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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am a new owner of a 400 project. I mow with a 300 with a k341 now and I am looking to rebuild and upgrade into this tractor.

I started a thread over at GTT here:

http://www.greentractortalk.com/for...8770-another-400-repower-opinions-thread.html

Short summary. I got this thing at auction and did not get the original blown up k532. I have mulled over numerous repower options ranging from a D722 kubota through a Geo Metro 3 cylinder (would be pretty sweet actually) to an Aegis kohler and finally have mostly settled on a V twin air cooled kohler. I know the tractor has had the hydro unit replaced at some point in its life, it has a 3 point, and a solid deck. It had a very crudely installed blown up (or possibly rusty bores) Briggs flathead twin which has been removed at this point.

Folks over there pointed me over here as there is more 400 knowledge over here.

Background on me: I can weld, I have a lathe and mill, I can wire, I can code. Putting something else under the hood of the 400 is not scary to me at all.

Current thoughts: create a full engine cradle because the k532 was a stressed member sort of mounting. Heady stuff back in the day for a lawn tractor, but probably not a good idea with a lightweight aluminum crankcase V twin like the kohler. I am looking at a ch730 type engine. I don't have the correct engine pulley for the PTO so the crankshaft output on the new engine is kind of a moot point as I will need to source something else (or bore and key a plain bore sheave) anyway. The oil cooler looks wrong. The driveshaft may need extending for the new engine. I am planning to set it up with left side exhaust. I don't have any of the front sheet metal.

At any rate I thought I would share my ongoing project over here and get more comments from other folks who like the oddities of the 400. :) Pics included.
 

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I for one, will be following along with you. I'm still running the K-532's and also a K582 in one. Yes, the 582 came from something else.

Haven't made the transition to repower yet. I'm still looking for running K 532-582 engines; but as the years pass the engines get scarce.

wink
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Well... Engine choice is sorted.


I picked up a 120 hour warranty replacement 25hp efi ech730 off of craigslist. The engine was in an Exmark Navigator and had lifter noise from new. Kohler told the owner to change to 20w-50 oil. This didn't help so at 120 hours, they replaced the engine. I scored it for a good deal missing only the airbox and exhaust (with O2 sensor).


Now astute observers will realize that a navigator has no pto shaft on the engine. The crank is cut flush with the closure plate. I have already located a low hour standard crank with a "normal" output shaft. I am tempted to put a CV730 crank into the engine though. This will give me alot more snout to work with a possible direct drive loader pump one day and fudging the engine fore and aft. But I am also trying to not go too far down a rabbit hole. Pics tomorrow.
 

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This may be an unreasonable option, but maybe replace the driveshaft with a "jackshaft". Use a Lovejoy coupling at the pump and run the shaft through a hangar bearing all the way forward under the engine to another hangar bearing attached to the front crossmember at the grill. Mount the engine over the shaft and cogged belt or double belt it down to the shaft. Then you would have the length of the shaft to add an aux hydraulic pump and aux alternator. Any V configured engine may be too tall to be mounted over top of the shaft. You might need to rotate the rear end to get it more horizontal.

My armchair engineering for the morning...

edit. I went back and looked at your photos and had the thought-add an electric clutch at the forward end of the jackshaft to drive the pto.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Cool :) I really thought about tearing down my light plant and using it's engine (isuzu 3lb1). Even went and looked at a few more dead light plants. But in the end decided on the Kohler.

So far not a lot done. Just a bit of pondering. I am unsure where I want to go with the driveshaft hookup. I really don't wanna go with set screws and keys and stuff on it, but it may be the simplest way.

I have a crankshaft, both side panels, and the hood hinges and stanchions/supports coming in the mail. I still need to get a hood, grill, grill support bar and the flat bit of tinwork that goes over the muffler and stabilizes the front cowl. I may fabricate that bit.


Right now I have sat the engine in the frame on a block of wood just for eyeballing things. Fit looks good with the exception of the support bar/pulley for the PTO cable. Not a huge deal. Pics below..
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
This is kind of what I am thinking on the engine pulley:


http://www.surpluscenter.com/Power-...D-H-BUSHING-DOUBLE-GROOVE-PULLEY-1-2BKH52.axd


That one has an effective diameter of 4.2 with 1/2" belts and 4.6 with 5/8" belts.


There is also this one that has 4.0 and 4.4 respectively.


http://www.surpluscenter.com/Power-...D-H-BUSHING-DOUBLE-GROOVE-PULLEY-1-2BKH50.axd


Hopefully I can slide the engine forward enough to put the bushing in from the rear of the pulley and get a direct drive coupler in front of it. I may never use it, but while I am building, i should go ahead and incorporate it. I do have a smallish pump that is supposed to be good the I could go ahead and sort out a way to run it.


I am currently watching my tracking info on all my parts. I will most likely purchase steel this week for mounts. Kind of swinging back toward doing it how SEW does on their vanguard mounts with a new cradle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
After considerable delay (not caused by the seller, he/she packaged the items extremely well!), my side covers and hood hinges arrived. Its a bit of a squeeze.... The engine will need to sit lower then where it is presently (on a block of wood :lol: ).
 

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I remember a while back (just before the first buyout) several repowered their 400 with Predator engines. I believe they were angled down to the rear. I had assumed this was the way of the original 400?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I am unsure about the predator repower. Honestly I am not a fan of those engines even though lots of folks have great luck with them. And the design looks fairly solid from the manual. I think they are more of a Honda clone than anything. And I think they are narrower across the valve covers than the kohler. They do seem to fit a in there a bit easier...

My goal is to have the stub shaft and hydro input shaft parallel and hopefully not running the universal at more than about a five degree angle max. By placing the shafts parallel in a two joint system, drive line vibrations are minimized due to everything accelerating and decelerating uniformly as the shaft spins.

I really hate I that I will be unable to work on this over the weekend :(
 

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I was not suggesting for you to use a Predator. I've only seen one 400 and just briefly. I just wanted to suggest for you to check around to see if you needed the angle for whatever reason. I guess I should have just kept quite since I did not know if or why...
 

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with all the re-powers, I decided to keep it all original. I don't use it, so I hope to keep it strong and healthy for years to come. It is fun to tow a wagon or lawn rake on occasion. Or drag a lawn roller about the lawn. Fuel consumption is quite unbelievable and found a 212 to perform the same work at much lower cost. The K532 has almost 300 hours on it now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I think I would enjoy a stock one. I do know where another machine is at which still has the K532. Unfortunately not having pretty much anything firewall forward would have easily made this into a parts machine vs the repower.

That is a REALLY nice looking machine!
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I haven't stopped on this project. Work has kept me traveling and I have pretty much been treading water all summer. Still mowing with my 300 but the parts of the deck I haven't replaced yet are getting in bad shape. I have my fingers cross to make it through the season. This deck will be done for at the end of the season I think. It's spindles and mounting pickups will most likely be donated to an experimental scratch built Scag velocity type rear discharge deck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I still have not mounted my engine. I have procured a dipstick/oil filler tube from a lincoln welder shortblock which should solve the valve cover clearance issue if mounting the engine at stock height. I have misgivings regarding the use of the OEM type mount on the closure plate. I worry warping of the aluminum crankcase could result.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Can someone do me a solid and measure the width of the top panel that goes between the hood hinge uprights? I can't seem to find one, and I am guessing I will need fabricate one anyway.
 
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