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K181 Power Questions


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#1 superspeedex OFFLINE  

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Posted October 18, 2014 - 08:48 PM

So my Rf 110 has a k181 in it the tractor runs pretty good but i was wondering if i shave the head on it if it will gain a noticeable amount of power.  I have a spare head thats why i figured id do it.  When im plowing it does okay but i need just a little more to be happy i have thought of putting a v twin in it but dont want to cut up the hood bracket



#2 Trav1s ONLINE  

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Posted October 18, 2014 - 08:58 PM

www.kirkengines.com   Killer Kohler formula will work on a K181 just as well as the k301 as they share the same basic design.  Shaving the head would raise the compression.  


Edited by Trav1s, October 18, 2014 - 08:59 PM.

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#3 JDBrian OFFLINE  

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Posted October 19, 2014 - 06:48 AM

Read that killer Kohler story that Travis posted about above. It should give you the info you need to kick up the power a bit. Have you done a tune up on the engine to be sure it's running at it's best? IMO you should stay with the stock setup if possible. For ground engaging work you are probably going to be limited by traction moreso than HP if you are geared properly. A big Vtwin may only yield more wheel spin and gas consumption. 


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#4 Trav1s ONLINE  

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Posted October 19, 2014 - 07:57 AM

In the RF I think the k181 is a great fit and never found a fresh engine lacking for power.  Perhaps leaving the current engine alone and build a Killer Kohler k181 with a second engine might be a better choice than messing with a good runner.  A

lso, have you pulled the head and decarboned the top of the piston and the head?  Do that, lap the head, and install a new head gasket - you might be surprised by the improvement in performance.  A Kirk pointsaver and a good coil will give you better/hotter spark.   


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#5 superspeedex OFFLINE  

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Posted October 19, 2014 - 08:25 AM

i dont have any troubles with traction 23-10.50 tru powers with wheel weight do fine.  i pulled the head on it a while ba new gasket and cleaned it seemed to help some the govenor is a little high it revs to 3800rpm  i need to check the points but not sure on what the gap should be.  In high gear variator the whole way forward when climbing a hill should it bogg down a good bit? 



#6 JDBrian OFFLINE  

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Posted October 19, 2014 - 02:13 PM

The gap also adjusts the timing, so if your points are not gapped correctly the timing could be off as well. Have a look at the Kohler K series service manual. I think there is one here in the manuals section to download. If not it's on the Kohler site. For the larger K series the gap is .020 but I'm not sure about the 181.  If you can get that 181 working to full potential you might save yourself some work and $


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