Vintage Sears Garden Tractors
I always wanted to get a 1966 Suburban. It was sort of a crossover year in the Sears models.. The squared off fenders and older type
front tires and grill from the Bradley Suburbans were there, but the problematic variable speed sheave pulley transmission had been
replaced with the six speed transaxle. So when I saw a '66 listed on ebay in the South Jersey area, I jumped at the opportunity. It was
nearby; the picture looked like the tractor was in decent shape and the seller said the motor was in good shape judging by the good
compression. OK, sold the highest bidder. The tractor was as advertised. The first thing I did was to get a battery from the local TSC.
Wow, only sixteen dollars. On the charger for the day while I looked things over. Yep, she's in pretty good shape. A little clean up, carb
kit, points, etc and then I'll decide where to go if the engine seems OK. The tractor is very good shape for being forty years old. Piddle
around until the charger shows a good charge, then mount the battery. It spins the engine to a certain point, the compression stroke, and
then the motor won't turn anymore, even with the plug out. Hmmmmm, back the motor up and let it try again. Same result, this time
with some kind of dust coming out of the exhaust. It's not clanging to a stop like the rod is broken, but it's like some type of resistance
in the motor. Oh well, off with the head to take a look. This looks like a rebuilt or replacement motor judging by the while paint.
Anyway, there was tons of carbon and junk under the head. Some of it was long enough to wedge between the head and top of the
piston, making the piston stop before TDC. An old chisel, wire wheel on a drill and compressed air took care of it. Button the whole
thing back up and it spins just fine now. This thing must have sat for years like this. At least I know the starter is good; it was smoking
the belt when the motor was sticking!
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