Craftsman gasoline powered blower

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  #1  
Old 11-10-06, 06:49 PM
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Unhappy Craftsman gasoline powered blower

I have a model number 358-797170 Craftsman blower which suddenly wont start. I followed the manual's instructions for "Engine will not start" (flooded engine starting procedure, filling the tank with correct fuel mixture, installing a new spark plug, inspecting the fuel lines which are working, and replacing the fuel filter) all to no avail. Is there any other thing I should do before I take the blower to a repair center? Please help.

Abraham
 
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  #2  
Old 11-11-06, 08:34 AM
Azis
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It depends on how mechanical you are as to how much more troubleshooting you may want to take on.
Is the spark plug wet after attempting to start?
If it is not even trying to fire or start, I would check to see if you have spark. That will determine what to check next. If you have no spark, and the on/off switch is in the correct postition (even then it could still be the switch) then it may require removing covers to test further.
If you have spark, you can try hitting the carb with a shot of starter fluid or a few drops of fuel and see if it fires. If it does then confirm fuel is getting to the carb from the tank.
It could also be plugged exhaust or spark arrestor screen mounted in the exhaust, or damage to the cylinder/piston and rings.

Most of the above is described in further detail in the sticky post on the main page http://forum.doityourself.com/showthread.php?t=68787, under the post titled "FYI: Basic Carburetor Information"
 
  #3  
Old 11-16-06, 08:49 PM
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Is this still a problem?
 
  #4  
Old 11-17-06, 01:37 PM
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Azis, question about the link

My blower has a problem similar to the original poster's, so I went to follow your link, Azis, and but it did not lead to "Basic Carburetor Info". Did I miss something?

Thanks!
 
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Old 11-17-06, 03:20 PM
Azis
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It leads to "Engine Specifications, Decipher Codes, OEM Home Pages & Carb Info Help" sticky'd by Sharp Advice main page of this forum.
The second post in that thread is titled "FYI: Basic Carburetor Information"
 
  #6  
Old 11-17-06, 06:48 PM
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The first thing I do when any small engine won't start is to determine whether it's a fuel problem, or an ignition problem. To do this, I set the choke fully on, prime the bulb 10 or 15 times, and crank it several times. I may repeat this again because I want to see if this gets the spark plug wet. I pull the plug and if it's wet, then it's not a fuel problem. If it's still dry, it is a fuel problem.

If the plug is wet, it's an ignition problem. Then it's time to check for spark. I do this by removing the plug, hooking it to the plug wire, and resting the plug on a metal part of the engine while cranking it. This is always tricky, and is best done in near dark conditions. If I can't see any spark, I remove the plug, put the end of the plug wire about 1/8th of an inch away from a metal part of the engine (secured with clamp, wire, or string) and pull to start. If no spark, it's probably the ignition module. Could be the ignition shutoff though, so have to check this. If I get lucky and get a spark here, it's the plug. If it's the ignition module, I check price for new one, and usually end up buying a new unit instead of the module -- they can be expensive.
 
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Old 11-18-06, 10:37 AM
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Still no luck

Thanks, Azis, I didn't read down far enough. I pulled the plug and saw spark jumping when I pulled the cord; then I opened the case, removed the carburetor, fuel tank, and what I guess passes for an exhaust manifold in this machine. I breathed through the exhaust and air was flowing: ok to assume the exhaust and spark arrestor are not clogged? Then I breathed through the fuel line and primer hose- the fuel line was a bit of a blow, I guess because of the filter. Last I breathed through the hose connections on the carb and probed inside them a bit with a pin- air was flowing there, too. Re-assembled it all and got nothing, even with starter fluid in the carb.

I'll have to try the "wet plug" test to see what I get. Any other ideas?

Thanks!
Dave O
 
  #8  
Old 11-18-06, 01:36 PM
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Dang it

The plug is wet after trying to start it with starter fluid, and I'm still getting nowhere. I'm officially out of ideas.
 
  #9  
Old 11-18-06, 11:01 PM
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Starting a 2 stroke with starter fluid is bad anyway, so it's probably best it didn't work. The fact that it didn't work makes me wonder how well it is sparking. If it is sparking across the electrodes on the plug as it should, then I would suspect bad compression. Have a look through the exhaust port into the cylinder and see how the cylinder walls look, and the piston skirt. If you see scratches in it, that's probably your problem.
 
  #10  
Old 11-19-06, 03:20 AM
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CycleZen: Reading back over what you've done, I'm still not convinced that you have enough spark, or that you have adequate flow of fuel. When you say "I pulled the plug and saw spark jumping when I pulled the cord;" exactly what do you mean. Please clarify what you did clearly so we can eliminate the ignition side of the system. Also, when you did the "wet plug test", you used starter fluid. So, we can't really tell that fuel is flowing or not. Let the engine dry out and retest but this time don't squirt any starter fluid in there. We need to see if the plug gets wet from the fuel in the carb only.

Having said this, there are a couple of other things that come to mind that I've encountered before that could be your problem:
- Poor air flow (have you tried cranking it after removing air filter?)
- Bad ignition timing ( only time I'd suspect this is if unit had been dropped or hit severely, or I found loose screws holding the ignition module)
- Inadequate compression (could be a burned valve, leaking rings, scratched cylinder wall -- all bad news, meaning replace unit).

PS: What ever happened to abrahamteklu: this was his thread, but haven't heard back from him???
 
  #11  
Old 11-19-06, 08:18 AM
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Sorry I wasn't clear

The last owner said he put a new plug in, and it does look clean and new. For the spark test: I removed the spark plug, inserted it back into the rubber boot, turned the lights off, pulled the cord, and saw arc at the electrode on the plug when I pulled the cord. Is that enough test? Also, I gapped the plug to manual spec.

I realized that I mis-spoke in that last post: I meant to say, "The plug is wet after trying to PULL start it". I did try starter fluid, but for this test I did not: I used the owner manual starting procedure with no starter fluid, pulled the plug, and wiped it with a paper towel: it was wet. Tried it again just to be sure, and got the same result.

Quote:"(have you tried cranking it after removing air filter?)
" Yes- I tried all of this with the air filter and housing removed from the machine.

Quote:"- Bad ignition timing ( only time I'd suspect this is if unit had been dropped or hit severely, or I found loose screws holding the ignition module)". I don't know about being dropped or any impact BUT: I found a screw and some type of plastic doodad (looks kind of like a top hat) inside the case when I took it apart. I thought it was just junk that fell into the case in the guy's garage... maybe this is critical to the ignition module? How do I locate the ignition module, and if this screw turns out to be part of it, how do I adjust it?

Quote:"- Inadequate compression (could be a burned valve, leaking rings, scratched cylinder wall -- all bad news, meaning replace unit)." I'll check this one.

Thanks for your replies!
 
  #12  
Old 11-19-06, 01:50 PM
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Cyclezen

What is the brand and model of blower you are having a problem with?
 
  #13  
Old 11-19-06, 02:06 PM
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Model

It's a Weedeater (which means Poulan, right?) either BV1650 or BV1800 (it's on the manual but not the machine) 24cc blower vac.

A guy gave me this thing because he shut it down to bag some leaves, went to fire it up again and couldn't.

The plastic piece I found in the case turns out to be a bumper of some type- they fit on protrusions inside the case and probably prevent vibration. Still haven't found a home for the screw I found in the case- the screw is a Phillips head, real stubby. I've taken this thing apart twice now, hoping to get some work out of it!

Thanks again for the replies!
 
  #14  
Old 11-19-06, 02:44 PM
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I have had numerous instances with sheared flywheel keys in these blowers, the key is cast into the flywheel and will shear and allow the flywheel to rotate on the shaft and become out of time. Then it seems no matter what you try, it will not even sputter and you should get something at least with a prime unless you have a major air leak. Remove the flywheel and inspect the timing key, I bet that this is your problem, from the what you describe.

Good Luck.....
 
  #15  
Old 11-19-06, 04:10 PM
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Dumb question time

Is the flywheel the part with fins and the magnets that generate the spark?

If the key is cast into the flywheel and that key is sheared, does that mean installing a new flywheel, or is there some kind of key replacement workaround?

Thanks
 
  #16  
Old 11-19-06, 04:35 PM
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Yes, thats the flywheel. You can mark the flywheel key way on the crankshaft and the key way on the flywheel then reinstall the flywheel and torque it down. It may work for quite awhile that way.

The key to tightening the flywheel down is using a piston stop to hold the crankshaft while tightening the flywheel nut. DON'T HOLD THE FLYWHEEL, this is how the key can get sheared, also make sure that the flywheel nut is applying pressure to the flywheel via the spacer and if not making good contact add a small spacer washer to it.

The flywheels are not expensive to replace, around $18.00 for most models.
 
  #17  
Old 11-19-06, 06:31 PM
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Thanks, 30yearTech

I'll go take a look at it again- there was no obvious way to remove the flywheel. It's looking like I'll have to go in through a gasketed surface to get at the hardware that's holding the flywheel on.

I'll let you know how it goes~
 
  #18  
Old 11-19-06, 06:42 PM
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No! You do not have to go through any surface that requires a gasket to remove the flywheel.

The housing splits in half, and the nut that holds the blower fan on is the one that holds down the flywheel.

You can look up a parts pdf manual at the poulan / weedeater website

www.poulanpro.com

click on the link to download manuals and search your model number and you can see an exploded view of your unit.
 
  #19  
Old 11-19-06, 08:14 PM
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Finally figured that out

You were right, it was the sheared key. I'll start looking for a replacement flywheel.

Thanks for all your help- and your patience!

Dave O
 
  #20  
Old 11-19-06, 08:26 PM
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Glad you found the problem! Good call 30yeartech!
 
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