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MTD 1988 38'-drive belt jumps off in rev.

Posted by tom42el (My Page) on
Thu, Sep 9, 10 at 17:55

.I have a 1988 MTD 38" 12 HP, 7speed. When I shift into reverse the belt comes off. I replaced the belt as the seller advised.(I recently bought this used, and after using it a while, I regret this, as it is pretty beat up
, but it was an Ebay purchase , and now I'm stuck with it).
If I'm really careful letting the clutch up it will occasionally go into reverse gear, but the "clutch" seems to grab very high, almost at full released pedal position in both forward and reverse. Is there any way I can adjust this, or is something else at fault? Any help will be greatly apreciated.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: MTD 1988 38'-drive belt jumps off in rev.

look under the tilting seat - find plate/decal with tractor's full model # - go to MTD website to search for manuals - follow manual instructions for adjusting clutch/brake mechanism. may also need to replace existing ground drive belt if stretched - replace with OEM belt for best operation.

RE: MTD 1988 38'-drive belt jumps off in rev.

Note: Automotive belts, or hardware store belts, are not suitable for lawn tractor use! You are wasting yer money by buying them! Take the advice of the other guy who posted the advice! We folks have been repairing lawn tractors and related machinery for many moons, and we offer the advice free and clear. I know, if you go to a real dealer of MTD machinery--they will tell you the same thing!
I know of one guy who made 4 trips of 15 miles one way, to a hardware store, trying to find the right size of belt! And ended up buying the correct belt that was designed for his machine! Bought it from the Dealer!

RE: MTD 1988 38'-drive belt jumps off in rev.

I am using a fully jacketed, OEM equivalent belt made by Stens.

RE: MTD 1988 38'-drive belt jumps off in rev.

Look closely at the transmission. There are 2 bolts at each side by the wheel, and there has to be another one
holding the trans about in the middle of the tractor/trans, yours
has likely rattled loose....

Replace with a bolt and locknut.....


RE: MTD 1988 38'-drive belt jumps off in rev.

Fish, thanks very nuch. that was exactly the problem. the bolt was there but the nut was not. Now it works fine, though the "clutch" seems to grab too high but I can live with that.
Thanks again.


RE: MTD 1988 38'-clutch adjustment?

I have a 1988 MTD 38" 12 HP, 7speed.
The Clutch engages very high, almost at full pedal release,and
gives a real lurch forward as it engages. Is there a way to adjust this? It has a new belt, fully jacketed, proper type.
The belt from the engine to the intermediate pulley is the original but appears in good shape.
Thanks in advance.

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