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Varidrive problems


louman's Avatar
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12-03-05, 12:31 PM   #1  
louman
Varidrive problems

I was recently given a Craftsman Lawn Tractor Model 917 253712. The outside of the mower has badging indicating it is a GTV/11 Varidrive. I have no history on the tractor, nor do I have a manual. Sears says the tractor is to old to support with a manual, so I am in somewhat of a learning curve. I finally got the tractor to start today and the engine seems to be in O.K. shape. WHen I took it out to test drive, it surged pretty badly and did not seem to have any speed. The engine RPM did not seem to be changing as it was surging, just the speed of the tractor. I am trying to find out how the Varidrive system actually works since I surmise the belts, or drive itself might have issues. Anyone with a working knowledge of these drives could probably point me in the right direction pretty easily, but being a new owner, I am not familiar with this problem. Any help would be appreciated.

 
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12-04-05, 12:52 PM   #2  
Varidrive problems

There is a sandwich pully and a couple of belts that have to be working perfectly for smooth operation. When you engage the front drive belt should tension properly which causes the center of the sandwich to tighten around the rear belt. The center of this sandwich pulley must move freely and is subject to hang due to rust on the center shaft. Some lubricant in this area helps much and is something these seldom get.

Part 28 at this link is the vari drive pully I refer to.

http://www3.sears.com/imaging/ImageP...titleID=00005&


Check that out and see how it goes.

networker

 
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12-05-05, 02:06 PM   #3  
louman
Will Try at first opportunity

I will look at the pulley at the first opportunity. It is not scheduled to get above 20 for a couple of days, but when it does I will pull the tractor into the garage and have a look. Is there an easy way to get at the pulley in question and check it without having to totally disassemble the tractor?

 
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12-05-05, 04:54 PM   #4  
Vari drive

Wow, strain my brain. Its been a while since I went into one of those. Check this:

http://www3.sears.com/imaging/ImageP...titleID=00002&

I think part 25 shows to be a "decal feature". I think it is stuck to a removable plate in front of the seat. If not, you'll have to get at by going under the mower.

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12-07-05, 02:01 PM   #5  
louman
I spent some time looking at the pulley system today. From a brief inspection with the tractor in neutral, it looks as though the pulley that connects the belt driven from the engine and the belt connected to the varidrive is surging pretty rhythmically. I would guess once every couple of seconds. I am wondering if I have enough oil in the transmission? Got any idea how to check? Sorry for the less than astute questions, no owners manual

 
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12-07-05, 04:08 PM   #6  
This sort of thing can be hard to pin down, man, if I could just see it run. Some other things to look for would be a flat spot on a belt, idlers that are frozen or partly frozen and good action on any idler pivot points.

On the trans fluid, I doubt there is a place to check it. I'm almost positive these are pre-packed with thick grease and are not supposed to need service.

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12-08-05, 02:58 PM   #7  
louman
I am going to pull it in the garage next week and really start tearing into it to figure it out. I will let you know what it turns out to be. Thanks for all the help. Don't sweat it, I will figure it out once I get it in someplace warm for a few hours and can really get my hands around it.

 
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