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Collection, Preservation and Display of Old Lawn Mowers

Atco 14" mower engine

   I have recently refurbished a 1952 14" Atco kick start mower.In the handbook it says it is powered by a79cc Atco Villiers two

stroke engine.In his book "Seventy years of garden machinery" Brian Bell,who I have found unreliable on occasions,says that

it uses a 98cc Villiers Midget  engine.It certainly looks like a Mk2 Midget (i.e. without a fan).The OLC mower profile says it has a

97cc(sic) Villiers engine.

   The logical way to obtain a 79cc engine from the Midget would be to reduce the bore size.Was this done and what is the 

correct engine for this mower?


Darmic1 Tue, 31/12/2013

Hi, I am currently restoring a 14" Atco with the kick start 2 stroke. Model 1449, Having had a conversation with Paul at Meetens when ordering new parts,  he was able to confirm the Villiers was made in 79cc format, only made for Atco to their specification. There are some parts which are common, mainly the magneto area, although there may be more. I am convinced the gaskets for the midget engine are also the same, haven't tried them, but look to be identical, I made my own just incase. Not sure how you could measure the cc's accurately without stripping the engine  down again.........


wristpin Tue, 31/12/2013

Occurs to me that with the OLC profile saying 97cc,the hand book 79cc  and one being the reverse of the other, one could just be a typographical error?

Old Lawnmower … Wed, 01/01/2014

For a few years before the War this mower was powered by the Villiers 98cc Mk.2 Midget engine.  After the War this engine was continued on the 20" model but the new 79cc engine was introduced for the 14" and 17" versions of the mower.  Certainly the 14" Light Atco has to be one of the all time classics.


Darmic1 Wed, 01/01/2014

In reply to by Old Lawnmower …

I am really quite chuffed to have found what you describe as one of the all time "Classics"

If anyone has any exploded diagrams for this mower, I would really appreciate it. There seems to be an awful lot of washers/spacers/shims that seemed to be in a completely random order. Any help, drawings etc would be really, really useful.


velofellow15 Fri, 03/01/2014

Thanks to all who responded.I think I will accept that it is a 79cc engine without stripping down

to measure bore and stroke.The mower starts easily,runs well and cuts grass nicely so I will

follow the advice of the late Harold Willis a development engineer at Velocette motor cycles.

"if it's designed right,made right and put together right it will go right.When it is doing so leave the

b----- thing alone!"

(I have this framed on my garage wall in case I am tempted to stray)