Kohler vs well, everybody else

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jstewart

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jon stewart
It has always seemed like Kohler was a bit more engine than other competitors. Is anybody else of that opinion? I'm referring to the old 8's, 10's, 12's and so on of the 60's and 70's
 

jkoenig

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Jim Koenig Halfway between Harvester, MO and Cadet, MO
I would say that that in those decades, Kohler ruled higher end OPE. Today, with the parts available to rebuild, service, and maintain them, I'm not so sure.
 

1811Cub

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Even up through the Command era, Kohler was on the top tier. The Briggs wasn't as robust. Unfortunately, the Series 1 KT17 left a black eye to their stellar reputation at the time (late 1970's). The series 2 KT17 and Magnum flat twins were great, mainly with the improvements to the oiling system. No doubt the classic K series single cylinders are legendary for their durability and longevity. Many are in use 40-60 years after they were manufactured.

The latest Kohler offerings are pure dreck. The Courage line is one of the biggest piles to ever come from a engine manufacturer.
 

Mark Evans

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Now days the Kohler has hydraulic lifters and a little better governor on them I like that better, Briggs is cheaper and the parts are always there Kawasaki small engines eat up cams and Kawasaki has paper tags that get sun burned and lost and you can’t get the right parts for carb or accessories !!!!!
 

Mark Evans

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Never liked the courage series on kohler !!!! And I always set governor speeds at 3000 rpm for survivability on all of them !!!!
 

Mark Evans

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jkoenig

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Jim Koenig Halfway between Harvester, MO and Cadet, MO
Many are in use 40-60 years after they were manufactured.


I think that may be the heart of the problem. Once upon a time it was a nice fairy tale to think of a small engine surviving for half a century. Today's more. more, more business model cannot handle the thought of a consumer only buying one of anything and having it last half a century. A decade is even a stretch.
 

Mark Evans

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If you rpm the speed by pulley size and have the blades up there on it you don’t need 3600 rpm on the engine and use less gas and ring wear !!!!!
 

Mark Evans

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Just picked up a front blade for my 782 series II 18 Command
 

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Mark Evans

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I go to post one picture and I spits out a hole line of pictures????? I still have problems with post on here !!! The blade is a Seers in roebuck and I got it for 50 bucks almost unused
 
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jonesville,mi.
I've only seen one Kaw blown (a 9 hp.) but other issues show up. Last yr I tore down a 23hp Kaw that NEVER had an oil change eventually the sludge plugged parts of the comp. release...I've worked on all different types of engines..Most are very good quality,oil changes are the biggest issue.People just climb on and if it starts they run it.It seems the average owner doesn't understand ANY maintenance.The exception is the Kohler "courage"it has a great habit of coming unglued. Their warranty coverage of the courage was an insult.The rest of the Kohlers have been very good..Briggs has been at it for a long time and are good at it except the last few yrs of valve guides moving and bending pushrods..Been too common,they need to put a crimp in the block to keep the guides from moving.....Tecumseh failed by letting the corp.world push them into cheapness...All opinions of a guy who just keeps wrenching and learning..
 

mgonitzke

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Matt Gonitzke
Cooling airflow is proportional to engine RPM. By running it under load at less than 3600 RPM, you are running it hotter. That is not going to help it last longer.
 

Mark Evans

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I keep my tin covers down on the fins to keep the air moving by the metal to cool it and air feeds open and clean no problems that way !!!
 

Mark Evans

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Perryton, Tx 79070
It’s the grass and leaves that plug up the cooling and cause the heat to over do the cooling and head gaskets to split and fail !!!!
 

JPrattico

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I think Kohler really seemed to know what they were doing, especially with the K series. I just fired up my little Kohler K90 yesterday after sitting all winter. The K90 was the first of the K series, produced from 1952-1959 when it was replaced by the K91. This little engine unfortunately sat all winter with water in the fuel system (endured 36 hours of nonstop rainfall at the county fair last August) and after a quick carb and sediment bowl cleaning, this 60-something year old engine is running like its almost new on gas that has rust floating in it. If that's not a testament to the quality of these engines then I don't know what is!

 
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