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Hello, I'm Dale from Michigan... My first post here.

I was riding my craftsman mod # 917.273390 when it stalled on me. I restarted it and it went BANG!!! I knew I broke the motor so began to disassemble to assess the damage. When I opened the case, there was broken metal all over. My rod connector looked like it exploded.

Fortunately, everything else appears to be intact (at least what I can see) the piston is still in the shaft and I don't know if it's seized up there.

I'm a handy guy but my skills involve wood not engines. I made it this far with the engine on my bench and the case apart. I haven't removed the head to asses piston damage yet. Does this sound like something I can repair or is the engine toast?

The mower is only 5 yrs old give or take and is in great condition otherwise. Thanks in advance for an advice.
 

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Looks like you have a Briggs and Stratton 31H777-0297-E1, normally when they blow there is other damage other then the connecting rod.
Look at the guides that the camshaft sits in and make sure they are not cracked or split. Also look at the crankshaft and make sure the journal isn't scored. If everything is intact, then all you need is a new connecting rod and gaskets. Special tools you will need are a piston ring compressor, and a torque wrench.
 
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