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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I got a 2012 Ariens Sno-Tek 24" 920402 in that my neighbor owned, it has a 136cc LCT Stormforce engine on it and the intake valve spring retaining clip on it fractured right in half. That is what put an end to this blower after only 5 years. It also took out the valve stem oil seal with it when it broke.
I checked the parts diagram for this engine for those parts and they are not listed. It appears the only way your getting these parts from LCT is if you buy an entire new head for about $88!
Does anyone know an individual part number for these two parts or some place I can source them without buying the entire head, because I'm not buying a head. I looked all over the internet and on ebay I found one listed for the 163, 208cc MTD engine and it looks like its the same or close for about $4 but its a gamble. The little seal, I have yet to find. Is their a way I can match it up by size or the numbers stamped on the seal. I tried typing those numbers into Google, nothing. Anyone know what size seal it takes?
Or does anyone who works on these often have these parts spare laying around, new or used they can sell and ship to me?
Also be weary of these engine's. After working on one, I can say the quality of them is pretty low overall. If you have a blower with an actual Tecumseh, keep it as long as you can!
Here are photo's of the carnage.
Update, I found this one on ebay which appears will work, I also looked up the Honda GX120 AND 160 and it is this same retainer. Will this work in place of the old broken one?
https://www.ebay.com/itm/Champion-CPE-163-196-208-212-223CC-Intake-Valve-Spring-Retainer-15711-KB01-0000/183570305436?_trksid=p2485497.m4902.l9144
and will this seal work in place of the old damaged one it measures 10mm outer dia and 6mm inner and that is what mine appears to be using a manual caliper as close as I can measure it.
https://www.ebay.com/itm/Harbor-Freight-Predator-Rato-Loncin-346CC-420CC-Gas-Engine-Valve-Stem-Oil-Seal/183588263756
 

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I had the same thing happen to my Generac 3500XL generator intake valve. I borrowed the retainer and seal from my Honda HS80 snowblower's GX240 until the new retainers & seals arrived, so swapping the parts as you outlined will likely work. A short time later, however, the valve stem itself broke at the retainer notch and also had to be replaced, so examine yours carefully...
 

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that's the downside of a LCT or a powermore dusty. most parts are UNIT parts, if they don't give a breakdown ,they list NA use this, always turns out to be the unit.
sadly if that motor broke a valve keeper it most likely also bent the valve stem when the valve dropped so going unit will save you time
sorry man,but thats todays oem thinking,
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I had the same thing happen to my Generac 3500XL generator intake valve. I borrowed the retainer and seal from my Honda HS80 snowblower's GX240 until the new retainers & seals arrived, so swapping the parts as you outlined will likely work. A short time later, however, the valve stem itself broke at the retainer notch and also had to be replaced, so examine yours carefully...
I'm glad to hear that, because thats what I did, ordered them separate on ebay for $10 total.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
You can also get an entire kit with new valves, the springs and retainers for the Honda GX160 and GX200 as well as clones, which will likely work on the LCT as well, since it is a clone for $7.90.
Only downside, it could take ahwile to get here from China. Thats why I ordered the parts individually inside the USA for $10, because I would like to sell this blower this year. But anyway, those are the wsys I found around having to buy an entire head from LCT, which is retarded. They should outleast consider selling a kit like this for their engines, instead of leaving all of those newer Ariens blower customers hanging, if one of these parts goes on their engine. It's a shame they flaunt the Tecumseh power product name now.
https://www.ebay.com/itm/Intake-Exhaust-Valve-Spring-Retainer-Oil-seal-Kit-For-Honda-GX160-GX200/153301371106?_trksid=p2485497.m4902.l9144
 

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Discussion Starter #6
LCT customer service just got back to me. They have great customer support and are very helpful.
They just got back to me and are sending me a kit for my engine. It includes valves, retainers and springs. They said the valves are not for my engine but the springs and retainers are. Their sending it free of charge. Most likely because it wasnt available.
I wish I didnt order the parts on ebay for $10 but now I'll have spares.
Also I believe the cause of the damage was my neighbor over revved the engine. He had the idle screw on top all the way screwed in so the engine was going full speed the whole time. Likely did that because their is no throttle. You don't do that! The overall quality of these engines is no where near as good as Tecumsehs were, but if you use it properly and take care of it, it should still serve you well for a good period of time.
Moral of story, don't over rev your engine and if you need those parts, contact LCT, they will take care of you.
I have a feeling after this, they will make a kit available for purchase.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Never seen one 30+ years old either . . . .
Good point, lets see where these new wave of engines are in 30 years. Outleast with the old Tecumsehs you knew you had a real good chance of getting a few decades out of it.
 

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I have faith in these engines, They actually make parts to race these engines, Biggest worry on them is NOT the piston rod but the flywheel exploding under higher speeds, They say the stock is only good to 5000 rpm I think LOL These chonda engines are pretty good.
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
I have faith in these engines, They actually make parts to race these engines, Biggest worry on them is NOT the piston rod but the flywheel exploding under higher speeds, They say the stock is only good to 5000 rpm I think LOL These chonda engines are pretty good.
Billit flywheel and you wont have to worry about it exploding and cutting your **** off. The Predators have all kinds of great mods for racing. Your talking about the Predators by Rato and Loncin right, not LCT?
Because I wasnt even able to order stock valve springs for the LCT, they had to send them to me free. Same thing with valves, cant get them without ordering a whole head. Now the Predators, yes apsolutely, they have all kinds of modified parts for sale. They can get those engines up to 8 grand rpm with billit connecting rods and all the other parts they have. Of course were not racing snowblowers. I found 4050 rpm to be the safe max for the Predator 212 stock on a blower. Whats the highest you can bring an LCT up to? The retainer broke because he over revved this engine. He had the throttle screw on the carb set all the way in on the butterfly. It was going full steam the whole time. This engine had no throttle, fixed speed. Under no load the thing was still going full speed. You can't do that to this thing.
 

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That said, I've got a 25 year old 6.5 hp WEN ( the Harbor Freight engines before the Grayhounds) that will throw better on a ST824 then any 10 hp Tecumseh. Maybe because I'm not afraid to rev her up.........she's been blowing my snow since 2003.....and had six years on a cranberry harvester before that. Made in America is great....but a flathead, engine with bushings instead of bearings....that is like saying your 51 Mercury flathead V-8 with 3 main bearings is state of the art. I'm so used to fixing Tecumsehs, that I can do it in my sleep....not so much the Chondras....they never break.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Never seen one 30+ years old either . . . .
Got some that are 25 years old...can't kill them...unless you get crazy.....I've seen Tec's full of oil and governor adjusted.....hole in the block and not ten years old....I save them for parts.
I wasn't aware they made these new style engine's 25 years ago. It says the company LCT has been around 25 years according to them, but prior to around 2009, I've never seen one of their engines. I know harbor freights original Grey hound motor started being sold around 2008. It looks to me as an observation the first of these slant head OHV engines started going on snowblowers around 2005, such as the Briggs which is also at the end of the day, basically the same design that Honda first brought out and the furthest back of all of them are the Honda's themselves, which of course the honda's would still be around as they are super reliable. I'm not sure when Honda first brought those engines out, if I had to guess late 80's maybe somewhere in the 90's, but generally speaking on Snowblowers these clones started showing up on them right around 2009 except the Briggs version, not sure exactly when China got big on cloning the Honda, but it appears, they got real popular towards the end of the last decade, which still isnt long enough to speak on their longevity.
I've had Tecumseh snow engines that still ran fine from the 60's. People always comment on how they blow, I've only ever had it happen to me one time, but the engine was 45 years old at the time it threw its rod, so it was its time to go. I know it happens, its just not happening left and right to me the way others describe it. Aside from that, I have had dozens of these and not one has ever failed like that. I think considering how many were built, they probably failed at about the same rate these new engines fail and I've seen these new engines fail too. In the end though, I prefer the Tecumseh personally and I also find that the larger L heads have more grunt than these OHV, specifically in areas like EOD, where I think they would most commonly throw the rod from the work load their under, also those older engines were offered as 318 and 358cc on machines as small as 24 wide up to 32 wide so good size and power ratio for the blower, where now I see them putting OHV engines on blowers 28 wide that are only 250cc, so much less power on a large blower, if I bought a new blower and I wouldn't, but if I did, I would make sure a 28 wide blower had outleast an engine that is around 350cc's. Size to power ratio is important.
Can someone show me one of those 25 year old chinese OHV clone engines, I'm very curious to see one now, as I have never seen one that old. The oldest one Ive seen, was from 2009, so just coming up on 10 years. I know the actual Predator version started in around 2011 so 7 years now and the 212 is great, I use them, the only engines I like better for snowblowers, are Tecumseh 8 and up.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
That said, I've got a 25 year old 6.5 hp WEN ( the Harbor Freight engines before the Grayhounds) that will throw better on a ST824 then any 10 hp Tecumseh. Maybe because I'm not afraid to rev her up.........she's been blowing my snow since 2003.....and had six years on a cranberry harvester before that. Made in America is great....but a flathead, engine with bushings instead of bearings....that is like saying your 51 Mercury flathead V-8 with 3 main bearings is state of the art. I'm so used to fixing Tecumsehs, that I can do it in my sleep....not so much the Chondras....they never break.
I've seen them break, I just fixed one that broke. I like the Predator 212, I use them as well, I found that 4050 rpm is their sweet spot and a good max, in fact the non hemi maxes at right around 4050, on the hemi version you can go way higher, so I limit it to 4050. I also added the adjustable mains to them so I can run them without choke. But a Predator is nit the same as an LCT or a Powermore. The Predators you can go out and buy performance parts. You cant do that with these LCT engines. Trying to locate stock parts for the head wss hard enough.
I like the Predator 212, but I like the Tecumseh HMSK100 and for its 360p rpm max I have also still found it to also be stronger than the Predator 212. For me those Tecumsehs will come first, especially the 10hp L head. I have not yet had the opportunity to buy or use Tecumsehs 12 and 13hp OHV 358cc engine, but I would like to as they appear to be a really good engine us its Tecumseh, they made the best winter engines for 50 years.
I wasnt even aware harbor freight was around 25 years. The ones that are in NJ now came about 5 years ago and I certainly was not aware that other than honda that clones were built that long back, thats interesting. 🤔
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Well I fixed the issue I had with this 136cc LCT engine on this Sno-Tek. All it needed was a new retainer and stem seal and it was good to go.
LCT sent out the valve kit for the head to make the repair, first they sent me the wrong one, which was for the 291, 306cc engine. I let them know and than they sent the correct kit for my engine free
Their customer support is top notch.
After waiting for the parts a week. I had it running within a day. I cleaned it up real nice.
Its true, these Sno-Tek blowers are on fire, they are so popular. I put it on cl for sale, within 12 hours, 8 people inquired and I had it sold for $350. Another one out the door.
I now have the valve kit's available for sale, both complete as I had ordered the valve retainer seperate on ebay.
I have one for the 136, 179, 208cc engines and one for the 291, 306cc engines. If anyone needs it, pm me.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
You were right about their popularity. Once I had it fixed, 8 people contacted me about it, within a 12 hour period I had it sold for $350. Thanks again.
 

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I wasn't aware they made these new style engine's 25 years ago. It says the company LCT has been around 25 years according to them, but prior to around 2009, I've never seen one of their engines. I know harbor freights original Grey hound motor started being sold around 2008. It looks to me as an observation the first of these slant head OHV engines started going on snowblowers around 2005, such as the Briggs which is also at the end of the day, basically the same design that Honda first brought out and the furthest back of all of them are the Honda's themselves, which of course the honda's would still be around as they are super reliable. I'm not sure when Honda first brought those engines out, if I had to guess late 80's maybe somewhere in the 90's, but generally speaking on Snowblowers these clones started showing up on them right around 2009 except the Briggs version, not sure exactly when China got big on cloning the Honda, but it appears, they got real popular towards the end of the last decade, which still isnt long enough to speak on their longevity.
I've had Tecumseh snow engines that still ran fine from the 60's. People always comment on how they blow, I've only ever had it happen to me one time, but the engine was 45 years old at the time it threw its rod, so it was its time to go. I know it happens, its just not happening left and right to me the way others describe it. Aside from that, I have had dozens of these and not one has ever failed like that. I think considering how many were built, they probably failed at about the same rate these new engines fail and I've seen these new engines fail too. In the end though, I prefer the Tecumseh personally and I also find that the larger L heads have more grunt than these OHV, specifically in areas like EOD, where I think they would most commonly throw the rod from the work load their under, also those older engines were offered as 318 and 358cc on machines as small as 24 wide up to 32 wide so good size and power ratio for the blower, where now I see them putting OHV engines on blowers 28 wide that are only 250cc, so much less power on a large blower, if I bought a new blower and I wouldn't, but if I did, I would make sure a 28 wide blower had outleast an engine that is around 350cc's. Size to power ratio is important.
Can someone show me one of those 25 year old chinese OHV clone engines, I'm very curious to see one now, as I have never seen one that old. The oldest one Ive seen, was from 2009, so just coming up on 10 years. I know the actual Predator version started in around 2011 so 7 years now and the 212 is great, I use them, the only engines I like better for snowblowers, are Tecumseh 8 and up.
Here are a few pictures of "old Faithful" I built her in 03 to the best of my recollection and the engine was bought for a cranberry harvester no later then 98. she starts one pull, I ran on half choke for years, and then a couple of years ago put the adjustable main jet in , an impeller kit, and the taller chute upgrade....and changed the oil. When the snow gets really deep she really gets on the governor and makes music.....I picked up a little power with the jet upgrade.
 

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