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MTD Snowblower Muffler Bolts

One of the bolts from the replacement muffler on the MTD snowblower worked its way out of the engine block and vanished along the driveway, perhaps to be found when the snow vanishes in a few months. The muffler’s still in place, but the engine exhaust comes straight out of the port into that compartment and, because I’m running the engine a bit rich to make up for oxygenated gasoline, a beautiful blue flame jets about two inches from the bolt hole.

Being that sort of guy, I installed one of the original bolts that I’d tossed into the bin with its relatives and continued the mission.

For future reference:

  • MTD Snowthrower E6A4E
  • Tecumseh engine HMSK80
  • Tecumseh muffler 35056
  • Tecumseh bolt 651002

The bolt has, of course, delightfully custom specs: 5/16-18 x 4-3/16.

My bolt stash tops out at 4 inches, so that not-quite-1/4 inch extra length means you gotta buy an OEM bolt.

They’re $1.20 from Jack’s Small Engines, with five bucks of shipping, or you can find a kit with two bolts and the lock bracket for $12 on Amazon.

No pix, because it’s 14 °F outside and barely more than that in the garage.

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  1. #1 by Red County Pete on 2015-02-28 - 09:41

    I’ve run into the odd-length bolt a few times. A few fixes: a) buy a 4-1/2″ bolt and use a few spare flat washers from the stash to make the difference. b) Put a nut on the bolt (use two to jam the end at the proper length) and apply a hacksaw. Backing the nut off will untangle the threads. c) similar to ‘b’ but use a die, taper end out… d) use a triangle file and remember ‘b’ or ‘c’ the next time.

    You might want to try a dab of blue loc-tite at the outermost portion of the thread. Low-strength purple would be better if you have a really good stash. Non-oxy gas would help let the engine run smoother. Try a marina. OK in Oregon, but YMMV.

    I’m not having any luck with the 7/8-xx(?)” nut on my disc harrow. The implement shop sez “get thee to a machine shop”. Either that or declare a stalemate and use it as is.

    • #2 by Ed on 2015-02-28 - 10:15

      If I had to actually buy a bolt, I’d get the right one… which I did!

      I lubed the threads with Never-Seez to eliminate stuck-bolt drama the next time around, but apparently didn’t crimp the lock bracket tightly enough around the hex head. We’ll see if I got that right in a few years when this muffler burns through.

      The notion of buying avgas at the airport down the road ended when we realized I’d blat leaded exhaust around the vegetable garden all year round. Probably wouldn’t make any difference, but there’s a Principle involved.

      • #3 by Red County Pete on 2015-02-28 - 11:39

        Agreed on leaded fuels. Besides, I’m not sure it’s a good idea to shove 100 octane fuel in a small engine designed for 85 or so. On the gripping hand, the last time I heard about avgas purchases, it was double the price of pump gas. I can live with a 50 cent per gallon charge for 87 octane (regular around here) difference. Not all terminals sell the lower grade, but I lucked out my first try.

        • #4 by Ed on 2015-03-01 - 18:37

          shove 100 octane fuel in a small engine designed for 85

          But I’d get closer to the Sears Horsepower rating, right before the piston emerges from the head…

  2. #5 by Biguggy on 2015-02-28 - 09:41

    Surely you could find ‘something’ a fraction longer, with a suitable head, and cut off the surplus? Dremmel cut off wheel or old fashioned hacksaw?

    • #6 by Ed on 2015-02-28 - 09:56

      I’m ashamed to admit that the bolt stock tops out at 3 inches for most sizes, four inches for a few, and random lengths beyond that. The duty cycle on those seems so low that even I can’t justify buying an assortment on the off chance it’d come in handy, but I do save discards.

      On the other paw: a moving estimator once said the job looked like packing an entire Home Depot store, soooo … it’s a pretty good stash. [grin]

  3. #7 by Daniel B. Martin on 2015-03-01 - 15:51

    Didn’t Ol’ Gene leave a nice collection of all-thread rod?

    • #8 by Ed on 2015-03-01 - 18:35

      Indeed!

      Between his collection and the stash I got when the Raleigh Home Depot shut down (a long long time ago), I’m set.

      Truth be known, though, I didn’t think of it: whipped an old muffler bolt out of the bin, slathered it with Never-Seez, popped it in, and continued the mission…