How many arch students does it take to perform small engine repairs?

Tale of the Pressure Washer: A Love Story

This is a tale of action, adventure, romance, and betrayal. We find our heroes on a quest to repair a broken power washer engine to prepare for project repairs ahead of this weekend. The task seemed reasonably simple: a quick check of the spark plugs, oil, and some fresh gas for the tank should do the trick. After a few sprays of starter fluid and a series of loud sputters of the engine, it came to a sudden halt. They realized it was yet a LONG journey ahead. Prof. Pastre kept hope alive, instructing that it must be blockage in the carburetor jets and that a disassembly to clean them out should get the job done.

As he left the shop to check progress on cleaning efforts of some of the past projects, our crew embarked on the disassembly. After venturing deep into the bowels of the engine, we finished our task of cleaning the carburetor and were ready to give the engine another go. The strongest of us began ripping at the pull starter. Pulling and PULLING AND PULLING.


To much of our crew’s dismay the pull starter cord had snapped. Most of us had only minor experience with small engines and were unsure of the next step to take. All hope seemed lost.

But then, another hero joined the group and rose our spirits by filling the wood shop with the sound of a hardy “I know somethings about small engines.” The crew dove back into the engine, digging deeper than they did before, Prof. Pastre returned with a new pull starter cord and just as they were re-positioning the recoil spring.

*snap* again

The spring had corroded over the years and broke. Will our heroes be able to repair the pressure washer? Will the engine even start up after all the effort? Tune in to read the next blog post to find out!

So that was a really long and drawn out way of me saying we spent all day trying to fix the pressure washer and have some more work left to go. Fingers crossed it actually works.

A proposal design for the branding plaque for existing and future community build projects.

On a much lighter note, cleaning on previous projects has begun. We have all split into groups to tackle 6 different projects in 3 different locations. My group is involved in cleaning/repairing the GAP Shed and Crop Stop both located at Sweetgrass Garden on Johns Island. They both have been well used and well taken care of. Most of our proposed work involves a good exterior cleaning (hence the need for the pressure washer), some gravel infill, paint touch-up, sink repair, and upgraded door latches. Our goal is to have these projects all beatified by the beginning of next week so we can move onto this semester’s main project (the excitement is building).

We are also conducting research and proposing ideas on branding for existing projects and future projects to come. This will involve displaying the Clemson Architecture Community Build logo along with the names of the students involved in the projects. Stay tuned to see the final decision on that in the coming week.

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