Great deal on a Craftsman Riding Mower

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Tis gone. The power of the word FREE. Gone in 24 hours. New tires, new carb, complete tear down of engine with possible new camshaft, blades and spindles, etc. I was looking at $400 to $500 just to get it going again. Looked rather rough, so wasn't going to be an easy sell.

All'n'All it was a good one to let go. Guy that picked it up has the exact same machine with a failed tranny, so he'll salvage his machine with parts from this.
 

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I've got some in my lawn tractor salvage of that nature. Did not know why this one was salvaged but I found out one reason why. I pulled what I thought was a good hydrostatic transaxle out of one few days ago, bench tested it by spinning the shaft and F/R seemed ok. Installed into another tractor. No Good.
Bad tires, engine, deck, on and on throwing good money into bad. You were lucky you could see the obvious bad stuff before you throwed any serious money and time into it.
 
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Yeah, I was tempted to order tires soon, and the carb seemed like a small expense. But I held off til I could get the engine to pop. When the carb was still on I tried to get it to pop with the Quick Start and got nothing, and the compression always seemed a little low when I turned it by hand. The big tip off was when I first got the motor to turn over with the battery. I still had a sandwich baggie over the carb intake to keep water and all else out of the intake. When the motor cranked over hard and fast, I thought I was lucky the baggie didn't get sucked in. Turns out I wasn't lucky in that way. I was unlucky that there was no vacuum to suck the baggie in.
 

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I did the same with a plastic baggie on a old L head Tecumseh engine once. I had never seen the engine run and was checking it out.
The big plastic baggie sucked inside fast and all at once. I pulled the spark plug and could see the plastic. Sure was dreading pulling the head. I got ahold on the bag with hemostats and keep pulling as i turned over the engine by hand and was surprised it all came out.

Few minutes later the engine was running strong. Big surprise again.

Turned out the old 8 horse Tecumseh was really a good one and still in use, electric start on a Troy Bilt Horse Tiller..
 
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Finally! Deal has been struck. I'll be buying/trading for a lightly used John Deere S180. Bought this year and used 1/2 the summer. 13.5 hours on the meter. Little dirty but otherwise in fine shape. $2000 plus an older, yet in very good condition, Remington 700 30-06. I haven't shot this rifle in over 10 years, and frees up a slot in the gun cabinet, so that is a win also. :yes:

New this mower sells at $3600, and has been unavailable for 6+ months.

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Temps were warmer this morning, still freezing but far better then it has been. And I could not wait til spring, and got to cleaning. I don't think this has ever been cleaned before. Hell the guy ripped the for sale sign off the seat and never peeled off the tape. WTF! 😡

When I first picked it up, the owner had a bit of difficulty starting it. I thought it might be temperamental in freezing weather. But now that I have it, and have started it several times, I have had to spray quick start each time it was cold. With quick start it starts immediately and runs nice. Well mostly nice. There are some flat spots in the power band, and those are already getting better, after draining the questionable gas and putting in fresh 92 Octane E-Free gas. While cleaning I did the usual stuff, reset the spark plug gaps, they were a bit wide. Air filter was really loaded up with dirt, and prefilter looked especially bad, but with soap and water now looks fine.

After all that it did start without quick start, and the power band is much smoother, and engine runs real smooth like.

Jury is still out on the starting issues, but it will have to wait til spring, when I can take wrenches and sockets to it, and possibly get new plugs, and really run the machine for a couple of miles on the street out front.

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djg james

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Temps were warmer this morning, still freezing but far better then it has been. And I could not wait til spring, and got to cleaning. I don't think this has ever been cleaned before. Hell the guy ripped the for sale sign off the seat and never peeled off the tape. WTF! 😡

When I first picked it up, the owner had a bit of difficulty starting it. I thought it might be temperamental in freezing weather. But now that I have it, and have started it several times, I have had to spray quick start each time it was cold. With quick start it starts immediately and runs nice. Well mostly nice. There are some flat spots in the power band, and those are already getting better, after draining the questionable gas and putting in fresh 92 Octane E-Free gas. While cleaning I did the usual stuff, reset the spark plug gaps, they were a bit wide. Air filter was really loaded up with dirt, and prefilter looked especially bad, but with soap and water now looks fine.

After all that it did start without quick start, and the power band is much smoother, and engine runs real smooth like.

Jury is still out on the starting issues, but it will have to wait til spring, when I can take wrenches and sockets to it, and possibly get new plugs, and really run the machine for a couple of miles on the street out front.

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Don't know if this is applicable. My Craftsman wouldn't start in warm weather, but it cold. I had a covered repair and the repairman reset the choke cable. It then started in Summer without starting fluid. But now it cold weather, I have to spray something into the air intake to get it started.
 
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Don't know if this is applicable. My Craftsman wouldn't start in warm weather, but it cold. I had a covered repair and the repairman reset the choke cable. It then started in Summer without starting fluid. But now it cold weather, I have to spray something into the air intake to get it started.

I suspect the choke cable as a possible too. Friday it is suppose to be in the 40s (I'll believe it when I see it), and I'll play with it some more then. I once had a JD LA130 that was 10+ years old, and for 4 years I used it in the winter to plow the snow. It started up perfectly winter, summer, no matter what. And the JD L120 I did battle with this early spring also was a good easy starting mower. I'll figure this out. In my experience these machines don't get used enough and any gas starts to go foul and causes some problems. The previous owner, with his negligence to even remove tape off the seat, tells me he probably never did a thing but mow and likely used the least expensive gas he could find.

I could probably ride this around and get it working properly. Good gas and some Chevron Fuel system cleaner is in the tank now, and that usually does the trick.
 
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Don't know if this is applicable. My Craftsman wouldn't start in warm weather, but it cold. I had a covered repair and the repairman reset the choke cable. It then started in Summer without starting fluid. But now it cold weather, I have to spray something into the air intake to get it started.

Good call! I could see that the choke rod was moving only very slightly. With my finger I could move it past the 1/4 inch movement to the >1/2 inch full motion allowed by the carb. With my finger moving the choke rod it fired right up. I mean BOOM, running gooooood...

No adjustment on the choke rod but the rod is actuated with the throttle at full. The throttle cable only took a small adjustment and now everything is working as it should.

I'z feeling good. :yes:
 
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Good to hear I guessed right.

I was going to use the palm of my hand to block the intake and choke the carb, but didn't get that far when I saw what was obvious. I'm now pretty certain the sellers were not just preparing for a move but also off loading a problem machine on to me. Grrrrrrrr. I wrote to the seller earlier today to share the success, but no word or response yet. LOL.
 
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