I find on my Craftsman mower, after I release the drive handle, that
if I move the mower forward a couple of inches, and then pull
backwards that it always allows me to go backwards. If I just release
the drive handle and try to pull it backwards, sometimes it will not
go backwards. I then push it forward a couple of inches and find that
it goes backwards just fine. This is not due to the rear mower
protection flap as I have already shortened that so that it does not
hang up on the lawn when pulling backwards. Less protection, but a
LOT easier to use the mower as I do have a lot of pulling to get
around a lot of plants that my wife loves scattered around the yard,
On 10/11/2011 12:34 AM, hr(bob) email@example.com wrote:
Again, that is why I personally will never have a self-propelled mower.
My yard also requires a lot of backing up, so the self-propelled isn't
much use, but it IS a lot more moving parts to get bollixed up. For me,
at least, it violates the KISS principle. The closer I can get to an
anvil, the better.
While I tend to agree, no anvil at all is even better. I think
Honda has turned the power mower into an overly complex system, but no
more complex than the absurd lengths homeowners will go to for their
precious lawns. I personally prefer my natural wooded landscape with
no lawn or lawnmowers
Preachin' to the choir here. When I hit the lotto and build my dream
house, you won't be able to see any neighbor houses. I'll bush-hog a 50
foot firebreak around the house 2-3 times a year, and aside from that,
whatever grows, grows. Need to have sunlight on the house, though. Deep
woods houses always smell like cabins, since they never dry out.
But back here in realityville- I need to keep my neighbors from burning
my place down while I am at work, or whining to the township about me.
So, I mow, as seldom as I think I can get away with. No water, no
fertilizer, no chemicals. The small animals prefer my lawn- it doesn't
smell funny to them.
yard also requires a lot of backing up, so the self-propelled isn't much use,
but it IS a lot more moving parts to get bollixed up. For me, at least, it
violates the KISS principle. The closer I can get to an anvil, the better.
What a load of sanctimonious pish that does not help in anyway. The answer is to
remove the wheel and clean out the ratcheting key mechanism. It is a weak point
on what is otherwise a fantastic mower.
re: "Less protection due to shortened flap."
My wifs buys our dogs these hooves to chew on:
I usually scan the yard before mowing, but I missed one the other day.
My Honda, with full flap still intact, shot one those hooves out from
under the mower at such a high speed that I have no idea where it came
All I know is I heard a loud BANG! as it hit the house and then landed
in driveway about 20 feet from where I was mowing. There was a mark on
the house in the 5' area between the glass storm door and the glass on
the garage door, right level with the middle of the garage door
windows. A few feet in either direction and I'd be replacing at least
a pane of glass.
The height was about face level of most of the people that live in my
house. I'm sure glad no one standing anywhere near the area.
Don't know about the 216 but I assume the 217 has the same ratchet
drive. If that's so then the drive key or keys are wore enough that
they do not return to their seat when pulling the mower backwards.
If they are bad enough they will come completely out of the seat and
will not return. It should be noted that forward drive will still work
even in this worn out condition.
Your problem has nothing to do with the transmission. Each wheel has a
ratchet. The reason for the ratchet is to allow free wheel movement when
pulling backwards. That is the only reason for a ratchet assembly in the
Within the ratchet assembly the woodruff key catches the perpendicular
slope of the ratchet when the mower is being driven. When pulling the mower
backwards the inclined slope of the ratchet pushes the woodruff key back
into the key seat of the shaft to allow for free wheeling.
Inspect the shaft key seats, springs, internal ratchet teeth, and replace
the woodruff drive keys. Use grease on everything.
As you can see from my October 10, 4:17 pm post, all of a sudden I was
able to pull in backwards, for unknown reasons.
The mower is only 13 months old, so it's not likely to need grease or
have broken parts in the wheels. The key thing is that with the mower on
its side, I couldn't turn either wheel backwards. All I could do is turn
the forward (and hear the ratcheting as I did so). Since both wheels
were affected equally, the problem had to be in the transmission.
Your above description is how a properly working mower works.
Both wheels have ratchets so you would expect them to behave equally
as you stated above. The transmission shaft ONLY goes forward or
stops. It never was designed to go backward in order for you to pull
the mower backwards. Going backwards can only be accomplished by you.
You must pull the mower backwards and then the two ratchets in the
wheels ALLOW you to do this. NOT the transmission shaft.
replying to Rebel1, roger leahey wrote:
Now that I have encountered and dealt with this problem, I know that the issue
is solved easily by simple routine maintenance. I am still baffled as to why
this issue is not covered in the troubleshooting guide. I have provided detailed
simple instructions in a previous post.
Here is the answer to your problem: When you first got your mower, it worked
great and you loved it, the same as I did. After a year or so, it no longer
rolled backward-rats! What a bumber! I took off the rear wheels, took
everything apart and cleaned it. It was no help. I read every post there was
and nobody had a really good answer except for one person and he indicated that
the clutch was not disengaging all the way and when that happened, the
transmission locked and of course you could not roll backward. I ask myself why
the clutch would not disengage all the way, so I begin to look at the cable
itself and oiled everything that had anything to do with it. Still no help, it
would not roll backward. I decided it had to be something to do with the
gearbox itself. The cable attaches to a bracket below and that bracket has a
large spring that encircles a stub shaft. Between the leafs of the spring, I
noted it was packed with grass residue. I got me a pick and scratched it out,
all of it. When I did the rear wheels immediately began to turn-forward and
I hope this helps you also.
Nice detective work. Should Honda be made aware of the issue? Is it
something that can be fixed with a shroud? After reading about how the axle
sheared off in the Seattle Duck Boat accident I began to wonder how well
industry deals with problems that show up well after production. It seems
the answer, in many cases, is "not very well."
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