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Mower deck repair

The other day I gave the taller grass a quick cut, and just as I was about to finish, the mowing deck failed with a big shower of sparks.
It turns out that rust and a failed botch job (not by me, I hasten to add!) meant that two of the three bolts holding the left blade in place...weren't.

Thankfully, the belt popped off the pulley so the blades stopped pretty quickly, before stuff got destroyed in an unfixable sort of way.

I bought a new drill, and a bit for drilling into metal.

At the supermarket yesterday, I picked up a cheap metal bit that was 4mm. Looking at the big 8.5mm bit, I did agree that making a smaller hole first might be a smart move.

 

I put it off all morning, but when I got down it it, it was really only about half an hour of work. To bend-break the strip of metal to the size that I wanted, to bend it into shape, to stick three holes into the deck (first the 4mm and then the 8.5mm), and finally to screw up three bolts with large washers - two to hold the metal bracket in place, and one near where the other mounting was to help hold everything in place.
Whether or not I'll need to add another bolt depends upon what sort of force the belt applies when it is tensioned.

That said, the work I did do was actually pretty simple. Far more so than I expected.

Here's the underside showing what I meant about the bracket:

The deck repairs, underside.
The deck repairs, underside.

And here's what it looks like on top:

The deck repairs, topside.
The deck repairs, topside.

The nuts have little plastic bits inside to stop them working loose. To be paranoid, each bolt has two nuts.
Yes, the one in the foreground right is off centre. Because of what it is mounted through, and the extra washer, the remaining part of the bolt was slightly shorter, so I put the second washer on upside down. Because the plastic bit went on first (and this, really, was the most fiddly part of the entire task), it put the nut off centre. Since it gripped hard, I tightened it up anyway. The point is that it doesn't come undone.

You can see the rusted bolt, right in the centre foreground.
As for the sparks, do you see that bit of metal that goes up from the deck, to the right of the spindle? Not really sure what that is for, however as the bolts failed, the pulley, rotating at high speed, moved until it could rub that piece of metal. That's where the sparks came from.

 

So, hopefully when the weather is nicer (ho ho, it's storm Justine right now) and the grass is dryer, I can take Marte out.

 

Storm Justine?

Yup. It's not even the end of January and we're up to 'J' in the named storms...

Actually, it is even worse as Western Europe has two concurrent naming lists: one that is Ireland, the UK, and the Netherlands (indicated below by †); and one that is France, Spain, Portugal, and Belgium.

So, we've had, since the start of hurricane/storm season on 30th September 2020, the following: Alex (strongest wind, 116mph/186kph Belle-Île, France), Barbara, Aiden†, Clement (stalled then gave up before landfall), Dora, Ernest, Bella† (strongest storm, 956mbar), Filomena (worst snowstorm in Spain since 1971), Christoph†, Gaetan (eventually absorbed into Christoph), Hortense, Ignacio, and now Justine.
The last five in the second half of January alone.

If the IE/GB/NL list makes it up to 'S', then we can all have the fun of trying to work out how the hell to say "Saidhbhín". Hint - for reasons known only to the Irish, "dhbh" is a V sound. So you'd say it sort of like "sigh-veen".
But, then, Irish names (especially the girls) is like somebody reached into a Scrabble bag and used what they pulled out as the spelling of a name that is pronounced entirely differently...to English speakers, that is, it will make sense if your brain is wired up to read "dbdh" as a "v".

 

 

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Gavin Wraith, 31st January 2021, 10:51
To see why Irish spelling is so weird have a look at https://spw.uni-goettingen.de/projects/aig/lng-sga.html. This is a lecture series on ancient Irish. The lecturer seems almost embarrassed.

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Last read at 05:24 on 2021/09/22.

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