How to do-it-yourself instructional
on the repair and modification of a hand-held leaf blower's pull start
- Today on Repairs101, or is it yesterday
on Repairs101? Yesterday I took this leaf blower outside to clear my
- [Pulls Cord]
- I live in Canada.
the weatherís nice.
- So now I realize thereís a bit of a
contradiction here with my claiming to be an environmentalist and using
a machine like a two stroke leaf blower. The by-laws in my neighbourhood
insist that the properties be kept in character with one another and
everybody in my neighbourhood has manicured lawns. If it was up to me Iíd
just let it all grow over wild and return to the state of nature. And
for that matter Ė as much as I want to make the environmentally
conscious choice every time, sometimes you have to make some
compromises. But you know I also drive this four by four when I go
off-road, instead of a horse - as much as I love horses.
- Alright, so letís get started. IĎll
just take this nozzle off so itís not such a big ordeal to work with.
OK Iím just going to drain the fuel out of this for obvious safety
- OK so weíre going to need some Allen
Keys to do this job. Generally speaking Iíll reach for one of these
two kits Ė BONDHUS Gorilla-Proof tools made in the U.S.A., to me that
still means made with pride and quality merchandise. Hereís another
BONDHUS tool that I would strongly recommend this for the average person
who just needs something with a good selection. If youíre not a
serious tool collector Ė youíre just someone whoís trying to get
the basics together so that they can take care of things themselves Ė
this is a great place to start.
- Just take this last screw out of the
bottom here. There we go. Piece of cake, eh? So the fan housing comes
right off just like that as you see. OK Iíve got a cover here Iím
going to take off Ė three screws one two and a third one hiding under
here. Looks like Iíve got to remove the impeller in order to service
the pull-cord - which is just terrible.
- And you can see thereís also a backing
ring here to cover this bearing. There you can see theyíre Torx. Theyíve
switched from ďAllenĒ to ďTorxĒ. Iím using a tamperproof Torx
Ė tamperproof has a hole in the centre.
- Iíve got the entire motor and fuel can
right here and this is the impeller housing here. The inside of the
impeller housing and theyíve gone and built the pull-start mechanism
inside of that. OK herein lies the recoil mechanism. Now Iíve had
trouble with this since day one Ė it doesnít recoil properly. So Ė
oh there goes the spring out the back. That is unfortunate. Oh crap.
This is bad design. This is just terrible. There it goes. Well, if you
canít beat Ďem, join íem, right? Son of aÖ
- OK so Iím loading the spring into the
housing just by winding it in. I am not impressed with the way this
machine was designed. There we go. Now be very careful, you donít want
that to jump on you. You can see the tang on this needs to go in that
tang slot right there. So Iím just going to drop that in there. There
we go. Now the only thing to do is to line that tang up Ė on the back
of this reel here thereís another slot that the other tang that the
tang on the other end lines up to. Now Iíve got the cord as short as
possible wrapped around the reel. To pre-load it: turn opposite from
which it recoils in other words: in the direction that it pulls out. Iím
desperately trying to hold that spring in place with the butt of my
hand. OK so thatís through, this pipe passes through here. Push the
pull cord out first and then the pipe and then weíll seat this end so
Iím just going to shove that through the handle and pull it out a
little bit. Now they had a regular stopper knot Ė I like to use a
figure eight knot here. Put the cover on Ė that just drops in here
like that and thatís whatís going to keep the spring from coming
out. OK? This is um, most uncivilized. Look at that it still doesnít
- Checking that I had the right tension on
the spring every time I redid it and I redid it and I redid it again to
make sure that I was doing it correctly. And in the end it operates
exactly the same as it did before. This seems to have been designed to
make it as difficult as possible to make a repair.
- For instance this chainsaw Ė three
screws and youíve got the start mechanism in your hand. OK so look at
that now: thatís a civilized start- cord mechanism. Three screws and
itís in your hand.
- OK so Iím going to put this back
together again nice and easy Ė I wish it was nice and easy. Twenty-one
fasteners: twenty screws and a big fat bolt. And oh and also youíve
got to take the fan off too so that makes twenty Ėtwo when you count
the nut on the end of the drive shaft that holds the fan in place.
- So Iím going to make two modifications
here Iím going to add a little dry lubricant Ė just a little bit of
dry graphite dust powder on the outside edge here. Besides a whisper of
dry lubricant I want to add spacers here and here to push back the cover
just a tiny bit. Unfortunately I donít have any washers that are the
right size so what Iíll do is just take these electrical connections
and nip the end of it off with my side-cutters. Letís see, Iíll just
put that in there like that and then hold onto this end and let that end
fly, and voila, home-made washer. So Iím threading the washer onto the
bolt Ė this should take care of my spacing problem back this off just
enough so that itíll rotate freely. And these home-made washers here
theyíre a nice soft metal that will crush down and conform.
- Well thatís the smoothest itís been
yet, without question, it recoils properly.
- I mean honestly is it reasonable to ask
me to take the entire motor and fuel tank off in order to change the
pull cord? Iím going to suggest that itís not reasonable.
- OK, put that bearing back in so that it
lines up nice and straight.
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