Did I mention that I HATE lawn mowers - Vintage Mustang Forums

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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 02:43 PM Thread Starter
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Did I mention that I HATE lawn mowers

I've had 2 Sears riding mowers and now this Bolens/Briggs mower which now won't crank. I got to run it for 1 mowing season. I have been eyeing my sledge hammer which might make me feel good for a few minutes but then I'd just have to pick up all the stray pieces of the thing.

It ran perfectly before I parked it and shut it off just 3 days ago when I was driving the trailer around picking up all the pine needles. Now all it wants to do is pop. Yeah. I know. Spark plug fouled, fuel line clogged, fuel filter clogged, bla bla bla. I bet my old push mower will run and I haven't cranked it up since like October or something but it doesn't pull my little trailer very well. I don't see any fuel in the clear(ish) fuel filter and the tank is half full. I tried spraying B12 down in the intake. Just pops out both the exhaust and the intake but not at the same time I don't think.

This is the same mower that the float needle is leaking on which I got a fuel line cut off valve for. I discovered that when I the engine wouldn't even turn over and had filled up with gas to the point that it turned the oil into something like diesel fuel. I did put new oil in it.

I know what my mistake was. I posted a photo of it on here and actually said a nice word about it. Thats just about guaranteed to cause a problem.

I wonder if goats will eat pine needles, pine cones and sweet gum balls? Eh. They would probably also eat the siding off my house.

331 solid flat cam, rings and bearings break in run up.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3MNjb-AiWec
331 break in complete and is waiting on me to finish the body work
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YhnOk5FCBkE

Last edited by macstang; 03-16-2017 at 02:53 PM.
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 03:26 PM
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First thing you need to do is fix the needle valve for the float. Mine did the same thing, filled the crankcase with gas. Pulled the float bowl off and there was a piece of stringy plastic in the seat, pretty simple to do.

And yes, goats will eat anything. My son has a friend who's family has a goat, it wanders their property. He stopped there one day with his jet ski in tow. Within 5 minutes the goat ate some of the trailer wiring, the start button, and one of his watercraft stickers.

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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 04:26 PM
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Modern Briggs are junk. My father had an early 70's lawn tractor with a Briggs and it wouldn't die, even after 30 years. The body rotted out and we tried to blow up the motor and couldn't. He thought Briggs were still the way to go and soon found out that was NOT the case!!

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Back on the road as of 3/25/17!! A driving shell of a beast.
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 04:42 PM
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Snowblowers aren't too much more fun either. I have a MTD POS. It sucks when you're out in the snow and it shears a pin on the auger or the belt takes a dump and you have to drag it back through the snow. I was having carburetor a couple years ago. It would only run with the choke almost closed. It was clean inside. Bought a kit and rebuilt it, that didn't help. Bought a new carburetor which ran worse the the old one, literally. I did a little digging on the net and found that a lot of the replacement carburetors are high altitude emission versions with the jetting and air bleeds, especially the air bleeds being wrong. Bought a jewelers drill set as well at "found" a older used carburetor t work with idle and main jets that were adjustable and not fixed. I was finally able to build a hybrid carburetor that actually works. Good thing too, we jut got 30+ inches of snow Tuesday.

Poor cat had to dug out of her house twice! Wife heard muffled meows. Pine needles...pfft.
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 05:39 PM
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Stop buying ****ty lawnmowers.

Really that simple.

I have a 93 John Deere GT262 that runs year around and doesn't give me issues.


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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 06:48 PM
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You have hit upon why I pay to have my lawn cut. I have a pretty nice 60" cut Kubota riding lawn mower but after a few times of either it or the weed eater not wanting to crank, I said to heck with it. That was about 5 years ago. Now when I leave the office and head home and pull up to 2 acres of fresh mowed grass, it's all worth the price I pay. I promise you, lawn equipment was trying it's best to keep me out of heaven!!

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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 07:47 PM Thread Starter
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To almost attempt to be fair on this stuff, it is now known and documented that E10 trashes needle valves and gunks up the carbs among other parts on these lawn implements. Bolens even sells the fuel cut off valve on their own website. I now have a local source of non-ethanol gas which I will be buying for it in the future but I still plan to run a fuel conditioner / preserver in it.

The same issue hit me with the front carb on my Kawasaki motorcycle and that fracken needle valve was $27 EACH x 2. That one lasted a long time but it was beginning to flood the engine the same way as the mower.

Lawn tractors at this level appear to be some sort of frankenstein monsters now days. I have a Bolens mower built by Troyblt with Bolens and Troyblt for some parts and with a Briggs and Stratton engine made of course by Briggs. It took an hour just to figure out what all my model numbers were for all this and I did order a new float needle for it which I should have done to start with.

I could never find the magic sweet spot with the shut off that would allow enough fuel to keep up with the engine but not over do it which would flood it out or run it way too rich.

Ok so now I order a $4.xx part and I have to pay almost $10 to get it to me. This is highway robbery and I burned them on it because they made the mistake and asked my opinion. On things like this, why can't they just throw the thing in a bubble envelope and send it first class mail. I can't imagine this would cost almost 10 bucks to do and it won't get here any faster with Fed ex dropping it off at my local post office for the last loop any ways.

331 solid flat cam, rings and bearings break in run up.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3MNjb-AiWec
331 break in complete and is waiting on me to finish the body work
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YhnOk5FCBkE
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 08:18 PM
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My "riding mowers".








I do have a couple of riding mowers but these are so much more fun. I leave the riding mowers to the red head.
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 08:59 PM
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Try small engine tune up in a can by the makers of pb blaster...get mine at tractor supply...works great on those small crappy carburetors on mowers and lawn implements....
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-17-2017, 10:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Huskinhano View Post
Snowblowers aren't too much more fun either. I have a MTD POS. It sucks when you're out in the snow and it shears a pin on the auger or the belt takes a dump and you have to drag it back through the snow. I was having carburetor a couple years ago. It would only run with the choke almost closed. It was clean inside. Bought a kit and rebuilt it, that didn't help. Bought a new carburetor which ran worse the the old one, literally. I did a little digging on the net and found that a lot of the replacement carburetors are high altitude emission versions with the jetting and air bleeds, especially the air bleeds being wrong. Bought a jewelers drill set as well at "found" a older used carburetor t work with idle and main jets that were adjustable and not fixed. I was finally able to build a hybrid carburetor that actually works. Good thing too, we jut got 30+ inches of snow Tuesday.

Poor cat had to dug out of her house twice! Wife heard muffled meows. Pine needles...pfft.

Went through 12" here this week like butter with my older Simplicity Broadmoor with an 18 hp Briggs Vanguard V-Twin. I also have an early 70's walk behind Simplicity Sno-Away with a 7 hp Briggs. With that monster, I can throw the snow over my neighbor's roof!! Take care of them and they run forever! By the way, in late February here it was in the 70's and I played tennis - OUTSIDE Good luck Badgers vs. Villanova
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post #11 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-18-2017, 08:04 PM
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Originally Posted by gwstang View Post
My "riding mowers".

















I do have a couple of riding mowers but these are so much more fun. I leave the riding mowers to the red head.

My riding mower can beat up your riding mower

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post #12 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-18-2017, 10:40 PM
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Ive got a 10 year old LT1000 with a 18hp brigs in it. The first battery lasted 4 years, the second 6 years, I just bought the 3rd battery for it.

Today I went to Sears to buy a fuel & air filter and a new gas cap.

I ran out of Sears as fast as my short legs would carry me.

air filter - $42
fuel filter - $12
no gas cap in stock

Lowes had all three items for $22.

I wonder why Sears is going belly up?



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post #13 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 06:20 PM
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My riding mower can beat up your riding mower

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Kubota > Deere



I've been looking at getting a few goats/sheep and need to see about rolling hay. I've never run a haybine.
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post #14 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 06:35 PM
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Kubota > Deere



I've been looking at getting a few goats/sheep and need to see about rolling hay. I've never run a haybine.
My tractor is an Oliver, but I've really had my eye on a Ford 4610 with 55 hp PTO that would move my hay implements through the field a little better. Your Kubota is in a different class all together. Those subcompact utility tractor's aren't really cut out for actual farming, just managing an acreage. You could pull a rake behind that easily enough but pulling a haybine or square baler, you need to get something with at least 40 horse AND weight.

Also, haybines are a perpetual PITA. You're constantly sharpening/replacing the knives or adjusting the guards. A discbine is the way to go because you can move through the field FAST, wet or dry doesn't matter, but they require a lot of power and a lot of $$$.

You should really look into a drum mower if you want to cut hay. I still don't know how that little Kubota would pull a baler through a field, even something like a tiny JD 24T. About every plunger stroke would throw you out of the seat.


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post #15 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 06:42 PM
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" About every plunger stroke would throw you out of the seat. "

that sounds like it would be fun...lol I still like to use the old '52 Ford 8N with the finishing mower. I rebuilt the engine last year and got it back to it's whopping 26 HP. Hard to believe that people replaced a mule with those tractors.
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