Pull Starter Problem

Old 05-29-03, 05:20 PM
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old snapper

I am currently working on a 12 hp rear engine snapper riding mower at trade school. It has several problems, but the one that I could not figure out is with the pull start device. It does have electric start so the pull start never gets used. The rope would not want to recoil back into the cover so I removed it, fixed the rope, put oil on everything, and I coiled up the spring a little more to make it a little tighter. Well, with the cover removed off of the engine, the recoil starter works perfect, however, once the recoil starter is installed on the engine, it locks up and does not recoil back in. So I once again removed it, took apart the little ratchet device and and noticed that there were 6 ball bearings, and 4 of them were stuck in the grease and dirt mixture that was in there. I removed the balls and cleaned the whole thing out. I put oil in it (should there be grease?) and made sure verything worked right and put it all back together. Well, once I installed everything back together, it once again doesn't recoil back. Why? The engine starts with the starter without a problem, but that dang rope will not recoil back in. Can someone please tell me what to do. Thanks!!!!!
Old 05-29-03, 10:41 PM
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Try removing the bolts that hold the engine shroud on and pull the rope out. Then, while lifting on different sides of the shroud, see if the rope retracts at any point. If you find that lifting on a certain side makes the rope rewind, then you know the starter is warped. You can pry up on the side that is low, at the top where the spool is until you get it back into position. It is a common problem....people stand on that spot to reach stuff up high, and distort it when they do it.
Old 05-30-03, 05:15 AM
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Hey mower17, the starter ratchet must be oil with very light oil. I like PB Blaster or light household oil like 3 in 1. Even motor oil like 30 weight can cause the ball bearings to hang. When you rotate the ratchet counter clockwise you should be able to hear the ball bearings falling into their slots......Mike
Old 05-30-03, 08:00 PM
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Ok. I asked my teacher and turns out the little tabs holding the plastic recoil in the cover were bent a little too much, so now the recoil works perfect. The oil I out in the ratchet device is 15w40. The teacher suggested hydrolic oil. However, out of nowhere, the mower developed a short, so I started checking with the meter, couldn't find anything, so the teacher came to help me and just out of the blue, the short was gone, so all that's left is the throttle. The throttle cable got bent and it will only travel half of the total distance it should. Well, now my question is, sometimes when I adjust the mixture needle screw on some engines (including this one) it will have no effect on how the engine runs. So what do ya'll do and how do ya'll adjust how the engine runs if the screw has no effect on it. Even if the engine is warmed up, some carb screws just don't do anything, nomatter if the screw is all the way in or all the way out. By the way, the same guy that has this mower has another one almost identicle to the one I am working on and it has a wisconsin engine and he needs a new carburetor for it, but he can't find one. Were could he get one? Although he used to be the dean and has plenty money, he doesn't like to buy more than he has too. If anyone can help I would appreciate it. Thanks.
Old 05-30-03, 08:49 PM
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Hello: mower17

When a carb adjustment screw has no effect on an engine, the carb needs to be cleaned out. The engine may appear to be running fine but most likely will not under all load conditions.

The condition can also indicate that there are additional problems besides the carb. Could be governor and or throttle linkage problems. Others could be vacuum leaks, gasket leaks, valves, compression, etc.

Carb aprts and rebuild kits are or should be available at almost any small engine repair shop in the area or where ever the school obtains parts.

The other resident small engine service and repair professionals may offer additional suggestions, advice & help.

Good Luck.
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