Very dissapointed in my 184

Wed Apr 16, 2008 10:17 am

This past fall /winter I changed out the rings to solve my overheating and power problems. I thought I had everything set, the ring gap, every ring gap at the right rotation position. Just went to mow. No power, smoking out the bottom end overheating. I just cannot believe it's the rings now, so what ? The head? Timing? Anyone in the market for a 184? I am totally disgusted. I had to walk away from the machine before I lit it on fire. Any ideas appreciated. Thanks DR

Re: Very dissapointed in my 184

Wed Apr 16, 2008 10:29 am

did you check the valves while you had it apart? Did the valves start sticking while it was laid up? Not to be abuster it sounds as if you have the same problem as before the rings. Maybe the origional plan it is weak I'll change the valves was not a proper diagnose of the problem.

I did a similar thing when I bought a 33 HP diesel because the Lowboy had no power. Turned out the PO had put in tapered plugs and I lost compression. The timing was off too. Thank god the diesel had a bucket or it would have been a waste.

Re: Very dissapointed in my 184

Wed Apr 16, 2008 11:36 am

I did reset all the valves upon reassembly. I went out again today and added about a quart of water to bring the coolant level back up, started it and bumped the timing up a bit (Faster idle) and tried again . Lots more power seems to be running cooler, very little smoke. It did start to heat up at the end but, I had gotten a bit bold because it was running so much better I mowed some heavier grass in 2nd gear and it did well at that. By heating up at the end, I mean, when I pulled it back to the shed and shut it down, I reached up and turned the radiator cap and it did steam a bit but, nothing too drastic. Maybe pushing it a bit with second gear? Glad I didn't light it on fire before! It maybe just some timing tweaking needing done. Thanks, DR

Re: Very dissapointed in my 184

Wed Apr 16, 2008 9:21 pm

Did you lap the valves?
Set the ignition timing?
Clean/flush the cooling system?
Carburator running lean?
Check clearances on the rod and main bearings?
Correct size rings for the piston? Rings in correctly, upside down, in wrong groove?
Any work on the cylinders? Hone, break the glaze, remove the ridge?

What is the history of this engine - tractor?

Fan belt loose? Trash in radiator? Shroud on radiator?

Re: Very dissapointed in my 184

Thu Apr 17, 2008 9:02 am

Did you offset the oil ring end gaps?

With the twin rings on the oil ring if there lined up some oil will get by them.

Did you ream the top ridge?

If you didn't then the new top ring with the square edge will break when it hits the rounded edge of the ridge at the top of the cylinder.

Go thru every setting so your sure its right. I like to let it idle for a while a few hours to break in before putting it to work.

Re: Very dissapointed in my 184

Thu Apr 17, 2008 8:30 pm

I just read most of Dieselriders post concerning this engine. If all that was done was installing new rings - won't solve the basic problem that this engine was no where near correctly rebuilt 3 or 4 years ago.

Re: Very dissapointed in my 184

Sun May 04, 2008 5:46 pm

Just to update on this tractor. The last two times out it did much better. Needs choked hard for a couple minutes but as soon as it starts to warm up it has been a dream to run. I have been cutting more open areas in second gear and no lack of power or overheating.

I have been given another 184(1978 model, as best as I can say from the sn) as partial payment for some work, and I do not need two. I may part the second one out or sell whole. I know there are alot of purists on here that don't like seeing these machines parted out but, that would probably bring the best dollar.

Re: Very dissapointed in my 184

Sun May 04, 2008 6:35 pm

PM sent.

Re: Very dissapointed in my 184

Sun Dec 28, 2008 8:42 pm

I purchased a 72 regular Cub this summer that had a stuck engine. It was not too bad and the bores honed OK. I found a cheap set of well used 184 aluminum domed pistons on EBAY which I hoped would give me more power. The new rings fit loose in the grooves (especially the uppers) but I used the pistons anyway since I was in a hurry. I knew better and should not have used them; my guess is that the old 184 engine was "dusted" and wore the grooves excessively. My Cub now runs and works plowing snow but has bad blowby even after break-in. I'll be replacing the pistons with new ones soon!
The ring grooves on the old style cast iron pistons probably don't wear nearly as fast as the newer style aluminum pistons but eating dust doesn't do any engine much good.
Piston ring groove wear is a factor to consider as you look at what your problem might be.
As in your case, I think I did everything else right but I KNOWINGLY used a set of pistons on which the ring grooves were badly worn and suspect that is the cause of my blow-by problem.

Re: Very dissapointed in my 184

Mon Dec 29, 2008 10:02 am

Dieselrider wrote:Just to update on this tractor. The last two times out it did much better. Needs choked hard for a couple minutes but as soon as it starts to warm up it has been a dream to run. I have been cutting more open areas in second gear and no lack of power or overheating.

I have been given another 184(1978 model, as best as I can say from the sn) as partial payment for some work, and I do not need two. I may part the second one out or sell whole. I know there are alot of purists on here that don't like seeing these machines parted out but, that would probably bring the best dollar.


My int154 even with the 184 upgrade takes a lot of choke to start up. But i do let it just sit for a while too. Sometimes i'm mowing with the cadets having fun. I did also notice that the anti-freeze level was low on my fcub and my int154 cub too. I kept on filling it until it leveled off then they stayed full. I did add some seafoam to lube the valves and the upper parts of the cylinders too and by the second tank of gas the 154 was humming awesome. These are great mowing machines with the live PTO. I'm past 2 years and going on 3 years of running my 154 with no problems yet.