Husqvarna LGT 2654 with Tuff Torq K46 transmission failure
I purchased a Husqvarna LGT 2654 tractor about 4 years ago at Lowes. I purchased this model because it was supposed to be heavier duty, it was even rated for ground engaging applications. As many are far too aware (and as I was not at the time of purchase), this tractor has the substandard Tuff Torq k46 transmission. I live in the mountains, and mow about 3/4 of an acre of very steep terrain. At approxamately 100 hours my transmission began losing all power after about 15 minutes of use. After researching several sites on the web (including the excellent k46 rebuild thread here) I first tried changing the oil in my transmission; it ran a tiny bit better for a few minutes longer, but still was bad. I bit the bullet and ordered both hydraulic motors and the center section from Tuff Torq (for a bit under $350), did the rebuild, and viola........it would now run for about 30 minutes before loosing most of its power (at least now it would very slowly creep back up to the house).
Frustrated, I spoke to Tuff Torq technical support; they had no solution for me other than to buy a new k46 transmission (why, so I could spend $650 just to see it fail again?). I then looked on e-bay to see what used transmissions might be found. I noticed that the mounts on a k71B transmission looked very similar to my K46. I did some further research and found that John Deere uses the same or very similar frames for their tractors with a K46 transmission, and those with a K71. I called Roger who sells the John Deere transmission upgrade kits and asked him if he though a k71B could work in a Husky LGT2654. He said he wasnt certain, but he very helpfully described the locations and motions of the controls on the K71 transmission. From his description, the pictures on e-bay, and the parts breakdown from Tuff Torq, I thought there was a good chance I could replace the K46 in my Husky with a K71B from an older (2003) John Deere.....so I went ahead and bid on the transmission......and won! I paid less than half the price of a new K46 (including the shipping).
The K71B transmission arrived a few days later. When I lifted it under the tractor I was much relieved to see that everything was indeed very close to to the mounting points and control connections of the old K46, even though the K71 is MUCH larger and heavier. I had to do a few minor modifications to the frame (because the K71 had to be mounted about 1 inch further back than the K46), including drilling some new holes, and making two cuts and bends. I also had to make one simple piece to connect the brake, and modify the reverse switch bracket and swap out the JD switch with the one from the K46 (one is NO, the other is NC). The entire swap out, including modifications took me one day to complete.
The tractor now climbs hills with ease, and seems more stable (the k71 is a bit wider than the K46 so the tires stick out a bit further). It handled my 30 minute mountain mowing torture test with ease. Hopefully this much more robust transmission will be up to the task I was led to believe the original one was when I bought it.
The intent of my posting is to let others know there are other solutions to fix a tractor with a failed K46 other than wasting time on a rebuild that may or may not work. I would imagine other Tuff Torq models would work with similar minor modifications (possible to do with nothing more than hand tools) as long as they were used in similar John Deere, Craftsman, Simplicity, Husqvarna, and any other tractors built using similar frames, components, and control layouts (it is my understanding most of the tractors sold at major retailers are essentially built on the same assembly lines regardless of brand).