Craftsman 6.0 Gold with B/S Engine Not Starting

farmboy1(5)May 14, 2013

I have a Craftsman 6.0 Gold mower Model 917.387400 with a B/S engine. Not sure of the age, and I don't have any manuals for it.

I started the season a couple of weeks ago with a new air filter and new Champion 5861 Spark Plug gapped to about .028-.030. This is the same plug that was in the mower last year.

The mower suddenly decided to not start the other day when I stopped cutting grass to take a bathroom break and refill it with more gas. Earlier in the day it had been running fine. When starting hot/cold I've always kept the throttle bar pulled to full open and pressed the fuel plunger 6-8 times.

Despite multiple pulls, it wouldn't start. The plug did have gas on it, though it was hard to check spark in the bright sunlight.

Everything I see online seems to indicate cleaning the carb will cure many ills, but my past experience with cars, trucks and motorcycles reminds me that most "carburetor" issues are actually electrical.

There is a choke or other spring loaded assembly on the top of the carb that can be self adjusted that I've never touched. Picture attached. Is there a certain position the linkage should be in?

Past that, are there any common issues with these engines that I should be aware of that may be causing the no-start problem?

Thanks!

vince

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baymee(LehighValleyPA)

On a newer motor, only push the "plunger" 3 times when cold and one or none when hot.

It sounds to me like your fuel can had water in it. To verify, loosen the bolt head underneath the fuel bowl and let some fuel fall into a shallow container. You will see the water underneath the fuel. If there was water in the bowl, the motor should now start. Use a 1/2" socket and don't overtighten the bolt. Be sure the engine is cold when you do this.

    Bookmark   May 14, 2013 at 3:49PM
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bill_kapaun

That "bolt" is also your Main Jet.
Make sure the hole(s) in it are open.

    Bookmark   May 14, 2013 at 9:47PM
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farmboy1(5)

Thanks, guys!

I did as baymee suggested, and no water came out, but some sediment came out. I let it drain for a bit, and then put the drain plug and bowl back on.

I then pushed the plunger three times, and pulled the cord. It started on the first pull!

Ran well, seemed to be running at a higher rpm, and the rpm fluctuated a little as the governor? shown in the picture bounced back and forth,

But the rest of the grass got cut. And I'll do it again this weekend.

Thank you for the help.

vince

    Bookmark   May 14, 2013 at 10:22PM
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rcmoser

"but some sediment came out." Only two ways dirt (segiment) can get into new mower. Fuel can or fuel your poring in or when the gas cap is removed, left loose or vibrated off... sound like you gas can maybe contaminated? how else would new mower already have sediment in the carb. bowl...? IF the rpm bouncing up and down the carb. IMO still has some blockge leaning out the mixture causeing the irratic RPM... I would check the gas can and the mower gas tank and probably add some additive to the gas.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2013 at 4:57PM
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farmboy1(5)

Well, the mower is anything but new, but it was given to me with a handle that was falling apart, a blade that was really, really dull, splayed front wheels... Basically, used hard, often, and put away wet. The old air filter was years old and probably didn't do a great job of filtering.

The gas can is clean, and the gas is about a week old. If time permits, I'll take the bowl off again and see if any other sediment has gotten into it, as well as blow out the main jet with compressed air. If it makes it to winter, I'll treat it to a full carb removal and clean/rebuild.

vince

    Bookmark   May 15, 2013 at 11:10PM
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