My First Lawn Mower Restoration

| March/April 1995

Two-cycle engine

7574 S. 74th Street Franklin, Wisconsin 53132

I am a fifteen year old boy who has many hobbies, one of which is collecting and restoring antique lawn mowers. Two years ago I bought a 1954 Crafts man lawn mower from a man in Ripon, Wisconsin. The mower was made for Sears by Yard-Man. It is powered by a vertical shaft Power Products two-cycle engine made in Grafton, Wisconsin.

This was a unique and attractive mower. One thing that made it attractive was its bright colors. The engine and all metal parts except the deck were painted a bright silver. The mower deck was painted a bright, orange-red. The handle bar wasn't painted at all, but was varnished. Overall it is one sharp looking lawn mower.

One of the mower's features is that the engine crankshaft is not a direct drive to the blade. It isn't often that you see a vertical shaft engine not having the blade directly mounted to the engine crankshaft. This is a good idea, because the shaft on the engine will not bend if an obstacle is hit with the blade.

Another odd thing about this mower is how the clutch system is designed to run the blade. There is a foot pedal on the rear of the mower deck. When you press this pedal down with your foot, the engine slides towards you and tightens the belt to the blade shaft. To stop the blade from turning, one has to lift the pedal, sliding the engine forward.

This model was the first 21 inch rotary cut mower to use a Power Products engine. Up until this time, all mowers that used Power Product engines were only 16 or 17 inch cut mowers.