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Ajmassa

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Garden season! And ivy covering our future garden.
Cleaned out above ground really well. But now we gotta get rid of the maze of roots that are endless underground.
Neither of us really know what we’re doing here. Just shooting from the hip. But this forum is filled with knowledgeable people. I’m assumed I need to just till it.
Yesterday I came home with a very old tiller I bought for next to nothing that doesnt start. Her name is ‘Betsy’ apparently. 5 HP. I think it’s a Briggs &Stratton motor.
She wants to start so bad. I’ll get her to go for about 3-5 seconds but not turn over.
Drained old oil and gas and put in new. Newer spark plug. That’s as far as my motor knowledge goes. I cheaped out on a tiller since $ priority is a decent mower and grill. I figure somebody here has gotta be familiar with these motors. IMG_5388.jpg
IMG_1899.jpgIMG_2119.jpg
 

salcoco

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see if you can get a carbourater(sp?) kit from hardware store.
be ware roots might still grow new cover and tilling will only spread the roots.
 

Johnd

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Second on the carb. issue. Usually when these old dudes won't start, that's the culprit, old fuel gums them up..
 

Boatboy24

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You've got John's second on the carb. I'll second on the tilling. That ivy is coming back and tilling will probably just make it more intense. I'm not sure of the best way to deal with it. I want to say use Roundup when it returns. But Roundup tends to hang around for a while and may end up in whatever veggies you're growing.
 

jswordy

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Use Roundup now, wait for it to kill it out, then till. The Roundup interacts well with soil and breaks down/neutralizes very quickly, and contrary to urban myth is one of the safest plant chemicals you can use. Be sure you wait long enough for the root to die, too.

If you are organic, the way to do it would be to cover the entire area with black plastic, weight that down with brick or stones or whatever, and wait a year. Your choice. :h

It appears your engine is young enough to have a diaphragm pump. The diaphragm is located between the gas tank and what passes for a carburetor. When you remove the tank from the carb, you will also find a spring topped by an O-shaped metal ring. Be sure you take it apart carefully, note the parts and positions and get those all back in place in the correct order.

Note whether the little screens on the tubes that go down into the tank need cleaning. Spray and gently brush them with carb cleaner and a toothbrush to clean.

A carb kit is pretty cheap for these and will include the new rubber diaphragm. Locate your engine model number. On older B&S it typically is stamped into the blower housing/shroud. Bring that number with you to the parts store.

Empty all old gas and start anew.

I used to be a pro small engine mechanic. Good luck.
 
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Ajmassa

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Thanks. I read about the spreading the roots issue. Going to be tedious but will remove as much root trimmings as possible while grading.
Im gonna have to google what a ‘carburetor kit’ is. I didn’t even know they sold them at hardware stores. Swinging by a Tractor Supply close by.
I couldn’t find much info for removing ivy AND planting a garden in the same spot. I’m open to any and all suggestions.

**Edit- I sent that reply before seeing the last 2 posts. As you can see in the pic all the ivy above ground is now gone. I didn’t think spraying roundup on the dirt would do much. What about tilling and chopping up the roots down as far as it’ll get and then spraying? I’m no organic and I’d spray copper sulfate everywhere if I could- but the whole kicker is wanting to have a decent looking garden going this summer.
Vegetable garden will be different location. This will be decorative landscaping with a few blueberry/raspberry/blackberries planned.
 
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pgentile

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Any chance there is a fuel line and/or filter on that tiller? Fuel lines and filters clog sometimes. But then again I know nothing about tillers. But I had a few minibikes when I was kid and a few lawnmowers all with similar motors.
 

Ajmassa

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Use Roundup now, wait for it to kill it out, then till. The Roundup interacts well with soil and breaks down/neutralizes very quickly, and contrary to urban myth is one of the safest plant chemicals you can use. Be sure you wait long enough for the root to die, too.

If you are organic, the way to do it would be to cover the entire area with black plastic, weight that down with brick or stones or whatever, and wait a year. Your choice. :h

It appears your engine is young enough to have a diaphragm pump. The diaphragm is located between the gas tank and what passes for a carburetor. When you remove the tank from the carb, you will also find a spring topped by an O-shaped metal ring. Be sure you take it apart carefully, note the parts and positions and get those all back in place in the correct order.

Note whether the little screens on the tubes that go down into the tank need cleaning. Spray and gently brush them with carb cleaner and a toothbrush to clean.

A carb kit is pretty cheap for these and will include the new rubber diaphragm. Locate your engine model number. On older B&S it typically is stamped into the blower housing/shroud. Bring that number with you to the parts store.

Empty all old gas and start anew.

I used to be a pro small engine mechanic. Good luck.
The first picture is a ‘before’ and 2nd is ‘after’. Do you still suggest spraying the bare ground? The roots run every which way underground likely deeper than I realize.
I read that ivy will likely continue to grow back regardless of how you remove. And you just need to keep removing until it eventually stops. Initially I figured to rip it all out (already did that) till, remove root cuttings, spray with something safe, plant and mulch and remove new ivy as I see it. <—just so we’re on the same page.
The engine deal? Wow. That was very specific. Much appreciated. I’ll let you know in a few hours how I make out. (Or you can swing by and help me. We’re doing steak for dinner. And of course- red wine. Tonight could be a 2 bottle night. More if you show :) )
 

meadmaker1

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In your carb kit thete will be a little rubber gasket with a couple tabs punched into it. It is the fuel pump diaphragm. If they get dry they wrinkle and crack and quit working. Simple to do irritating to get to. I carry a spare for my dredge.
 
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Boatboy24

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You can't spray the ground with Roundup. It is systemic and needs to be absorbed (through leaves, preferably). Ideal course of action would have been to leave the ivy in place and spray. Let it sit for a couple days, then water daily for a week, encouraging it to try and spring back. Then hit it again w/ the Round up and mow it down a couple days later. I'm really tempted to tell you to just wait until fall to plant anything. In the meantime, hit anything that comes up during the summer, during which time you can also till in some peat and compost a few times.
 

sour_grapes

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I concur with Jim. To kill the ivy, you need to let it live long enough to show its face (err, I mean leaves).
 

KayThrasher

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Be sure to use 100% gasoline in your tiller, not gas with ethanol. Older motors don't do well with the blends. Also, I keep a can of starting fluid on hand - really helps get older gas engines get going!
 

Ajmassa

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I stopped by Tractor Supply and loaded up carb/choke cleaner, starter fluid, some spray for the sparkplug port, degreaser etc...
No carb kits tho. Got her running for about a minute and a half without much tinkering. Confident once I clean it all up via the advice I received here she’ll be good to go.
Btw, my 1st time at Tractor Supply. My new favorite store.
 

pgentile

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I stopped by Tractor Supply and loaded up carb/choke cleaner, starter fluid, some spray for the sparkplug port, degreaser etc...
No carb kits tho. Got her running for about a minute and a half without much tinkering. Confident once I clean it all up via the advice I received here she’ll be good to go.
Btw, my 1st time at Tractor Supply. My new favorite store.
Come on.... more favorite than Gino Pinto"s??? Please save your love for trackers for tractortalk.com, and let's get back to grapes. Oh yeah and happy birthday, wish I started this hobby when I was 35, I'd have many aged wines by now and probably also be fatter than I am.
 

Ajmassa

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Come on.... more favorite than Gino Pinto"s??? Please save your love for trackers for tractortalk.com, and let's get back to grapes. Oh yeah and happy birthday, wish I started this hobby when I was 35, I'd have many aged wines by now and probably also be fatter than I am.
Thanks Paul. Growing up in Philly i never heard of the place and thought the same thing when I did. But not just all ‘tractors and John deer tear in my beer” stuff. Place is legit with quality tools. Like a hardware store on steroids w/o the extra BS like Home Depot.
Seems like majority of home winemakers get into it a little later (because your smart and have your priorities is order unlike me :) ). Either way I’m glad I got bit by the bug.
 

jswordy

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Come on.... more favorite than Gino Pinto"s??? Please save your love for trackers for tractortalk.com, and let's get back to grapes. Oh yeah and happy birthday, wish I started this hobby when I was 35, I'd have many aged wines by now and probably also be fatter than I am.
No tractors... no grapes...
 

jswordy

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Be sure to use 100% gasoline in your tiller, not gas with ethanol. Older motors don't do well with the blends. Also, I keep a can of starting fluid on hand - really helps get older gas engines get going!
A great way to blow the head clean off it. Never use starting fluid. I've seen the results when it goes wrong. The lucky ones just blow out the head gasket. To safely start a reluctant small engine, remove the plug and dribble a bit of gas directly in the cylinder. Replace plug and wire. Choke it fully. Try it. But any properly maintained engine should start in no more than two cord pulls with no additional help. Otherwise, back to the drawing board.

The best product anyone can have, if you do not run the engine dry of gas when you store it, is a container of Sta-Bil.
 

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