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Short screwdriver for LB fuel bowl

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by Roger, Aug 3, 2005.

  1. Roger

    Roger LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,923

    My LawnBoy Duraforce didn't start one day last week. For the previous couple of days it would start fine, but overspeed slightly, returning to right rpms quickly. I didn't think too much about it because it was running fine after starting. But, then last Thursday, it wouldn't start.

    After some diagnostic work, I concluded it was in fuel delivery. I could get it running, and keep it running, albeit rough, but continuing to push the primer bulb. My conclusion: the screen in the fuel bowl was clogged.

    However, getting the fuel bowl off requires taking out four philips screws, screws that are pointed down, about 1 1/2" above the ground drive shield. My only solution was to take off the carb, rotate it enough to get access to the four screws.

    I did that, but the sequence included taking off the fuel tank, taking off the three-legged tank support. I did not want to disengage the primer tube (real hassle getting it attached the last time I had it off), and I didn't want to separate the carb from the air cleaner body (held together by the very delicate governor spring). But, after taking all those parts off, I was able to rotate the carb/air cleaner body out, accounting for the governor fin protruding up through the cowling.

    After all that, I was right -- screen in the bowl was clogged. I cleaned it, put it all back together, and it runs fine.

    But, my question: Any suggestions on how to get those four screws out without taking off the carb unit?

    I have screwdriver bits for my 3/8" socket set, but none for my 1/4". Are such bits available, and if so, how long? I could have taken off the belt shield to gain a little more access room -- easier to take off the shield than the other parts.

    Or, is there another tool for phillips screws in tight quarters?

  2. lawnmaniac883

    lawnmaniac883 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,613

    Maybe try one of those worm drive screwdrivers? They have a flexible body and a fully rotating shaft inside of them, you hold the housing and turn the handle, while the bit rotates.
  3. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,023

    There are 1/4" bits and come in different lenths, You can pick them up at any hardware store. I use them all the time in my 1/4" 1/4 drive socket with different length extenions.
    Btw; If you get one that is too long you can cut the shank to the exact lenth required to do your job.
  4. dutch1

    dutch1 LawnSite Silver Member
    from Jayhawk
    Posts: 2,231

    It isn't that much of a hassle to remove the carb and separate the airbox from the carb. In my opinion, that is the only way to properly check out a LB carb. Several things need to be checked. First, LB floats tend to swell over time allowing the float to bottom out on the carb body. Has any one seen a Lawn Boy with a fuel leak? Secondly, the float height needs to be adjusted properly. Thirdly the main jet should have it's ports cleaned. Fourth, the pilot jet should be checked, particularly if the engine has a tendency to surge. Over the last 15 years I've done way too many LB's and wouldn't consider working on a carb while on the machine. Of course I'm thinking along the lines of a shop. Do everything to avoid come backs. Anymore I will not do a LB carb rebuild with out a new float and needle/seat. Don't mean to be derogatory to any of you DIY's. but that's my opinion. You can do it right or you can do it over.
  5. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,023

    You are right !!! The proper way to clean and check any carb. is complete removal. I didn't question his tactics because the repair was already done and working, I simply answered his question about tools.
  6. Roger

    Roger LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,923

    Dutch - thanks for the pointers in maintaining a LB carb. Yes, I know in the big scheme of things, taking it off isn't that big of a deal. Last week, when I had the problem, I was in the heat of a mowing schedule, wanting to get the machine running so I could get back to work. I guess I got a bit frustrated in not being able to simple take off the bowl, clean the screen, remount, and get on with the day's work.

    But, your maintenance pointers are valuable. I will keep in mind for offseason PM work. The motor isn't very old. In thinking about it, I think I may have run 200-250 gallons of mixed fuel through it.

    Actually, it is a rebuild - new short block after only four months of service. The needle bearing on the crank gave out. I posted a thread about this last September. I am fully convinced the engine was faulty from the beginning because my rebuild with a new short block never demonstrated the same behaviors as the original.

    The engine was ran hard this morning and it runs like a top.

    A question for you who have done maintenance on these engines: Can I put an inline fuel filter between the tank and carb? I have a 70 micron inline filter that I use on other equipment and was going to cut the tubing and install a filter (get two clamps for either end). Is a filter too much resistance for these engines? My 5.5hp Sizuki on my Toro Proline has a filter. Swapping out the filter for annual PM is much easier, and a failsafe way to protect the carb. With all the fuel refills, some debris is bound to get inside the tank.

    Thanks for your tips, and the ideas about tools.
  7. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,023

    Adding a fuel filter is just fine and should reduce the carb. cleanings as you said.
  8. PARDS2

    PARDS2 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 2

    would you have any pics of a Duraforce governor and throttle hookup--got one in a box and i am not sure on the correct setup


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