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Big and Wide
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Discussion Starter #122
Some of it gets cut in to firewood, some of it gets used as a border around the fire pit. The rest gets piled up for the neighbor - he's got one of those power line right of way monsters. The kind of thing you often see behind an Asplundh truck. It's a basket case but it runs every few years. My little old craftsman takes care of the small stuff pretty well. Great if ya consider that it cost me a full $60.
 

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$60? Wow, that would have been a bargain at twice the price!

Mike
 

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Big and Wide
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Discussion Starter #124
$60? Wow, that would have been a bargain at twice the price!

Mike
**** yeah and ya gotta love scrappers. 8.5 hp Briggs and have seen them advertised for more than double what I paid. If that score wasn't cool enough, I found the rare optional tow bar in a car u-pull-it that has a small mower boneyard. That bit is over $100 new by itself. It needed an oil change, blade sharpening and a tire and only starts cold with a shot of starting fluid. The way old school ball bearing clutch for the recoil starter failed me a few times so I cut it off and went with the ever older school starter - a used pulley and a rope.
 

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What was wrong with the ball bearing starter? Was it the typical screech from the balls getting stuck in the wrong place?

Mike
 

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Big and Wide
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Discussion Starter #126
If ya make the mistake of greasing the balls, they get stuck in the out position. Next time you go to start the motor, the clutch just free wheels. A few wacks with a hammer will generally get one free enough to lock the clutch. The screech comes from the end of the crank shaft spinning in the cam of the starter clutch because of no lube. Bearing grease seems like a good idea except that it ends up on the ball bearings. I've seen motor oil and trans fluid recommended but neither helped me. Likely something to do with the missing sponge that's intended to hold some oil. One problem ya get is the crank grabbing the cam just enough to unwind the starter cord a bit, then it gets out of the pulley grove and wraps around the tip of the cam. Eventually various things get fouled up enough that the plastic cord pulley is spinning with the crank or trying to enough that the center of it strips out. One way that happened to me is the body of the clutch unscrewing from the crank but I doubt that happens often.

One of my tow mowers has a vertical shaft 8.5 briggs with this style starter and has never given me any problems in 20 yrs. This horizontal shaft 8.5 worked when I got it, failed, chewed up the pulley. Worked fine after I fixed it until the clutch unscrewed itself. Worked fine for a while after I replaced the pulley again then started screeching. I actually got pretty good at putting the recoil spring back in and tensioned. While doing some research on you tube, I came across the pulley trick and said to myself, screw trying to fix it right or replace it with a later style, go with something simple that will work.

 

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I had that problem with a Briggs on a mid-90s TB Horse tiller. The balls were rusty and sticking. The balls are chrome-plated, but when that wears off, they rust and get stuck (partially engaged).

A few years ago, I took everything apart, cleaned it, lubed with either ATF or MMO (don't recall), and it's been fine since (although I haven't yet run it this year).

I know that you can buy just the balls.

Thanks for posting the pulley video. That's a pretty cool idea, just have to be careful not to get anything into the cooling fan (don't want to grenade the fins), since the debris screen gets deleted in that mod.

Mike
 

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Big and Wide
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Discussion Starter #128
I didn't have the screeching symptom until I tried ATF. I think the real fail on my attempted repairs was not getting the inside of the clutch cam polished (de rusted) well enough. A new in the box clutch assembly is probably a cheap / easy part to get but I just got really tired of spending more time getting good at tearing the starter apart than I was spending chipping branches. More worried about the nut holding the pulley backing off (loctite is a good thing) and the thing throwing the pulley at me. It's much more likely to just fall off the crank but paranoia can be a good thing too.
 

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I have had several Briggs starter clutches do the horrific "SCREEECH" and spit the rope out of the recoil,and the spring often gets the end busted off...had this happen at least 3 times when I had my tractor at the furthest point in my yard from the garage,about 500 feet away..first time I had to trudge back to the garage to fetch tools,pull the recoil housing off,and put the rope back in ,and rewind the spring..then I had about 2 feet of rope left that wasn't mangled or destroyed..but it started again..

The other 2 times it did that,I was able to wrap what was left of the rope around the engine pulley and get it to start,so I could at least drive the dern thing back to the garage..

I had the blower housing off this engine enough times to strip the threads on the bolts that are pointing down towards the chassis,and they suck to get back in--so I cut out the metal around the bolt holes in the housing to make them slots,so I only have to loosen those bolts to get the housing off,not remove the bolts completely..

Briggs engines often have those "tabs" snap off the block too,and they are part of the block,no easy fixes there if that happens..:(

I find those clutches screech in the cold winter more often ,right after a cold start..

In my case,the end of the crankshaft where the clutch rides on got mushroomed from taking off the flywheel several times to clean the points,I used a hammer blow instead of a puller to get it off,then had to file off the end and taper it,sand it down smooth,so the clutch wont want to "stick" there and screech...

I found thick lube like STP or gear oil seems to work best to prevent future screeching..applied only to that part of the crank,not inside the clutch,that needs to be kept free of any lube..

I also noticed Briggs decided to start using a different clutch on all models,that has a shorter square piece that goes in the recoil pulley--the factory instructions say to "cut off about 1/2" of the crankshaft on older engines ",and then sand or file the cut off smooth--I guess they figured with less surface contact there it might be less likely to screech ..
Me,I prefer not to chop off anything--I had several old style clutches hanging around so I just used those..
 

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Big and Wide
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Discussion Starter #130
So it's been crazy rainy which means the grass was getting way too tall. Went out to cut it the other day and was pleasantly surprised to not get stuck in the usual spots. Was annoyed to get stuck in a spot that usually isn't a problem but oh well. At least I didn't have to wade in to the mud or track down a neighbor - I walked up the yard and got the "donor" tractor and a tow chain. Old habits die hard so I broke down the train to see if I could drive the tractor out without the extra weight of the tow mowers. Next time, I'll give up earlier and see if I can drag the whole thing out.

Which leads me to those old, original, dry rotted and cracked rear turf tires that are still holding air. Almost got the thing hung up in the soggy woods with the chipper behind it so almost pulled the trigger on these fairly generic AG tires in the exact same size:

https://www.amazon.com/24x12-00-12-Garden-Tractor-Mower-ATW-041/dp/B076CTRGCQ/ref=sr_1_5?keywords=24x12.00-12&qid=1554997469&s=gateway&sr=8-5

Probably a pretty good choice for what I need but I like window shopping and found these for $50 less:

https://www.amazon.com/Pair-MassFx-Tires-25x10-12-25x10x12/dp/B01MYXKX8N/ref=sr_1_50_sspa?keywords=24x12-12+lug+tire+-nuts+-turf&qid=1557533777&s=gateway&sr=8-50-spons&psc=1

and these for about the same price:

https://www.amazon.com/Set-WANDA-Tires-25x11-12-P373/dp/B00XF3NSP8/ref=pd_bxgy_293_3/137-4062694-6039657?_encoding=UTF8&pd_rd_i=B01HC7ECYS&pd_rd_r=956f5466-7414-11e9-ad99-d763d3fc76f8&pd_rd_w=CaUdw&pd_rd_wg=eApnw&pf_rd_p=a2006322-0bc0-4db9-a08e-d168c18ce6f0&pf_rd_r=VGXEDRZCY55WN3SFXR28&refRID=VGXEDRZCY55WN3SFXR28&th=1

A little taller, not as wide but extra plies and if I get hung up with that much tread, I deserve it.
 

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Big and Wide
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81 Posts
Discussion Starter #131
I was really surprised when those old dry rotted tires held air all summer - until last weekend when I found out they had tubes in them. Here's the original tractor with the original Carlisle turf savers 24x12.00-12 and the donor with Carlisle ATV tires 25x11.00-12. A little tall, a little narrow, a bit too ballon shaped but hey, $50 for the pair and bring on the mud.
 

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Premium Member
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Very nice! Where did you find those???

Mike
 

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Big and Wide
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Discussion Starter #133
Very nice! Where did you find those???

Mike
facebook marketplace - have made a few nice scores there. This one was only like 5 miles from the house. I was a little concerned that one had a plug - until I discovered the tubes.

Warm day today, cabin fever runneth over, took em for a test drive and they straight up rock. Drove though probably 5 different spots that I know I'd get hung up this time of year with the turf savers. The ATVs acted like it wasn't even muddy.
 
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