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OT: funny snow blower operation

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  • OT: funny snow blower operation

    Last year I had to take my snowblower which is at least 30 years old but has always run well into the shop, it refused to start. Just needed the carb cleaned out, after 30 years it needed a little love.OK so this year it was the first time I tried it out and while it started fine it didn't seem to have the power it used to and couldn't blow any snow deeper then 4" without lugging down. Same thing the second time I used it. So I took it out for the third time today, after we received about a foot of snow, figuring it might not work so good and it blew the snow very well. Seems to have more power. Is there something that a carb cleaning could affect that would mess up the performance like residual cleaner which might have dissipated or was it just gremlins messing around.
    The shortest distance between two points is a circle of infinite diameter.

    Bluewater Model Engineering Society at https://sites.google.com/site/bluewatermes/

    Southwestern Ontario. Canada

  • #2
    sounds like Gremlins --- if it ain't broke don't fix it...

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    • #3
      Like most snow equipment, just be glad it worked and didn’t break before you were half way done with the job and had to lay in the snow trying to fix it.

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      • #4
        With my Honda, the more snow you feed it, the better it works. 1 foot of snow and I could throw it 30'.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by 3illmesmart View Post
          With my Honda, the more snow you feed it, the better it works. 1 foot of snow and I could throw it 30'.
          I hate you! We had a foot or so of really wet snow a few weeks ago and my Predator re-engined Toro could barely toss it a few feet when it wasn't clogging. I'm sure if it were dry snow it would be different, but here in NJ most of what we get is wet snow in 30 deg weather if we even get snow!
          Location: Jersey City NJ USA

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          • #6
            Gremlins, its always gremlins. If its working for the sake of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, dont question it, otherwise itll hear you and stop in protest

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            • #7
              If it is 30 yrs old it probably has a carb that is adjustable. If is has the Tecumseh
              engine the screw under the carb is the MAIN adjustment. It is for full load mixture
              adjustment. Give is a 1/2 turn either direction with the engine running full throttle
              and see if engine sounds better or worse. Go from there.
              Worked on engines all my life. My son purchased our shop and I still help him out.
              olf20 / Bob

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              • #8
                Outside temperatures will affect the old Tecumseh engines I used to run on old blowers. Tweaking the main jet always helped mine. As the snow load increases you should be able to hear the engines governor increase the throttle setting. If this blower sits outside, ice can mess with those linkages. Old blowers are usually helped if you modify the blower wheel. Rubber screwed or bolted to the blower wheel paddles outside edge. That will help take up space between the wheel and housing.

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                • #9
                  We had a lot more snow last night and I took the blower out and it powered through 2' drifts quite nicely. Oh well, as someone said it ain't broke..................
                  The shortest distance between two points is a circle of infinite diameter.

                  Bluewater Model Engineering Society at https://sites.google.com/site/bluewatermes/

                  Southwestern Ontario. Canada

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                  • #10
                    Had a problem with my snowblower (25+ years old) where the priming push button didn’t seem to be effective for cold startup. There was that and also I had to run it with the choke partly on. I had to use it & didn’t think too much about it but finally got a new primer & when I went to install it, I found the rubber tube that attaches to it was broken due to old age. So I put the new primer in anyway & trimmed the tube of old material & reinstalled it. All is working fine 6 years later.
                    The point is to look for the simple things like this broken & aged tubing. It was causing a vacuum leak which is why the choke needed to be partly on to offset the lean fuel/air mixture. The tip about frozen linkages is very good - deal with them delicately as they bend/break easily

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                    • #11
                      I was in the small equipment biz for 13 years. As mentioned yours is likely the "Tesuckem" engine. These carbs don't do that well with temperature variance and can run lean when it's really cold.
                      Get it running full throttle and open the high speed needle on the bottom of the carb until it starts running rough from too much fuel. Then slowly turn it back in until it 'almost' runs smooth. That's the sweet spot for them. *Note that the holder that holds the float bowl on has a little hole through the side of it near the flat surface that holds the bowl on. Be sure this is clear and clean as that is what feeds fuel to the main jet.

                      If you don't have an adjustable hi speed needle you have a fixed jet. All you can do is take a piece of wire through the jet and spin the jet around it to clean it out.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Mike279 View Post
                        Outside temperatures will affect the old Tecumseh engines I used to run on old blowers. Tweaking the main jet always helped mine. As the snow load increases you should be able to hear the engines governor increase the throttle setting. If this blower sits outside, ice can mess with those linkages. Old blowers are usually helped if you modify the blower wheel. Rubber screwed or bolted to the blower wheel paddles outside edge. That will help take up space between the wheel and housing.
                        I did that, put reinforced rubber wipers on the blower wheel, amazing difference, turned it into a different machine.

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                        • #13
                          Like Bob (Olf) said it's most likely mixture adjustment and your on the ragged edge of being either too lean or too rich when the engines NOT laboring too much, so even though it's performing good at full load you may very well be able to split the difference between full and light load with a twist of a screw, IF it has an adjustable main,

                          if it does not have an adjustable main there's still hope, because light load is less then 1/4 throttle it's still affected by the idle circuit --- so you can try to spit the difference there, you may be on the ragged edge with the idle circuit that the engine will still idle fine but it's set too lean or rich and can be adjusted more in the middle or to one side that favors light load, governors are such that they are designed to seek the same RPM be it light load or full,
                          the difference being is the throttle plate positioning - one can be close to wide open therefor the idle circuit has very little to do with adding or subtracting from the overall mixture but in the other positioning of plate just cracked the idle circuit can mean the difference between a lean bog or a rich stumble --- these carbs are very crude, they have drastic ratio changes throughout the ranges, what you are most likely experiencing is a ratio change that pushes the engine into an unacceptable range for smooth running and making good power...

                          also making sure air filters are clean - engine could be lean fuel wise and stumble at low demand because of it but start to get a restricted filter involved at full demand and the fuel will start to flow regardless --------------- most likely NOT your problem as snow blowers can usually run their entire existence on the same air filter due to the clean environment they work in just wanted to mention for most other stuff....

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                          • #14
                            I too have a 30 year old blower. I found that running no-alcohol gas, draining the carb every spring, and adding Sea Foam to the first tank of the year has cured all the weird problems I used to experience. I would run a tank or two through it to make sure the fuel system is clean/dry before spending much time tinkering with the carb settings.
                            George
                            Traverse City, MI

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                            • #15
                              Good point GB --- maybe he's re-built up varnish even after taking it in or they did not get it all out the first time, although --- maybe they just plain did not get the jetting adjusted correctly either, after all they had to disassemble to rebuild, any time iv disassembled Iv always screwed the jets in first and counted how many turns to the 1/4 and then just set the carb back up that way after cleaning,
                              allot of guys go the the 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 half rule to start with and then take it from there but on something like a snowblower that you cannot effectively load until you get snow it's hard to get the main correct for testing till it's needed (if you have an adjustable one)
                              Then again --- allot of times your faced with owners who have already tried the adjusting method and have it way out of wack, so the 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 half rule is a good place to start... at least for idle --- mains can vary more.
                              Last edited by A.K. Boomer; 02-16-2021, 11:17 AM.

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