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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    California
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    5

    Question lawn mower pull rope

    The pull rope that starts my lawn mower broke. It came completely out from the engine. How can I attach a new cord. Can anyone help me.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
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    Maryland
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    1,161

    Default Re: lawn mower pull rope

    I've done this a number of times with small outboards & lawnmowers. It's a messy 3 handed job that can be done if you're at all mechanically inclined & can understand how it works. A service manual or parts diagram may help if you have one.
    Get a replacement piece of rope.
    Remove the recoil assembly. Be careful as the spring, which is a coiled up leaf spring, is under tension and will unwind.
    Install the new rope. Be sure to use a good stopper knot like a figure eight or put a dab of glue or paint on the knot.
    Wind the rope around the pulley.
    Pretension the coil spring enough to have some tension on the rope when it is wound, but not so much that it binds when pulling the rope out to start the engine. This is the three handed part of trying to keep the rope wound, the spring wound and trying to insert the spring end into its retainer.
    Tie on the handle with a good stopper knot.
    Put the shroud and recoil assembly back on the lawnmower. Test that everything works properly before putting all the bolts in.
    Clean the grease off & have a beer.
    Or call a repair shop and see what they charge.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,481

    Default Re: lawn mower pull rope

    It's an easy procedure, but can be dangerous if you're not careful with what you're doing.


    1. Write down the engine brand, model, type, serial number, and any other discernible markings.
    2. Contact your local lawn and garden equipment dealer with the above info and buy a new starter rope of the right type and length.
    3. There will be screws or bolts that hold the starter housing to the engine, remove those and simply lift the housing off.
    4. This is where it starts getting tricky. The pull rope is under spring tension. Most of that tension has been released with the breaking of the rope, however there's still plenty there to cause injury, particularly if you have to remove the wider spool from the housing. The trick now is to apply enough spring tension to recoil the rope, without over tightening the spring and causing it to bind when pulling the rope (when starting the mower, pulling the rope winds the spring tighter, causing it to recoil the rope when released ).
    5. Turn the spool in the opposite direction that the rope will pull it until you've got a good amount of tension on the spring. You don't want to do this to the point you bind the spring, but you do want significant resistance. Clamp the spool from unwinding so that you may move your attentions to the rope.
    6. You'll have to determine if it's easier to feed the rope from the outside of the housing into the spool or from the spool and out of the housing, probably the latter. Keep in mind whether there is a plastic stop attached to the rope or if it's fed through any guides along the handlebar of the mower, this will affect the direction in which you work.
    7. Once you've got the rope in place, knot the end and insert it into the spool, just as the old rope was. Now, hang onto the rope from the outside of the housing and then release the clamp holding the spring tension and the spool. Slowly and carefully release the rope, allowing it to recoil into the housing.
    8. Reattach the housing and you should be good.

    Or, the easier way to do this would be to take the housing to the dealer and let them change the rope for you. If you pull the housing and take it to them, it will be cheaper and faster than having them do it. Again, the only caveat to this is if the rope is held in guides along the handle, then you'll probably want to just take the whole mower to them.

    This all probably sounds more difficult than it really is. The housing is usually held on with only 3 or 4 screws/bolts. If you are the least bit mechanically inclined you'll have no problems figuring out how to do this. You might also be able to find a repair manual or step by step guide with pictures ******. Google your mower and see what you find.

    This link may be of assistance as well.
    Notes on the Troubleshooting and Repair of small Gasoline Engines and Rotary Lawn Mowers
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Pacific Northwet
    Posts
    1,361

    Default Re: lawn mower pull rope

    Quote Originally Posted by Darb View Post
    The pull rope that starts my lawn mower broke. It came completely out from the engine. How can I attach a new cord. Can anyone help me.
    So what you're saying is that you've tried and tried to get your mower started without success and now you're at the end of your rope?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    California
    Posts
    5

    Smile Re: lawn mower pull rope

    Quote Originally Posted by Fencepost View Post
    So what you're saying is that you've tried and tried to get your mower started without success and now you're at the end of your rope?
    I enjoy a good since of humor during a crazy day!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    California
    Posts
    5

    Smile Re: lawn mower pull rope

    Quote Originally Posted by A. Spruce View Post
    It's an easy procedure, but can be dangerous if you're not careful with what you're doing.


    1. Write down the engine brand, model, type, serial number, and any other discernible markings.
    2. Contact your local lawn and garden equipment dealer with the above info and buy a new starter rope of the right type and length.
    3. There will be screws or bolts that hold the starter housing to the engine, remove those and simply lift the housing off.
    4. This is where it starts getting tricky. The pull rope is under spring tension. Most of that tension has been released with the breaking of the rope, however there's still plenty there to cause injury, particularly if you have to remove the wider spool from the housing. The trick now is to apply enough spring tension to recoil the rope, without over tightening the spring and causing it to bind when pulling the rope (when starting the mower, pulling the rope winds the spring tighter, causing it to recoil the rope when released ).
    5. Turn the spool in the opposite direction that the rope will pull it until you've got a good amount of tension on the spring. You don't want to do this to the point you bind the spring, but you do want significant resistance. Clamp the spool from unwinding so that you may move your attentions to the rope.
    6. You'll have to determine if it's easier to feed the rope from the outside of the housing into the spool or from the spool and out of the housing, probably the latter. Keep in mind whether there is a plastic stop attached to the rope or if it's fed through any guides along the handlebar of the mower, this will affect the direction in which you work.
    7. Once you've got the rope in place, knot the end and insert it into the spool, just as the old rope was. Now, hang onto the rope from the outside of the housing and then release the clamp holding the spring tension and the spool. Slowly and carefully release the rope, allowing it to recoil into the housing.
    8. Reattach the housing and you should be good.

    Or, the easier way to do this would be to take the housing to the dealer and let them change the rope for you. If you pull the housing and take it to them, it will be cheaper and faster than having them do it. Again, the only caveat to this is if the rope is held in guides along the handle, then you'll probably want to just take the whole mower to them.

    This all probably sounds more difficult than it really is. The housing is usually held on with only 3 or 4 screws/bolts. If you are the least bit mechanically inclined you'll have no problems figuring out how to do this. You might also be able to find a repair manual or step by step guide with pictures ******. Google your mower and see what you find.

    This link may be of assistance as well.
    Notes on the Troubleshooting and Repair of small Gasoline Engines and Rotary Lawn Mowers
    Thanks for your help and the link!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    California
    Posts
    5

    Default Re: lawn mower pull rope

    Quote Originally Posted by A. Spruce View Post
    It's an easy procedure, but can be dangerous if you're not careful with what you're doing.


    1. Write down the engine brand, model, type, serial number, and any other discernible markings.
    2. Contact your local lawn and garden equipment dealer with the above info and buy a new starter rope of the right type and length.
    3. There will be screws or bolts that hold the starter housing to the engine, remove those and simply lift the housing off.
    4. This is where it starts getting tricky. The pull rope is under spring tension. Most of that tension has been released with the breaking of the rope, however there's still plenty there to cause injury, particularly if you have to remove the wider spool from the housing. The trick now is to apply enough spring tension to recoil the rope, without over tightening the spring and causing it to bind when pulling the rope (when starting the mower, pulling the rope winds the spring tighter, causing it to recoil the rope when released ).
    5. Turn the spool in the opposite direction that the rope will pull it until you've got a good amount of tension on the spring. You don't want to do this to the point you bind the spring, but you do want significant resistance. Clamp the spool from unwinding so that you may move your attentions to the rope.
    6. You'll have to determine if it's easier to feed the rope from the outside of the housing into the spool or from the spool and out of the housing, probably the latter. Keep in mind whether there is a plastic stop attached to the rope or if it's fed through any guides along the handlebar of the mower, this will affect the direction in which you work.
    7. Once you've got the rope in place, knot the end and insert it into the spool, just as the old rope was. Now, hang onto the rope from the outside of the housing and then release the clamp holding the spring tension and the spool. Slowly and carefully release the rope, allowing it to recoil into the housing.
    8. Reattach the housing and you should be good.

    Or, the easier way to do this would be to take the housing to the dealer and let them change the rope for you. If you pull the housing and take it to them, it will be cheaper and faster than having them do it. Again, the only caveat to this is if the rope is held in guides along the handle, then you'll probably want to just take the whole mower to them.

    This all probably sounds more difficult than it really is. The housing is usually held on with only 3 or 4 screws/bolts. If you are the least bit mechanically inclined you'll have no problems figuring out how to do this. You might also be able to find a repair manual or step by step guide with pictures ******. Google your mower and see what you find.

    This link may be of assistance as well.
    Notes on the Troubleshooting and Repair of small Gasoline Engines and Rotary Lawn Mowers
    Thanks for the advice!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,481

    Default Re: lawn mower pull rope

    Quote Originally Posted by Darb View Post
    Thanks for the advice!
    You're welcome, though there was a minor typographical error in item four, it should have read as follows:

    Quote Originally Posted by A. Spruce View Post
    4 - This is where it starts getting tricky. The pull rope is under spring tension. Most of that tension has been released with the breaking of the rope, however there's still plenty there to cause injury, particularly if you have to remove the winder spool from the housing. The trick now is to apply enough spring tension to recoil the rope, without over tightening the spring and causing it to bind when pulling the rope (when starting the mower, pulling the rope winds the spring tighter, causing it to recoil the rope when released ).
    If you want to post clear pictures of your mower, with a close up of the top of the motor where the rope enters, I can walk you through getting it off the machine. From there, with pictures, I can also help you through getting the new rope installed.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

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