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Troy Bilt Vari-Drive problem

Bobbo's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 2

07-04-06, 12:05 PM   #1  
Troy Bilt Vari-Drive problem

I have a 2002 Troy Bilt LTX1842 lawn tractor with a 18.5 hp B&S engine and a varidrive transmission.

When I put it in Drive, it surges forward for a short time and then goes out of gear altogether. I have to then put it into neutral & put it back into drive. It will go fine for a few minutes but it will start to surge again & go completely out of gear.

Occasionally it will stick in reverse, the brake won't stop it & I have to shut the engine off to get it to go into neutral.

This started when I was backing toward a hill & it stuck in reverse. It was always hard to shift on a slope but it never stuck in a gear until a few weeks ago.

I can't use the tractor right now because of this problem so any info anyone has will be really appreciated.

This one has me stumped. I've checked the main drive pulley on top of the tranny to see if it was stripped & it appears to be fine. I also checked the main drive belt and it, too, seems ok.

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cheese's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator

Join Date: Jul 2001
Posts: 16,564

07-05-06, 12:49 AM   #2  
I believe your shifter handle is bent out of adjustment, and is not putting the tranny fully into gear when the handle goes into the fwd notch. Try putting it in fwd, blocking the linkage under the mower so that it can't move back, and pull the shifter handle back towards the neutral/rev direction to bend the shifter rod a bit in that direction. I think it may have bent the other direction when you got it in a bind in reverse going up the hill. These trannys are hard to shift when they're in a bind and sometimes the rod gets bent in the effort to make it shift.

The problem with it staying in reverse and having to shut it off to stop it sounds like the varidrive pulley needs lubricating and/or the linkage that moves the tensioner may need lubricating.

"Who is John Galt?" - Ayn Rand (Atlas Shrugged)

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Bobbo's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 2

07-06-06, 07:45 PM   #3  
Thanks so much! I think you might have saved me several hundred $$$.
I'm going to try this fix over the weekend and I'll let you know how it goes.
Thanks again!

MinVin's Avatar

Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 1

05-29-11, 02:42 PM   #4  
Sure would have loved to hear the result of this - I'm experiencing a similar problem now and I can't use the tractor. Mine has just over 200 hours on it and this happened the last time I was cutting - it was going along fine, then it surged, then it would go along fine again. After about the third surge, I could no longer get it to find either forward or reverse. It seems the drive belt is slipping (later, after I finally got it into the garage and was evaluating the status, I could smell it).

I can move the belt by hand some with the accelerator depressed, but it is quite hard - that might just be the compression stroke fighting me. The pulleys appear to be spinning ok. The shift lever doesn't appear to be bent, but how would I know? Could it just be a worn or stretched belt?

Any suggestions or input would be appreciated.

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