I recently replaced the mandrel, housing and pulley on my craftsman lawnmower. Got my yard half mowed and the deck started to vibrate. Took the deck back off and where the mandrel and pulley conect it is all chewed up. Got new parts, replaced them and it did it again. Is it junk parts or am I doing something wrong when replacing it?
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Re: mandrel chews pulley
Are you sure the spindle is not bent and also are you balancing the blades when sharpening. Other then that make sure bolts are tight on the mandrel. With the deck off and standing up spin the blades and watch center of balde to see if something is bent. Also watch pulley on the other side to see if its bent.
I had the same issue and went through 3 pulleys It turns out that when we changed the shaft the we forgot to put the washer/ spacer back on. It sits under the pulley. It's thicker so it raises the pulley a little to line up the teeth. Very important! If this part is missing the pulley will keep stripping.
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Safety and Preparation
Serious injury can occur if the engine or mower blades accidentally start while you are working with lawn tractors. To prevent this, drive the Murray lawn tractor onto a flat work surface and disengage the mowing deck cutting blades. Engage the parking brake to keep the mower from moving; chock the wheels with a wooden block or brick. Adjust the mowing deck to the lowest position. Turn off the engine and remove the key from the ignition. While not necessary, you may even wish to disconnect the spark plug wire from the spark plug.
Mowing Deck Removal
You must remove the mowing deck on a Murray lawn tractor to gain access to the belts. Remove the adjustment rod hairpins, followed by the adjustment rod pins from the front left and right sides of the mowing deck. At the rear on the left and right sides, pull out the retaining hairpins and slide the mowing deck suspension links from the adjuster plates to separate the rear mowing deck from the frame. Remove the blade control rod stud, including the hairpin and washer, from the top of the blade control lever shift linkage at the left rear of the deck. Remove the front hanger rod, including the hairpin and flat washer that hold the rod in place. Loosen the belt guide retaining bolts with a socket wrench and remove the engine stack pulley belt so you can slide the mower deck out from under the tractor
Transmission Drive Belt Installation
Slide the new transmission drive belt between the engine stack pulley belt guides, over the belt guide plate and under the engine stack pulley. Fit the transmission drive belt around the top engine stack pulley. Push the free end of the transmission drive belt up through the transmission shifter hole in the lawn tractor floorboard. Slip the transmission drive belt loop over the transmission shifter. Pull the transmission drive belt down through the transmission shifter hole. Fit the transmission drive belt around the transmission drive pulley and tighten the transmission drive pulley belt guide retaining bolts to hold it in place. Fit the transmission drive belt flat side around the idler pulley. Slide the idler pulley onto the idler pulley stud while holding the belt in place. Tighten the transmission idler pulley retaining nut with a socket wrench to secure the idler pulley to the idler pulley stud.
Mowing Deck Drive Belt Installation
Pull back on the right side mowing deck mandrel pulley spring-tensioned belt retainer. Guide the new mowing deck drive belt around the right side mandrel pulley and release the belt retainer. Pull the drive belt spring-tensioned retainer away from the mowing deck idler pulley, guiding the deck drive belt around the idler pulley. Fit the mowing deck drive belt around the left side mandrel pulley and under the rear mowing deck cross link rod between the right and left side mandrel pulley. Slide the mowing deck under the right side lawn tractor frame, reconnecting the deck to the frame in reverse order of removal. Engage and disengage the mower deck while driving the mower to test the belt for proper operation.
i'm guessing that you're referring to the aluminum mandrel housing: yes you can get the housing separately, better get some new bolts too, because the old ones will likely break off - use some anti-seize compound on them and it'll go alot easier
there are thousands of these mowers out there, and most people do not have the problem that you are experiencing - let's face reality, you are hitting something, that's the only way these break - it is impractical to make a machine that will mow through rocks, stumps, and water pipes and not break - also, sears does not MAKE anything, they contract companies to make products for them - if you want a thicker, tougher mandrel housing, log onto www.amcpartsstore.com. they recently began offering a heavy duty version of the mandrel housing, part no. 130794. i've seen these and they are definitely beefy - just be sure to put everything together correctly and tighten all the nuts and bolts firmly, and try to avoid the rocks and stumps
there are only a couple of things that could be causing this: either the spacer [looks like a thick washer] is put on above the pulley [it goes UNDER the pulley], or the nut holding the pulley on is not being tightened enough
You dont have to drop the deck. Remove the belt first then hold the blade in place so you can loosen the nut on top of the pulley. after you remove the pully then remove the blade. There are 3 bolts holding the mandrel in place remove the bolts. Then pull the mandrel out from underneath the mower deck. There is a shroud that will come loose with it or it may stick from accumilated grass regardless it needs to go back during reassembly. When putting it back together the 3 bolts are usually self tapping into the new aluminum mandrel. Its much easier to put these in and take them out before you install the new mandrel as the bolts cut the threads.
You have to remove the nut on top of the pulley. With the pulley off, the shaft will slide out the bottom with the blade. Don't forget when you put the pulley back on, the washer/spacer goes BETWEEN the pully and housing, NOT on top of the pulley. Dwain