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Hit & Miss Gas Engine Discussion

A knock on the door...


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  #1  
Old 10-10-2009, 09:06:39 PM
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Default A knock on the door...

I had just finished dinner on Thursday night when I heard a vehicle pull up in my driveway. I put stuff away and opened the door to find the neighbor from 4 houses down on the porch. He told me he had a piece of equipment in his garage and needed my help with it. I hopped in the truck and went to see what I could do. He opened the garage door and I saw a cememt mixer staring back at me. "Oh great, one of those things." I walked around back, opened it up and fixed my eyes on a pretty nice looking Hercules built engine. My neighbor explained that his dad used the mixer about 30 years ago to pour his driveway and it had been in the barn ever since. He had a small concrete project and figured he would pull the mixer out and use it but didn't know how to get it going. Time got away quick while I went over the basics of running the engine and pointed out where to put gas, oil, grease, etc. I tapped the gas tank and it gave a nice hollow ring. I told him it should be okay, but it wouldn't hurt to put some acetone in there just in case it had a coat of gum. I showed him the check ball and explained that he needed to remove it to verify its operation. He said he would let me know when he was ready to go, hopefully Saturday, and have me over when he started it. Excitement got the best of me this afternoon, so I headed over with a new plug wire, extra plug and a couple of tools. After fitting the new wire, I pulled the plug and rolled the engine over. No spark. I'm not the most hip guy with Wico mags, but I know enough to be dangerous. I pulled the cover, cleaned the contacts, lubed the sliding pieces and put it back together. Still nothing. Fortunately I spied another EK mag on the shelf in the garage on Thursday night. I swapped the mags and played around with the trip mechanism to get it working right. The second mag didn't sound right when it tripped and still no fire. I got to looking at it and noticed someone had put thin pieces of rubber under the armature to cushion it when it trips. I pulled those out and liberally applied WD-40 as things just felt gummy. After a couple more tries I had a nice blue spark. I reinstalled the plug, choked it and started cranking. It hit half heartedly and then nothing. I took the choke off, tried again and still nothing. I shut the fuel needle off figuring I flooded it. Sure enough, the next time around she fired and took off. I re-opened the needle and let it run. I left it run about 5 minutes while my neighbor and I stood around with big dumb grins before shutting it down. Pretty sweet to get the old girl running and to find out it had been sitting under my nose for the past five years. I told my neighbor that the serial number on the engine made it a 1927 model. It's a 2hp Type S engine built by Hercules. The amazing thing is that the engine has a ton of compression and very little wear. You can still see the involute form on the governor gear!! Most of these engines are pretty well ragged out and have the gears worn to a point from use. This would almost qualify as a Paul S. story except that I didn't bring the mixer home. But I have a real happy neighbor!
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Old 10-10-2009, 09:16:40 PM
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Default Re: A knock on the door...

Mike, Great story and I still think you did Paul proud!!! You don't have to help pour cement do you???
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Old 10-11-2009, 03:53:44 AM
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Default Re: A knock on the door...

Mike: I would also get excited and couldn't wait to help either . Good job helping out.

Did I tell you about the knock on the door that got me a "rough & tired" but drivable 67 Chevrolet, Impalla, SS, Convertable(top goes down & up), 327 with a turbo 350 . Just put a set of new tires on it as the "old" ones were leaking air through the brused sidewalls . Just a bit dry rotted from age .
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