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312-8 Going slow in all gears

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I have recently acquired a 312-8 originally purchased for 2500 bucks in 1987. While picking up leaves for about an hour I find that the gears are not working well. they all run really slow. 1st is slower than normal 1st. They all run the same slow speed. Any ideas as to what the problem could be? Clutch? Trans?

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If it's an 8 speed transmission it might be in the low range.Does it have two shifters? If so the lower one is the Hi Low range selector. Shift it to the right to get back into Hi range which will speed up all the gears.
 

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I will give that a looksee when I get home from work.  I got this mower for free.  I sure hope I don't have a repair ahead of me.  Thank you for the reply.  I will let you know how it works out for me.


 

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:WRS:
Just like Jim stated, it's in low range. There have been issues with the high/low range fork breaking which will not allow it to shift out of which ever gear it's stuck in. Did you happen to move that shifter hard or move it by accident?

Edited by wallfish

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RMiller...Welcome to Red Square.  I deleted the other 2 threads you started so it would not be confusing.  :)  Hang in there, we will get you fixed up. Here is a copy of the manual for your 312-8.  Just click on the link and download the TIPL.
http://www.wheelhorseforum.com/files/file/3518-tractor-1987-312-8-da-tipl-snpdf/

Edited by stevasaurus
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I borrowed this picture from Colbyeast in the gallery.  You can see the 2 shifters next to each other.  The smaller one is a hi/low shifter, the other one (as you know) gives you the 3 gears forward and l1 in reverse.
gallery_14968_630_4931807.jpg

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The link that Steve gave you may not necessarily be the right one for your tractor.  Yours may actually be a 1986 model sold new in 1987 (my 310-8 was), different engines and electrical systems.  Probably the same transmission though, although if I remember correctly there might be one bearing that's different.

Take a look at your engine when you get a minute.  There should be at least one tag on the outside of the cooling shroud, let us know what that says.  If it's original, your engine will be a Kohler, either a K301 or a Magnum M12.  You may also be lucky enough to see a tag on your tractor, somewhere near the seat, that would help too.

Either way, these guys can definitely help you with your transmission problem.

Just to clarify, you're not saying your tractor is running the SAME speed in all forward gears, correct?  In other words, 2nd is a little faster than 1st, and 3rd is a little faster than 2nd?
 

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Tunahead72 - thanks for your reply.  Yes I am saying the tractor runs at the same ultra low speed in all gears.  I will get the tag info requested tonight when I get home.  Thanks to everyone who has responded.

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Well....that changes things a little.  Glad we started a thread now??  :)   Now it sounds like your shifter.  Does it feel like you are changing gears when you move the shifter??  Check out that hi/low thing when you get home also.  It would be nice to know if that works while we are at it.  Let's see what you find. 

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Good morning gentlemen.  Thank you all for your replies yesterday.  Upon further review I was in low range.  Im not altogether sure of the value of low range.  I found the tractor to be uselessly slow in all gears.  What possible benefit could that setting have?  Does it afford more pulling power?  Clearly I am new to this site and tractors in general.  I did look up tag info if anyone is interested:

Kohler Magnum 12
Model M125
Spec# 471527
Serial# 1628103514

ID# 2112K804  22337  Tag by the seat
What are any observations that anyone might have?
 

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I'm happy to hear that you don't have a problem. By gearing the tractor does have more pulling power in low range but, obviously, you're still limited by traction. Low range is nice to have with some attachments such as a snowblower, tiller, etc. Attachments that need full RPM but slower forward speeds. I've had times with both of those attachments where conditions were such that even 1st gear in high range was too fast.

:WRS:

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Thanks RacinBob.  It was the only explanation I could think of really.  The attachment I would be most interested in acquiring would be a core aerator.  I suspect the low range would be helpful with that as well.

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RMiller...so you are saying that the shifter being in low range was your problem??  :)
BTW...according to your model number # 21-12K804...that is the correct manual link above. 

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Yes Stevasaurus, the shifter in low position was my issue.  I know how silly that makes me look believe me.  By the way I do have all the original manuals and research shows me the serial number is from 1987. 


 

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Don't feel silly Sir.  I've been around here for a number of years now, and I have had (and still have) my moments.  Just glad it was an easy fix...enjoy your horse.  :)

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I will enjoy the horse.  The family I got it from were all pretty technical folks so I hope it was maintained well.  The one guy was MIT the other guy worked in the US government nuclear program.  They had an awesome working garage which was too neat actually.  I am just not all that certain how mechanically inclined they all were.  We shall see.  Do you have any tips for how I should proceed investigatively on my maintenance question?  Plug looks new, oil seems cleanish.  The air filter seems to need a change.  No smoke when you start it but I had a back fire last week when I turned it off.  Steers well rides well. Could use a new seat.

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:WRS:             Great folks here.  None of us were born knowing the ins and outs of a :wh: , we learn from each other. Just refer to the manual for lubrication and other maintenance schedules. On piece of advice would be to use ethanol free gas,you can find a station near you that has it by going to buyrealgas.com and put in your zip code. The ethanol will eat up rubber parts in the fuel system.  

Enjoy your horse and remember :wwp:
:text-welcomeconfetti:
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I'm thinking I would change the engine oil and grease any fittings.  If the transmission oil is not milky, which would show some water in the oil, and it looks good...I would change it, but maybe next spring.  Take that horse out and use it and get to know it...these machines are amazing at what they can do...they are the Cadillac of Garden Tractors.  We sure would like to see some pictures.  :)

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Don't feel silly Sir.  I've been around here for a number of years now, and I have had (and still have) my moments.  Just glad it was an easy fix...enjoy your horse. 

Oh Boy.......Dino's had his moments....:scratchead::ychain: Don't worry happens to the best of us...:hide:

Like Bob said the low range is more for when you need low end grunt when you have very high grass and need to creep. Most ground engaging attachments such as a plows, tillers & blower benefit for the low range. I seldom use it but sure is nice when you have too.

See if you can find the Owner's manual for your tractor which should be here on Red Square. It will have basic maintenance and you can always ask here. Enjoy your new horse and :WRS:

Like Steve said we love :text-coolphotos:

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This is important...you were asking about some other issues...make sure you come to complete stop before shifting gears, start out in the gear you want...these are not syncro trannys.  As far as the back fire...not sure...but make sure you idle down before you turn off the key.  Might just need to be run for a while...horses love to be rode.  :)

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Backfire occurs when you shut it off without idling down.  Raw fuel air mixture gets pumped into the hot muffler where it ignites.  Idle it for 10-20 seconds then shut off. 

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And to think doc I wasn't doing that just to get a rise out of the cats.....told the Mrs I was...as the brits say....decoking the muffler 

As we used to say when we were younger RMiller and were not used to manual transmissions. .. syncros be dammed grind me a pound!!!

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By the way 953 nut.  NJ doesn't seem to have any non ethanol gas stations.  I smell government!

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I just used Low-Range to move my trailer onto concrete pads. Like Racinbob and WHX5 said, when you need a little finesse as well.

With regard to the backfire, let it idle down before you shut it off like Doc said. I also need to push the throttle to full while turning the key off on my two Twin Kohler Commands that are in the 5xi tractors. That keeps them from backfiring.

By the way 953 nut.  NJ doesn't seem to have any non ethanol gas stations.  I smell government!

The ones in MD are near the shore for the boaters. It is probably based more on demand.

.

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