So, how many years/hours did you get out of your "consumer grade" lawn mower 'til this happened?
For $28 you can't save a lot by fabbing up an "improved version" from new parts, IMHO.
Sometimes, you just gotta "pay the piper" and move on.
(Disclaimer) Of course, I'd probably dip into my used parts inventory (AKA, junk pile) and waste some time making the problem go away! (YAMMV!)