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Detroit Moto-Mower, Super Detroit

Jim Bracken

New member
Hi,

I'm a newbie here. I just purchased the above referenced mower. The engine tag is unreadable, but I got the following numbers through a rubbing. Near the top the following numbers appear. 300362 several spaces then 198357. I went to a yahoo group and posted this info. I learned that this engine is a model "B", manufactured in July 1948.

Given that information and the model number D-18174 on the mower, I would appreciate any information available on the mower and engine that any of y'all might have. I'd like to restore this to it's original beauty, that I recall when I used one of these massive mowers in the late fifties/early sixties.

Thanks,
Jim
 

Jonathan Widelo

New member
Jim,

Do you happen to have a picture of the mower ? I have a an original copy of a manual for one of these ( an early version from the 1930's) I know the first ones used Briggs WA engines, which are very rare. I think these were the largest Moto-Mowers made at that time. I have a Detroit (27" Cut) model and a few City Models (21" Cut). John Rolli otherwise know as "Motomowers" on here knows a great deal about these mowers, he would be the guy to contact.

~ Jonathan
 

Motormowers

Subscriber
Jim, my Moto-Mower pamphlet lists your engine type number as a 1948 model although its 300632 not 300362. The mower ser # would list it as a 1947 model though. I guess 1948 Super Detroit Models had no mower ser# and they started back at ser# 16,000 which they used in 1946-47. STRANGE. :bonk:
 

kelby

New member
Jim, Welcome to the Stak. You and I are blessed with Super Detroits. I am in the process of restoring D-18237. I have the Model B engine restored and running. Type 300632, serial number 211113. According to ASECC data, mine is an Oct 47 engine. According to ASECC, your B is a June 47 engine. Guess there are different opinions on when these engines were built. Anyway, my mower is complete with two options, sickle bar and slip on rubber tires. I can take some pics of my engine and status of the mower; basic frame, reel, and soon to be sickle bar done. Took me a whole summer and fall to get it apart. Started last summer on the cleaning, painting, and reassembly. Will share info and pics if you need it. Bill McKelvey
 

Jim Bracken

New member
Jonathan,

Thank you for your reply. Do you have any manuals for the mower? If you do, are they on electronis media? If so, would it be asking too much for you to send them to me? I'll be taking pictures this weekend and will post them when done.

Again, Thank you for your reply.

Jim
 

Jim Bracken

New member
Motomowers,

Thanks for you reply. According to Jonathan "you're the MAN" on motomowers.. If you have any manuals or parts/supplier lists that would help me out I'd appreciate it very much. Again, Thank you for the information.
 

Jim Bracken

New member
Jim, Welcome to the Stak. You and I are blessed with Super Detroits. I am in the process of restoring D-18237. I have the Model B engine restored and running. Type 300632, serial number 211113. According to ASECC data, mine is an Oct 47 engine. According to ASECC, your B is a June 47 engine. Guess there are different opinions on when these engines were built. Anyway, my mower is complete with two options, sickle bar and slip on rubber tires. I can take some pics of my engine and status of the mower; basic frame, reel, and soon to be sickle bar done. Took me a whole summer and fall to get it apart. Started last summer on the cleaning, painting, and reassembly. Will share info and pics if you need it. Bill McKelvey
Bill,

Thanks for the reply and welcome. I've been looking for one of these for years.. I used one to mow a neighbors yard when I was a kid and all I could remember about was it drug me around, I'm not sure my feet ever touched the ground. I couldn't remember the name of the mower until I ran across a picture of one on Yesterday's Tractor. From there I was able to find more Info. on Yahoo Groups and start to perusethe web for my mower.

I'd be interested in seeing everything you've done so far as I commence the restoration process. My first concern is the engine and making sure that everything is right with it. The rest pf the mower appears to be complete. I suppose I'll find out more about that as I clean it up. The rubber appears to be in pretty good shape, they also appear to be of the slip off variety. The sicle bar also appears to be comple, although it does appear tp be slightly bent, I'll worry about that last. Anyway, I'd appreciate any Info you can send me and I'll post pictures of my Super Detroit this weekend.

Thanks agin for your reply.

Jim
 

Jonathan Widelo

New member
Jim,

The manual I have covers the early model with the Briggs WA engine, but its should be basically the same. The copy I have is only in print, I usally don't do to much scaning since it takes a good deal of time to do it right. I can send you a copy for $ 5.00 shipped, message me your address and I will send it off.

~ Jonathan
 

41Briggs

New member
i have a motomower motoboy (in terrible shape unfortunatly) but i plan to save the briggs WI engine off it! i do have an other earlier WI from 1941 with the original motomower decals! i also have a Briggs WA thats unfortunatly locked up and missing its carb. but i plan to fix it up someday! i never knew they put WA's on moto mowers! thats pretty cool!
 

kelby

New member
Jim, your Super Detroit looks a little better than mine did. I have to get out the old pics and get them digitized. Will attach the Model B pics. The B is done and running well.
My rollers were basically gone. Would you mind taking the measurements of your rollers and let me know what they are? I found a place to get the wood? Rollers are on the list for this summer. Thanks in advance. Am working on the sickle bar. It is almost done except for the two long bars. They go in the big electrolysis bucket next week. More later, Bill
 

Attachments

Jim Bracken

New member
Bill,

I'll get you measurements for the rollers. Do you happen to know where I could acquire an OEM sparkplug or is there a more modern replacement that will work? I'm not getting any spark and am having difficulty getting the fly wheel off to completely check out the electrical.

Jim
 

kelby

New member
Jim, I used a NOS plug, Champion 8 COM, from Donald McKinsey. He has them all !! Send him 2 or 3 $$ and he will send you his catalog. PO Box 94 Wilkinson, IN 46186. I don't know what this plug crosses to for a new plug. What kind of a problem are you having getting the flywheel off?
 

Jim Bracken

New member
My rollers were basically gone. Would you mind taking the measurements of your rollers and let me know what they are? I found a place to get the wood? Rollers are on the list for this summer. Thanks in advance.

Bill,
I measured my rollers and they are 7" long, the circumference is 12.25" which I calculate to be a 1.95" radius which means
the diameter is 3.9".

Jim
 

41Briggs

New member
Jim, I used a NOS plug, Champion 8 COM, from Donald McKinsey. He has them all !! Send him 2 or 3 $$ and he will send you his catalog. PO Box 94 Wilkinson, IN 46186. I don't know what this plug crosses to for a new plug. What kind of a problem are you having getting the flywheel off?
an old champion 8com and a new champ d16 are very very close!
 

kelby

New member
Jim, thanks for the measurements of the rollers! Am going to make the diameter a bit bigger to compensate for some wear. Finally got my mower pics and have them attached. Yes,it came without the engine. The seller called me 6 weeks later and asked if I wanted the engine. He found it at the place where he bought the mower. When I picked it up, it was in pieces in a grocery cart!:bonk: Those rollers in the pics are actually steel casings cut to fit with wood inserts. They are a bit heavy!
 

Jim Bracken

New member
My goodness, it was a real leap of faith that you could even begin to restore that machine. What made you want to try? My excuse is nostalgia. When I was a kid one of my friends lost her father to a heart attack. They had a 3 acre lot and needed someone to mow the yard. I volunteered. The only mower they had was one of these monsters. It was identical to the super detroit without the sickle bar. All I remember is that it seemed to drag me around that 3 acres. I was impressed with having to break the inside wheel to turn the mower. I guess it's the grand father of the modern zero turn mower. Anyway the mower had sulky that I was dieing to use, but was never allowed. After my mower is done, I'll start looking for a sulky to match.

What got you started down this road?

Jim
 
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