttle lag (as with a conventional governor), this means the engine senses load much faster, enabling the fuel to be delivered quicker; which in return keeps the top end operating rpm's from dropping as easily.
  5. Ridin' Green

    Ridin' Green LawnSite Fanatic
    Male, from Michigan
    Messages: 17,828

    I'd take he FX850 any day over the 29EFI Kohler. Kohler is still labeling their engines with the old rating system stickers which is false advertising IMO. The 29 efi is actually only 25.3 HP/38.7 ft lbs torque using the new system of rating, while the FX850 is true rated at 27hp/44.6 ft lbs torque.

    I agree on having efi when possible, but not unless it is providing the same HP output as a carbed engine.

    http://www.kohlerengines.com/onlinecatalog/productDetail.htm?productNumber=Command PRO EFI ECV749

  6. puppypaws

    puppypaws LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,177

    You can add 2 hp to an efi engine, in other words, a 29 efi will perform equally to a 31 hp carburetor type engine rated by the SAE J1940 standard. This means with Kohler still using to old hp rating standard (SAE J1940), they are allowed to list their hp rating to within 15% of actual checked hp without an air cleaner or muffler. Their hp may not fall the full 15%, but only means this is allowed.

    By explaining that fuel injection adds hp to an engine from a performance standard, you will understand why the FX1000V engine I have on my 72" is listed at 35 hp, whereas when you move to the FX1000V-DFI you gain 2 hp, and now have the fuel injected model which Kawasaki lists at 37 hp.
  7. Ridin' Green

    Ridin' Green LawnSite Fanatic
    Male, from Michigan
    Messages: 17,828

    I took the new HP numbers for each engine right from their sites puppy. The 29 Kohler is still not the equal of the FX850 even though it is fuel injected. The torque numbers are even farther apart.

    I'll be glad when the day finally comes where they are all EFI/DFI.
  8. puppypaws

    puppypaws LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,177

    The Kohler 29 efi is listed at 44.3 lbs. of torque, and the FX 850 is listed at 44.6, really no difference. This tells me the engines will be pretty equal in power, the difference will be seen in reaction time to load; which will make the 29 efi feel stronger.

    The method (SAE J1940) Kohler uses will allow them 15% less than true hp, this is not to say the engines actual hp will be 15% less, only that it is possible.

    I was running a 60" Hustler Super Z with a 25 hp Kawasaki when my new 60" Hustler Super Z with a 27 hp Kohler was delivered. I pulled out of the grass I was cutting when the truck drove up, after swapping out, I went back into the same exact grass I was cutting, with the exact same mower, the only difference being; the new mower had a 27 hp Kohler engine, whereas the year old mower had a 25 hp Kawasaki. The grass I was cutting would cause the governor to react on the Kawasaki, the new 27 hp Kohler never changed sounds. I new immediately the Kohler was definitely showing it was 2 hp stronger, but this was also during the time Kawasaki was using the SAE J1940 hp rating method.

    I was cutting with the same 60" Hustler Super Z that had the 27 hp Kohler; when the truck drove up delivering my new 60" Hustler Super Z with a Kohler 28 efi engine. The 28 efi is nothing but the same 27 hp Kohler engine I had previously; that has now been fuel injected. The same; as I could tell a difference in power with the 27 Kohler being stronger than the 25 Kawasaki, I could tell even more difference in the 28 efi feeling considerably more powerful than the previous 27 Kohler I was running.

    There was so much difference, I started paying close attention to how the engine reacted in different size grass. I could tell immediately there was not a noticeable difference when the engine required more fuel for extra power, there was no noticeable lag time as seen with a conventional governor. The efi would hold the high end of the engines operating rpms more easily than would the carburetor type engine. This told me the efi was sensing much more quickly its need for fuel, and this in itself caused the added power to feel much smoother in transition.

    The Kohler 29 efi should perform as a 31 hp engine by the SAE J1940 rating method due to fuel injection alone, with the worse case scenario being a 15% hp drag, this would bring the efi back into a 26.5 hp range, so close to the FX850 you would never know a difference.

    This is why you see the Kohler 29 efi, which in actuality may be rated at 26.5 hp by the SAE J1995 method Kawasaki now uses; being listed at 44.3 lbs. of torque, and the Kawasaki 27 hp FX850V being listed at 44.6 lbs. They will both be pretty equal in power, with the difference showing up in better fuel economy and quicker response time with the fuel injected Kohler.

    I own both the carburetor type Kawasaki, as well as the fuel injected Kohler, meaning I have no preference. I am only educating people on the differences, which comes from my hands on experience.
  9. Ridin' Green

    Ridin' Green LawnSite Fanatic
    Male, from Michigan
    Messages: 17,828

    puppy, you're not listening to/reading me here. The numbers I posted in my first post are not my "figures", they are taken right off of Kawi's and Kohler's sites. They (Kohler) show the J1940 rating for the main listing, but below it at the bottom of each spec chart is the J1995 rating, and they are as I posted above. The 29EFI Kohler does not equal the FX850 by any rating measure, especially in torque.
  10. puppypaws

    puppypaws LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,177

    I see exactly what you are saying, and you are correct...


    1) Max Power (hp) and Max Torque (lbs ft) specifications for Kohler general purpose engines are rated pursuant to Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) J1940 based on gross output testing performed according to SAE J1995 without the air cleaner and muffler. Actual engine power and torque are lower and affected by accessories (air cleaner, exhaust, charging, cooling, fuel pump, etc.), application, engine speed, ambient operating conditions (temperature, humidity and altitude) and other factors. This J1940 / J1995 rating provides consistent measurement to customers who may want to control the intake and exhaust features of the engine. For more information, contact Kohler Co. Engine Engineering Department. Kohler Co. reserves the right to change product specifications, designs and standard equipment without notice and without incurring obligation.

    I am now wondering if Kawasaki is giving correct hp, and honestly don't see how they could unless their engine it is checked with all accessories attached, and knowing all applications are different.

    I would think the only fair way hp could be advertised would be if the engine was checked with the air cleaner and muffler attached. We all know you can generate more hp with the air cleaner out, and no muffler.

    I would love to hear feedback from someone running the same machine with both engines. I doubt there would be a great deal of difference in feel of power, fuel injection just makes for a stronger and more responsive feeling engine.

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