1997 - Volume #21, Issue #3, Page #32[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
VW Engine Great For Repowering Bobcat
"It would have cost more than $1,000 for labor and parts to repair the 2-cylinder Kohler engine," says the Michigan farmer. "I looked around at small engines about the same size and found that a Volkswagen engine from a Jetta car would fit perfectly. A Volkswagen engine operates at about 100 psi oil pressure so any engine you find in a junkyard is likely to be in good condition. The valves might need grinding, but that's about all.
"Fitting the engine into the cavity of the machine was a logical process. The most difficult part was making an adapter to fit the pulley onto the crankshaft. I made four adapters before I was satisfied that I had a perfect fit. The adapter to run the hydraulics on the opposite side of the engine was simple to do.
"I've used the repowered Bobcat for a year now with no problems. I could have installed a governor but I chose to put a choke cable on that's attached to the carburetor. I ran the cable up through the steering lever so the choke button is on top of the steering arm. So as I work the steering I can control engine speed at the touch of my thumb.
"Any belt-driven Bobcat could use this engine. The 4-cyl. VW puts out over 57 hp, which is considerably more than the original Kohler. The engine is water-cooled and the radiator is about the same width as the Bobcat. I put a hinged frame on back to hold the radiator and to open the back of the motor compartment for service.
"The cost of the engine was about $200. I could build the crankshaft adapter for sale if there's interest, or make blueprints avail-able."
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Ralph F. Johnson, 4597 Sunflower Ridge Dr., Ada, Mich. 49301 (ph 616 874-6827).
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