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What's your favorite gt engine? And why?

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#1 Xrperry ONLINE  

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Posted September 19, 2017 - 08:24 PM

I don't know if this has been tried before so let's see how it goes
My favorite is the cast iron briggs.they are easy to work on and They run forever.

Edited by Xrperry, September 19, 2017 - 08:28 PM.

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#2 Reed Breneman OFFLINE  

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Posted September 19, 2017 - 08:34 PM

I like the older kohlers ,,k241,for me they are easy to work on and I like the sound and the way they run

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#3 larrybl ONLINE  


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Posted September 19, 2017 - 08:46 PM

I have several 18 opposed briggs both vertical and horizontal. Solid engines, but the favorate is the N52M 20hp Onan. Runs smooth, plenty of power, and can be run at slower rpm's as it is pressure lubed.


When building it, It almost sounded like a Harley with the pepper shakers.

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Edited by larrybl, September 19, 2017 - 08:57 PM.

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#4 esbbent OFFLINE  


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Posted September 19, 2017 - 09:23 PM

Kohler K series, I have worked on K181, K301, k321 and a K341. To me they are built tough and very similar to the old flat head car/pickup engines. 

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#5 boyscout862 ONLINE  

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Posted September 19, 2017 - 10:16 PM

I like the old K series Kohlers and my Bolens Wisconsins but I love my old cast iron B&S. They are simpler to work on and they run much smoother. I also seem to be able to find them easily. It also helps that I acquired a set of B&S dealer tools years ago. Good Luck, Rick
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#6 Bruce Dorsi OFFLINE  

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Posted September 19, 2017 - 11:02 PM

I worked on a lot of engines in our mower shop.  ...Cast-iron definitely preferred over aluminum engines.


My 1st choice: Wisconsin TRA-10D  .....Simple, reliable, long life, and top quality.


Kohler K's and B&S cast-iron were good engines.


Tecumseh engines my least favorite to work on.

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Posted September 20, 2017 - 06:30 AM

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#8 KennyP ONLINE  



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Posted September 20, 2017 - 07:15 AM

Kohler here too, but my Onan P220 is running a close second! I like the Magnum 18 also.

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#9 dropped82 ONLINE  


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Posted September 20, 2017 - 07:30 AM

It's a tough decision between Onan and Kohlers for me. The k341 has done me real good. Right along with the Onans I have. Don't think I can take one above the other.

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#10 LilysDad ONLINE  


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Posted September 20, 2017 - 07:35 AM

Kohler K and the M too, if you change out the carb.

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#11 chieffan ONLINE  

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Posted September 20, 2017 - 12:03 PM

Briggs L heads.  Good running, easy to work one and parts not hard to find.  Least favorite is the Tech, tho I have 2 and they run great.

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#12 classic ONLINE  

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Posted September 20, 2017 - 12:49 PM

My favorite engines are the big old Wisconsin single cylinder engines. I'm working on a couple of Wisconsin AEH engines from the 40's and these have got to be the best built garden tractor engines out there. Here are the reasons why they are my favorite engines.
1. Cast iron block.
2. Removable cylinder.
3. Cast iron main bearing plates.
4. Timken tapered roller main bearings.
5. Removable intake and exhaust valve seats.
6. Stellite exhaust valve and seat available.
7. Adjustable lifters/tappets to set valve lash.
8. Steel connecting rod.
9. Mechanical oil pump.
10. Large side inspection cover to view bottom end.
11. Fairbanks Morse/Wico magneto ignition.
12. Cast iron Stromberg or Zenith carburetor.
13. Four groove piston, chrome rings available.
14. Overbuilt with the highest quality materials, components, and machining.

The old Kohler cast iron K series engine are another one of my favorites, along with the cast iron Briggs 23 series and old Briggs ZZ engines. The Kohlers cylinders egg out quite a bit over time, but they are smooth runners and extremely well built. The carbs on these Kohlers and old Briggs engines can be troublesome once they start to age. The cast iron Stromberg and Zenith carbs will outlast these carbs, especially when it comes to throttle shaft wear. The old cast iron Tecumseh engines like the HH120 were excellent quality engines, but I never liked the solid state ignition or the Walbro LME carbs on them.
Well, that's my take on it. I've used, torn down, and rebuilt all of the engines that I mentioned above. I've seen the wear patterns on the components of these engines and have done a lot of trouble shooting with them. I can't think of any faults or weaknesses in the old Wisconsin engines such as the AEH, AHH, etc. People have blown the governess in these engines, but that's only from running the engine at too high of an RPM.
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#13 Bolens 1000 ONLINE  

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Posted September 20, 2017 - 12:57 PM

Wisconsin has and always been my favorite, tough built machines that were made to last and run forever if you take care of them.

Bearings on the crank instead of bushings and replaceable rod bearings on most of the models. 


Kohler K series would be my second as they share alot of the quality of the wisconsin


B&S cast iron motors 3rd


Tecumseh 4th , decent built motors  &  always cheaper priced replacement  parts compared to the above models.

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Posted September 20, 2017 - 01:10 PM

My favorite has to be the 16 hp cast Briggs. The one I have was "Rode hard and put away wet" when I got it. It was on  an old Gilson variable speed tractor with a tiller on it. A close second is my AKN Wisconsin. Both are built without plastic and start when asked to.  16 Ponies

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#15 EricFromPa ONLINE  



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Posted September 20, 2017 - 04:01 PM

For garden tractors I'm normally a briggs twin guy but I had a gravely here with a Onan CCKA in it that I fell in love with lol. Butter smooth running and tons of torque.



2nd favorite would have to be the cast iron bore 16-18hp briggs opposed twin. Only common problems are fuel pump diaphragm and starter gears and the occasional bad coil.

3rd favorite Any Wisconsin single cylinder engine Very Very reliable and pretty much maintenance free. 

4th Any Kohler K series single cylinder as long as it doesn't have the Walbro carb.

5th Tecumseh HH100  Good engines with junk Walbro carburetors. Carbs are the main reason for them blowing up. Run it lean and they overheat quickly.


Sorry to say the old points ignition Cast Iron Briggs comes in last place for me.


I absolutely HATE the large 2 piece flowjet carbs and the ignition systems and the intake valve problem. They are a pain in the butt to diagnose if there not running correctly.


I had 9 tractors at 1 point or another with 14-16hp cast iron briggs engines on them. Only 3 of them ran 100%. 2x 1980 Gilson 16 hydros and my old trusty MTD Fourteen Hundred. 


I had enough of the Cast briggs after the one on my old Sears SS15. 1 problem after another. 

Edited by EricFromPa, September 20, 2017 - 04:02 PM.

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