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That strimmer

This part was supposed to have been uploaded yesterday, but mumble-technical-issues-mumble.

Thank you to everybody who contacted me with suggestions of how to remove the strimmer head. I didn't see a direction arrow, but there was a little piece of metal on one side to clip the strimmer line to the right side, which told me the direction the head turns. I found the little notch and wedged an allen key into it. Grabbed the head, and gave it a hard turn.

So I sprayed some WD40 in there, counted to forty two, and tried again.

Off with it's head!
Off with it's head!
Of course, the whole head removal thing is extra ironic today, the day of Vive la révolution!.


Since I had everything in place, I decided to give the machine a bit of a clean up and also see about recovering the fuel filter from the petrol tank.

The fuel tank itself was held in place by four plastic lugs. To undo the back two in order to get the tank out, I had to undo a plastic back plate. Once this was carefully removed... well... the photo...

Uh, the crankshaft?
Uh, the crankshaft? (all inch of it!)

I know two strokes are a bit weird, but this - having a bit of plastic holding the engine closed at the back - was weirder than normal. Doesn't this get hot?
As it happens, it was useful to take the back off as I gave it a quick whip around with a piece of paper towel and saw what looked like tiny slivers of metal. It would be better to not have them rattling around inside the engine. Still, that wasn't what I expected to find when trying to get the fuel tank off.

I tipped rather a lot of oil out of the fuel tank. The petrol would have long since evaporated, but if this machine is supposed to run on about 2% oil (or 50:1), then I'd say going by the oil in the tank that it was possibly trying to run with a mixture somewhere in the range of 15% to 20%. Yeah, there was a lot of oil in there. It could also explain why I was told that it probably won't work. I'm guessing the previous owner did a combination of mixing the petrol entirely wrongly and putting that into a tank that already had oil in it. If two strokes aren't used for a while, it's useful to tip out whatever is in the tank and replace it with a known fresh mixture.

I retrieved the clunk, and it was pretty dirty. I've given it a wipe, but I wasn't happy with it. Upon discovering that the primer bulb was disintegrating (not really a surprise), it was back to Amazon. I've ordered a kit with a new primer bulb, a new fuel filter, and some bits of fuel line in different widths, in case they should be necessary.

Spark plug, old fuel filter, and broken primer.
Spark plug, old fuel filter, and broken primer.

The spark plug didn't look in bad nick. I cleaned it up a little and checked the gap. It was 0.6mm, which agrees with what various websites suggest.
Unfortunately I haven't been able to find an operator's manual for the MD320i on-line, just a spares manual which is an exploded diagram giving part numbers of everything.

Amazon guarantees that these things will all be here for Friday, so if it's a nice weekend... ☺


Just noticed in my suggestions of things I might like to purchase, that I can get an entire carburettor for about €15-20...or a carburettor overhaul kit (gaskets and such) for €20-25. That doesn't make any sense.


Grass and weeds and potatoes

It's just been a really naff year, weather-wise. It's a surprise that anything at all is bothering to grow.
But, then, as a human we have concepts like "why bother?". This is because our lifespans are measured over years, decades. For many plants, they must bother. They grow, they make seeds, they die, the seeds are for next year. Or birds. They don't have a choice of not bothering. Whether or not they make effective seeds, the result is the same. They'll be gone by winter.

So, when you have a lovely hot early Spring followed by a blast of winter, giving us both the highest and lowest temperatures of the year just weeks apart, followed by a lot of meh, followed by plenty of thunderstorms, followed by a week (last week) that felt like early October (Monday morning was 8°C when I got up, with so much fog I needed to put the fog lights on)... well, it's not a surprise that things are saying "enough already, I'm outta here".

This document was ready for half seven. Google's Competent Coders Strike Again! The video (source) was 236MB. The upload got to 229MB, stalled a while, then resumed once again, from 35MB. Bravo. It then stalled at 49MB and didn't resume. Double-bravo. So I cancelled that upload and started all over from the beginning.

On the way to work a week and a half ago. Because... it's summer, right?

The F in Fog.
The F in Fog..



It's normal that my pig-farmer neighbour brings his... wheat? barley?... in on or around Bastille Day. There are two harvesters out now, so it's pretty much on time. It looks a bit rancid though. Mom would have gone and asked him what the crop yield was, and he'd reply in some weird measurement like quintals, and she'd know whether that was good or bad. Me? I'm usually at work when he's around, and he tends to avoid me. Maybe he's still sore about me telling him he sucked so much at basic science that he must have failed high school. ☺

Whatever, the rancid crop is being brought in. Another sign that time is passing and it's the downhill slide towards winter.

A big harvester.
A big sexy harvester (not American-style big).
The reason I added 'sexy' to the description is because it's so full of tech that it can damn near do the job all by itself.

I'm hoping for a mild winter this year, especially seeing as how last winter stretched from sometime in October through to the middle of May, with just a little blip of extreme heat to troll us all.



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