Ahh. At last I can relax. My darling tiller (who still has no name. I should remedy that!) broke down this week. Of course, there were two days of sun forecasted before literally ten days of rain and rain and rain, and it broke down on Friday leaving me a ticking clock of anxiety. Each hour was an hour I was losing, and the danged North Garden (50'x30) needed to be tilled asap for planting.
So... I opened her up. At first I was super excited because after a quick examination I was able to find the problem. The forward drive belt had slipped off of it's pulley (I have forward and reverse on this baby!) so it wasn't a huge deal. I slipped the drive belt back into place, revved up the engine and got it to till another three feet before it slipped again. Poo.
Upon closer inspection, I discovered the drive belt was split. No problem, right? I thought I'd just be able to head to the store and pick one up. Wrong! This particular model is so adorably ancient and geriatric that it uses an itty bitty non-standard belt. I was able to find one on ebay and ordered it immediately, but unfortunately the store I bought it from is closed on the weekends so it won't ship until Monday. I seriously started panicking. Monday is when the slew of 80% chance of rainy days began.
Then, yesterday morning, in a fit of madness, I started calling local small engine repair shops. My tiller is so old that there isn't even a model number on this guy. I think it's actually the first model of Junior Troy Bilt there was. I described the belt to a few different mechanics and they all said it was too small and they didn't have GW-9095 in stock (the part number). Finally I called a place that ended up being very close to us and the guy said he thought he'd have something that would work. I drove into town and TADA! He had a drive belt!
So yesterday evening was spent alternating between cooking carnitas for some friends and tilling patches of the North Garden. By 7 oclock I had finished not only the best carnitas I'd ever eaten (recipe to follow!) but I'd finished a final pass of the garden and wrapped up my tilling for the night.
Lucky for me, the forecast has shifted and we have sun and 80's today so I get to do another few passes with the tiller before the rain sets in. Thanks Michigan!