craftsman snowthrower bearing rods in hex shaft gear

Old 05-15-23, 04:54 PM
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craftsman snowthrower bearing rods in hex shaft gear

I needed to replace the rubber friction wheel on my Craftsman Show Thrower model 247.88691. This model has fancy gear units at both ends of the hex shaft. When I slid one of the gear units off one end, in order to get the friction wheel assembly off the hex shaft, a number of the bearing rods fell out (at the round shaft hole of the gear). Please see photo. I doubt if I can get the rods back in; some of them are broken and it looks like others were ground up over time. But I can't just get a new gear by itself: it is not sold separately. It has to be bought as part of the "drive shaft assembly" (labelled #41 in the attached diagram from the manual; part # 918-04322A) which costs at least $270 (cheapest I can find online; not sure if I can actually get that price). That seems like a lot to pay when all I really need to do is replace one of the gears, or fix the bearing rods in the gear.
Can anyone tell me if there's a way to get the rods back in to the gear, or some other repair? What would happen if I just remove all the rods and put the gear back on to the shaft?

This seems like a poor design to me.

Also what gear grease would you recommend?

Thanks for your help with this.

Donna Walker

without them?

Old 05-15-23, 08:17 PM
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That's an MTD machine. ...... E-replacement diagrams and parts list.
The exploded view is the wheels/drive tab.

Those are worn out bearings. They are a "must have" and are replaceable.
Interesting... you have needle bearings and these are ball bearings. Possibly an upgrade ?
Pictorial 26 - Bearing: 741-04076
Example - not necessarily the best price.
Old 05-15-23, 08:24 PM
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That's a needle bearing. Leaving the needles out will cause the piece to flop around loosely and strip the teeth off and ruin the rest of the unit. You could try a bearing supplier but if the part isn't available separately, it's just one of those things. Looks like there is some serious cleaning needing done in there too with broken bearing pieces. I see the replacement part for under 170 on amazon.
Old 05-28-23, 08:01 AM
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Sorry I'm late here, but you can replace the bearings. You need 1 SCE98 bearing for this part & 2 SCE108 bearings for the planet carrier. You should be able to source them at any industrial supplier. SCE98 - INA | Needle Non Thrust Roller Bearings | BDI Canada (

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