Many of these products really seem to be designed so they will fail. And then you won't be able to get some part because they design was changed. They see it as a way to generate sales!
I have a couple of small machine tools at home and ther have been a number of time where I have made some simple part because the manufactirers part is either unavailable or way too expensive. If I can make it in 15 minutes why does it have to cost half te cost of the whole machine new? But then, most folks haven't the basic skills to open something up and repair it. Perhaps that is what we ought to be teaching in school nowadays. Then we might get better engineers and factory workers making better products.
Sorry to rip on the engineers, but they are involved in many of these "Made by Monkeys" complaints. How many of the engineers would be lost if handed a mechanics toolbox or a set of micrometers?
Ken, I have a similar mower (the auto trans version) and the same mulching cover, which we use. I will have to check (I'm not home now), but I have not noticed any rusting or other problem. If I do, I will comment later.
Have you noticed rusting in the hole through whcih the clip goes? This would be another area of contact?
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Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.