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JohnF2015, Small Engine Technician
Category: Small Engine
Satisfied Customers: 1079
Experience:  Owner/Service Technician at S & J Small Engines
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Craftsman model # 917287130 riding tractor.......both front

Customer Question

Craftsman model ####-##-####riding tractor.......both front wheels are at a 45 degree angle outward, steering rods are not bent or damaged. Solution?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Small Engine
Expert:  JohnF2015 replied 1 year ago.

Hi, my name is***** will be assisting you.

Do the wheels seem to straighten when you go backwards?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
NO. Forward or reverse they are in the same position. If I turn the steering wheel all the way to either right or left one wheel is straight and the other is at the max for the direction selected.Right turn....left wheel straight ahead.......left turn right wheel straight ahead.
Expert:  JohnF2015 replied 1 year ago.

There are two bushings in the center of the front axle that may be worn or broken. This will allow the axle to move and cause the wheels to not run straight. The only other thing that might cause this is if the drag links are bent but according to your information you have already checked those.

Expert:  JohnF2015 replied 1 year ago.

It is reference number 67 if you are looking at a parts break down with a part number of 194737, it takes two one in front and one back.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I was curious if there was a way to correct this issue by realigning the gears from the steering wheel to both gears on the drag links. I am a retired ASE mechanic and it appears one solution would be to re-position the gears properly. Getting in there seems impossible even though I had my hand in there. I will check those axle bushings first and we can go from there.
Expert:  JohnF2015 replied 1 year ago.

Realigning the gears in this instance will not help you. If you try to move the gears to different position it will only make one side worse than the other.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Bushing check it is then. I assume each axle is independent and the worn bushings bring the axles closer to the center of machine.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Ok. 1 Piece axle....only bushing is center pivot and that is good. Any other options?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Any other thoughts on this
Expert:  JohnF2015 replied 1 year ago.

You have bushings or bearings in the center of the wheels as well. You may want to check those but that is the only other place that comes to mind other than the drag links being bent themselves.