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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
So a friend of mine brings me his Honda HRX217TDA Versamow (SN#MAGA-1142027) with a 3 speed transmission that runs GREAT but wouldn't move.
I'm not that well versed in Honda's but he's a friend so I agree to take a look.
When its in gear and you pick the back up a litle the wheel go like no ones business in all 3 gears but as soon as it hits the ground-nothing.
I immediately "assume" (yes I know) that the transmission is ok & there's a problem elsewhere.
So I get a new drive belt-did nothing!
Then I get a new cable-did nothing!
then I spoke to a local Honda mechanic and he says that he has seen the pulley on top of the blade adapter get out of shape and not grip the belt well-so we replace that-which was not cheap!
It didn't help either!
I have the cable adjustment maxed out and there's very little tension-if I pull on the cable it wants to go-SO I made a quick bracket to get a little more tension on the cable and it STILL didn't work...
Anyone have a thought?? Is the tranny bad??
Any info would be appreciated! Thanks

BTW: I haven't been able to find an exploded view of the transmission to see what inside may have gone bad-maybe i should just tell him to bite the bullet and take it to a Honda dealer...
 

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Kirk,

DUNNO! I'm sure what I've read is probably the same thing as you've already done. But, just in case here is the owners manual for the model in pdf format:

http://www.lawnmowersworld.com/honda/manuals/31VH7001.pdf

As you've stated, there's nothing re; an expolded transmission view.

Being more familiar with riding mowers, there is most often a 'free wheel' key that you eithr pull or push to unclock the transmission. Was wondering if there is anything like this on the walk behind Honda??

Not much help, am I :(

Perhaps one of our other members is better versed in the Honda models....I sure hope so anyway .
 

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I don't know if those have an actual differential type gear setup or not. If they do one wheel could be loose on the drive shaft and stop it from moving under load.

Some of the Honda's used a hydro transmission but I don't know if this is one or not. Replacement cost looks too cheap for a hydro drive.
 

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First thing that comes to my mind of course is slipage of some sort, but it looks as though you have your i's dotted and t's crossed as far as that goes. Have someone lift the backend and operate the self propell while you take a closer look at the drive mechanism. Hold the drive wheels with your hand and see how much resistence it has and if possible, where the slipping is happening. From what you described, it would seem likely that the transmission is shot, but I would reccommend that you take it to a lawnmower shop and see what they can find. I know it could be costly, but they could at least daignose your problem easier.:)
 

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Did he or you take the wheels and small drive gears off?

If so, the small gears may be installed on the wrong sides. Don't ask me how I know this!

If the mower is like mine the belt tension can be adjusted.
 

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As MVA suggested, you might try taking the rear drive wheels off and taking a look to see what might be clogged up with debris. Honda's self propelled mowers have tiny little ratchets and springs inside them that make them go and on some models, there is a right and left side. You might be able to hear them clicking as you push the mower one way or the other, I think forward for this one, and they will actually take hold when you go the other way and you will be spinning the tranny's innards so it might seem stiff.
All Years HRX217 TDA LAWN MOWER, USA, VIN# MAGA-1000001 Honda Lawnmower REAR WHEEL Diagram and Parts

Otherwise, you might take a look inside the transmission just to see what it all looks like. Not saying the one you are working on is the same, but I once worked on an HRT216. The arm inside that actuated everything was broken off, I think due to the fact that the owner had tightened the adjustment up thinking it would make it work. Had that fixed, but then I learned that the bits that had to mesh together to make it all work were worn to the point that, like you said, would spin like no body's business, until they were under load, so no amount of adjusting the tension was going to overcome the wear on the cogs. They looked fine, but just wouldn't do what they were supposed to do. The final fix was to get a whole new transmission as Honda does not sell the individual parts inside them on many of their SP mowers.
All Years HRX217 TDA LAWN MOWER, USA, VIN# MAGA-1000001 Honda Lawnmower TRANSMISSION (1) Diagram and Parts
 

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remove the rear wheels and check out the drive gears on wheel and drive penion. also the woodrif key on each penion gears.
 
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