When you pull the cord , it pulls as it should, however it doesn't 'catch' anything or cause anything in the motor to spin.
Original issue: One of the bolts came off the front of the machine, there by letting the pull assembly to get loose. Is there a piece that goes between the top 'pull assembly' and the engine? It seems like there must be!
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I have had this situation before on a lawnmower. I didn't have a craftsman, but is probably the same issue. Basically, the spring that recoils the cord back in either broke or came unwound. When the mower is not running, the cogs on the pull chord keeps the cord from coming out. When the mower is running, the spring is not wound enough to hold the chord in and thus releases or doesn't hold it in.
Try pulling the pull chord assembly off and rewind the spring.
you need to pull your spark plug and check that cylinder is not hydrolocked with fuel or oil first, then with plug out see if it will pull the motor over or pull out any farther than it did before. If everything is good there, I would check underneath the deck and see if you can spin the blade by hand,(make sure your spark plug is still out for safety) next I would pull the rewind top off motor and visually inspect the Flywheel and coil gap and look for something possibly binding or catching on the flywheel, I think that model has a flywheel brake, maybe that is not adj. correct.....good luck hope I gave you some ideas, If by chance the cylinder is full of gas..replace needle and seat in carb.
Most of the recoil starters have ball bearings in them, and the centrifugal force that you apply pushes the balls out where they engage pawls and allow the flywheel to be rotated. Since your's is on a snowblower, you may just be stuck, or moisture could be in the mechanism, freezing the ball bearings in place. The quickest thing to try: Rap the recoil mechanism in the middle of the top, with a rubber hammer. You want to jolt it, without denting it. Try to pull the cord and see if it engages. You can repeat this several times, but try not to dent it. If the machine is outside, and you believe that the mechanism may have frozen, you can apply heat to it with a hair dryer, and then rap and try. Try these out and repost if the problem persists. Best regards, W/D
The starter assembly is between the motor and boom so you have to remove the boom from the motor housing. Usually one nut & bolt at the nose of the starter housing. There may be another lock bolt. You shouldn't have to remove the throttle cable and leads but it depends on how tight the factory installed them. Remove the starter housing. If you're real lucky all you have to do is pull some starter rope up past the pulley and wind the pulley in the direction the rope pulls back into the housing. You have to pull the rope around the pulley as you wind it. If the spring catches and builds tension you're good, wind it four or five times or enough to fully pull the rope back in. If the spring doesn't catch or releases every two or three turns it has to be replaced. You may have to replace the spring and container (PN638033001) and/or the easy start assembly (PN310022001).
dry the plug asmall squirt of aerostart in the top of carbywith air cleaner off full throttle pull the rope and she should fire up make sure the on/off switch is in the correct position. no don`t laugh ican remember nearly completely stripping amotor years ago before ichecked it put it all back together and it started first go try the aerostart and switch