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Discussion Starter #1
Been slipping for quite a while and I finally decided I was going to have to deal with it. So. I have a Bolens 38" deck 2 blade, 6 speed shift on the go, lawn tractor with a Briggs and Stratton engine. It has been a great mower but I bought it refurbished, I have no manual and I have looked everywhere on this thing looking for a model number or identification of what it is and I can't find anything except for the Briggs engine.

Getting the mower deck belt was not hard. Lowes sells a 38" deck belt for MTD/Bolens mowers. The drive belt is an issue. I don't have one drive belt. I have 2. A short pulley to pulley belt runs the transmission. The intermediate pulley is a dual groove and the other groove goes to the front to the engine. I think I may be able to get the longer engine drive belt by taking it to Lowes. They have a long measuring plate and you match up your lengh minus roughly an inch for a stretched out belt and find one on the shelf that matches that length. I'm going to try that tomorrow.

To even get this small belt off I had to unbolt the transmission pulley and it wasn't easy. I wasn't even sure it would work but it did. Now I have this belt and I haven't yet found any Bolens information on the net for it and Lowes has no such short belt.

I thought I would try and get a deep groove automotive belt from Napa that is just under the size of this thing and see if I can get that to work. It does have a sprung tensioner so maybe there is a little room for a tighter belt assuming Napa has something close. I have some short belts in my shop so I compared a couple of those with this alien belt and they are close but the belt itself is too small to work with the pulley groove on the mower. I need the deep v groove belt.

Does any body else on here have a mower like this with 2 drive belts or any idea how I might be able to identify and then find this short belt other than a try Napa belts and see if one works? Man Its just always some fracken thing or other. I get really tired of this stuff and I absolutely hate working on lawn mowers but I gotta get the grass mowed or turn the goats loose.
 

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If you could guess a year you can dig into the parts diagrams and figure out the belt on the MTD site. Just click MTD Catalog->Bolens and dig around.

If that doesn't work I'd just take it down to your local Grainger or Tractor Supply if they're closer. One of those two will have it (probably Grainger) they'll just have to look up the length.
 

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Do you have a real lawn mower repair shop near you? Or a automotive service station that has been around for awhile that will have a belt measuring device? We had one at the Sunoco station I worked at when I was a kid that you simply put the belt on and measured it. It had a cross reference list with part numbers for various manufacturers. Also you can look up the Briggs and Stratton engine VIN to see what year the engine is to get an idea of what year service manual for your mower you should be searching for. If it was my tractor, I'd first pull the deck, usually pretty simple once you know how, and make sure everything under there works as it should including the tensioner and blade brake. Post a picture of your tractor and we can help you identify it and maybe find a service manual.
 

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In a pinch, Tractor Supply is a good source for mower betls, albeit they are overpriced like most things in that store. I usually go to NAPA as they have a very high quality belt and guys with at least a little brainpower.

Check on the underside of the hood, my old Scotts and current White tractor both have a parts list sticker of the most commonly used parts - air & oil filters, belts etc.

Worst case, find the model & serial sticker on the tractor, you can then google "bohlens (model #) parts"
 

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The best place I have found to buy V-belts is: V-Belt Global Supply, LLC. | V-Belt Online Catalog
I have an old 8' mower/shredder that uses 2 belts that are about 100" long and I can buy them at vbelt supply for about 1/2 the price everybody else charges for them. The staff is extremely knowledgeable which is rare these days.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Wow, thanks for all the great responses on this. I guess I'm not the only one that has come across this problem. I did find part of a torn sticker under the seat and that was for 2007 California evaporative emissions certification. 2007, HA, I win,,,,, I hope. Hard to believe this thing could be 13 years old considering how well it runs but ok.

Well it was gone through by a really good mower guy that lived here by me. When my Craftsman threw a rod he sold me this Bolens. Said it would run good and he was right. I used to go visit him and we'd drink coffee and talk hot rods because he and his son were seriously into it for years. He had a wealth of information about building and running fast cars. He died of cancer some time back. Dang all my friends are dying around me. I have one close friend left here and I have informed him that he is not allowed to die before I do.

If anybody remembers the post I did about Wayne, the local Napa store owner dying and how hard that was for me to deal with, Wayne was 1 of 3 close friends I have had where I am now. Well he had agreed to accept responsibility for the dispensation of my ashes when my time comes. That is a real friend. That conversation still haunts me the day I talked with him about that. He said sure he would be glad to then he looked over at me and smiled and said you know that assumes that you go before I do. Well with my health being what it is and declining I couldn't see that happening but the way he said that was strange. I still can't get over him dying at the age of 44 like that. I would have traded places with him but we aren't given that option unfortunately.

Anyway, found online a diagram from a Bolens parts manual for 2007 and it looks to be the correct configuration so I have the 2 drive belts coming from somewhere or other(Engine Masters Outdoor Power Equipment). I hope this works. Meanwhile I guess I should temporarily put my mower back together so I don't start loosing parts I have scattered across the concrete.



Thanks everybody for all the help. Frankly, many times over now I don't know what I would do without the help I get from people on here.
 

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I run a Parks Department and a very large Cemetery, so we go through the belts. Our local Napa can cross reference just about any belt (if you have a part number) but can also order you one based on the length. If you have one close by, may be worth a shot.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Well, if my most recent internet orders are any indication, the internet has slowed to a crawl. I should have anticipated that with all these orders from governments to shelter at home. They got no employees or a lot are missing. I may get my mower belts by April 10,,,,,maybe.

I decided to try the Napa belts which are industrial belts. Apparently one or both were too thick. The mid drive transmission pulley on my mower has that floating plate in the middle that separates the 2 belts. They were so thick that they put the mower in run over you mode as soon as you start up the mower even with the transmission in park. I had left the rear gear in forward. I has forward, neutral and reverse. Cranks up fine and sits still in neutral but as soon as I try to go into forward or reverse it takes off even in park.

Fortunately, I'm not skinny and can withstand a lawn tractor trying to run me over, ha. I took the short belt off and put the old one back hoping that might at least let me mow but its still permanently in drive even with the clutch/brake pedal in. Well frack. If my mower didn't have that mid plate pulley I think I would be good to go.

I guess I will have to just wait for the correct belts to show up.
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
So I called Tractor Supply to 1. find out if they were even open and 2. see if they had my 3 belt part numbers. They are open. A lot of my area looks like it has been abandoned now and my gun range is closed down so I can't even go shoot. Driving on the highway over to the Tractor Supply was the least traffic I have ever seen on that highway at any time. There were barely even any 18 wheelers rolling. I guess that means we are doing our jobs social distancing or self quarantining in my area.

After I ordered my belts online and I also ordered a high speed steel drill bit set online, I found out that Amazon who is sponsoring both the companies I ordered stuff from, was just about completely shut down. Not sure why they would have to go to this extreme over the virus but they did. My stuff was put on order a week ago and the 2 belts just shipped so maybe there is some light in the tunnel after all. No news on my drill bits.

Now if it will just stop raining for a couple of days maybe I can motor the grass.
 

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I also ordered a high speed steel drill bit set online
Is there a Harbor Freight nearby? Their 29 piece drill bit sets are always on sale for $10.99. It used to be $9.99 but they raised the price a couple of months ago. I buy a set just about every time I go in there. $10.99 will buy 2 single drill bits at the hardware store.
 
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