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Garden Tractors Discussion Forum

shaft drive question

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Don B.

03-19-2019 15:28:11




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I happen to own 4 Ariens S series and GT's. but have seen this on other shaft drive machines. They have a fiber disc that bolts separately to the hub on the flywheel then the driveshaft bolts, 90* to the same disc. They appear to be some kind of plastic, almost fiberglass-ish.
What would it hurt, to either; bolt the driveshaft direct to the hub on the flywheel, or make those discs from steel, more or less like a big washer? These aren't the rubber shaft couplers, as used on older Cub cadets.
I'm just completing an engine swap on the S-16H, and bolting the driveshaft to the engine is one of the few things left to do.
I don't see any kind of deterioration on these discs, but my tractors are all 40+ years old now. I do know of people who have had those discs come apart.

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Don B.

03-26-2019 15:19:09




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 Re: shaft drive question in reply to Don B., 03-19-2019 15:28:11  
yeah I've seen those, used to do lots and lots of car shows, but working on the shuttle buses at work I see em all the time, its req'd on those.



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Bob

03-26-2019 10:53:14




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 Re: shaft drive question in reply to Don B., 03-19-2019 15:28:11  
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If you are worried, you can make a couple of simple "driveshaft safety loops" to keep the driveshaft relatively centered IF a coupling breaks so it can't whip around and break things.

The photo below shows one on a hot-rod car, obviously your little tractor has a MUCH smaller driveshaft, but the principle would be the same.

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Don B.

03-26-2019 10:19:40




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 Re: shaft drive question in reply to Don B., 03-19-2019 15:28:11  
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I did, just worried about the age, don't know if I would see signs of deterioration before it went kaboom like one would see in a rubber rag joint or even a plain old u joint.

I know of someone who has a tractor like this one and remember him telling a story on another forum that I frequent , detailing the Carnage from when one of these discs self destructed. I just repowered this machine and don't want to go thru that mess.

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MNGB

03-26-2019 05:59:04




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 Re: shaft drive question in reply to Don B., 03-19-2019 15:28:11  
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Put the disc back in you state they are in good condition use them there are in there for the reasons posted

GB in MN



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kevinstuff

03-25-2019 12:57:57




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 Re: shaft drive question in reply to Don B., 03-19-2019 15:28:11  
older simplicity old cast iron 8 to16hp horzontal Briggs has those disc also , some one told me they handle up to 25hp , gearbox bearings would probably fail quickly without the disk.



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DoubleO7

03-22-2019 16:46:17




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 Re: shaft drive question in reply to Don B., 03-19-2019 15:28:11  
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They also help isolate the impulses of the engine as it fires away on one or two cylinders.



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Mule Meat

03-21-2019 21:24:08




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 Re: shaft drive question in reply to Don B., 03-19-2019 15:28:11  
They are called Flex Plates or flex couplers.

They are used to allow a slight mis-aligned shaft to operate smoothly and to absorb shock loads to the drive line.

With out one your drive line would have one heck of a vibration unless your drive shaft is aligned exactly straight and balanced perfectly..



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Russ from MN

03-20-2019 06:06:37




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 Re: shaft drive question in reply to Don B., 03-19-2019 15:28:11  
Like t.r.k. said, the fiber disc is there to give it some flexibility. Since it's nearly impossible to align something perfect, most all drivelines have some sort of flexible coupling to allow for misalignment.



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t.r.k.

03-19-2019 18:21:21




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 Re: shaft drive question in reply to Don B., 03-19-2019 15:28:11  
The disk is in the drive shaft to allow the frame to flex without damaging anything. The disk just warps a bit. I am pretty sure if the manufacturer thought they could get by without it, they would have. A rigid assembly would probably shorten the life of the bearings and shafts at each end of the drive shaft.

If you need new ones, I bet someone on the internet is selling them.



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Don B.

03-21-2019 18:23:56




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 Re: shaft drive question in reply to t.r.k., 03-19-2019 18:21:21  
Yes but not everyone repairs their machines with 110% oem parts. Most who come on to these forums have modified their machines somewhere along the line. And with the highway robbery prices that Ariens wants to charge for just about anything, I often look for alternatives. I wasn't thinking about misalignment being the reason for the flex discs. But I saw on a forum somewhere where someone else who had done what I was thinking about doing, Don't remember what brand of machine.

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