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Tinkering On Tractors...

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Mike_H

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I sometimes wonder about my myself, and whether I have a real problem or not.  I just can't seem to leave we enough alone.  What started as replacing a motor quick (like in a weekend) has grown into stripping the motor down, and painting it...

Once I got the covers off, I noticed that the engine had a LOT of Oily buildup on it, and had at LEAST one critter condo under the shroud.  Once I started cleaning the black, nasty mess off, I realized that the clearcoat on the engine was discolored, and starting to flake off.  I don't want that in my relatively nice Broadmoor.  This pic illustrates my point.  That yellow/brown discoloration is clearcoat with what I assume is oil underneath.  Looks nasty...

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My motives were not entirely vain however, I also wanted to get underneath the flywheel, and make sure there wasn't anything living there, past or present!  Finally, I wanted to totally remove the recoil starter, so I don't have to worry about vertical clearance at all.

I studied the web quite a bit, trying to figure out how to remove the post for the recoil...you can see it sticking up in this picture.  Turns out, it is an extension piece that is threaded into the crankshaft.  Those clever engineers at Briggs and Stratton figured out how to use the same crank for both recoil and electric start engines.  While I was searching, I also found a fan kit that will fill in the gaps left

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Post to Hood Clearance
from removing the recoil.   Finally, since the kit didn't come with a flywheel bolt, I picked up a new one of those.  

Here is where it gets a little dicey...I KNEW the extension was threaded into the crank, but it didn't have any type of drive feature on it...in other words, there was nothing for me to grip and put any amount of torque on.  I checked with my local Fastenal store, and they happened to have 5/8-18 jam nuts, in stock!  I figured I'd use two of them tightened against each other, and spin the extension out.  I rushed home from work, excited to continue my project.

I got the first nut installed, and to my dismay, there was not enough thread cut onto the shaft for the second nut.  I dug through my toolbox for some Loctite and was only able to find the blue stuff.  I had my doubts, but applied it anyway.  I tightened the nut down against a flange then went to the house to have some dinner.  Afterward, I tried again to remove the extension.  No dice, the nut broke free...blue Loctite wasn't strong enough.  At this point, I was getting impatient, so I tried vice grips on the smooth end of the shaft.  That didn't work either...just slipped, and gouged the shaft.  Last effort for the night, I got my electric heat gun out, and got the extension hot enough to boil the penetrating oil out.  I tapped it a couple times with my screwdriver and it sounded like two pieces of metal...Could it be?  I grabbed my vice grips again, crossed my fingers, and gave them a turn.  FREEDOM!  It spun right out with very little effort.  Red Loctite was applied at the factory.  I have a love/hate relationship with that stuff...Heat always does the trick but I never seem to know when I need to apply heat.
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The extension, In Place on the crank

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Free from its home














I worked on getting the rest of the block cleaned up after that.  Hot water with dish soap, a couple rags, purple scubbie pad, and a stainless bristle brush did a pretty good job.  I also used a deburring brush in my drill to get into the nooks and crannies.  Cleaning round one is done.  I'll get back after it tomorrow with a fresh scrubbie pad and some lacquer thinner...that should remove the last of the grease and oil.  I'll probably have to wash with soap and water one more time, just to float the last of the clearcoat that I loosen by scrubbing away.  Prep is the key to a successful paint job, that goes double for aluminum.

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