Craftsman LT 1036

Where it all started...


Hello everyone! Welcome to the ONLY website for the 1974 Craftsman LT 1036! I hope you enjoy the story, and pictures! 

 I used to own a 1992 Craftsman riding mower, which my family used since it was new. Sadly, it had a slight oil leak that we did not know about and it locked up halfway through mowing the yard. Needless to say, we hauled it off and needed a replacement.

Luckily, my grandad had a 1974 Craftsman LT 1036 that he rarely used for mulching-type jobs. He told me I could have the mower and use it to mow with. I do not have "before" pictures of the restoration, because i honestly didnt think to take them. I found a picture online that looks almost exactally how mine looked:

My 1036 had a rusty hood (similar to this one), a rusty deck, worn running boards, heavy rust behind the hood and other panels, and a disconnected headlight. The reverse gear was also stripped out, so reverse didn't work. It was also missing the original hood latches and switch for the lights.

The restoration begins!

It all started in my Turf and Lawn class at school, where we winterized mowers and fixed a couple riding mowers. I decided i would take my 1036 to get serviced by the Ag department. We sharpened the blades, changed the oil, cleaned the air filter, and alot more.

One day, about 30 minutes before time to leave the class, I decided to make a project out of the 1036. Everyone agreed to help when I needed it, and the teacher found it as a great idea. The only stipulation was that I buy parts and materials.

The next day, we taped off all of the original stickers and warning labels and began to strip the old rust and paint off of the mower. We pulled the deck off, removed the hood and front grille, jacked up the mower and removed all 4 wheels and the seat, then removed the rear-end and drive belt. We continued sanding and grinding until the body was ready for paint.

To repaint the mower, I used Rust-oleum metallic silver. This is a exact match to the original mower color. When applied, it looks almost like a dull chrome... But after drying, it settles to a perfect match of the silver paint Craftsman used in 1974. I used this paint on every silver part painted on the mower.

I also repainted the motor, inside dash panel, battery, steering gear, gas tank, back of seat, and clutch pedal boot with Rust-oleum flat black paint. It isn't a high-heat paint, but it does just fine for a mower.

After painting the mower completely and removing the tape, I went over all of the silver paint with a coat of Rust-oleum clear coat. This helps the mower out alot against future rust, paint chipping, and excessive ware and tare. I applied a extra thick coat on the running boards and hood.

After paint, the rear-end had to be fixed. We pulled all of the bolts out of the rear-end casing and pulled it apart. We found that the reverse gear was loose and would not stay on the original shaft. So we bolted the shaft down and fixed the gear and replaced all the old grease with new. It took 6 tubes of grease to fill up the casing.


After all restoration was complete, and everything worked correctly, it was time to re-assemble.

We slapped the rear-end back under the mower and hooked up the drive belt and bolted it on. Then, we put the seat, wheels/tires, grille, hood, battery, fuel tank, new fuel line, air filter, switches/ignition, new deck belt, and lights back in the mower. We tried it out and everything worked and looked like a brand new mower!

Final Product!!

There are pictures of the final product in the "Photos" section at the top of this page. I hope you enjoy them and if you'd like to ask any questions, please post them in the "blog" section at the top. Thanks!


Is there More!? 

 Is this the ONLY Craftsman tractor out there?? Can I find something bigger/smaller??

Since 1966, Craftsman has built quality lawn tractors. Here is a list of MANY tractors produced by Sears/Roebuck Incorporated.

Tractor:                                                                   Model #:


1966 Suburban  (917.99400)

1967 Suburban    (917.25100)

1967 Super 12 (917.25120)

1968 Suburban  (917.25340)

1968 Super 12  (917.25310)

1969 Suburban 12                        (917.25520)

1969 Super 12                        (917.25510)

1970 Suburban 12                                                                                                                    (917.25550)

1970 SS 12  (917.25510)

1971 SS 14  (917.25610)

1972 SS 12  (917.25370)

1972 SS 15  (917.25380)

1973 ST 12          (917.25730)

1973 ST 16  (917.25740)

1973 ST 16 Twin  (917.25750)

1974 ST 12  (917.25730)

1974 ST 16  (917.25740)

1974 SS 16  (917.25750)

1974 LT 1036  (917.255270)

1975 ST 12  (917.25860)

1975 ST 16  (917.25870)

1975 SS 16  (917.25880)

1976 ST 12  (917.25930)

1976 ST 16  (917.25940)

1976 SS 18  (917.25960)

1977 16/6  (917.25170)

1977 16/6 Twin (917.25180)

1977 18/6 Twin  (917.25190)

1978 GT 16  (917.257050)


1978 GT 18 (917.257060)

1979 GT 18  (917.257110)