Sears 8.5HP Chipper Problem

All of a sudden now it will not start. Pulled the fuel line off and there is fuel going to the carburetor. Took off the spark plug wire and tested for sparking to the engine. (saw a spark.) Put some fuel directly in the carburetor and the engine started right up, then stalled out once it used the fuel? Any ideas on how to fix this? My guess is that there is something wrong with the carburetor. Thanks in advance!
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Greg-EE wrote:

Sounds like a classic case of a gummed up carburetor jets.
Assuming you know how to readjust the main jet needle (and the idle jet needle too if the carb has one), you might get away with just unscrewing them all the way and using a spray can of carb cleaner (auto parts store) to squirt solvent into the holes they came out of. Or, you could try pushing some gasoline through those holes with a turkey baster. (Remember to buy SWMBO a new one in time for Thanksgiving!)
If that doesn't do it, then you'll have to remove the carb, take it apart and clean out the gunk, wherever it is.
If you haven't been shutting the chipper down by turning off the fuel tank petcock and letting the carb run dry, you should be doing it that way. And, a squirt of "fuel preservative" in the gas tank before storing the unit wouldn't hurt either.
Good luck, let us know how you make out,
Jeff -- Jeff Wisnia (W1BSV + Brass Rat '57 EE)
"If you can keep smiling when things go wrong, you've thought of someone to place the blame on."
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I sprayed it to death with the carburetor cleaner and started up on the third try. Thanks for the great advice! ( Now it seems so obvious, Why didn't I think of that!)

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I spent an entire summer repairing small engines, and it seemed the most common problem we ran into was clogged needle valves. Once the engine sat for any length of time with fuel in the carb, small amounts of gunk/varnish would clog or prohibit movement of the needle valve, and have to be sprayed out with Berryman's. So even though you have fuel going into the carb, it might not be passing the float in the bowl. Usually easy to check out by removing the bowl, most just have a single bolt that drops the bowl and float.
Chris
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