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With Small Engines youth learn basic small engine knowledge:  engine parts, tools of the trade, safety issues and what makes small engines work. They explore the uses of small engines and safety issues. Youth who love figuring out how things work will enjoy the 4-H small engines projects. They will get hands-on experiences that will help them understand how machines, such as lawn mowers and model airplanes, operate and how to keep them running.

  • Learn to distinguish between engine types
  • Indentify parts of an engine
  • Prepare a lawnmower for storage
  • Take engines apart and reassemble them

State Fair Exhibit Rules

Each county may submit 1 entry total for 50294, 50296; and 1 entry for 50297.

Small Engine displays must be no larger than 4’ x 4’ display board. Exhibits must be portable. The size of exhibits larger than 3’ x 3’ should be noted on the 4-HDMS electronic entry form. No complete engines, lawn tractors, tillers, chainsaws, etc. are permitted for display. No electrical power is available for displays/exhibits.

50294   Small Engines

Exhibit a display, selecting one of the following items:

  • Ignition System: Identify the parts of the Ignition System and explain how magnetic energy is produced through the ignition system to ignite the spark plug; OR
  • Compression System: Explain how heat energy is produced by an engine and converted into mechanical energy; OR
  • Heat Transfer: Explain how heat is transferred through the cooling and lubrication system of an air cooled or water cooled engine; OR
  • Filter Maintenance: Explain the proper maintenance and cleaning of the air, fuel and oil filters of an engine; OR
  • What does a serial number reveal?: Explain the various information that can be learned from the serial number or identification number stamped on the shroud of a Briggs & Stratton engine; OR
  • Tools to do the job: Identify and explain the function(s) of different specialty tools needed for small engine work, OR
  • Experimentation: Explain through illustration an experiment you conducted from the project manual showing the results of your work.

50296    Small Engines Clover Challenge

Open to 15- to 18-year-olds enrolled in the Small Engines Clover Challenge Project who have completed Small Engines 1, 2 and 3.

Exhibits in this category should go “above and beyond” what the 4-H project books cover and should represent an accumulation of years of project study. The exhibit may include, but isn’t limited to, original works, objects, demonstrations, digital presentations, programs, websites, games, apps, performances, or posters which you have made. Choose whatever method best shows what you’ve learned. You must furnish any equipment you need for your exhibit. Internet service will not be provided for the exhibit. All exhibits must include something visual, such as a printed copy of a digital presentation, which will remain on display during the exhibition. Electronic equipment will only be used during your personal judging time and will not remain on display during the entire exhibit period. The completed Illinois 4-H Clover Challenge Agreement must be presented with the exhibit.

50297    Small Engines Ready4Life Challenge

Open to 11- to 18-year-olds enrolled in any Small Engines project

Exhibits in this category must include the following: a) a physical representation of the career or business product such as a model, prototype or display/portfolio that includes images of accomplished work; b) verbal or written explanations that demonstrate knowledge of the related career or business fields, potential careers, and the appropriate requirements for achievement in those fields. The judging criteria for this class values thoroughness of career and/or business exploration and pursuit above the workmanship of the physical specimen on display.