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Sunstar 18


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#1 Diesel guy OFFLINE  

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Posted May 18, 2014 - 09:21 PM

Hi everyone, I'm new here and this is my first post. I just purchased a simplicity sunstar 18 with the Briggs vanguard. 48" deck with power steering and a hyd lift in the rear. I was just curious as to what everyone seems to think about these mowers. I haven't heard much bad about them. But always good to hear some first hand experiences and things (if any) to keep an eye on other than the usual things (oil levels, etc). I will say that I rode it around some today and it has independent brakes (or the option to split the brake pedals and use them separately at least) but when I tried to use them independently, they kick the hydro lever back to the neutral position. Which mowers I have used before that are hydro do this but it seems that with this tractor doing that the independent brake option is pretty much useless?? Any input on that would be great as well. Sorry for the long post! Thanks in advance for any info
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#2 Texas Deere and Horse OFFLINE  

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Posted May 18, 2014 - 09:23 PM

Welcome to GTtalk, Someone will be along shortly to help you out.



#3 MH81 ONLINE  

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Posted May 18, 2014 - 09:24 PM

I do not have one nor have I had the pleasure to try them, but they do have a decent reputation.
I am pretty sure that several members have (or had) them and should be able to give you some feedback.

Looking forward to seeing pics and :welcometogttalk:

#4 Diesel guy OFFLINE  

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Posted May 18, 2014 - 09:34 PM

Thanks for the warm welcome . I will say that this thing is a TANK. Can't believe how heavily built it is. I'm pretty new to the world of older GTs. I think I've found a new hobby!! Here's a picture of it on the trailer. More to come of it out doing some work later! ImageUploadedByTapatalk1400466868.594819.jpg


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#5 superaben OFFLINE  

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Posted May 18, 2014 - 10:06 PM

The Sunstar is a great little tractor.  One of my favorites.  It is a horse for work.  The hydraulic lift on the rear is a bonus. 

 

Ben W. 


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#6 Cvans OFFLINE  

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Posted May 18, 2014 - 10:27 PM

Welcome here. I'm a previous owner and my wife's family has four of them. The first thing I would do is pull the tunnel cover off and check the condition of the drive shaft universal joints. For some reason people tend to not grease the rear one and this can lead to real problems for the Hydro input shaft. If the joint feels good grease it and if the shaft seal isn't leaking you should be good to go. 

Also make sure the front suspension is being maintained. 

They are very good tractors and deserve to be taken care. It should serve you well for many years to come. 


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#7 Diesel guy OFFLINE  

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Posted May 18, 2014 - 10:37 PM

I'll have to check the shaft! What all should I check out on the front end. What is the suspension comprised of? It has about 1395 hrs on it. What the average lifespan of one of properly maintained??


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#8 rustyoldjunk OFFLINE  

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Posted May 19, 2014 - 12:01 AM

I love mine,it is my go to machine. I believe that when you use the brakes independently the hydro is suppose to reduce speed so that you don't accidentally make a a fast super sharp turn. You can down load and print manuals for it. Here is a link to the owners manual,if it works. http://bsintek.basco...rE3CNg5kbp796Dq

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#9 Alc ONLINE  

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Posted May 19, 2014 - 05:35 AM

Welcome to GTTalk , Jim might be right about turning too quick , when I use the brakes at all on my JD 318 you can see the hydro lever go back towards netural by it's self but never to the extent that yours might be I bet the  hydo/brake must have some kind of adjustment . Keep us posted , Al



#10 crittersf1 OFFLINE  

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Posted May 19, 2014 - 07:10 AM

:welcometogttalk:



#11 Diesel guy OFFLINE  

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Posted May 19, 2014 - 07:15 AM

Thanks everyone! I'm going to mow with it today I'll post up the results. Never been so excited to mow the grass :)


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#12 Diesel guy OFFLINE  

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Posted May 19, 2014 - 07:15 AM

Thanks everyone! I'm going to mow with it today I'll post up the results. Never been so excited to mow the grass :)


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#13 Diesel guy OFFLINE  

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Posted May 19, 2014 - 09:01 AM

Ok fellas. Here's the latest. I just finished up mowing. This thing is an absolute animal compared to my grandfathers JD 325ohv that I have been using. But I've noticed a few issues. The engine has developed a pretty good oil leak on the left bank. Looks like it may just be a head gasket. I was told that it hasn't been used in 2-3 years. Next, with the engine running I pulled the oil fill cap off. Seemed to have excessive amounts of blowby so I performed a compression test. Results are : right bank- 130psi

Left bank- 165-170psi. What's your thoughts? The tractor runs very well I thought. So maybe not an issue?


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#14 Diesel guy OFFLINE  

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Posted May 19, 2014 - 09:01 AM

ImageUploadedByTapatalk1400508077.087522.jpg ImageUploadedByTapatalk1400508088.755619.jpg

Top one is right bank bottom one is left


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#15 Cvans OFFLINE  

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Posted May 19, 2014 - 09:24 AM

Might just be tight valves on the low cylinder. 

Some of the twins do seems to move a lot of air in the crankcase while they are running. Personally if it is not using oil or smoking I wouldn't worry too much about it. 


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