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BigRed84

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About BigRed84

  • Rank
    Member
  • Birthday 08/21/1984

Wheel Horse Information

  • tractors
    314-H
  • favoritemodel
    520-H

Profile Information

  • Location
    Shelton, CT
  • Occupation
    Aviation failure analysis technician
  • Interests
    Anything with a motor and wheels....or wings

Recent Profile Visitors

320 profile views
  1. Holy Moly if I've ever made a mistake before....

    Yea, maybe I'll just price it comfortably and throw it up on CL this winter with the blower attached. Use the mulching deck as an added incentive if they don't beat me down on price too much. If no one is interested I'll just do my best to hang onto it. With the ease of operation in the newer walk behind snow blowers, I'll just let Mom remain comfortable on the Deere during summer months for cutting the lawn and hauling the utility cart full of gardening supplies, and I'll put a walk behind blower in the shed for myself in the winter.
  2. Holy Moly if I've ever made a mistake before....

    It makes perfect sense. Seemed great up front on the showroom floor, but after owning and experiencing it first hand, I just can't convince myself to keep it around, even knowing the kick I would take in selling it used. I'm still cooling off from trying to get that blower installed, so once I finish that, hopefully I'll have a change in heart and hang on to it, give it a second chance, maybe bring it back to the dealer for some post break-in tuning, and then go from there.
  3. Holy Moly if I've ever made a mistake before....

    Yes, I will have to clean up the Deere and see if I can come close to getting our money back between the blower and tractor. If I see reasonable offers, I'll have her hop up on the 314 and see if she comments on difficulty getting on and off the seat. Hopefully she is o.k. with it, otherwise maybe as mentioned before i'll just sell the blower attachment and use it strictly for cutting the lawn, and i'll pick up a cheap ariens walk behind so I don't have to trailer the WH back and forth.
  4. Holy Moly if I've ever made a mistake before....

    Yea, while I was developing this love and turning the 314 into a new hobby (who knew)...and I love it, I started looking at craigslist. Someone had a 520-H with (I can't remember the exact number but) a ridiculously low amount of hours, and it looked like you can eat off of every surface. I should have jumped on it. I went with the Deere for Mom because she insists on cutting the grass herself, but because it doesn't have hydro lift, not to mention it's cold out, I do the snow blowing.(but when everything is working right I actually enjoy doing it!) I just enjoy the wheel horse a ton more. The Deere is easy to get on and off without the need to swing your leg up and over, the steering feels like power steering, and the ease of starting it is a lot better for her. However, she isn't THAT old, maybe I should bring her back the 314 and let her ride around for a bit now that I have it tuned up and close to back to new condition. The Deere wasn't even impulse, I spent 2 months researching other brands and prices. I can't believe I thought a little lawn tractor would do what I needed it to do. Oops.
  5. Sorry in advance for my long story. It started about 6 or 7 years ago, Dad got sick, health was declining over the 4 or 5 years to follow. I was trying to get my own life together, so between the two of us, the 1997 or 98 (I'm unsure) 314-H unfortunately took some neglect and lack of routine maintenance. Anyways, within a couple more years Dad passed, and as strong as Mom is, she kept pushing me to show her the ropes around the yard work Dad used to take care of. That being said, the 314-H needed a battery, choke knob was replaced by a small pair of vice grips, cable was cruddy and difficult to slide, starting was annoying, usually 3 or 4 tries, steering was heavy for Mom, and I ultimately convinced her to buy something new that was more user friendly. After looking at the junk at home depot and Lowes, I couldn't let her buy one of those ( we also used the WH to snow throw in the winter). So I went to the dealer that sold my Dad the 314 back in the late 90's. He now sells Husqvarna lawn and garden tractors. Dad had always drilled into our heads to buy American. So I went to a real Deere dealer, after looking at the comparable Husqvarna, and Deere X series, the Deere just seemed so much more user friendly. Mom would have a simple time steering it, adjusting the deck height, and starts were a piece of cake with the auto choke it came with. Deck removal and 2 stage blower was supposedly a breeze.....so, I recommended the X350. Yesterday we got about 4 inches of snow here in the southern CT area.....I have since repainted, new battery, new belts, AG tires in the rear and tri-ribs up front, new plug, new choke nob, lubricated the cable, and the 314 fires up on the first try, seems to bog down just a small bit when throwing snow but she gets the job done. Steering with the tri-ribs feels like having power steering, no chains or weights necessary even when pulling the cart with the blower in it UP a hill in the 4" of snow, the AGs just keep on gripping! So i'm in love with this 314-H. I trailered it to Moms first thing this morning because i hadn't swapped the deck for the blower on the Deere X350 yet (we JUST got the last of the oak leaves cleaned up a few days ago) so the 314 cleared her driveway and then a path down the hill to the shed to pick up the 2 stage attachment for the Deere. After spending 3 times as long trying to install the two brackets, two arms, cross pins, and blower.....i managed to overlook something and the belt would make this loud click when engaging, so I got frustrated with it and called it quits for the day. I'll go back after work during the week to figure it out. That being said, after driving the Deere, and wheel horse the same day....the Deere is complete garbage. The Kawi engine is great, yes, but for the money the trans and non-serviceable rear is weak and the light weight of the tractor overall makes it difficult to get grip even with chains and rear suitcase weights. I think i messed up big time. Mom wanted to keep price down, but i should have just stepped up and gone with the bigger better tractor and paid the difference. I had a feeling the little X350 would be trouble for the type of work I need it to do. And seriously....what is the deal with the HORRIBLE blower attachment design? Wheel Horse figured out a way to allow me to hook up the thrower with two cotter pins and all of 10 min....20 years ago....yet Deere uses this awful design that took me all morning, and still isn't right? Worst part is, this wasn't even my first time setting it up, I did it last year, and even though time consuming, I got it done. So if I didn't lose you yet, i'm considering selling the Deere, and just paying the extra for her so we can get hydro lift back, and the better trans and rear....the question is, what is comparable to the 314-H regarding user friendly, and price? I believe 20 years ago a 97 314-H went for around $5000?? Factor inflation over 20 years, what am I looking at, 6 or $7,000? Brand? Anything made in America anymore? The next size up with the Deere jumped up to $7000 but didn't even include a deck or blower. What do you all think??? I'm disappointed in myself for this mistake. Feel like I let Dad down.
  6. Uneven lifting of snow blower

    Sorry for bringing this back from the dead. Has anyone had any good luck solving this issue? I have a 314-H with the exact same problem. I can't remember long ago, but I never recall tearing up the grass when blowing a path to the wood shed, now as soon as I hit the grass and lift it an inch or two so it doesn't scrape, one side is off by at least that amount...an inch or two. I originally thought I may have a cracked frame/bent, or something was cracked or bent in the attachment points, but after seeing so many other guys with the same issue, I'm starting to agree with some responses that maybe there is just extra slop from wear. Let me know if anyone had any luck with shims or weld to the attachment point. If not, is there anyone in the CT area that can recommend a trustworthy shop that can look at it? I know of one in my immediate area, but have had some shady results in the past so I'd be willing to travel if it meant quality work. Thanks all! -Chris- P.s. Can these single stage tall chute blowers be rebuilt? (bearings and chains and sprockets?) Wondering if I should just do some preventative maintenance considering its age? (1998)
  7. Thank you. I'll be tackling paint in the next couple of weeks, so I appreciate the response.
  8. 314-H Service

    Not to beat a dead horse...haha...get it?....But I'm looking for anyone to throw some red flags my way based on the work I started last night. I'm interested in any kind of "NO DON'T DO THAT!!" type of responses. So after pulling the manuals you guys kindly linked me to, and searching a bit more for tips and specific experiences, I've gathered what I needed to know to replace the trans oil in my 314-H. Along the way I've read in certain posts that some people are under the impression that the 314-H has the smaller Eaton 7....so I figured I'd clear that up for any other rookie that might stumble across this thread in their searches. My 314-H does in fact have the heavier duty Eaton 11, I purchased and replaced the oil filter that is under the gas tank next to the left tire if you're looking at the tractor from the rear. I also confirmed while draining the oil that it was red enough for me to assume whoever serviced this last did in fact put trans fluid in. I know for a fact that this has not been serviced for at least 6 years, and we used it for cutting an acre of grass and snow blowing the driveway. Everything has been operating flawlessly UNTIL the last year or two. My concern arose when I was recently pulling a plug aerator with roughly 80lbs on it, and the tractor would gradually begin to slow to a crawl on its own. The RPM stayed where it was, but the motion lever for forward or reverse would begin returning back to the neutral position, requiring me to push it forward again to maintain my speed. So I bought 11 qts of 10-30.....6 conventional, and 5 synthetic. Last night I drained the old trans fluid, clean as can be, no chips or flakes or any debris in it. drained the filter as best I could, and flushed it with 10-30 several times, filling it and dumping the 10-30 out before threading the filter back on. Then I filled with the remaining 4 qts of 10-30...I started off by loosening one of the bolts as recommended, and didn't quite understand a different post when someone said "but that method can make a mess when it overflows all over the place". My thought was " how can it overflow at the top, if it's supposed to take 5qts, i'll just slow down around 4.5".....2.5 qts went in with no issues, and approaching the 3rd qt, BAM....oil everywhere!!! hahahaa. NOW I understand. haha. So I cleaned everything off, and put that bolt back in....20 minutes later I was able to squeeze 4.5 total qts, and assumed once the fluid runs through the lines, fills the filter, and any other air bubbles make their way up, i'll fit the last half qt. in. So there's one question: worried the mix of trans fluid and 10-30 would harm the system somehow, I jacked the rear tires off the ground, fired her up and slowly ran it forward and reverse for a few seconds. I figured that would help flush the trans fluid left in the lines out with the 10-30 so when I drain it again tonight I wont have to worry. Does anyone see any issues in doing this? Should I not run it at all like that? I have a new filter for tonight, with Valvoline 10-30 synthetic. The plan was to prefill the filter a little, drain out the mixed trans and 10-30 oil from last night, and then complete the 5qt fill with the new filter. HOPING that solves the problem of the motion lever moving slowly back to the crawl position. This weekend I'm going to finish cleaning the dirt out of the vent fins....it really isn't that dirty, its like a thick coating of dirty dust on some of them that I couldn't reach while I had the pan and seat off. So I'm going to try a wire handle soft brush to try to get the hard to reach area, as I'm not confident enough to completely remove the whole unit. Any other comments or suggestions will be MUCH appreciated. I've been building muscle cars with my dad for 20 years, he was always there to answer my questions....I think I'm just having a tough time with my confidence even with the simplest things like this now that he's not around, you would think this entire project would be a breeze for the mechanically inclined. haha. Thanks all!
  9. Mods feel free to move this into it's own topic but I figured it would fit to just expand this thread with more info. I read several places that Valspar IH red is decent, and after waiting a week (can says 15 days before adding clear coat so maybe one more week will help?) I've decided I can tell the cart I painted with majic's IH red is going to be a little less durable due to the "soft" feel it seems to have. It also has a bit of a haze to it....not sure if just a good wax/buff job would remove that or not? Anyways, I'm leaning towards Valspar IH red in a regular can so I can mix in their hardener as well for my tractor. My main question right now is for surface prep: since the paint/panels are all in decent shape (just faded and light scratches here and there) do I have to get down to bare metal or can I just lightly hand sand it add new paint to that surface?
  10. Just put a coat on my dad's old cart from either the late 70's or early 80's. IH red from TSC....brand was "Majic". Has anyone used this brand yet?
  11. Engine Rebuild or Replace

    Thanks, the more I search and talk to you guys here, the less I'm concerned with the little bit of smoke I see. I'll be sure to stay away from the dealer that mentioned no rebuilds on a smoking engine. I thought that sounded kind of strange. I guess I'll just keep an eye on it and see if it gets worse or starts drinking oil.
  12. Engine Rebuild or Replace

    I'm sitting here watching Memphis Belle, and I know there are a lot of veterans and active military folks here so first and foremost thank you for your service, and Happy Memorial Day. As for my question, I've mentioned it briefly in a couple of other random threads I made about other related things, but as of yesterday I'm getting nervous, as I saw my first puff of smoke when throttling up after she idle'd for a minute or two while I was greasing the front hubs. It did clear up after a second or two, but with the ticking noise and now that, I feel like it may be time to gather info and seriously consider a rebuild or replacement. I don't know where to start. I've dealt with Knights in Orange and that's actually the dealer that my Dad originally purchased this 314-H from. The kohler fires right up on the first try no matter how long it sits. I have recently done an oil change, fuel filter and lines, cleaned the carb, new spark plug, and was in the process of taking it apart one panel at a time for paint. I just dumped some money into rear ag tires, and front deestone tri-ribs on new rims so I really would hate to have to scrap the project. That being said here are my questions: 1. Anyone have first hand experience rebuilding or giving any shop in CT their business to rebuild? I've been told Knights is still good, and recently heard about Schmidt's and Serafin's in Waterbury but have yet to deal with them. 2. Busy season aside, once the job is started is this rebuild generally completed within a month or is this like a season long thing? 3. General price range to expect, are we talking $500, $1000, $2000?? Obviously there's a point where i'm sure it just makes more sense to buy used 520H on CL....i see a lot going for around $2000 in great shape. 4. IF for any reason the engine can't be rebuilt (I don't know why, but on dealer i'm hesitant about told me if it smokes they wont rebuild it) can these engines be bought new? Thanks for any info.....even if it's something i'm not addressing, feel free to give me your input in general.
  13. 314-H Service

    Mind blown! Haha. Thanks for the link and replies everyone.
  14. 314-H Service

    I'm still lost, that's what i've read when I search the forums....but 10w-30 as in motor oil??? I assumed the reddish tint was along the lines of transmission fluid in a car....or hydraulic fluid? I'm confusing myself with the cars I work on. I put gear oil in the rear end, trans fluid in the transmission, and motor oil in the engine. haha On this specific tractor I have the dipstick that goes directly into the rear end (if i'm allowed to call it that, or is there a specific term for it on our tractors?) Then I have a filterless splash system for the Kohler engine that I change the motor oil in. Since this is a hydraulic lift, shouldn't there also be a reservoir somewhere for hydraulic fluid or is that the same fluid that I'm supposed to put into the "rear end"? Kinda feel like an idiot at the moment. haha Sorry for my confusion.
  15. 314-H Service

    Officially confused after searching and reading many different suggestions. I even called two local dealers, and was told two different bits of info. I thought since I don't know when it was done last, and the fluid level is below the add line, I would do a filter change and fluid flush. My original question was going to be what fluid do I use (possibly the beefier trans because I have the filter under the tank on the side near the rear wheel as opposed to the cap??) One dealer told me if it works properly just top it off and call it a day. He says he has seen more problems START after someone changes the filter and drains the fluid than if they had just left it alone. Coming from the muscle car world I feel that urge to do routine maintenance BUT I don't want to cause trouble since everything seems to be working well. The fluid is a translucent reddish pink. Looks clean, just very low. If I fill it, maybe I will find out I have a leak. Anyways, this dealer also said the new fluid used is no longer the reddish pink color, it's green. Is this true? I search here and I see a lot of different suggestions. So, from 314 or 520 or any other hydro owners....if it even makes a difference from model to model....what should I top it off with, and what's everyone's opinion on not touching the filter since the existing fluid is still clean looking after all this time???
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