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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Happy Easter. So with the shutdown I finally have enough time to do a re power on my 317. The original engine was tired. I am looking to locate a source for the flwheel side adaptors for a Kohler Command 18hp engine to allow the connection of the rear driveshaft. I thought perhaps someone had completed this conversion and is aware of a source. Thanks so much
 

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I don't have any information to help you, but I also have a Kohler sitting in my shed that potentially may find itself in my 318 in the future so I'm just curious if you made much progress with this?

Good Luck!
 

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Hello- If you have a Kohler Command Horizontal style engine it should swap over easily. I have no choice but to finish the install before the end of the shutdown because the KT17 died. I have read on several forums that it is a direct swap with the Kohler Command 18 mounted backwards with the muffler in front. I do stand to spend about $150 in parts to make the swap work. Hope that this helps. The 318 and 317 are close to the same machine. Although I think the 317 is closed frame and 318 is open frame.
 

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likely a little late with this info. Your (what called a front drive shaft but in our case really becomes the rear drive shaft) will work on the CH18 Command engine. The issue is the drive shaft length and where you mount the engine. If your present shaft is in good condition it can be used but the front PTO really isn't in an ideal area. And you need to be careful to get enough penetration into the front u-joint. A longer front drive shaft adaptor is available from Kohler in their accessories catalog but it is a bit spendy at $95 bucks. It allows the engine to be place a bit farther forward making the PTO pulley line up better to the mule drive. With my install I decided to build a new driveshaft with heavier u-joints so I could make it any length I want. That's as far as I've gotten with this and I'm now working on the exhaust. Which I think is the hardest part. I'm also installing the 400 power steering and N3 hydraulics so it's a lengthy process. It's a spare 317 that I intended to part out. I'll be following your progress so hopefully we can save each other some time and money.
 

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I am attempting the same re-power. Information on the web says the kt17 fly wheel stub shaft will bolt to the Kohler. My Kohler came with a stub shaft. I have several pictures to post but haven't figured out how to get them to post. My CH18S has a speck #62577. I found this but the link doesn't work.
Richard check out my 317 repower thread https://www.wfmachines.com/discus/mes...tml?1247273180 . I will be happy to answer any questions you have and I also live in North Carolina (Concord). My email is [URL="mailto:[email protected]">[email protected][/URL] Thanks Roger.
If those of us looking for information could locate the discussion it might answer many of our questions.
Don
 

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Technology Electronic device Wire Electric motor OK now I can do pictures. The previous picture is of the engine tag for the engine I am attempting to re-power my 317 with.

Here is the engine sitting in the tractor on the plate from the John Deere Onan re-power kit.

Auto part Engine Vehicle Automotive engine part Car

The stub shaft that came with the the Kohler engine in the drive shaft

Machine Auto part Machine tool Wheel

The engine PTO shaft

Machine Machine tool Auto part Lathe Metal

As it sets the fuel pump will fowl with the hood and the side panel.
Vehicle Car Auto part

Removing the Onan mounting plate and setting the engine directly on the frame members underneath gives nearly enough clearance but not quite. I have no idea what this does for the electric clutch alignment.
This is a picture of the exhaust with the front hood support sitting on top of it, the muffler and heat shields will have to fit between the legs.

Electronics Technology Electronic device Machine

Picture of muffler without heat shield

Vehicle Auto part Car City car Engine

The shaft of the Kohler is 1 1/16. My electric PTO clutch came with the tractor and fit the 1 7/16 Onan shaft.

Auto part Engine Vehicle Automotive engine part Car

The engine came with an ignition switch solenoid and sufficient wiring to run the engine and support the battery starter and charging system.

Wire Technology Electronic device Tire Cable

The 317 re-power subject has been covered in many places but specifics for the Kohler Command seem to be hard to come by. The link I copied in my previous post seem very promising but leads no where. If someone knows how to access that thread it would be greatly appreciated.
Thank You.
Don
 

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View attachment 254780 OK now I can do pictures. The previous picture is of the engine tag for the engine I am attempting to re-power my 317 with.

Here is the engine sitting in the tractor on the plate from the John Deere Onan re-power kit.

View attachment 254782

The stub shaft that came with the the Kohler engine in the drive shaft

View attachment 254784

The engine PTO shaft

View attachment 254786

As it sets the fuel pump will fowl with the hood and the side panel.
View attachment 254788

Removing the Onan mounting plate and setting the engine directly on the frame members underneath gives nearly enough clearance but not quite. I have no idea what this does for the electric clutch alignment.
This is a picture of the exhaust with the front hood support sitting on top of it, the muffler and heat shields will have to fit between the legs.

View attachment 254790

Picture of muffler without heat shield

View attachment 254792

The shaft of the Kohler is 1 1/16. My electric PTO clutch came with the tractor and fit the 1 7/16 Onan shaft.

View attachment 254794

The engine came with an ignition switch solenoid and sufficient wiring to run the engine and support the battery starter and charging system.

View attachment 254796

The 317 re-power subject has been covered in many places but specifics for the Kohler Command seem to be hard to come by. The link I copied in my previous post seem very promising but leads no where. If someone knows how to access that thread it would be greatly appreciated.
Thank You.
Don
Are you sure about the PTO shaft diameter. I think it is 1.125 (1-1/8) not 1- 1/16". Better double check. Wouldn't want you to buy the wrong clutch.

Another thing to remember about engine placement is the front PTO alignment is important. Not so much for a mower deck as the mule drive allows for quite a bit of variation. But in some cases the mower belt will rub on the frame as the belt wears. A snow blower attachment may be much more critical as the pully's must line up correctly. (It's been 15 years since I had to blow snow so my memory is a bit lacking) The drive belt is very short and alignment would be critical. All of this effects the driveshaft length. So for that reason, you should start at the front and work back. For that reason the stub shaft from the KT engine wasn't long enough with the OEM drive shaft. That being said, I'm fabricating a new shaft of my own using much heavier u-joints. I haven't complete that yet but it's looking good so far.
 
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I believe you are correct on the PTO/crank shaft. I have seen reference to sleeves made to solve the clutch problems. I have no snow blower and have never seen a 317 with any engine installed so have no reference point for alignment. I bought the tractor as a project. It was and is a basket case. The original KT 17 long dead and gone. The Onan completely disassembled - one piston and rod. Mostly packaged in zip lock bags. So at this point I have no true reference to PTO clutch alignment, or crank shaft height. Can you give me any reference points or measurements. Not having a snow blower I have no way to know. It would seem to me that belt alignment would be dictated by the engine/PTO pulley and adjusted by the pulley on the blower?.
Is it possible to get pictures of exactly what you are using for an engine mount? Are you using isolation?
In this picture the stub shaft on the flywheel is buried deep enough in the U joint to touch the back half of the U joint so the engine would have to be moved forward or the the stub shaft or drive shaft shortened to make it functional.
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Trying to think this threw and avoid all those OOO Crap moments. Thanks for your help.
Don
 

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naplesjoe you are correct about the crank size I took my mike out and measured and it is 1 1/8. The engine is at the moment resting down on the frame without any mounting plate under it. It is actually resting on the oil filter and starter against the side frame rails and still the fuel pump and left hand valve cover interfere with the hood and side cover. So at some point I will have to decide between modifying the engine to fit or hacking the hood and side cover to fit. I think what I will do is mount the engine, get everything functioning and then worry about fitment of the hood and side covers.
Don
 

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naplesjoe you are correct about the crank size I took my mike out and measured and it is 1 1/8. The engine is at the moment resting down on the frame without any mounting plate under it. It is actually resting on the oil filter and starter against the side frame rails and still the fuel pump and left hand valve cover interfere with the hood and side cover. So at some point I will have to decide between modifying the engine to fit or hacking the hood and side cover to fit. I think what I will do is mount the engine, get everything functioning and then worry about fitment of the hood and side covers.
Don
Sorry for the delay Don. I had written a rather lengthily response but for whatever reason it didn't stick. I think the photo was too large. My phone won't take anything smaller so if you wish you can PM me with your email and I'll send them that way.

I did mention that I'm a little reluctant to post my opinion on these sites as often times folks get offended with a different opinion. Your thread will end up a mess or arguments. So, again if you want me to I'm willing to share my experience but prefer to do it with PM's or emails. And, these threads get so long that it takes longer to locate something than figure it out for yourself.

I will say that I think you should take the time to do it as right as possible. It's worth the effort and you will have something to be proud of as well as functional and saleable. Your comment about getting the engine placed and running then worry about the hood is backwards. You may end up with a workable lawn mower but that's it. If you ever want to sell it you might find that to be impossible. Who knows? You may get addicted to these things as some many of us have.
 

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Still working on this. Lifted the engine out and put the Onan adapter mount plate back in.

Vehicle

The remains of the original front iso mounts were still there. I could see absolutely no use for them in my application so I removed them.

Bumper Auto part Automotive exterior Bumper Auto part

Wanted to move the engine back some. With the stub shaft that came with the engine this was not possible. the stub shaft went all the way through the ujoint and hit the grease fitting.

Auto part Fuel line Engine

Tire Automotive tire Auto part Automotive wheel system Vehicle brake

The stub shaft that came with the blown Onan was way to short. the one that came with the Kohler was to long so I cut 1 1/8 off. this allowed me to move the engine back about 1".
Next I have to decide how to accurately locate and drill the holes for the engine mounting bolts. Then decide how to deal with the engine oil drain.

Don
 

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The drive shaft is a definite issue. You can make up for the shaft being too short with the longer extension but it puts the front u-joint at a bad angle which will sooner or later cause issues. U-joints need to be as straight as possible for long life and to keep vibration to a minimum. There is usually a 15 degree limit on this angle but when two or more are connected together on the same shaft you need to add them together. No doubt the shaft is one of the more poorly engineered parts on any 300 series tractor. They certainly lasted well beyond any expectations the original engineers ever dreamed of. But with more HP and less then ideal installs, I think this needs more attention and I wouldn't feel comfortable using the original shaft. Perhaps a new one but I am in the process of building my own.

I'm sorry the first reply I wrote didn't take as I mentioned the motor mounts in depth and disagreed with those suggesting using the 318 kit as a start. But it looks like your committed to that but I will explain why. Deere eliminated the rubber mounts on the 318, something many didn't care for. Those mounts go a long way to eliminate vibration. And, Onan's mounted without them are known to break the feet off the oil pan where the engine mounts. Who knows how the Commands will react but if you have a lot of unchecked vibration I would bet the farm that aluminum case won't last long. All the more reason to get the driveshaft right. Few 318 people like to mention this but if you browse thru these pages you will find many instances of this happening. And, every 318 I ever owned would put my hands to sleep from the vibration of the machine. I suggested leaving the mounts if they were still there and using the 317 engine mount rails rather than the ridged plate. Welding the plate or straps to the 317 mounts (rails) makes a much better installation in my opinion. It also allows easier engine alignment as the shaft height of both the KT and Commands are the same. Deere had that part figured out for us and you would only be changing the shaft height the thickness of the plate. And, after all, how many cars and trucks do you see without engine isolation mounts. (rubber) In fact, in all my years the 318 is the first and only engine I've seen without rubber mounts. That includes cars, trucks and aircraft. Just one of the things I never cared for with the 318.

Hopefully I'm not discouraging you. Just trying to keep those "Oh ****" moments away.
 

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I have a hard time believing the vibration will be to obnoxious. When I went to pick up the engine the seller fired it up sitting on a concrete driveway with a slight slope. It jusr sat there and purred. It jumped slightly when throttled up then smoothed out. I will keep your comments in mind as I proceed. I haven't yet decided how to best judge the angle of the drive shaft. Got distracted today and made no progress. looks like the same scenario for tomorrow. All of the Onan engines in my Sears/Roper tractors are solid mounted and it seams to present no problems. Have also seen many solid mounted Kohler K series engines. I don't recall ever seeing a rubber mounted vertical shaft engine.
I am not easily discouraged and appreciate the input. It is as much about the journey as it is about the destination.
Don
 

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I replaced the P218 Onan with a Kohler 18 Magnum also and one thing I did was reroute the oil drain using 3/4 steel pipe 1" nipple a 90 degrees and about 4 " pipe with a threaded cap on the end that will drain in front of the motor mount. just my 2 cents. Dave
 

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I replaced the P218 Onan with a Kohler 18 Magnum also and one thing I did was reroute the oil drain using 3/4 steel pipe 1" nipple a 90 degrees and about 4 " pipe with a threaded cap on the end that will drain in front of the motor mount. just my 2 cents. Dave
Many questions for someone with the experience. What mount did you use? Was the replacement in a D 317? Did you get pictures? Are you happy with the results?
Don
 

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When looking to install an engine that doesn't have much precedence for the tractor, I would look at the following things in this order:
1. General fitment within the confines of the engine bay
2. PTO shaft size if I want the widest choice of new and used clutches - 1" is most popular, adapter's available to fit JD Ogura clutch to this shaft.
3. Select the clutch, get adapters (could require custom machining) and install it
4. Now you have the engine configuration that you can use to position the engine on the tractor's for/aft axis. The clutch needs to be in position to use with your mule drive.
5. Now you can look at the driveshaft requirements. In your case you can use the stub shaft and parts of the original driveshaft - it may need to be shortened or lengthened to fit the position you chose for the engine for the clutch pulley to be in the correct position. This mod is an easy process.
6. Finally you can figure out what your engine mount configuration must be - for example, do you need to lift the engine to level the universal joint angles.
7. From this, you will have all the info you need to actually mount the engine into a viable position, and then you have the other odds and ends to deal with like exhaust, fuel lines, throttle and choke cables, etc. All can be done if you approach it logically - some engines are easier to deal with than others, good luck.

If you choose the OEM JD clutch, I have a write-up on this site that will show you the available options for a 1 inch shaft, if you have a 1.125 inch shaft, you can use the configuration I used for a 1 inch shaft and have one made to fit your engine.
 

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When looking to install an engine that doesn't have much precedence for the tractor, I would look at the following things in this order:
1. General fitment within the confines of the engine bay
2. PTO shaft size if I want the widest choice of new and used clutches - 1" is most popular, adapter's available to fit JD Ogura clutch to this shaft.
3. Select the clutch, get adapters (could require custom machining) and install it
4. Now you have the engine configuration that you can use to position the engine on the tractor's for/aft axis. The clutch needs to be in position to use with your mule drive.
5. Now you can look at the driveshaft requirements. In your case you can use the stub shaft and parts of the original driveshaft - it may need to be shortened or lengthened to fit the position you chose for the engine for the clutch pulley to be in the correct position. This mod is an easy process.
6. Finally you can figure out what your engine mount configuration must be - for example, do you need to lift the engine to level the universal joint angles.
7. From this, you will have all the info you need to actually mount the engine into a viable position, and then you have the other odds and ends to deal with like exhaust, fuel lines, throttle and choke cables, etc. All can be done if you approach it logically - some engines are easier to deal with than others, good luck.

If you choose the OEM JD clutch, I have a write-up on this site that will show you the available options for a 1 inch shaft, if you have a 1.125 inch shaft, you can use the configuration I used for a 1 inch shaft and have one made to fit your engine.
Very good write up. But could you be more specific with the 1.125 clutch? I'm perfectly OK with updating to a more modern PTO clutch but most of those listings refer to mower model numbers and I haven't had any luck so far getting info from any of the new suppliers. If you know of a specific clutch that works well on the Command/317 install it would be very helpful.
 
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