A Tractor in the Woods

The Tractor

On a walk in the woods about two weeks ago, my roommate and I stumbled upon the strangest thing in the woods (if such a concept exists). We were a few miles away from anything that would have justified its existence, but we got excited and started toying around with it. It was a rusty, broken, 20 year old tractor. Well, maybe it was a lawn mower. Or a go-cart. Anyways, it was tiny and looked like a ton of fun.

The first thing my roommate did upon finding this rusty piece of junk was to try to start it. Being broken as it was, we laughed it off and went on our way further into the forest. We came back and told our other roommate too. We visited it once more later that week, and the crazy idea of getting the thing running started getting us excited.

Some other friends and I returned several days later, and we came equipped to knock the carburator off so that we could start to clean it. It was a challenge, since everything was so rusted together. My friend spit on the bolt, then we hit the carburator with a rock and we finally got it off! We brought it back and got it cleaned up, still thinking the funny thought that we could bring something so dead and old to life.

We joked around some more, and decided to head out to the woods armed with several “tools” with the hope of cleaning the actual tractor off. We got there when the sun was setting, the rain was sprinkling, and the temperature was dropping. We were all carrying more crap than we needed, and were equipped with the cheapest tools college kids could buy. We started taking the tractor apart further and concluded that we couldn’t get it running, because it was so borked. After taking more parts off the thing (as I learn how engines work), we find a stuck valve and spend the next hour trying to get it unstuck and fluid with our wire brushes and carb cleaner. We finally get it back together and think there is still no hope in the world this thing could ever run.

Jokingly, like the whole project, one sprays carb cleaner into the engine, and the other one pulls the cable. Here’s what happens: