Lawnmower pull string will not work when engaged


Old 06-27-05, 11:56 AM
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Lawnmower pull string will not work when engaged

Showed the kids how to use the MTD 21" 3.5 HP Briggs Stratton rear bag mower...and how to maintain it as well. Came back in the afternoon, lawn wasn't done...guess why!!!

Apparently, it started chugging, and stopped. Tried to pull the string to restart after the kids told me, and it wouldn't budge, so I pulled the spark plug, tied off the brake, and the blade spun, as did the gear on the top!? Oil was very low, so I topeed it off as well.

Pulled off the top assembly which contains the pull string, a large, flat spring, and two plastic dog ears....

Wrapped rope around the top gear, tied off the brake, gave it a tug, and she started! Finished the lawn, but now I do not understand why, after putting the draw string asembly back together why it doesn't start the engine?

I wrapped the spring very tight, and it has a litle nib or hook on it, that apparently attaches to itself, and you get a tighlty wound, secure spring unit you can hold in your hand. I put the two dog ears back in the unit, left the string all the way out, put the spring back in, making sure it hooked around the centre of the plastic unit it sits in, and the unit on the gear at top of the engine..... when I put the top back on the engine, the string does NOT snap back, so obviously I am doing something wrong, or a pin, or spring is soon as I lift the unit off the engine, the string snaps back like lightening? Provided it is disengaged from the gear at the top of the engine it fits into.....I CAN start the engine and mow the lawn, if I want to continue tieing off the brake, and wrapping rope around the gear whilst giving it a big pull, but I would rather properly repair the top assembly. I am quite sure SOMETHING is missing, and broke whilst the kids were mowing...spring? Pin? Maybe someone has a schematic of the top assembly, and how everything fits together properly, before putting it back together..?

The lawn and I need your help my friends!!

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Old 06-27-05, 01:22 PM
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On the Recoil Starter Assembly, I am assuming there is something missing...There is the coil, starter rope, and two plastic dog ears on the side of the assembly..that is it.....perhaps those dog ears have springs attached to them, and I am missing them? Anyway, thought I would try to post as much info as possible...
Old 06-27-05, 01:47 PM
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If u can find the model and type on the front of the engine shroud, post here, I can find parts breakdown and perhaps work through the repair.
Old 06-28-05, 12:23 AM
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Does the rope pull out and retract as it should when the housing is removed from the engine? Do not run the engine without this cover, as it is necessary for engine cooling. It directs the air from the flywheel fan over the cylinder fins to cool it.
Old 06-29-05, 11:37 PM
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Sounds like the shroud is slightly bent and is not centered on the flywheel--tap it to the side with a wooden hammer or something and I'm sure the cord will retract. You can actually bend it back where it should be using this method as it is not usually very much off centre.


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