Monday, April 29, 2013

18 hp Vangaurd Blown head gasket

It seems for some reason this machine spends a lot of time not needing an engine to get around . It has been a troubled machine since new . I inherited from the sister course a few years back .

 First day out of the shop and it blew a head gasket . The boys where not impressed and had to shovel the traps up by hand . Personally shovelling our traps by hand does a better job anyway .
The engine is in a pretty tight place and is much easier to remove from machine to repair . I'm not going to talk to much about the repair . I will talk about the importance to take key picture for reassembly . When doing a small engine their can be many parts that need to go back in the same location . Looks easy when tearing apart but when it comes to reassembly you can get confused easily . The reassembly instructions give the basics but not much in fine details .
Here Is a picture of the starter side wiring . Doesn't hurt to label or right down what colors go where .

 Picture of choke linkage.
 Throttle linkage.
 Ground wires and where they bolt on the machine .
 Oil pressure switch .
 Rear framing section that hold the hydraulic pump to the engine ...pulleys on engine and pump will have to be removed first .
 Along with the rake lift framing and park brake assembly.
 I left the starter positive wire to solinoid and ground cable to battery on engine .
 Engines out and on the bench .
 I took it over to the parts washer and cleaned it of as well a possible then blew it off with air .
 Pic of bracket on top of engine and carburator .
Another picture of choke linkage and ground wire ...which I found the bolt was cross threaded .
 Fuel pump and brackets pictures . When I was reassembling, this part left me scratching my head till I referrenced the pictures I took .

 Removed the flywheel . The guys on the tech site suggested to replace the front and rear crankseals while it was out . The rear seal on this one had a slight leak before I pulled it out .
 All the shields need to be removed . I also laid the parts and bolts to each part together on a couple of pieces of cardboard . That way I could right notes on it and if a parts drop by mistake you can easiely find it .
 Pictures of how the wiring was tied up to the intake manifold . Kill switch wires to shield . 
 See the black wire coming through the shield ! remember it because it is the fuel shut off solinoid that was fed down from the top of the engine to here behind the shields .
 The most important pictures of all are the governor linkages and springs etc. and where they go .

With out pictures you could spend days trying to figure out where the springs go unless you have the full service manual .

 Linkage to carburator the small spring ( 4 pic's up )hooks on the next hole also this end will have to be attached before assembling all the brackets . There is no other way to get it on the carburator end otherwise .
Picture of shield on top of engine and below the clip that attaches to the bottom to hold the wire off the flywheel .  

 The flywheel pulled off fairly easy . Leave the nut on loose till it pops off plus it will prevent the end from getting damaged .
 Keep the rocker arms and push-rods matched and lay them out on the cardboard . You can label them . If you forget the aluminum push-rods are the exhaust .

4 bolts to remove the head on each side . I like to crack each one first before pulling them all out .

Not hard to tell the intake side from the exhaust . The exhaust valves do not have valve seals plus running a dirty air filter caused it to run rich resulting in this look on the piston . Also the plugs were black and clumpy and they looked like they were running with the choke on . (which was not the case )

A few more pic's of parts laid out . I'll go back and clean everything up before the seal kit gets here .

Heads are all cleaned up and ready . I use medium grit emery cloth on a hard flat surface circling it in a figure eight pattern . I also replace the intake valve seals .

Also replaced the rear cover seal .

Over all it took the better part of a day to reassemble torque bolts to specs, check coil to flywheel air gap and valve clearances . New filters,  plugs , oil etc . reinstalled and hook up .
   Being a golf course equipment mechanic you are working on many different types of equipment some times there are a few in the shop torn down waiting for parts . If you do the above you can reassembly them quickly with out to much guess work or trouble . In my case this unit sat in the way for almost 2 weeks . I had to check a few key pictures to remember where things went . The best part was it fired right up when the fuel hit the carb . Makes for a great day .
Our New fuel tanks have arrived and wiring upgrades to the buildings are finished . Now I can go back and finish off 2 snippers and start getting into cut checking routine . All the the gears been out a few times and no problems so far . The MD's are going to get the hitch upgrade soon  too .


Thursday, April 25, 2013

Woo Hooo !!!! Opening Day

First day open . Of to a good start . The grass is coming in nicely we wintered well . Had a bit of much needed rain which spruced things up for today's opening . Good to see the regulars back and out for a round . By noon the sun came out and the place was packed. Not a parking spot to be had by 1 o'clock . Soon our sister course will open relieving some play on our course . New electric carts are working out great . The guys we're out mowing rough today and laying down some sod around 18 trap area .The new guys are working out great so far . We had to put out a temperary green to speed things up for the guys and keep them save . I've been busy getting the small engines serviced so they will be ready to go . The new MD Toro's received some wooden height extensions on the box to dress them up a bit . Soon I'll get some metal to extend the hitch a little and to pull on 3 points on the  axle instead of one plus we  use the 2" square receiver so we can switch from pin tow to ball tow in seconds .

 The seal kit for our Smithco traprake engine is in finally . It will be nice to get it out of my way next week . Soon will be time to remove the covers off the grinders .
Next week the irrigation should be firing up . We would have  water on but the power line upgrade is holding us back .

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Pro Gator 2020 is back

After changing the wire connections on top of engine and repaired governor adjustment screw it seems to be working pretty good . We just picked it up from a Provincial Springs ( a local spring suspension shop ) After a half hour labour and making a new main spring it was well worth my while .

Sometime sourcing work out to a specialty shop can save you time and money .

Friday, April 19, 2013

PGM drum seal collars

We have a few of the PGM 22 mower here at the course . When greasing the drums the outer seals tend to pop out allowing sand / water to get in at the brass bushing . This is not my idea but when I read the post I knew it was going to be the fix for me and thought I would pass it on . I held of for a while because it is in an ackward spot to get the collars on .
One of our PGMs we use for tee decks .
This is the problem . When greasing it will pop the seal 9 times out of 10 . You grease these through the drum 4 of them .
One of the techs posted his fix . He bought some collars to fit the shaft .

After removing the bolts I put a dab of grease on them to help hold it on the shaft.


You WILL need a ball head Allen key (new if possible )3/16 ths. in my case .You can use a 3/8ths. wrench to get more leverage on Allan key . It's the only way you will get the bolts in . I also used blue loctite on them . You will have to be in the right frame of mind and patience to get them in ... but it can be done . I did four of mine today ...8 collars .

Just before you tighten the bolts all the way force the collar against the seal . Problem solved !!!

New Building ( The final chapter )

Great out come !!! Big undertaking for Brian ( superintendent ) to create a well laid out space in this state of the art golf course maintenance building . It looks fantastic .

The old lean too buildings have been pulled down and removed . Really highlights the new building now with all the open space . Most of area is to grade and the fuel tanks are being moved to a new location soon . Greenhouse is up and running getting ready for the up coming season .
 A little trenching to move the Rainbird decoder wiring to the new site .
 Al's been busy building new benches and moving supplies in . Hats of to Brian and Ashburn to provide modern tools to stream line repairs to equipment more efficiently .
 Randy ( Al's assistant ) Al and Curtis ( assistant super ) enjoy a much needed break .
 View from Al's bay door . Grinding room on the right.

 Lunch room finished . Dave taken a break . Soon the place will fill up with new and returning staff.
 Cold storage most of the gear found a new home out of the weather and sun . They will figure out the layout of gear as the season progresses . Took me some trial and error to get it right at My Shop  .
 Ice machine up and running . We provide the members with water and ice out on the course .
 Fertilizer and chemical room area
 Mens shower area .
 Lockers are all in and the guys have moved into them .
 Kitchen area complete . They may get a second fridge . Tends to fill up pretty fast when the full crew gets back .
 Nice size offices . Looks great .
Eye wash station . Built in and water temperature controlled and pressure regulated .

A couple of pictures inside chemical room .
Not much left over from last season .