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Kohler Single Balance Gears


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#1 bgkid2966 OFFLINE  

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Posted March 07, 2012 - 12:44 PM

I was reading a topic, (
Engine (Kohler 321S) Blew, Possible Rebuild?

Started by frenchy, Feb 29, 2012 09:44 PM),

and this got me thinking. Is it worth a tear down to remove the balance gears? Does the idle have to be set up really high to get past the vibration? I am looking to get all the pros and cons to this so as to make an educated decision.


If you have any thoughts or facts let's hear them.


Thanks,


Geno


#2 Cvans ONLINE  

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Posted March 07, 2012 - 12:52 PM

My view on this is "if it ain't broke, don't fix it". If you have the engine apart for some other reason then yes I would remove them. I would not pull the engine just for that reason. There are probably tens of thousands of those engines running just fine with them, including mine.
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#3 olcowhand ONLINE  

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Posted March 07, 2012 - 01:47 PM

I take them out of every engine, but as Chris said, only when I already have her down for other reasons. Now if you have some weird sounds coming from the engine, that may be a good time to go ahead & get in there to take them out while checking for the reasons for the knocks/rattles, even if the balance gears aren't the cause.
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#4 GTTinkerer OFFLINE  

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Posted March 07, 2012 - 01:59 PM

Seems like if you have that much vibration at an idle you may be doing yourself a favor and saving some money by opening it up and taking a look. Most of the single cylinders Kohlers (like most other single cylinder engines) that have been in the shop did have some vibration but if something lets loose it is hard to say where it will end up.
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#5 bgkid2966 OFFLINE  

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Posted March 07, 2012 - 09:43 PM

If I remove the balance gears should I remove the shafts for them also or leave them be? I am tempted to tear into it in the summer since it hibernates all summer. It could use a new head gasket and truing of the head while I am at it.

Geno

#6 KennyP ONLINE  

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Posted March 08, 2012 - 08:01 AM

I left the shafts in on my K341. They are a press fit and do no harm. I just broke the upper gear to get it out..
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#7 olcowhand ONLINE  

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Posted March 08, 2012 - 09:45 AM

Yep, like Kenny said, if the pins are still tight, leave them be.

#8 Amigatec OFFLINE  

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Posted March 08, 2012 - 09:54 AM

I left the gear in my K301 when I had it apart. I didn't see any reason to remove them.

#9 coldone OFFLINE  

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Posted March 08, 2012 - 03:04 PM

I just pulled my engine back off the snapper 1650 so that i can remove the balance gears. I got the engine installed last week and when I started it up it was making the front end jump off the ground. I tried several times to get video of it but since the frist two times I started it up it did not jump anymore. I tried several days to get it to be that bad again but it wasnt, but I could hear something in the engine wasnt right. So i decided to pull it and see what was going on. I pulled it last night and dropped the oil pan and pulled the piston. I managed to get the lower gear out and I am still working on getting the upper gear out. There is something strange going on with the balance gears. I dont know if they are worn or loose but I am glad I am pulling them out.

I will get some pics in the next few days.

#10 JDBrian OFFLINE  

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Posted March 08, 2012 - 04:28 PM

The later 300 series JD's like my 314 do not have them. As far as idle speed JD recommends 2200.

#11 olcowhand ONLINE  

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Posted March 08, 2012 - 06:29 PM

At 2200 rpm idle speed, you'll not even notice the balance gears being removed.

#12 bgkid2966 OFFLINE  

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Posted March 08, 2012 - 07:11 PM

2200 RPM seems a little on the high to me. I also fear the vibration with the aluminum pan and solid mounts. I have had to seal up stress cracks in the pan with JB Weld. Just a concern.

Geno

#13 JDBrian OFFLINE  

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Posted March 08, 2012 - 07:12 PM

Daniel, I wonder why JD removed those gears. It may have been part of the decision to go with rubber engine mounts. The 140 engine was bolted directly to the frame. On the later tractors they switched to the rubber mounts. I suppose this was all part of the push to build a more refined tractor. The big change came when the 318 was introduced. It's a way different beast then the older 300's which are very much like a 140.

#14 JDBrian OFFLINE  

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Posted March 08, 2012 - 07:19 PM

2200 RPM seems a little on the high to me. I also fear the vibration with the aluminum pan and solid mounts. I have had to seal up stress cracks in the pan with JB Weld. Just a concern.

Geno


I agree it seems high. 2200 is what JD set the idle at when they removed the balance gears. They switched to using rubber mounts as well so the engines are not directly mounted. For comparison the JD140 with a solid mount and balance gears had an idle speed of 1200. These tractors are also hydro drive so you need the revs up a bit to get good performance from the hydro and the high idle really isn't an issue. In a gear driven tractor it would restrict your ability to vary ground speed with engine rpms in some instances.

#15 olcowhand ONLINE  

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Posted March 08, 2012 - 07:42 PM

I think that 1400 to 1600rpm would be fine too, as I've never set one to idle at 2200. In solidly mounted engines, without the balance gears you can only slightly tell the vibes have increased at all. On rubber mounted, if you remove the gears & idle down to 1200, the shake is definitely noticeable. But if you increase it to 1400 or so rpm, you see the shake go away. The easiest way is just to start the engine, then slowly increase the idle speed until the engine smooths out. I'd bet it will be around 1400+rpm. I didn't have neither a vibra-tach, or my photo-tach back when I rebuilt my last Kohlers, so I'm not sure what I set the rpm's to, but I can guarantee it wasn't near 2200rpm!
As far as JD dropping the balance gears when they went to rubber mounts, that increased engine shake at low rpm's. Massey models with rubber mounts all kept the balance gears.....till I got them! LOL




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