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Rope Pull Starter Problem

wallyk's Avatar
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09-29-02, 03:19 PM   #1  
Problem pull-starting rototiller

I have a 5hp BS engine on my rototiller and when I pull the string to start, there is no tension on the string at all. I took off the flywheel cover and the little gear that's in the flywheel is just loose. It doesn't catch so that I could pull it to start. Is the gear stripped or is there some other promlem..? Thanks in advance.

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09-29-02, 03:25 PM   #2  
Hello wallyk, many questions can be answered without a model number but with this one there are two completely different styles. Get back with a number and it would save us some time.....Mike

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09-29-02, 09:02 PM   #3  
Hello: wallyk

The part your describing is the sprague clutch. It has a square stem extending out from it.

In the top of the stem is a shiny silver cap with a tiny hole in it. Beneath that hole, inside the shaft of the stem, is a felt pad. The hole is a place to inject oil and the felt pad is there to retain the oil and keep out dirt and dust.

Inside the starter clutch housing, under the larger circular circumference cap, is 3-5 steel balls which fit into slots. When these balls spin they catch into grooves and connect the stem to the clutch body.

Since the clutch is attached to the flywheel, when the rope is pulled, the clutch turns [spins] and engages the balls. All this pulling turning and spining action connects the assembly together to crank the engine.

When the rope pulls and there isn't any cranking action, the balls inside the clutch are most likely stuck inside there lowered resting places inside the clutch.

To correct the problem, carefully pry up the outer round circumference cap, remove the steels balls, clean them and the interior of the clutch completely.

Once this is completed, oil the inside surfaces of the clutch, the steel roller balls and reassemble as found. Reinstall the starter housing and the problem is resolved. No new parts needed and no clutch part to remove.... Quick, Slick & Trick!..

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wallyk's Avatar
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09-30-02, 03:19 PM   #4  
Thanks a lot TOM!

It was EXACTLY what you said it was, the ball bearings were stuck inside there slots and wouldn't come out. As soon as I cleaned & oiled them, I pulled the rope & it worked right away. It is such a simple task, but if someone like yourself doesn't give you the answer, it can cause a lot of grief trying to pull-start it. Thanks again for your help and the prompt reply....

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