Thanks for the reply. Yes, I realize the safety issue here. I am VERY safety conscious. I want to note though, that with the the spring removed as mentioned above, upon releasing the lever, the auger DOES stop in less than two revolutions. I realize this is a temporary fix until I can find the issue and put the return spring back on. Though i will say, even since new, I have never noticed any kind of direct braking of the auger when releasing the lever. Are you saying that there is a definite auger brake system that stops the auger instantly when the lever is released? If so, I don't think I EVER had that on my machine. But I could be wrong.
I have been down in the area of the auger engagement pulley & belt before. I had to replace a drive belt and I was looking for the source of the auger lever binding as well. It was a while ago, so I don't exactly remember what it looks like. I don't remember seeing very much down there, maybe ONE spring. certainly not 4. I do remember seeing the engagement pulley and the "swing lever" it is mounted on, it appeared to be "free and not binding" when I moved it manually. The auger lever itself also appears (by feel) to be free of binding. Maybe it *IS* the cable, though the accordion seals appear to be intact.
Can you elaborate on the multiple spring system a bit for me? Maybe a diagram or picture?
Thanks again for taking the time to reply.