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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I acquired a '73/'74 Ariens 910018 with a Tec HM80 (155020) and 24" Sno Thro attachment last March. Checked the RMPs, running at 3450, but noticed it was burning oil. Took the cylinder cover off to inspect and found a 1/2" x 1/4" horizontal groove about the shape of a small olive pit on the cylinder wall just above the point where the piston bottoms out. I wonder what would have caused that? Otherwise, no scoring.

Cleaned it up while I had it open, changed the oil and ran it with the mower attachment this summer - about 45 mins per week. Maybe 10 or so uses. I checked the oil level after each use once the oil had cooled off and had a chance to settle back down into the crankcase. The oil level drops about 1/4 of the way down the dip stick between the "full" and "add" markers. I always add a bit more oil to top it off. I've been running it with Castrol 5w30 (not synth). Spark plug needed regular cleaning as well, but always started.

Changed the oil (which was very black) this week, installed the Sno Thro and ran the engine for about 3-4 mins and saw none of popping or blue smoke that I witnessed in the summer. I'm assuming the colder weather would explain that. I also picked up the vac and shredder/grinder attachments recently that I hope to use this upcoming summer. My understanding is that these attachments, esp. the vac, are particularly demanding on these 8hp Tecumsehs.

So in getting to my question(s), is this oil burning issue a progressive problem leading to the ultimate demise of the engine, or will it keep chugging along as long as I maintain oil levels and change it regularly? Will using the vac and shredder attachments compound the problem? Re-power?
 

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Used Engines are out there cheap. Don't sweat it, and keep an eye on the oil level.
 
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Hi King,
Don't know what could have caused your bore damage but I see no reason to keep right on using it.I have a pushmower with a Briggs engine that has a severely scored bore that actually burns very little oil-you can smell it a little,but you can't see it.I might add oil every third time I use it,but I don't let it drop very low.The bore is so bad it should smoke like a death-row inmate,but it doesn't.

How are valve guides and cranks seals?What did your head gasket look like when you pulled the head.Did you replace it?Did you check your crankcase vent for proper operation.Are the oil drain holes clogged in the vent cover?Your bore damage may not be the source of ALL of your oil burning,maybe just a contributor.

Oil burners don't bother me until it gets so bad it gags me or the neighbors complain.But,in my own experience,I've seen more Tecumseh Snowkings with blocks ventilated by the connecting rod than oil burners.

I'm not a big fan of 5w-30 oil in any Tecumseh engine used in warm weather-synthetic or not.Straight 30w is the way to go in temps above 40 degress F.Just my opinions,your milage may vary.Cheers.
 

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I have them $100 and up for 8-10 hp engines.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
How are valve guides and cranks seals?What did your head gasket look like when you pulled the head.Did you replace it?Did you check your crankcase vent for proper operation.Are the oil drain holes clogged in the vent cover?Your bore damage may not be the source of ALL of your oil burning,maybe just a contributor.
I cleaned, lapped, and checked lash clearances on the valves at that time and I would say that the valve guides did not seem to be worn, i.e., no play in the valve stems (if that's what you're referring to).
Gasket showed no visible damage. I haven't replaced it, though I've been meaning to. Crankcase vent mesh filter (can't recall what the actual name of that parts is) was rather black, perhaps I should clean it. Any suggestions on good method on doing that- soap/water? I don't think the drain whole plugs were clogged, but wouldn't hurt to take another look.

Thanks for the detailed suggestions, Mike C. This is why novice enthusiasts like myself love this forum.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Just out of curiosity,what does a used HM80 go for in your neck of the woods?
Private sales are in the $150 range (CAN). But those are a crap-shoot.
Haven't seen too many small engine shops advertising them, and those that have were asking as much as $400 for rebuilds or NOS.
 

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Hi King,
My favorite go-to quick cleaner/solvent for greasy,gunky parts is either carb cleaner or brake cleaner,whichever I can buy cheaper at Walmart.Brake cleaner is nice because it's a zero residue product.Just be careful with it around paint-it will remove that too.Good luck.
 

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If you are thinking of a repower check Princess Auto. It is the Canadian equivalent to Harbor Freight and a few people have gotten engines from there up in Canada. As others have said, just keep an eye on the oil and you are probably good to go.
 
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Off topic but I ran 30w50 in a car I had that liked to drink oil. With 10 30 it was 2 qts in 1000. 30w50 it was .5qts in 3000 miles... knocked at cold start up but made it and is still running at 200k

Sent from my SM-N900P using Tapatalk
 

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Hi King,
My favorite go-to quick cleaner/solvent for greasy,gunky parts is either carb cleaner or brake cleaner,whichever I can buy cheaper at Walmart.Brake cleaner is nice because it's a zero residue product.Just be careful with it around paint-it will remove that too.Good luck.
Carb cleaner is more aggressive on plastics and rubber too.
Brake cleaner is probably a better choice if you are near anything non-metal.

I typically don't worry about paint dissolving on my equipment as you can always paint it again later and it will look like new.

I have seen some used Snow Kings in the $100 to 200 USD range. Depends on its size and condition.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I think ideally I'd like to stick with a Tecumseh, 10HP would be nice - for several reasons. Mostly having to do with the fact that much of the allure, for me anyway, in collecting the Trac Team tractor/attachments is trying to keep their configuration as original as possible. i.e., not having to move/modifying chute control guides, etc., to accommodate other engine brands. Knowing full well of course that as the years pass Tec parts will become increasingly harder to come by not to mention expensive. Although I've been researching it, mostly guided by this forum, I have yet to attempt an engine swap on a snowblower or any other OPE for that matter. Definitely something I would like to try in the future or whenever my oil-burning HM80 calls it quits. Or maybe sooner. Thanks for your input fellas.
 

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I'm south of Buffalo NY, I don't know how far you are but I have an 8 or 10HP(I forget). Tecumseh in my shed that just needs a carb. I tested it with a good carb and it runs fine, I've been retaining it for a repower job but its been a few years I still haven't run across a repower job as blowers don't stick around long here even if they don't work. My ancient Roper 8/26 still works fine engine wise but the hardware of the blower itself is getting harder to maintain year after year. The engine is fine and I'll probably retain it so I've got the extra engine with both.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Hello man114. I may be in Buffalo late January. I'll PM you if it's in the works.
 

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I think ideally I'd like to stick with a Tecumseh, 10HP would be nice - for several reasons. Mostly having to do with the fact that much of the allure, for me anyway, in collecting the Trac Team tractor/attachments is trying to keep their configuration as original as possible. i.e., not having to move/modifying chute control guides, etc., to accommodate other engine brands. Knowing full well of course that as the years pass Tec parts will become increasingly harder to come by not to mention expensive. Although I've been researching it, mostly guided by this forum, I have yet to attempt an engine swap on a snowblower or any other OPE for that matter. Definitely something I would like to try in the future or whenever my oil-burning HM80 calls it quits. Or maybe sooner. Thanks for your input fellas.
An HM80 is an 8 HP. If you go to a 10HP Tec it may require different mounting, Pullies etc. I would get all of your critical dimensions down before you buy something. It may be the same engine block.... but it may not.
 
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