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Kohler K341 surging and sputtering

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by beerguzzler50, Oct 3, 2006.

  1. beerguzzler50

    beerguzzler50 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 15

    I have replaced the points, condenser, air filter, spark plug, fuel filter and carburator (brand new) and this engine just won't run right.

    It starts up right away, but if I take the choke fully off, it will surge constantly. I can also hear sputtering/very small backfires in the carb. It seems to be blowing out the carb a bit too...like pressure coming out of it when I take the air filter off.

    I have pulled the head, and the cylinder looked ok, so I think the rings are good...and it doesn't burn oil. The valves didn't look warped, and I adjusted them per kohler spec.

    This all seems like a majorly lean condition...any thoughts? This is an engine that I have only this experience with. It is on an older allis chalmers.

    I forgot to mention that cutting grass under load it seems to smooth out the surging problem??? wierd.
  2. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,029

    Well, Guzzle 50 more beers and try adjusting the carb. again. :waving:

    Have you checked the governor adjustment ?

    Here is the procedure if you need it;

    With the throttle control at idle or stop position (not running) push the governor arm to where the carb. throttle shaft is at wide open position. Pay attention to which way the governor shaft the arm is attached to rotates.

    Now loosen the arm retaining screw and while holding wide open grab the end of the shaft with pliers and rotate the shaft in the same direction the arm rotated it then re-tighten the retaining screw.
  3. beerguzzler50

    beerguzzler50 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 15

    I'll check the adjustment, but I don't think it is that because I tried unhooking the gov. linkage and just holding the butterfly in several places and it wouldn't stay alive...so I think the gov. is doing what it is supposed to. But I will try the adjustment to make sure. Thanks...the beer may make it seem to me to run better!!
  4. khouse

    khouse LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,465

    if you don't have a leak down tester then next time your head is off pull that intake valve and have a look.
  5. pugs

    pugs LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,024

    Is it an adjustable carb or a fixed jet carb? Walbro or Carter?

    Sounds like the carb is not adjusted properly or you may have other issues. As was posted above you may wanna get your hands on a leakdown gauge and test leakage.
  6. beerguzzler50

    beerguzzler50 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 15

    kohler adjustable carb...not warlboro.

    What do you mean pull the intake valve? I pulled the head once and the cylinder walls looked good and the intake and exhaust valves weren't burned/warped (that I coud see). and there wasn't excessive carbon buildup.
  7. khouse

    khouse LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,465

    you said you heard small backfires back out the carb. so it could be a little carbon broke loose under the intake valve or maybe it's not seating fully. i didn't want you to go out and pull the head right now and check. i said the next time you have the head off take the intake valve out and look at the seating pattern. this would be after all else fails to get it running.
  8. beerguzzler50

    beerguzzler50 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 15


    BTW, how would I tell if the valves were in need of lapping or not? They looked OK in that there was no buildup or anything blocking the seating that I could see...but is it so sensitive or precise that the problem can't be seen with the eye?
  9. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,029

    What did you gap the points at ? What you really need is a in-line spark tester to see if the problem is ignition or fuel related.

    Have you set the throttle to where it sputters and tried applying the choke slowly to see if it smooths out ?
  10. beerguzzler50

    beerguzzler50 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 15

    set point to .020 per manual spec. Tried going less and more on gap to see if it made any difference for the better...it didn't.

    The choke can make the surging smooth out, but the sputtering and the pressure out the carb continues.

    Checked the float last night and it is correct...also drained gas, put new fuel filter in and checked gas lines...all ok...and used higher octane gas...no difference.

    I am starting to think this is a intake valve issue. Can't see what else it could be. What is a spark tester and what would it tell me? Can I rig one up?

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