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Discussion Starter #1
I am looking to repower my MTD 24 with a Tecumseh 5.5 hp with a 6.5 hp and would like to get some input. I'll have to put a 3/4 to 7/8 inch shaft bushing on the motor output shaft. The Tec has been pretty reliable, starts easily and will throw a foot of average weight snow 12 to 15 ft, but it struggles with the end of driveway or heavier snow. I am looking at either the Briggs 950 snow engine or Predator 212 cc . I have read that Briggs has had some valve train problems and not sure it they have been resolved on the 950. The non-hemi Predator seems to be fairly reliable, but can be hit or miss on quality. Anyone with experience with either of these engines?
 

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i would take the clone over the briggs anyday !
 

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With the shaky position of B&S financially, alternatives are looking better and better for the long term... They've moved almost all production out of Wisconsin now, and have been putting Honda engines in their products. That said, I recently had a very good experience with B&S customer service with my pressure washer, but fear that it may not last.
 

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have you done the impeller mod to it? if you haven't that may help you out with the bottom of the driveway. more power would only help if it is bogging. you can put a bigger engine on but if you can't get the heavier/slushy crap out of the bucket more power won't do you any good.
 

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They are both China made engines, both Cheap motors. You have to look at being able to get replacement parts for them when needed.
Briggs has better parts availability than Predator does.
Usually when you have a problem or need parts for the Predator, you just throw the engine in the garbage pile and replace the whole engine, they are very cheap in price, so it is easier and cheaper to just replace the Predator engine than to repair it.
Briggs has been in the process over the past couple of years to bring their manufacturing back to the USA and sell off all of their other Power Equipment divisions, they just want to concentrate on their engines only and hope to bring their reputation back up to where it was before they took over a lot of those other companies. The Simplicity Company was about the only good company they had, the Snapper products were very poor along with the Murray products. It could take Briggs another ten years or longer to get things back in order again, but at least they have a good dedicated parts supply readily available to the public.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
The impeller mod is on the to do list, but the Tec boggs down at the end of the driveway with the usual heavy snow we get here . Otherwise It runs good, starts easy, good parts availability, but I can see the difference with other 6.5 HP
machines.

I hope your right about Briggs upping their game. The Briggs 950 has no throttle control and the possible valve train issue is a concern. In some cases this was due to low grade steel used. I think this model uses the metal vs plastic cam.

I guess with Predator parts are hit or miss. Some claim you can use various clone parts available on eBay , but quality is probably a big question.
 

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I have put a B&S on one Ariens, and a Predator on another Ariens.

They both work fine, but I actually like the Predator better, as I feel it performs better under load.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I have put a B&S on one Ariens, and a Predator on another Ariens.

They both work fine, but I actually like the Predator better, as I feel it performs better under load.
Great, it looks like you can really do a good comparison between these two engines. A few questions for you.

How much better is the performance of the Predator ? For instance, what difference in throwing distance under load ?

Ease of starting ?

Fuel storage tolerance ? Some newer engines/carbs will not start or run well when fuel is 30 days plus old even with the stabilizer. I have E10 here and run stabilizer in all my power equipment .

Durability/build quality. I know these are cheap engines, just want to know if there is any diff between the two.
 

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I'll bet KPS will pimp the name out and do little else. It will only go downhill from here. Think Bolens, Troy Bilt, Black and Decker, etc, etc. All fleeced to the bone turned to crap.

We could see this coming when Toro, Generac, Ariens and Troy Bilt starting using chinese engines and they were performing better and didn't blow up like everyone predicted. Pot metal aint that bad for small engines I guess.

Why spend $299 on an engine when the $99 engine works better?

And with battery powered OPE gaining ground fast B&S probably said "Thats it, we are done"

And how in the heck did they pay a CEO $5M per year for running the stock from $25 a share down to $5 a share?

The real shame is that he and other executives decided to skip paying interest on their debt and pay themselves instead. Thats a slap in the face to the workers and suppliers IMO
 

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Sad sad sad, How much you want to wager those $99 engines stop being $99 once Briggs bites the dust for good? Really sad state of affairs. Does the OP have the OHV Tec 195cc? If so they made a 7hp version of that, may be as simple as just bumping up the high limit on rpms. It's a good motor, winterized, has plastic tank that doesn't start sending rust and other crap through your fuel system halfway through the first season, usually 120v e start. I'd personally stick with the Tec....but if it's truly worn out and not just a carb/governor issue, If I were to go new clone as opposed to just buying a real US made Honda, then I'd definitely go with a Ducar(clone ) built Tillotson 212 with TCT mechanical fuel injection upgrade, ditch that stupid steel tank, and make sure nothing went into it but marina 100% gas.

 

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...If I were to go new clone as opposed to just buying a real US made Honda...
The traditional GX series OHV Honda engines are still made for the US market in Thailand. Their HSS 2-stage blowers are assembled here in Swepsonville NC, but the GX engines are Thai (they are excellent, too). The US-made engines are the GC/GCV and GS/GSV OHC engines.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Does the OP have the OHV Tec 195cc? If so they made a 7hp version of that, may be as simple as just bumping up the high limit on rpms. It's a good motor, winterized, has plastic tank that doesn't start sending rust and other crap through your fuel system halfway through the first season, usually 120v e start.
This Tec is the 5.5 hp LH195SP Flat head 195 cc (HSSK50) which I think was the last version of this engine which had increase of 0.5 hp and improved compression release. It really is a good running engine, it just does not have the extra power for the end of driveway and wetter snows. I have not check the rpms. It does pretty well otherwise, has a plastic tank, e-start, starts easily with primer and multiple choke settings and is good on gas. The only other issue is it probably needs 0W -30 synthetic oil to start at 0 F with the recoil starter.
 

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The traditional GX series OHV Honda engines are still made for the US market in Thailand. Their HSS 2-stage blowers are assembled here in Swepsonville NC, but the GX engines are Thai (they are excellent, too). The US-made engines are the GC/GCV and GS/GSV OHC engines.
Sad, are the small Kohlers made overseas as well? Well at least the Tillotson R block (Ducar based GX clone) is at least redesigned in the US by EC (Birt) carbs (go kart stuff), but then you're definitely out of the $99 and into the $400 (or build it yourself) range.
 

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Sad, are the small Kohlers made overseas as well?...
I don't know about the Kohlers, but in the case of the Honda GX engines, it is NOT sad... I have had old 30+ year old Japan-built Honda GX engines (still have a 1987 GX240 snow engine that I recently transplanted to a chipper) and newer Thai-built GXs (wood splitter, water pump, snowblower) and can't distinguish any quality difference. The Thai plant has been making those engines for us since the '90s. I've actually had more issues with the GXV120 on my mower that was made in the USA (admittedly more total hours on it than the others).
 

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This Tec is the 5.5 hp LH195SP Flat head 195 cc (HSSK50) which I think was the last version of this engine which had increase of 0.5 hp and improved compression release. It really is a good running engine, it just does not have the extra power for the end of driveway and wetter snows. I have not check the rpms. It does pretty well otherwise, has a plastic tank, e-start, starts easily with primer and multiple choke settings and is good on gas. The only other issue is it probably needs 0W -30 synthetic oil to start at 0 F with the recoil starter.
Is that on an MTD or Ariens? what size impeller? I ask because I have I believe a 2006 version of the small frame L head 195 Tec on an Ariens 939000 blower, it throws snow 40 feet and has no problems with EOD. It performs as well as TEC OHV 195's on my 932000 series when adjusted properly, and heavily outperforms my ST504 with an 80's version of the same 195 Lhead motor. The major difference between the 939 and 932's is the impeller size, (939 has the 12" impeller)....There's no doubt your blower will perform better with 2 extra HP predator, but make sure the engine is the problem first and not an adjustment, or the blower itself, problem. The HF clones do not have plastic tanks or E start, and the mount pattern may be different from the L head block, So it won't be a $100 fix if that's what you're thinking.
 

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I don't know about the Kohlers, but in the case of the Honda GX engines, it is NOT sad... I have had old 30+ year old Japan-built Honda GX engines (still have a 1987 GX240 snow engine that I recently transplanted to a chipper) and newer Thai-built GXs (wood splitter, water pump, snowblower) and can't distinguish any quality difference. The Thai plant has been making those engines for us since the '90s. I've actually had more issues with the GXV120 on my mower that was made in the USA (admittedly more total hours on it than the others).
Is that GXV the 118cc with the aux PTO? I have one of those too and it seems to be the only thing I can leave stored outdoors and still start in the spring. I've had it since 96' and I'm second owner (took it in trade for some work) and it's just now starting to blow a little blue smoke on startup. Great motor, On the other hand I have a Lifan clone on a gas compressor that seems to need a new carb every year even if filled with pure gas and stored in the garage. It's a PITA because it has a whip linkage.
It's not sad because Hondas and clones are not designed or put together bad, the closing of Briggs and Tec is sad because it puts our American brothers out of work, out of process engineering, and out of the parts supply chain, and the execs made it happen on purpose.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Is that on an MTD or Ariens? what size impeller? I ask because I have I believe a 2006 version of the small frame L head 195 Tec on an Ariens 939000 blower, it throws snow 40 feet and has no problems with EOD. It performs as well as TEC OHV 195's on my 932000 series when adjusted properly, and heavily outperforms my ST504 with an 80's version of the same 195 Lhead motor. The major difference between the 939 and 932's is the impeller size, (939 has the 12" impeller)....There's no doubt your blower will perform better with 2 extra HP predator, but make sure the engine is the problem first and not an adjustment, or the blower itself, problem. The HF clones do not have plastic tanks or E start, and the mount pattern may be different from the L head block, So it won't be a $100 fix if that's what you're thinking.
This is on an MTD 24 " with a 12 " impeller. The engine runs/starts well and has maintenance, so the thinking was it is not down on power due to a problem. I never had it throw snow 40 ft , so maybe there is an issue. Could be a good idea to rebuild the carb and check the governor setting at this point eliminate those as a possibility. Replacement of carb the emulsion tube o-rings is probably needed since they are trouble prone.

Any idea what max rpm for this engine? I can't find it in my tec books. It is usually 3600 rpm, but I want to be sure.

The swap to the HF will require a few things. A 3/4 " to 7/8 " shaft bushing and new mounting bolts. The bushing should eliminate the need for new pulleys and belts.
 

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If it is the powermore engine, for iys 208 cc, it has guts, and is a pretty good engine, so far for me.
 
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