Yesterday was my once a month trip to the grocery store in the big city.
I dragged my ass out of bed around 9, girded up my loins, and headed to the big city. My first stop was to fill the wife’s tank, as it seems every time I use it these days, I have to fill it.
I so arrive in the big city, pull into the gas station, reach for my card and…no wallet…again. @#%$&*!!!
I had no other choice but to turn around, and head back home. Will I return same day? Heck no.
When I arrived home, the wife was already up and surprised to see me back so soon. “What happened?” when she saw I was empty handed.
I shrugged “forgot my wallet”.
You see, this was pretty much my plan for the day…when I go to the grocery store and return and unload, that’s pretty much it for the rest of the day, except to cook something delicious with all the new goodies.
Not so yesterday.
The wife made a comment something to the effect of “well, if you’re not going back to the store, then you’re not gonna sit here all day on your computer. The grass is not too wet to mow…” (like she would know).
“I can’t mow until I fix the mower” was my usual lame assed excuse.
“There ya go” she replied.
I thought I heard thunder in the distance…
So, once again I girded up my loins to go out to the shed, and replace my new starter solenoid.
As I approach the shed, I see 4 kittycats playing under the truck, that scattered when I got too close for their comfort.
First order on the agenda, move the truck out of its stall sose I can work on the mower with some elbow room.
I get in the truck and start it and the dashboard comes alive with every single light illuminating, accompanied by a bunch of ‘clicks’…no starty.
I shut off everything, and repeated the attempt…just clicks.
I hook up the charger and set it to jump start, after which it started.
Everyone out there knows this is a warning sign, and I figured I might as well just replace it. I found the receipt where I had replaced it 4 years ago…likely out of any warranty.
I called the Car Quest and they had one, so I pulled the truck up to the house under the shady tree, removed the battery, and stuck it in back of the wife’s car inside a milk crate, and headed to town.
Of course, I had to stop first and fill the tank, as it was now on fumes.
OK, I picked up a new Diehard from the Car Quest to the tune of $165, and headed home again.
Fortunately, replacing the battery on my Ranger is very simple; each battery terminal cable, and the clamp. Done.
Now on to the real job at hand; the Beast.
I removed the battery from the mower, and upon some detailed examination, realized to my horror, that I was going to have to remove the body off the mower to access the starter solenoid.
It was buried very nicely behind the battery compartment, and even though I gave it my all to exhaust every avenue of getting to it without pulling the body, no way José.
I thought well maybe I can just remove a few bolts, and just bend it up to reach it.
So I proceeded to begin figuring out which of the bolts actually remove it.
Of course, you realize that this process does not happen unless X is crawling around on the floor, getting up every now and then to find a different socket, or ratchet that will fit into whatever compartment necessary to make this happen.
I put on my knee pads again, as my knees still hurt from the last mower repair job.
Four bolts under the seat loosened the rear section but still was bolted down hard, but where? where?
A bolt under each side floorboard, and two under the center console floor (if you wanna call it that), and i was able to pull the body high enough to see the solenoid…as long as I had a 2×4 crammed between the fender and rear tire to hold the body up…
They put a “strain relief” on the cable containing the wires that led to the solenoid, making it extremely difficult to reach the solenoid terminals, but I got it done, and it worked, after several more !!@#$%&!!, and trips up and down off the floor.
The mower started like it should and my thanks go out to those of you who stated from the getgo it was the solenoid.
So, I’m happy now, right? A dim bulb in a dark room with the beast laughing is more like it.
I noticed on both of the rear tires in the sidewalls, that they were wet. Upon further examination, I discovered that the wetness was the flat proof I had put into the tires, and was now leaking through the huge cracks in both rear tires..!!@#$&*!!
Do you know what they get for those?
A complete wheel ass’y is $104 for each wheel at Lowe’s.
The tire alone I found on Ebay for $75 (they are tubeless).
Replacing tubeless tires is not a specialty of mine, but have been successful with the smaller tires using a rope and a hunk of rebar to seat the bead. I figure if I leave them out in the sun a while, it may help in ‘softening’ up the tires for an easier seat.
So, by then, I was wiped out, and decided to call it a day.
The wife ended up going to the big city for groceries, as as I write this, I am enjoying my coffee with whipping cream…and Irish Cream.
Looking forward to mowing later…NOT.
Not a strikeout, but another victory for the Beast throwing slow balls.