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  1. #1
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
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    91
    Location
    New Martinsville, WV
    Tractor
    jd 445, kubota bx1500,wheel horse c-160, wheel horse h-520

    Default 1988 wheel horse 520 hc power lose

    My 1988 wheel horse 520 hc with a 60" mmm has at least 1200 hours on it (not 100% sure) recently it has lost power, it stalls out going up hills (hst transmission) an it burns oil kinda of bad ( have to add a quart of oil about every 10 hours) is there anything I can do to help this 20 horse onan, or is this air cooled engine at the end of it's life?

  2. #2
    Veteran Member Tollster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    1,261
    Location
    Benton, Pennsylvania
    Tractor
    Kubota, BX23

    Default Re: 1988 wheel horse 520 hc power lose

    Quote Originally Posted by zlock24 View Post
    My 1988 wheel horse 520 hc with a 60" mmm has at least 1200 hours on it (not 100% sure) recently it has lost power, it stalls out going up hills (hst transmission) an it burns oil kinda of bad ( have to add a quart of oil about every 10 hours) is there anything I can do to help this 20 horse onan, or is this air cooled engine at the end of it's life?
    I would try to rebuild it, new rings, valves ect. Depending on how good a shape its in, it would still be much cheaper than a new one, and in the long run, its twice the tractor compared to anything you can touch for under 4k today I would imagine. One look at the rear axle will tell you that.
    I think norther hydraulic may even be able to set you up with a new onan if you wanted to go that route. I never did it, but imagine you could pull it off. They are worth fixing, keeping the deck working seems to be the toughest part.
    Kubota BX-23, BH, FEL, MMM, Various Bro-tek attachments, Exmark Lazermark.
    ASME Certified welding inspector specializing in Visual, Mag Particle, Dye Penetrant, and Ultrasonics

  3. #3
    New Member 546cowboy's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    22
    Location
    Fair Oaks,IN
    Tractor
    2-Wheel Horse 520H's

    Default Re: 1988 wheel horse 520 hc power lose

    If you aren't an experienced mechanic don't even try to rebuild it. You can only get Onan parts from one place and that is owned by Cummins.

    Rods are $80+ ea., piston with rings is around $120 ea., a gasket set is I believe $132. Now that's just the basic stuff and then you will have machine shop work on top of the parts. As you can see before you know what happened you'll have close to $1000 in it.

    You could buy a rebuilt one for about $1100 or watch Ebay and Craigslist for one or swap a Honda in it for about $1800.

    I do have three 520H's so I know what I'm talking about. There is nothing like them though short of a diesel. Once you've had a good one nothing else compares.
    Lynn Beccue
    7525 W 700 N
    Fair Oaks, IN 47943
    www.cowboysredhorses.com

    1963 Wheel Horse 653
    1964 Wheel Horse 654
    1965 Wheel Horse 655
    1968 Wheel Horse Raider 9
    1974 Wheel Horse C-120
    1983 Wheel Horse C-175
    1989 Wheel Horse 520H
    1991 Wheel Horse 520H

  4. #4
    Veteran Member Tollster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    1,261
    Location
    Benton, Pennsylvania
    Tractor
    Kubota, BX23

    Default Re: 1988 wheel horse 520 hc power lose

    Like I said, take it somewhere and get it rebuilt so you have it ready for mowing season, chance are the shop amybe slow this time of year.
    Kubota BX-23, BH, FEL, MMM, Various Bro-tek attachments, Exmark Lazermark.
    ASME Certified welding inspector specializing in Visual, Mag Particle, Dye Penetrant, and Ultrasonics

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