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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Thinking of re-powering my 1990's vintage Toro 521 Snow blower that has the original Tecumseh HS50 engine.

Considering the Predator 212cc based on price but have some concerns about quality. I found some reviews where the engine block cracked after a limited amount of use. It seems like the Predator is a hit or miss, as some folks have good luck with them, others not so much.

I am also considering a Tecumseh Snow King OH195SA (7 HP) as an alternative.

The Predator would be about $130 all said & done
The Tecumseh would be about $235 all said & done

Based on other threads where a Toro 421/521/3521 was upgraded with a predator, it looks like the chute crank bracket needs to be extended in order provide clearance of the chute crank rod versus the engine.

I am thinking, based on the look of the Tecumseh engine being similar to the original engine, I may not have to make the chute crank bracket modification.

So, I am wondering, based on quality and the chute crank issue, if I am better off getting the Tecumseh? To me not having to modify the chute crank braket is worth $50, and better quality certainly would be worth the balance of the difference in price between the 2 engines.

Thoughts?

Any other engines to consider? $250 complete (or less) would be below my threshold of pain.

TIA for thoughts, comments, advice
 
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Welocome to the repower sub-forum ;-)

Lots of people here are impressed with the Predator 212cc, and they seem to be quite powerful, and we are having good luck with them thus far.

A few have repowered machines just like yours and are real impressed, I'm sure they will chime in with praise, and video :)

P.S. I spent 200 (including two new belts) used a coupon and went with the 301 , it's a beast now. The 212cc would be great for a 21"

A COUPON would put you at about $105 dollars.
 

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Considering the Predator 212cc based on price but have some concerns about quality. I found some reviews where the engine block cracked after a limited amount of use. It seems like the Predator is a hit or miss, as some folks have good luck with them, others not so much.
The only review I read that said anything like this was one on HF reviews for the engine were it was installed on a wood splitter and after a while it started to leak oil and the oil leak was as a result of a crack in the block. Thousands of others have used the engine for the same purpose on a wood splitter and not had any problems. I have 3 of the 212cc engines and none leak oil and they all start in 1 or 2 pulls of the recoil and work very well. Is that the review you are talking about? The engine is rated 4.5 out of 5 on HF own website and Go-cart people have beat the snot out of these engines with out them failing and they have been torture tested to 5,500 rpms with the stock connecting rods with out failures how ever the flywheels are not safe at that rpm. the 7hp Tecumseh engines when they get old get play in the connecting rods and if run with low oil or over reved even the slightest have been known to blow rods.
 

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I'd go with the Predator and enjoy the extra power it will give you over the 5 horse tec.
 

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the only mod to the crank for the chute is to put a longer bolt through the handlebar to space the bracket out for clearance. for me it comes down to having an electric starter so I don't strain my neck cold starting the motor
 

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Discussion Starter #6
There are reviews on Amazon as well as HF; HF has many more reviews.

Cracked block/head were noted on a log splitter, a roto-tiller app and a snow blower. Other issues were ignition problems and fuel leakage (into the crankcase somehow ?) and rust. Other reviews were just erratic performance, which I suppose you will get from some reviewers.

I'm just worried about the hit or miss aspect of these engines. I would not want to do this twice. Maybe I can find some Tecumseh reviews to compare.

Also wondering about the chute crank and the winter operation, making the snow king a better choice?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Of course I see posts from about 4-5 years back about Tecumseh folding up the tent. Looks like they consolidated operations and moved a lot of stuff off shore.

Is the LCT/Tecumseh engine brand what became of it? The company Stock (TECU) is still listed, but losing $$$$.

I am wondering if Tecumseh Snow King engines would be left over inventory or current production?
 

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get the predator and buy the 1 year warranty for 10 bucks extra if your that concerned. it is very unlikely that you will have any issues, none of us had any and most of the ones that did have issues were early production units. they have fixed those issues since then
 

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Discussion Starter #9
OK, I'll do the Predator from HF. . . . but I'm counting on 'youze guys' to come through per your advise. I suppose I can buy 2 Predators for the price of 1 Snow King. . .

I would be looking at about $80 in parts to keep the old Tecumseh HS50 running, and that was rivaling the price of a new Predator.

I have some ideas on how I can deal with the chute shaft interference without extending the crank bracket further out. My garage, is smaller than most, and I don't have a lot of clearance getting the machine out between the cars. I was thinking of going lower on the bracket to make the shaft go just beneath the OHV cover on the engine. It seems that the Predator engine is a little wider on that side of the engine than the old tecumseh. I'll have to look at my Toro 521 just to be sure of the existing clearance, etc.

In terms of re-jetting for winter use, Is that just a matter of reaming out the carb jet a couple 0.000's ???
 

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Tecumseh Snow King was once known as the best snow engine. I'm assuming you're looking at a new old stock engine, since they stopped production in 2008/9 I believe. I see the one on ebay for $235 with free shipping. LCT ended up with all the patents but they are not the same. I'm pretty sure ALL the TEC's were built in the US.
I had an Ariens ST724 with a TEC 7hp snow king engine for 15 years before selling it for a bigger machine. It was a solid engine that never gave me any problems through 15 New England winters.
 

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Thinking of re-powering my 1990's vintage Toro 521 Snow blower that has the original Tecumseh HS50 engine.

Considering the Predator 212cc based on price but have some concerns about quality. I found some reviews where the engine block cracked after a limited amount of use. It seems like the Predator is a hit or miss, as some folks have good luck with them, others not so much.

I am also considering a Tecumseh Snow King OH195SA (7 HP) as an alternative.

The Predator would be about $130 all said & done
The Tecumseh would be about $235 all said & done

TIA for thoughts, comments, advice
the 7Hp Tec. should be a bolt in, go with that. it's not ok that everything is made in China, keep that in mind. people have become complacent into thinking so, it's a mistake.

most importantly, the 7HP Tec. has more power, and better metallurgy.

if you hit it big and won $800 million in the lottery, would you be buying that Chinese made machinery you always wanted but could not afford ? doubtful. it's simply NOT the mfr. of choice for quality.
 
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Discussion Starter #13
OK, so now I'm really up in the air on which route to go. :confused:

I'm heading to Florida on Saturday for a few days to work on the golf game and the sun tan. Perhaps I'll have an epiphany by the time I get back in MA.

Probably won't do anything until after I get back.
 

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OK, I'll do the Predator from HF. . . . but I'm counting on 'youze guys' to come through per your advise. I suppose I can buy 2 Predators for the price of 1 Snow King. . .

I would be looking at about $80 in parts to keep the old Tecumseh HS50 running, and that was rivaling the price of a new Predator.

I have some ideas on how I can deal with the chute shaft interference without extending the crank bracket further out. My garage, is smaller than most, and I don't have a lot of clearance getting the machine out between the cars. I was thinking of going lower on the bracket to make the shaft go just beneath the OHV cover on the engine. It seems that the Predator engine is a little wider on that side of the engine than the old tecumseh. I'll have to look at my Toro 521 just to be sure of the existing clearance, etc.

In terms of re-jetting for winter use, Is that just a matter of reaming out the carb jet a couple 0.000's ???
You can either ream the stock main jet of.028 out, up to .032+ if you already have the little drills or reamer, or some other method, or you can oder one online for just a few bucks and just swap it out.

The Predator has a cast iron sleeve, and modified can run at higher RPM than any Tecumseh I know of ... Honda design, modern design.
 
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If the 7hp tecumseh is a single shaft anyway I wouldn't bother. The predator is a superior engine in every way other than you have to modifiy it somewhat to run properly in the cold. Now if you had cheap access to a dual shaft sump cover and cam for that Tecumseh my opinion would be different.
 

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most importantly, the 7HP Tec. has more power, and better metallurgy.
It doesn't, and it doesn't. Put a 6.5hp Honda or Honda clone up against a 7hp Tecumseh and it'll walk all over it. Those clones have been out long enough now to really see how they're holding up. They're just not throwing rods like Tecumseh did.
 

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Swapping the main jet is a five minute job. Making the shrouds can take a little more time, think I put easily over 2 hours into that, between measuring and bending, then spray painting it. Sheet metal work is slow for me.
 

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I was looking at a thread about this the other night and personally I think making a heat stove to pull warm air in is better than trying to run a richer mixture.

Not sure what thread it was or who did it, but he did beautiful work.

Perhaps someone has a link to the thread?
 

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The Predator engine is based on a newer more efficient design than the old Tecumseh engines. The Predator is called a Honda Clone for a reason. The Predator does seem to make more power with minimal tweaks and can be highly modified for higher HP and higher RPM usually for minibikes and go carts.

You can read owner reviews from guys who replaced a 6-7-8 horse engines with a Predator and only changed the jetting to make it run good in the cold and none of them that I've run across say anything about a loss of power. All say the 6.5 Predator is equal to or better than the 6-7-8 horse engine it replaced. That's an owners opinion out in the real world on their snow blower.

Tecumseh engines are know for throwing rods once they get to be 20 or 30 years old and usually have had a long and hard life by them. Don't know of a Predator that has died from a broken rod but they haven't been around for 20 years.
I have two very old machines (around 40yrs) that appear to have their original engines and they are both 32" machines so they were never babied. It's not that Tecumseh engines are blowing up left and right it's just that the rod breaking is common but there are so many machines that get scrapped out long before that Tecumseh starts burning oil or breaking it's rod.
So far the Predators quality from the recent couple years posts seems to indicate the quality is acceptable and even if they only last 10 years and you buy another it's still likely cheaper than going with an older new out of stock or used and rebuilt Tecumseh.

I wish they were made in America but they aren't so either you make your decision based on where it's made or you go by the recommendations of others who have done what you're considering. In the end, all we can do is give you info and it's your decision to make.
Please don't base your decision on any one persons opinion.
 

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I was looking at a thread about this the other night and personally I think making a heat stove to pull warm air in is better than trying to run a richer mixture.

Not sure what thread it was or who did it, but he did beautiful work.

Perhaps someone has a link to the thread?
They are too lean from the factory. Plus, letting in cold, dense air and rejetting result in more torque/hp than staying lean and providing warm air. This is a given.

My old Ninja 900R always ran stronger in the cold air :cool:
 
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