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The operating manual shown below came with a Roto Spader (Tiller) that my grandfather purchased in March of 1955 from Sears, Roebuck and Co. According to the bill of sale, the tiller cost $129.95 plus $6.95 delivery. I made a 4MB Adobe pdf file that can be down loaded here of the 30 pages. I can re-scan it with different settings if someone has trouble reading it.

 

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hey mem, you got any pics of the tiller l got an old tiller that has the same motor but no name on the tiller wanted to know the maker of my tiller
 

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I have the tiller but no picture of it yet to post. I'll get you a picture of it when I have a chance. I have another engine on it that is a little older if I recall correctly. The base plate broke at one of the mounting holes which lets the oil leak out. I used the coil and carb, and gas tank off of the original to keep the current engine running. Hope someday to fix up the original engine and get it back on there. I think it has less hours than the one I have on it now. I have another bigger tiller that I use most of the time.

Speaking of which I recall Jody I think ask for a picture of it. It is a 5 hp. Tru-Test. Bought in the late 70's by my other grandfather at Tru-Value Hardware.

 

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I have changed website hosting companies so the above link I posted to the manual is no longer valid. I do still have the manual so if anyone wants a copy just send me a personal message and I'll email it to you. :fing32:
 

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Mark--I'm about to sell an "Agway" tiller to a friend that looks nearly identical to yours..It's probably made by MTD in reality,and was sold at Agway stores..many other stores sold MTD brand stuff under their name,like Sears,Montgomery Wards,Western Auto,etc..

I'd guess yours is an MTD,but many other brands look so close,it's hard to be sure..I have a Simplicity "Roto-Cull" that isn't much different as far as outside appearance,but the gearbox IS not the same!..

Robert
 

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I have a Roto-spader, and I think I have some photo's of it if you need them, or I can go down to the barn and take some more in the Daylight if need be.

You can see it in my avitar. I made a hitch and put it on my Murray tractor. The engine quits from some vibration after a short time in hard dirt though.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Here's a photo of the Sears tiller with another slightly older Briggs engine on it. I managed to break one of the mounting feet on the original engine shown in the manual and it's been setting in the shed for about 20 years now waiting for me to fix it. Also I had some carburetor and coil problems with the blue engine since so the carb, gas tank, and coil on the blue engine are from the original Sears/Briggs engine. I had just rebuilt the carb on the original engine when I broke the mounting leg. :duh:



Here's another photo I found on the net sometime ago which looks like the same tiller under another name.

 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
That's not a roto-spader though.
Mine was all Vertical, and a lot heavier duty that that one in the photo.
But the Sears employee said it was. :D

I would have to agree with you. I took the name from the sales receipt. The salesman probably meant to put rototiller instead. The label on the tiller only has David Bradley, the Sears and Roebuck name and model and serial. No mention of Roto-Spader or rototiller on it. Anything I've seen since with the roto-spader name was either a tractor attachment or looked like the walk behind tractor of that time period that carried the David Bradley name. Notice also on the receipt it mentions at additional cost a "transport unit". I originally thought that was a delivery fee. But now I'm wondering if that may actually be referring to the wheels and axle. The rod that the wheels are attached to with a single bolt is long enough when adjusted down to function as a drag bar. I think dad mentioned onetime my grandfather using it that way with the wheels removed. I was only 11 years old when my grandfather died (1977) and don't remember seeing him using them myself. He had two of them originally, kept the outside tines off on one for use between the rows. We almost always visited on Sunday which was still a day of rest in the small town back then. One thing I do remember is there was never a weed to be found in his garden. :fing32:

Too bad we cannot call George the salesman at Sears and ask him about the receipt. ;)




Here's the web page I found the picture of the Choremaster:

http://www.donaldantiquerototillers.com/OtherPlayers.htm
 

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Gee, and I thought I kept stuff for a long time.

Great stuff, and look at that receipt, Kind Sale = Cash

Remember cash?
 

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I have one of these. It's really nice to finally have the manual. My father bought it 2nd hand from a departing neighbour in '59 or '60. It is clearly stamped Roto Spader on the deck fore of the engine.

I remember tying a toboggan to it. You could get it going at a pretty good clip on a snow packed road. Braking was an issue though.

I haven't used it in 5 or 6 years (in the garden). The carb float seems to be shot.
 

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My Rotospader looks a little different. My Rotospader is about 4th handed.
I'll take some Closeups if need be. I know I have a book around here somewhere but with that PDF book you wouldnt need mine.

My carb is messing up too, If any of you guys have some experience to offer.
It will start and run OK, for awhile but when I start tilling and the Jiggiling and bouncing begin, the engine just slows down and quits.
Any Hints?
 

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@ Thupucker , sounds like the float in the bowl has a hole in it and sinking allowing it to flud out or locking the float keeping the valve closed. Common in old engines. A good cleaning should fix that. The float may need to be replaced too.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
25 years ago they managed to cross those Sears numbers over to a carb rebuild kit for me at a local shop. Worked pretty good for several years after that. But last I run it a bit of gas was leaking while shut down again. I took the shortcut of putting a fuel valve on it.

With all the vibration and dirt, I would agree that style of carb especially was kind of prone to problems. The good part is the way it is designed the excess fuel drips on the ground rather then running down the intake into the cylinder and crankcase oil like some engines.
 
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