Ready to repower Dixie Chopper have questions

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by soilsample, Oct 1, 2012.

  1. soilsample

    soilsample LawnSite Member
    Messages: 19

    Hi guys!
    I'm in need of a new engine for my Dixie Chopper Silver Eagle
    It's a LT2000 (2004) with a 20hp Kohler Command.

    I'm leaning toward a 27hp Briggs..... Mostly due to price.
    I only use the mower for my 2.5 acre lawn.

    Trying to decide on what engine, but I need to know the shaft dimensions on my current engine.
    Can anyone help me? I don't want to buy the wrong thing.

    Also any advice is welcome...... Tell me if you've done this swap and any pitfalls that you've encountered.

  2. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,029


    You need to remove the crank pulley and measure your crank length and diameter to know for sure.

    Things to keep in mind when swapping engine brands;

    Different wiring.
    Different charging systems.
    Different throttle-choke configurations.
    Different exhaust......
  3. herler

    herler LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,139

    One other thing...

    Most people who have never replaced an engine on an aging machine frequently think more power...
    Granted when they think less it's usually a money issue...
    And you want more for less, whichever the case may be it fails to take into account more relevant factors.

    The machine was designed for a 20hp engine, and it was broken in and ran all these years with 20 horses going through the frame and all the related parts... These parts have worn and fatigued themselves in accordance to the whims and specs of that 20hp engine, more than likely more than a few of those parts simply will not tolerate more horsepower today and they will break, requiring you to perform frequent repairs.

    Further more engines wear down, that 20hp Kawasaki was likely only putting out 18-19 actual hp's towards the end.
    So you want to replace it with something in the range of 18-20 hp, which if you have 27hp Briggs money then you probably have enough for a 20hp Kawasaki but you're just not going to get better than new out of it, perhaps a good reminder why we should take care of our stuff but you can certainly get another 5-10 years of use from it, at about the same performance you were getting when the Kawasaki quit, which...

    Change and check the oil and filter religiously.
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2012
  4. soilsample

    soilsample LawnSite Member
    Messages: 19

    Thanks for the replies!

    My 20hp Kohler bent a valve early in life and was repaired by a local shop. Ever since then it's never really performed like it should.
    Now it's at the point where the compression is down and it's using oil......

    My Dixie Chopper is still in very good condition so i hope it handles the extra hp without too much trouble!

    I was trying to avoid removing the pulley and clutch just to measure the shaft, but I guess I'll have to.

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  5. piston slapper

    piston slapper LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,337

    Putting more horsepower on the mower is not going to be an issue...
    The right muffler and getting the wiring correct should be your concerns...
    If you research the spec # on the cv20 you should be able to determine the crank size..
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