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Antique Gas Engine Discussion

Fairbanks timing

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Old 06-22-2005, 01:30:44 AM
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Default Fairbanks timing

Does this sound right? i have the buzz coil on my Z model fairbanks set, it is set to fire JUST after the compression stroke. basically at TDC, the piston rod is almost straight, not quite, but almost, that is, after it gets done with the compression stroke, then just right when the rod is almost straight to go into the power/exaust stroke, it is set to fire.. does that sound like the timing is correct? another thing i noticed, is that each time the piston goes back, it sucks the intake open, i thought it was only appose to do that once? the spring is still strong, and the fairbanks has exelent compression to it, far beyond what i had expected, perty good for it's original rings. the cylender has a good few rust pits and one kinda deep one, but everything still seems to be far........ dont know how much longer my luck is gona last though if every thing keeps going good, as i dont have much good luck at all. and that messes me up ALOT of times.
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Old 06-22-2005, 08:04:35 AM
C Pratt
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Thumbs up Re: Fairbanks timing

Sky , just gither down to Martinsville In. this sat. Me & Dick will gitter going fore dark! Dave
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Old 06-22-2005, 09:00:01 AM
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David M. Lyon David M. Lyon is offline
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Default Re: Fairbanks timing

If the engine is not running, or not firing, then it will pull the intake open on the normal intake stroke, and again on the power stroke because there is a vacuum in the cylinder from the absence of pressure from ignition of the fuel...Some folks call it "eight cycling" some call it "double sucking" ...Whatever you call it, It ain't runnin' right!...If you don't have any means of advancing the timing once the engine starts, then I would just set the ignition about 10 to 15 degrees BEFORE top dead center...Just MY opinion...Try it at several places and see which works best for the RPM you are going to run... Normaly about 8 degrees for every 100 RPM.

David M.
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Old 06-22-2005, 09:49:45 AM
Jonathan Widelo Jonathan Widelo is offline
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Default Re: Fairbanks timing

are you making good contact ? did you set timer up to come contact with somthing on the engine which will fire the plug every 4th revolution, I have never set one of these mag equipped engine to battery ignition, I usually just get the mag it's a whole lot easier. but I have run my 1917 Fairbanks 6hp on a battery and coil, after posting on this site, i was able to easly hook it up since it was an ignitor engine it already had a tripping device in place , when i get my new project Fairbanks Headless ready to go I am going to try the samething. Look on ebay you might find a good useable Fairbanks R mag for a reasonable price , if not i proably can get you one for around 130 from a friend out west who has a couple,I seen him at CoolSpring but forgot to ask
Good Luck
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Old 06-22-2005, 10:28:32 PM
Andrew Mackey Andrew Mackey is offline
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Exclamation Re: Fairbanks timing

Your ignition is very late! You should fire somewheres about 20 to 25 degrees Before top center Compression! Exhaust should open about 20 Degrees before BDC Power stroke. and the valve should be just closed at TDC intake stroke. as posted earlier, double sucking on the intake is common if there is no ignition, especially if some compression is lost.
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Old 06-22-2005, 11:09:36 PM
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Larry Evans Larry Evans is offline
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Default Re: Fairbanks timing


You might want to take a look at:
to see some pictures of a temporary set up my brother did on a 3 hp. F-M Z while we were waiting to get the magneto rebuilt. He used 2 contact feelers and a switch so we had a retarded spark for starting and normal timing for running. Worked fine.

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Old 06-23-2005, 12:33:11 PM
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Mike Monnier Mike Monnier is online now
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Default Re: Fairbanks timing

Andrew is right that your ignition is late. Unless you plan to pull a load with the engine, I wouldn't set the ignition 25 degrees BTDC. Firing late will make the engine run a little smoother but may also make it run hot. I retarded the cam one tooth on my Z with an AB-33 and that seemed to really smooth it out. It also lessened the risk of breaking my arm trying to start it!
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Old 06-23-2005, 11:41:28 PM
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Exclamation Re: Fairbanks timing

That sure is a perty engine Larry!
i thank you all Very Very much for your help!
now for the big news ................she runs....very good i might add. little fine tunin to do left BUT...she runs.
i had the buzz coil all hooked up, well.....temporarily........and as anxious as i was, i just had to do it.....crank crank crank crank crank.....nothin......perhaps out of time? i dunno, so this time i held the intake open,....crank crank crank, the exaust belched a little, i backed off, definitly out of time i thought.....BUT, what the heck, i just had to try it one more i did........crank crank crank POP, crank pop pop pop pop pop pop, and off she went! as all when the engine first runs, that took alot of questions off of my mind like it always does, did i do this right, did i do that right? i must have........ cuz now i feel like someone lifted a thousand pounds off of my back.
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