Atco Standard 16” renovation.

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Atco Standard 16” renovation.

Some time ago I bought this mower on the popular auction site and as so often happens it proved to be in worse condition than I had hoped. In fairness I don’t think the vendor realised the extent of this and indeed I did not pay a large sum for it.

It has a Villiers Mk VI C engine with an H prefix, which I think, dates it to 1923 and therefore is an early model. Even more reason to try to recover it. It has clearly been left very exposed out in the open for many years so that just about all the parts have rusted solid, including the engine. Some of the parts have rusted and deteriorated way past my skills of renovation but we’ll not worry about these at the moment.

After many weeks of working on the engine I have at last got it free enough to revolve.

Now for a few of what I think will be many questions. I have made some attempt to find answers by searching the forum but haven’t found exactly what I am looking for, however if answers already exist please do direct me to them.

1. As you can see from the picture the spark plug lead has disintegrated and I need to replace this. On the rear of the magneto back plate and passing in front of the spark plug lead connection there is a curved piece of wire which is attached to the backplate by a screw at each end. What is this?

 

2. On the other side of the backplate is what appears to be another connection to the magneto, see the picture below. What is this? The only things I can think of are a connection for lights but this seems pretty unlikely for a lawnmower! or some form of ignition cut-out.

 

3. The original Atco carburettor was still attached, see the picture below, but unfortunately is missing its float needle and float clip; the float itself is dented but useable I think. I’ve read somewhere on this forum (but now can’t find it) that unlike the clips on most Amal floats the clip on these is a separate part sitting on top of the float and upside down to the way they are fitted to Amal floats. Interestingly, inside the float chamber was the small brass ring, is this some part of the carb? What I’d especially like of course is another float needle but maybe one can be made. In order to get one made I need to know the diameter of the straight section (at the bottom of which is a cone shaped section which sits through the bottom of the float chamber to control the flow of fuel). Also the overall length of the needle (including cone section) and the distance of the groove (for the clip) below the top of the needle. The needle it seems protrudes through the top of the float chamber and is used to ‘tickle’ the carb. Incidentally, as a completely unrelated and nonsense question, why, when we tickle the carb do we keep pressing and releasing the tickler rather than simply holding it down until the carburettor floods?

 

4. The disc clutch plates are completely seized on the countershaft and I’ve not been able to find a drawing or picture of how the various parts are assembled. I’ve removed the outer collar by drilling through the retaining pin but I still can’t get anything to move, I guess I simply have to persevere with penetrating fluid etc or is there something I’ve not realised? Presumably the outer disc (the fixed disc) should now simply slide off the shaft? Also presumably the inner (sliding) disc should slide along the countershaft on a Woodruff key? I’ve poured diesel oil onto the friction plate (yes, I know it’s oil) but have been reluctant to try to drive a wedge between the two discs in order to help free them. Can someone tell me please which metal disc is the friction disc attached to?

Many thanks very much to anyone who can provide any help.

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Adrian
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I can help with a couple of

I can help with a couple of these, as I fettled my magneto earlier this year.

1. That wire is a clip that holds the plug lead in place - see pic below. There's a groove in the end of the lead, and it sits in there. You can get a replacement lead here: http://www.villiersparts.co.uk/ignition.html - scroll well down the page until you get to the second row of HT leads and it's the one on the left. He sells everything you'd need to completely rebuild the mag - though probably way in excess of what your mower originally  cost!

2. Again, as you can see in the photo, I have the same place on my mag, fitted with a (rubber?) blank. My guess is that, as the engine would have been a proprietary item to be fitted to whatever, it was for eg lights or alternative HT lead placement should a customer company's machine need it. So you are not missing anything important. 

Can't help with 3 and 4, I'm afraid, as I have a Villiers carb and a drum clutch, but I hope that helps.

 

wristpin
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I’ve poured diesel oil onto

I’ve poured diesel oil onto the friction plate (yes, I know it’s oil) but have been reluctant to try to drive a wedge between the two discs in order to help free them

At this stage I think that it is more important to dismantle without breaking anything, so I have a 25 litre drum of red diesel  ( big enough to fully immerse a Marquis rear roller) and leave things to soak , sometimes for a week or more - very effective !

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Thank you very much Adrian

Thank you very much Adrian for your helpful response and the link. I take it you are referring to the plug lead described as "Original Villiers HT lead, push in type.

I want this mower to be a usable machine and not a shiny exhibit so I'm very keen to get the engine running and a spark plug lead is pretty essential! Let's hope the ignition coil doesn't need replacing, it will spoil the pleasure of renovating this mower if it requires large sums of money spent on it.

I believe this 147cc engine was primarily used in small motorcycles and the Villiers Parts Book does show a lighting set was available for it so you are likely correct that the second hole in the backplate was to provide a connection to lighting coils. I'll seal it with some black silicone sealant.

Thanks Wristpin, unfortunately I don't have a 25 litre drum of diesel, however the clutch friction plate has been saturated and regularly topped up with diesel not for just a few days or even a week but for several weeks. I've kept the disc oiler filled with PlusGas and continually apply this to the shaft and end of the fixed disc.

I have a puller attached to the sprocket on the fixed disc and periodically apply heat to the shaft with a blowtorch but the disc shows absolutely no sign of moving. This is why I increasingly wonder whether there is something I've misunderstood or need to know about dismantling this clutch.

I really don't want to resort to the malicious use of a large hammer and damage a 100 year old piece of machinery.

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Adrian
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Yes, that's the one - if you

Yes, that's the one - if you look closely (very, it's a tiny pic!) you'll see it's got the same shaped end at the right angle - by the 1930s, they were screw-in.

Adrian
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Dunno if this helps? with any

Dunno if this helps? with any of your enquiries?

https://www.oldlawnmowerclub.co.uk/forum/general-topics/general-discussi...

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Very many thanks again Adrian

Very many thanks again Adrian and my apologies for the slight delay in acknowledging your help.

Yes indeed, this does help. Although we don’t actually see him remove the fixed clutch disc after drilling out the taper pin and removing the collar (which I have done) I would imagine he would have shown any other significant steps before getting to the clutch sliding disc.

So I guess I must just persevere with what I’m doing before getting a larger hammer!

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