Since no one really talks about walk behind tractor restorations very much, I figure I might as well start telling how I do the ones I get to lay my violent hands on. They are so simple mechanically to restore, but oftentimes very difficult tracing parts and getting the details right. I think walk behinds are my favorites to get polished up since in most cases you end up with a one of a kind machine that is very rewarding to finish.
This is the victim, for one of my local customers. It is a Bolens Handi Ho.
It has had the normal abuse and misuse all walkers seem to get. However, it was retired and parked away inside (much better treatment than most of its brethren get) and was in very decent shape.
I was told by the Bolens geniuses floating around here that the Briggs 8B currently on board was incorrect. It just happens that I have a 6S lying in the shop that would be right at home on the tractor and that would make it correct.
The first step was a stick of dynamite and I suddenly had it in a pile of pieces. You gotta love the simplicity of these tractors.
I learned pretty fast that it had had some modifications through the years. Not the least of which was the engine. The old engine and the 6S side by side. Someone was creative enough to raise the tank on the 8B to make it fit.
Sadly, they did cut up the base plate to make the 8B mounting pattern work.
It looks like they even had to rig up the belt guard.
Someone must have gotten aggressive on the handles. Both are broken off. I have a second set I will probably use to replace these.
The cultivator attachment came apart very easily. Most times dirt engaging tools from the past simply are permanently in place. Once a little oil goes on the right places, I think I will end up with a working Handi Ho.
Here is another injury. The whole pull of the cultivator pivots here:
The old Firestone tire still holds air, amazingly. There is no tube here, even on split rims.
Before I began sanding, stripping, and priming, the 6S had a beautiful Briggs logo on it I had to preserve first. I hate to take those off, but you gotta do what you gotta do, and this shroud is turning green!
This lime green (almost a Deutz Spring Green) was the color of the inner sprocket. This thing has been repainted numerous times. The first original coat shows through in some spots. Some places it is a dark forest green, others it is this lime green, and other places it is a John Deere green. At least it was preserved from rust although it was painted wrong!
I really haven't decided what color to paint it. I am leaning towards Oliver Clover Green, not the dark green of the old Olivers. The yellow looks like an industrial yellow, so I'll probably borrow some Cat paint. Do I hear any input on the paint?