Wow, Great site! Glad I found it. Im a homeowner with a problem with my mower. I worked lawn maintenance almost 4yrs during High School. I went into the NAVY where I was an Aircraft mechanic (F/A18s). I got my A&P (civilian licenses) and built simulators and worked on commercial aircraft. I now support wide area networks (???). I have a Kawasaki FH680V-ES09 with 163 hours. Im a homeowner and have owned the mower since new about 4 years. It started running rough and I thought I bought bad gas. I topped off the oil and it got worse. Its loading up the cylinders with carbon and the plugs are saturated with deposits. I think I may have over filled the oil capacity. Through reading this forum it seems to be a problem with this engine. I remember in the past when I changed the oil as the seasons pass that I needed to keep the oil level a little on the low side. Otherwise the engine ran a little rough. I forgot this recently when I topped it off. I know I didnt go over the full line on the dipstick. Anyway Ive replaced the spark plugs and it keeps loading them up. Its spitting black smoke out the exhaust. The air filter is relatively new. The fuel filter is a season old and looks a little dirty. I dont believe Im having a fuel supply problem. Ive changed the gas and when I clean the plugs it runs good for about 5 minutes, until the plugs load up again. I removed the valve covers and the covers were retaining quite a bit of oil. I assume this is normal or a sign the oil capacity was overfilled. I can smell exhaust or gas in the oil on the dipstick faintly. I checked the fuel pump (a year old) and it seems not to be pumping gas into the crank case. The engine runs strong (until it loads up) and doesnt backfire, make noise or stall. Im worried I have bad rings but both cylinders are exhibiting the same symptoms.