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Archive through August 04, 2014

IH Cub Cadet Tractor Forum

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Well-known member
Jul 22, 2007
Harry Bursell
Just trying to catch up here.

Doug B and Ed "HotRod" Lincoln - sorry I still don't know if I'll make the show but I'm sorta shooting for Sat.

Terry D - don't know anyone making the correct Kohler repro engine ID tags, and for that matter also don't know anyone making correct repro IHCC serial number ID tags. Someone should put it together - this has to be a productive business just waiting to happen (if they are done correctly - they have to pass the Correct Police test).

Bob E - there is a Search function link at the bottom of the page. It's pretty much self explanatory and you have to use it a few times to get the hang of it. Don't overlook that it defaults to a "last 3 days" search. You probably want to change that to 300 or 600 or so.
Just a few pictures of the valves after they were removed from the engine, should have the new ones in a day or two. Seats looked good just need to be lapped in so will see how things go.




BRIAN - Does that engine have plain valve spring retainers or does it have valve rotator retainers?

A lot of the higher HP Kohler had rotators on both valves, but most of the engines had rotators on just the exhaust valves.

It looks like the side of the valve head facing the piston and advancing flame front torched the thin edge or "margin" of the valve off. The Kohler engine service manual cautions against grinding the valve margin too thin for that reason.

I would recommend you get a rotator on your exhaust valve at a minimum to prevent the new valve from getting torched again. Maybe put a want ad in the classifieds. I would also have the valve seats touched up with a seat grinding stone as it looks like the exhaust seat has some small pitting in the picture. Perhaps an local engine shop or NAPA dealer could help you out with that. Then lap your new valves in and you will be good to go.

Amazing your engine was able to run for this long with the exhaust valve in that condition.
Harry. would be good if you made but if not maybe next time

Ed L. are you camping out or just coming up for the day?
I have a question on the proper level of the hydro fluid on a 129. I assume that the fluid level should be at the bottom of the fill hole but if it is that full it leaks until it is down about 1/2 inch then the leak quits. I am thinking that 1/2 inch down should be OK but I thought that I would ask.
Any comments appreciated
EARL - Knowing where the fill hole on the transmission is on a 129, I'd say your cork gasket is leaking, and maybe one or both of the oil seals on the outer ends of the axle carriers.

I just looked up the current cost of the cork gasket this AM, $6 from CCS, and with the current price of Hy-Tran, if you leak a quart of Hy-Tran, you've paid for the cork gasket. Not sure what current price is on the axle carrier oil seals... every time I've bought them the invoice says "Corn head gearbox oil seal", and the price used to be $2-$3 each.

But to answer your question, YES, you can run your Hydro 129 a half inch low on Hy-Tran for light jobs for a short duration, not over a half hour, like mowing, general yard work like pulling light weight carts, etc, but if you want to moldboard plow, rototill, or other heavy draft loads, fix the leak and fill it up where it belongs. Running the hydro low on fluid means there's less fluid to absorb heat and the hydro will run hotter. Also, I wouldn't get your 129 on any steep hills with the Hy-Tran low, your charge pump may suck air.
What Dennis said times 2

this is how I moniter mine, and the level is about 1/4 low but the picture makes it look like more

As far as the hydro level, I remove the fill hole plug and stick my pinky in. If I can touch the fluid I run it. I have added fluid to tractors where my pinky touched the fluid and it didn't take but a pint at most. I can't stick my pinky in very far at all so I figure it isn't very low. Proper fluid level is always the best way to go though. And if I plan to work it hard I'll top it off regardless.


How do you add fluid to that tractor with the window? ...just curious.
I back it up on a slope in the front yard lock the brake and unscrew it. I really only had to do it when I filled it. I have this on two tractors and neither leak hydro fluid.

The picture was when I was filling and checking.



It's alive! The yellow cub is back to normal with its easy starting and smooth idle. Decarbonized the head and valve pockets then proceeded to lap in the new valves and set the clearance. The motor had not turned over in two months and fired off in two stokes. Can't wait to get a few tires fixed and get it out in the lawn.

Thanks for all your help!
That sight-glass is just plain neat. Where did you get it? How did you "thread" the cover like that to accept it?

You can't just post pics like that without telling us where it came from.
Jeff - that sight glass looks like one off an older air compressor pump? Pretty cool lookin rig!
Xtreme Motorworks sell rear cover plates with a sight glass, for cast iron and aluminum rear ends.

Plus they have a drain plug!
A picture of the valves after lapping and one of the lifters being adjusted. In the picture with the lifters you can see the left over grease from installing the keepers. When I looked at this picture I washed it back out again before I set the gap.



Aaron's description doesn't say anything about a sight glass.

Oh, I do see where is says sight plug, but with the bottom of the hole at the fill level.
Thanks for your comments on the hydro fluid level on my 129.
When you said that it might be the outer ends of the axle carrier, did you mean out by the wheels? The leak is in the center. Regarding the cork gasket. Where is that one? Is it the split by the check valves?
Earl LaMott
EARL - Yes, rear axle seals will leak down on the rear brake rotors or the insides of the wheel flanges.

If the leak is dripping off the lower frt of the transmission or oil filter, 99% chance it's the cork gasket. It's tough to describe where exactly the cork gasket is located. Gerry Ide wrote up an EXCELLENT description of how to replace the gasket and I looked thru ALL the FAQ's 2-3 times yesterday and couldn't find it. Picture being worth 1000 words.

You don't have to take ANY of the hydrostatic unit apart... just carefully remove it, clean the mounting face up, remove the old gasket, install the new one, and reinstall the whole unit. Most people replace the filter and Hy-Tran with the cork gasket.

You may have a leaking gasket between the transmission case and axle housing. Look for part #5 in the picture below that I got from partstree.com: