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My $15 Yard Sale Snowblower

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  • My $15 Yard Sale Snowblower




    Last week, while mowing at one of my regular stops, my client told me to look through the garage to see if there was anything I wanted, as she was setting up for a garage sale the next day. "There's a Lawnboy mower in there", she said.
    I looked, and it was in like-new condition for only $100, but I wasn't really interested.

    Then I saw it - in a dark corner... with a strip of masking tape on the handle...



    $15?!!! "Does the snowblower run?", I asked. "I think it needs a tune-up or something", she replied, and offered to let me start it up.
    "Woo-Hoo", I thought when I saw the "50:1" label on the cap. I grabbed my can from the truck and poured some in. I primed it, set the choke, and pulled a few times - nothing.

    Ooops. Forgot to turn the key to the "on" position...
    (click)
    (Pull) Sputter...
    (Pull) Sputter...
    (Pull) Brrrrrrup-upp-upp-upp-upp...

    Can I come back tomorrow to pick it up?


    I called and arranged to go get it and brought it home today!

    MTD 21" single stage with 11" clearing height.
    139cc two stroke 50:1 mix

    Not sure how old it is, but the decal on the Tecumseh engine says something about "meeting California 2006 something or other", so I'm assuming it's no older than that.









    She told me that "everyone wanted that snowblower!" LOL.
    "Sorry, it's already sold - it's written on the tag", she would reply. haha! Hedgemaster FINALLY catches a break. I NEVER run across deals like that.

    Heck, even if it doesn't run that well, I'm only out $15. I may take it to my dealer and have the shop guys look at it to see if it needs the paddles replaced and see what it would cost to have them check the engine over.




    It's "electric start", but I didn't get the cord. I don't understand the need for it anyway, as it's incredibly easy to pull start as it is.







    Here's the bottom and the paddles...








    The underside. I did note a small amount of fuel seeping out. Not enough to "drip", but I may need to figure out if it needs a gasket or something replaced.








    I ran it for about 15 minutes in the back yard today. No issues other than a bit of "smoke smell". The auger starts up when the bar is engaged and it doesn't seem to slow down the engine. The chute control works smoothly and although the "skid plate/scraper/whateverit'scalled" is a bit mangled, it's apparently reversible and can be switched to the "unused side".

    Anyone have some snow so I can take it for a test run?

  • #2
    WOW!! What a deal! congrats!

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    • #3
      WOW!! What a deal! congrats!
      Seriously. I can recoup my investment in the first pass of a driveway. LOL!

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      • #4
        an electric start does not need a special cord. . . it takes a normal ext. cord. .

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        • #5
          an electric start does not need a special cord. . . it takes a normal ext. cord. .

          Ahhh... that's right. I was thinking of the electric start mowers that have the "recharger" cord.

          My two stage blower has electric start. I tried it once just to make sure it worked and never used it again.

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          • #6
            Congratulations! What is that bolted to the blades? How does that help the functionality of the snow blower?
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            • #7
              Congratulations! What is that bolted to the blades? How does that help the functionality of the snow blower?
              Those are the "paddles". They're made of some sort of reinforced rubber material... sort of like a fan belt.
              They are meant to come in direct contact with the sidewalk/driveway surface, unlike larger two-stage snowblowers that have metal augers that do not touch the ground. That's why these smaller, single stage blowers can clear all the way to the pavement. (although I can get pretty close with my two stage as well)

              I just don't know if they have any life left in them. They look well worn, but I don't have any experience with them, so I don't know when they need to be replaced.

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              • #8
                Ahhh ok very interesting. Well it will be neat to experiment with it this winter!

                I found a pictures of some new paddles but it is difficult to tell the level of wear on them. Also, how much that wear would effect it's functionality.
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                • #9
                  Heh. I drug it out so I could run it (let it idle) while I mowed my lawn today and when I engaged the auger lever (to show my wife how it works) the cable must have broken or slipped off.

                  I am also noting that it puts out more white smoke than it should. I don't know what that means, but I'll need to determine if is worth repairing.

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                  • #10
                    Did you check the oil level before and after running it? Maybe it is burning oil.
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                    • #11
                      Did you check the oil level before and after running it? Maybe it is burning oil.
                      It's a two cycle. 50:1

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                      • #12
                        It's a two cycle. 50:1

                        clean carb see if issue persists.
                        Colton
                        Mountain View Greenskeeper proudly offering yard care in the East Valley of Arizona.

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                        • #13
                          Hedge
                          I had an identical thrower to that Mine was a Toro but everything was exactly the same a twin to yours.
                          It worked great for years then one day dead ans a nit. no nothing so I took it to a dealer to have a look they came back with a worn out starter $250.00 labour included and a shot carburetor $300.00 labour included. I can buy a new one for $300.00-$400.00 so why repair it .
                          I hung on to it for years but finally trashed it. So my advice is to keep your eyes open for a parts machine and to take very good care to clean and maintain the thrower. Their great when they work but expensive when their broke.

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                          • #14
                            Nice find! I don't deal with snow here in FL but if I did I would be jealous. lol
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                            • #15
                              WOW $300 for carb work? It could blow all the white smoke it wanted then
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