"After the 2nd pull I realized that
my allergies and headache had the better of me and I was not
the rope very hard. So I tried again. The rope came out as
the engine didn't start, and the rope went back in. So I
again and when I pulled I found that the rope would not come
Turns out it won't budge."
Sure looks to me like the engine locked up between the
second and third pulls. If someone else killed the engine,
it woulda been locked up before the first pull, you think?
Does it really make much differance in how hard the rope is pulled on the
small gas engines ? I have a 5 kw generator and it will take two or 3 pulls
to start every time. If I just pull it slow or as hard as I can. Maybe the
hard pulls went out when the easy start/low compression came out.
With compression release, now days. It's supposed to make it
easier to pull the engine. I'm sure it does. Two or three
pulls to start, that's about the right number. My seldom
used generator, I've had to spray some ether on the paper
air filter to get it going. Runs for a few seconds, and then
dies. Repeat, until it runs.
Remove the engine brake completely
Keep spark plug out
Carefully check to be sure that there is nothing packed
around the blade. Clean well around crankshaft. Squirt
penetrating oil at base of crankshaft (where it exits engine
Now, Try to turn blade
CY: That's a thought. Locked up where the crank shaft comes
out. My best guess is the engine brake isn't really
Note: Does this mower have a built in generator (for lights
charging battery if it has one)? If there is a generator
winding may have come loose and bound up against flywheel.
that if there is a generator. (I had that happen once).
CY: That musta been some years ago. I've not seen generator
except on riding mowers. And the OP did say it was pull
If it still dont turn, the engine is siezed. Could be the
wall was so dry that just pulling it, caused a piston ring
the cylinder wall.
CY: He did say the oil was slightly overfull. But that
doesn't prevent engine siezing. Especially if the oil hadn't
been changed in a long time.
If this happened, flip the engine upsidedown for a few
seconds to get
crankcase oil into lower part of cylinder. Then when it's
again, pour some kerosene (or diesel fuel) and motor oil
mixed half an
half into the cylinder. Leave it sit for a few hours, and
try to turn
blade again. Use a wooden mallet if needed against the rear
side) of the blade, and tap it.
CY: That's a thought. Might be piston siezed.
If none of this works, remove the cylinder head. Take a
block of wood
like a 8 inch piece of 2x2 or chunk of tree branch. Place
against top of piston and whack the wood with a hammer. If
there is a
bit of scoring on the cyl wall, this should free it up.
likely have a bent or broken connecting rod, crankshaft, or
thats the case, it's time to tear down the whole engine.
CY: Or, at that point, to pitch in the scrap and go find
I know a guy who drained the engine oil from a mower in
started it in spring without oil. The piston siezed against
wall. It actually peeled up a small bit of the aluminum cyl
had me look at it. I removed the head and found this. I
all around the piston, let it sit, and whacked the piston
block and hammer. It came loose. With the piston all the
way down, I
used some emery paper and carefully smoothed out the score
cylinder wall. Then I spun the engine with the blade until
I put on a new head gasket, put the head back on, and it
up. However, it did smoke quite a bit from oil leaking past
that gouge in the cyl wall. He bought a new mower a few
and gave me that old one. I used that old mower for
probably 10 years
after. The smoke ceased to be real bad after the rings
that gouge. I also added some of that STP oil treatment to
the oil to
help lubricate better.
CY: I'm the same way. I'll spend an hour or two trying to
restore an old mower, rather than pitch it and buy a new
I don't think anyone has suggested this yet but please disconect the spark
plug before trying to turn the motor with the blade. You will need your
fingers for the future.
This is not a fix for your problem, but a safety issue.
Some very good ideas.
LM, thanks for the good post. I'm looking forward to trying this when
I get a chance in the next couple days.
There are no lights/battery/generator, so that part is ruled out.
Also, no one else ran the mower since I have. No one but me has
access to the power equipment.
I can remove the flywheel brake and see if that helps. I ruled the
brake out because it is a pad brake (not a strap brake) and I can see
the pad move completely away from the flywheel. If I end up needing
to remove the flywheel itself at some point, I'll need to get a
flywheel puller and holder. They don't seem to carry those at the
local home & garden store.
That happened to me and when I pulled the sparkplug the tip of it was
missing. I followed up by pulling the head and found the tip was
wedged between the piston and cylinder wall. Figuring I had nothing to
lose at tjis ponit I placed a block of wood against the piston and hit
it with a hammer. This drove the piston down just enough for the tip
of the sparkplug to free up. I got 4 or 5 more years use out of that
engine. I would pull the head and take a look.
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