12 thoughts on “November 30, 2019: Axe”

  1. Truck Snowblower Time with Twayn:
    Last weekend I fired up the old Murray snowblower to make sure it was ready for the winter. It seemed to run fine, maybe a bit sluggish until it warmed up, but otherwise okay. Wednesday morning I got up to clear the 8-9 inches of snow we got. It was fairly wet snow, perfect for snowballs and snowman building and clogging snowblower chutes. It didn't take long for the machine to bog down and when it did she started backfiring and spitting flames out the muffler. I slowed way down and cut my swath to half the width of the auger. I cleared about half the drive before the muffler started to glow red, so I shut her down and finished the job with a shovel. A few minutes on the Googles confirmed what I was thinking - worn exhaust valve (and probably intake valve) that's letting fuel mixture leak out and burn in the exhaust port. The carburetor primer hose is also spongy and needs replaced, and the carburetor was pretty dirty and leaks some gas from the top of the bowl when you push the primer button. This is on a 5HP Tecumseh Snow King engine which is pretty ubiquitous around these parts. I called my small engine guy to find out when he could take a look at it and he said sometime after Christmas. Since I can't afford a new snowblower right now and don't want to shovel until after Christmas, I'm going to do this one myself - a valve job and a carburetor rebuild. The valve job looks easier than I thought it would be. Remove the gas tank and the side and top covers. Pull off the head, remove the muffler and the carb and the valve access port. decompress the valve springs, pull out the valves and take to machine shop for grinding. Lap the valves and valve seats and reassemble (a lapping kit runs about 20 buck and spring compressor tool is about fifteen). Rebuilding the carburetor is a can of corn, I've done it on a couple of outboard engines and they are pretty simple. Reassemble the works and adjust the carburetor. I may have to replace some gaskets, but this is an older machine and most likely has the sturdy metal gaskets that can be reused if you're careful when you remove them. Total cost should be int the fifty dollar range, plus the labor on valve grinding. More to come later, stay tuned.

    1. Nice. The carburetor rebuild kit costs 10 dollars and doesn't include the float but I found an OEM replacement carb for just 18 bucks on Amazon. That and the lapping kit and the spring compressor will arrive by Wednesday.

  2. In many ways, this was the Gophers' best season in my lifetime, and yet it's hard not to feel disappointed. No division title so no Big Ten championship game and once again no Rose Bowl or better. They lost both rivalry games (Penn State doesn't count). They still have exceeded expectations prior to the season and I think will continue to build on this season in the future. I will be rooting for Ohio State in the Big Ten championship to ensure one team in the playoffs to give the Gophers the best chance to play on New Year's Day. If Wisconsin gets routed again by Ohio State, the Badgers might not even go to the Rose Bowl since they would have a worse record than Penn State with one extra loss.

    1. Kind of like the Twins season. Fun season that greatly exceeded expectations with hopes for a nice postseason, only to disappoint when it really mattered. Promise for the future however.

    2. With four games left, I said I'd be happy with 2-2 considering the opponents. Expectations got too high due to the easy early schedule. The Gophers ended up right about where they should have.

    3. The Gophers lost the game early in the first quarter when it was 4th and short from somewhere inside the 50 yard line and they decided to punt. This years Gophers never did that! It showed they changed instead of doing the things that got them 10 wins.

      Good season, still going to a good bowl game, bit disappointing at the end. A big improvement over years past.

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