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Be careful around small engines

1764 Views 9 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  Jet-A
So, I washed the 18G today. That's the Gravely angle. While finishing it up, my neighbor comes over to ask if I can look at the motor on the little 1-cyl "toy" quad bike that he got second-hand, non-running, for his kids. I said sure. Electric start only so I put the battery on the charger and checked things over, familiarized myself with the plumbing and electrical. It had a hydraulic hand brake. Installed the battery, checked the key and it wouldn't turn over; found out you need the hand brake applied. Turned over fine; wouldn't start with fresh gas so checked for spark, spark was good. Pulled the carb and blew out all the passages, and fixed a sticky float valve. Reinstalled carb and it fired right up. And took off, ran into the neighbor's garage and was finally stopped by the bumper on his truck. Smashed the cowling on the front of the quad and broke the filler neck off the gas tank. Best I can figure is the brake caliper was frozen and the throttle was on "bunny." Thank god no one was in the path of it when it took off. Moral of the story is respect the equipment you are working on, and think twice before trying to start a machine that you are unfamiliar with. I also think the guy should think twice before putting one of his kids on it.
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Good thing no one was hurt.
That being said, it sounds hilarious & I wish you had a video of it.:hide::sidelaugh
I hope he thanked you for
1. Getting it running
2. Saving his kid's neck
3. Demonstrating what a dangerous "toy" that is without injuring anyone

Sent from the MTF Free App
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The good new is that it didn't hit your Gravely.
The good new is that it didn't hit your Gravely.
lol there's always a bright side isn't there?
I have to ask, was the guy mad?
I have to ask, was the guy mad?
He's one of those people that are not terribly picky or insightful about anything... to put it bluntly he's pretty dense about a lot of stuff, especially when it comes to his kids.

Basically he didn't see any damage to his truck so could've cared less about that. Today he was going to try to source a new fuel tank so he could try again.

Myself on the other hand, tried to imagine his 6-yr-old son or 8-yr-old daughter trying to control that thing and didn't see it ending well. I think I would rather avoid helping him start it again.

Oh I also told him he needed to get the brake figured out before he did anything else.
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I'm glad the 18g, you and everyone in the vacinity didn't get hurt. That story is the type of comedy you just can't write. If it was me, I would be laughing too hard to appologize for the scratch on bumper.

New tank:$40
New plastics:$75
The sound it made at the moment of impact: priceless

Chances are high that your the one whose gonna figure out the frozen caliper issue. Maybe you can do something quick to limit the throttle down to too boring of a speed for those kids to keep interest in it. Just sayin.
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The 18G I picked up a few weeks ago. All the safety switches were removed or bypassed. Basically the guy cut out the existing wiring and installed his own including only the starter key switch, ignition and charging circuit. I'm not a big fan of some of the seemingly excessive safety features that are on current mowers, the "disconnect mower deck upon shifting in Reverse" being the most annoying one. Some are needed, or perhaps best advised. Neutral start and PTO disengaged for start I think are important. I'm sure no matter how careful you are we can all relate to a story of being absentminded and being thankful for a level of safety to save our bacon.
I also have 2 curious little boys that don't need to find a way to start a tractor like that after moving all those levers and shifters around first.
I did buy a wiring harness of eBay and will be replacing the crappy homemade wiring with the factory set.

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