Thanks for the input guys. I called Basic Power today and spoke with the tech. He told me the particular snap ring does not need to snap firmly into place since the spring rides against it. This is what I was hoping to hear, but wanted to be sure. He also said that the snap rings on the backside of the clutch assembly (the ones to set clearance) were not used on the 10-17. Thats the first I have heard of that as everyone seems to advocate carefully checking clearance. He said just put it back together and I should be good to go. Since there were no snap rings there when I took it apart I will take his word. This is the second time I have spoken with him and he seems to know these things well.
So I have the clutch/ring gear assembled, gaskets and seals replaced on the reduction unit, and ready to go once I get the following: a new snap ring for the input shaft/front bearing, a cooler, a set of reverse springs since I lost one in disassembly, and a new oil baffle. I am replacing the baffle because the old one had a main tab that was ready to break off and I dont want loose metal flopping around in this thing. I also replaced the stupid $30 coupling nut because the book says I should. Hope to drop it in next week.