Dumbest thing I've done in a while..

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Jan 17, 2016
South Louisiana
I was helping my dad with his mclane edger last weekend and he mentioned a pair of generators he had in a shed that flooded. He claimed both were new, one "honda" and one "onan". We retreived the honda which was a honda gx390 powered Blackmax brand that I had often seen for sale at Sam's club. The onan, still in the box, had some stuff stacked on it so we left it for later.
I've hed pretty good luck getting most of my junk running after the same flood so I volunteered to take a look at it.
There was oil and water in the crankcase, a rusty liquid substance in the fuel tank and thankfully no water above the piston. I drained the oil, flushed the fuel tank (best I could) and cleaned the carb. I got it running breifly and then the fuel filter clogged. I then drained the milky oil again and refilled it. I replaced the fuel filter and fired it back up. After about 45 seconds the fuel filter clogged again and I drained the milky oil again. The oil was clearer this time and I noticed some (rust??) particles flowing out the drain hole. I got the bright idea to flush it out by spraying carb cleaner through thd fill hole while the the old oil was dripping out the opposite side of the block. The plan seemed to work out till I saw the red straw thing disappear into the fill hole.
It was getting dark and my patience was suddenly wearing thin so I left it for tomorrow. I'll try to work the straw out a little more tomorrow but I refuse to open up the case. Doing so will require removing the generator head from the tapered shaft which I'm sure is well rusted into place.
Turn it upside down and the red straw should fall back out otherwise I wouldn't worry about it. It will just get chewed up. Not like a Uranium rod in there.
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Some of those generator motors have plastic gears in them for the cam, or governor. If it has any plastic gear the plastic straw may be enough to mess them up if it were to get caught between the teeth of the gear.
I've done that! I was able to clean out the sump and get the straw out. Took a little effort and fishing around with a some thin wire.
Funny, I've yet to make a smart mistake.

I'd go after it. Then make the decision to run it or not. If you don't get the spray nozzle and run it and there's no problem then your smart, a genius maybe. If you tank the engine you're an idiot.
Some day , someone will invent the superior, fly proof applicator straw. I have lost more of those in all kinds of places than I can name.
Originally Posted By: OneEyeJack
Funny, I've yet to make a smart mistake.


Mistake 1: Speaking of DUMB mistakes and dropping articles into the abyss, I about lost the tensioner bolt for her car when we did the timing belt. I set it on the intake manifold once unbolted. Did some other stuff and went to lunch. Came back, did some more stuff, positioned the belt etc. went to grab the bolt and clunk. It fell somewhere into the engine... Lots of metallic contacting sounds on the way down. I probably searched for 15 minutes saying every swear word imaginable. Come to find out, it fell on the splash pan under the car..

Mistake 2: Not sure why I didn't use my HF magnetic bowl. It was right there with other nuts/ bolts.
consider it viscosity improver! Or.... not
I would try to fish it out, sometimes luck, swearing and wire can solve these situations. Trust me, I know.
LOOK, LOOK....another call for an optical viewer. Poke it into whatever holes you have and look around!

Then you'd know where to go fishing.

How 'bout a "community owned" optical viewer? No one person needs one for long!
Getting a generator head off a tapered shaft is not easy. I needed to do it on a Winco generator and pulled off the generator housing and then used a block of hard wood and a few good whacks of a small sledge hammer to loosen it. This was all mentioned in a Winco document.
I'll work on it some more this weekend.
Maybe i'll flush it with some diesel and the straw will work it's way out or tilt the unit towards the fill hole and it'll show it's self where I can grab it with some needle nose.
Don't worry about it. The generator head and electronic parts are probably shot due to the water anyway.
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