cant shift gears


Old 07-16-08, 07:05 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: east texas
Posts: 2
cant shift gears

i have a 14.5 hp craftsman lawn tractor 917.271530. i saw smoke coming from the engine pulley area i pressed the brake in and it stopped. i couldnt go forward/rev. it acted like i was power braking even i though i was in neutral. i replaced both belts today and it will go forward/reverse fine but now it wont allow me to swith gears once i stop. i have to turn the engine off then will allow me to shift easily but also it wont roll if its in neutral. any suggestions. i would be greatful
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Old 07-17-08, 06:03 AM
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: usa
Posts: 755
I would hope you had/have a belt problem but it may be a transaxle problem. Remove the belt from the transaxle and see if the large pulley on top of the transaxle will turn by hand. Attempt this in neutral and in various gear positions.

If the transaxle pulley will not turn or is extremely hard to turn the problem lies inside the transaxle. You will have to remove the transaxle and open it. If you have mechanical skills and photograph or sketch the position of parts during disassembly, you should be able to accomplish the task.

A new Dana 4360-140 transaxle is about $530.00. You doing the repair may be as little as $20.00 in parts. However, it will take quite a bit of time. If you take on this task pay close attention to the position of every part, including shims. It needs to go back together the same way it came apart. Inspect everything for damage and corrosion. Look closely at the shifter. Only disassemble as much as you have to.

I will not be surprised if you find water inside the transaxle and corrosion. The water could have entered the transaxle from outside storage and rain or washing.

Good luck
Old 07-17-08, 07:36 AM
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 128
It sounds like you may have two problems, #1 the brake
may be just stuck. On the right side of the trans, is a lever
and brake caliper assy., try moving the lever back and
forth, and see if it will unlock, then spray a bit of lube on
it. See if that cures the pushing in neutral problem. As for the other problem, it sounds like the belt is still turning the
pulley with the pedal pushed in, look at the idler pulleys, make sure they are not locked up, and make sure the belt is on the correct side of the belt keepers.

Old 07-17-08, 10:20 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: east texas
Posts: 2
how much play should there be in the brake assembly? looking from the rear i can move it left to right a good inch or so..and those 2 bolts below the springs..if i tighten one it will keep the brake assem. from going lt to rt but makes it real hard to push the brake pedal in. the idler pulleys turned fine w/wo the belt.

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