Installing an hour meter on my new craftsman tractor

ttworesetJune 3, 2014

Just purchased a new craftsman 19hp tight turn riding mower with 42 -in deck, model# 917 203810. It does not come with an hour meter. I would like to put one in, but it may not be pre-wired. I looked at the floor model in the store. It did not have any open connection on the wire bundle. I would like to install the same type which comes on the higher end models, which is the type that connects to the ignition switch and not the cheaper kind that connects to the spark plug wire. Has anyone done this?

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May I presume you have looked at the wiring schematic for this tractor?
The schematic offers that an hour meter is optional.
As such, it "should have" a connector already in place behind the instrument panel.
At any rate, hour meters have been added to countless vehicles of all type, even when there was nothing "pre-wired" for one on the vehicle.
In the case of this tractor, the Blue wire circuit coming off of terminal A1 of the key switch would be the wire to "tap" for the positive side of the circuit, and any ground point available could serve as the negative side of the circuit, All the ground wires are Black on this tractor.

    Bookmark   June 3, 2014 at 1:12PM
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For the Craftsman units that do have hour meters, the hours registered are simply the hours in which the key switch is in the ON position.

    Bookmark   June 3, 2014 at 1:36PM
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The craftsman is being delivered on the 14th, I'll follow your advice when it arrives. I really don't want to start cutting wires if I'm not 100% sure. Thanks

    Bookmark   June 3, 2014 at 3:25PM
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You should not have to be CUTTING any wires.
For something as light duty as an hour meter you can use a couple of "clam shell taps" to bite into the Blue and Black wires, if there is not a connector already in place to plug it to.
Click the link to vie a typical clamshell tap
Oh, the price shown is for a 5-pack of the clamshell taps, not just a single one.

Here is a link that might be useful: Typical clamshell tap

This post was edited by mownie on Wed, Jun 4, 14 at 0:50

    Bookmark   June 4, 2014 at 12:48AM
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There is an alternative that I have used for over 10 years. It is a combination hour meter/tachometer. You call it the 'cheaper kind' but I can testify that it simply works great.... Available for about $40. No wired connections required. Simply mount on dash then wrap the one wire it has around one of your spark plug wires per instructions. Also blinks every 25 hours to remind you to 'lube' engine. The tachometer function is also very handy to monitor how much you are loading the engine....

Made by SEN-DEC.

Here is one on Ebay:;hash=item27dc3a97ce

    Bookmark   June 4, 2014 at 6:44AM
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For more info on Sendec and their hour meters, click link below.
They also offer this type of hour meter as a round, "in dash" meter, and a rectangular shaped "in dash" configuration as well as the rectangular surface mount version.
Thanks BGM for the heads up. I had completely forgotten about the critters until you smacked my head.

Here is a link that might be useful: Sendec hour meters

    Bookmark   June 4, 2014 at 10:23AM
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Another vote for Sen-Dec and Tiny-Tac... they work great and are EZ to install.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2014 at 4:40PM
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