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Vintage Diesel and Oil Engines Fairbanks Morse, Lister, Petter, Witte and other pump injected Diesel oil engines.

Vintage Diesel and Oil Engines

John Deere 4239 Diesel Engine Won’t Start and Won’t Fire on Ether

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Old 06-19-2018, 11:50:11 PM
Mark Schneider Mark Schneider is offline
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Default Re: John Deere 4239 Diesel Engine Wonít Start and Wonít Fire on Ether

Always a good idea to service the injectors at the same time as a injector pump rebuild. While a worn injector that has a poor spray pattern will affect performance and starting, an injector that sticks shut will not allow fuel flow and will "terminate" some important parts in the pump head and more than likely snap the pump drive shaft off.
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Old 06-28-2018, 08:05:36 PM
Joe Stewart Joe Stewart is offline
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Default Re: John Deere 4239 Diesel Engine Wonít Start and Wonít Fire on Ether

I picked up the injection pump from the repair shop. They told me that the plungers had become stuck.

When I asked them what was the cause of this, they told me it was due to "sitting up". They also mentioned fuel lubricity as a possible factor.

I have trouble believing the "sitting up" theory, because as per my first post in this thread, I had only let this machine "sit" for about a month. Well, maybe it was two months, or possibly longer - even if it was - I still don't think the plungers should have stuck due to "sitting", particularly if they were continually bathed in diesel (which they were). He said the tolerances were tight. But he did not think that the plungers were replaced at the time that the pump was rebuilt. Therefore, these are the same plungers that have always been in this pump since I owned the machine (9years), and I have definitely let this motor "sit" for longer periods (sometimes more than a year), and the plungers never stuck before......

Regarding fuel lubricity: I have always run the dyed diesel with the Stanadyne additive. I purchase 500gallons of fuel and add one container of fuel conditioner (I believe the label says it treats 375 gallons, so I may be shortchanging myself slightly).

Well, from now on, I am going to keep a fresh battery on this machine and start it up every couple of weeks - kind of a bummer because I really don't need to use this machine very often. Word to the wise, I guess.

I've re-installed the pump back onto the motor, but I have not installed the new Chinese injectors I bought. Gonna have to hurry and get those installed so I can get this pump doing its work again.

I want to thank everyone who answered in this thread. A huge help.
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Old 06-28-2018, 09:46:37 PM
Greg Mosley Greg Mosley is offline
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Default Re: John Deere 4239 Diesel Engine Wonít Start and Wonít Fire on Ether

Greetings Joe, Try to keep #2 in the tank at all times. Ad a 1/2 Qt. of ATF every 30 gals. of fuel this will stop lubricity issues and keep your injectors clean and free of corrosion. I do not recommend this on late model engines as injection pressure can exceed 30,000 lbs and may crack the injector, Your engine by todays standards just slobbers fuel on the pulse. Enuf Said
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Old 06-29-2018, 06:21:54 AM
Sooty Jim Sooty Jim is offline
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Default Re: John Deere 4239 Diesel Engine Wonít Start and Wonít Fire on Ether

The Stanadyne is a much better lubricity additive than ATF. 2-stoke oil is a much better lubricity additive than ATF, though it does have zinc and can clog certain injector tips. The Stanadyne and the 2-stroke oil are designed to combust and leave minimal deposits. Some of the modern synthetic base oil ATF is not designed to combust. In fact, it's base oil has very high flash point and resists combustion. The additive package is designed for automatic transmissions and the stuff that does not combust is left as a deposit. With a high enough dose, it can actually effect how the diesel fuel combusts. Back in the days when there was nothing else, and injection systems were crude, the early ATFs were an OK thing to add. Now there are many better products that do not leave combustion chamber deposits and combust readily. The newest ATFs have REALLY high flash points and very complex additive packages (vs the old days) and who knows what you are putting inside your injection system that really wasn't designed to be there. If ATF were still just a light base oil with a few friction modifiers, that was one thing. Today's ATF... not so much.

Also Google "Spicer Lubricity Study." It will fill you in on additives and their effect on lubricity. Many other things to read on the net, some from injection system manufacturers, fuel refiners, etc. Modern ULSD fuel does now have a lubricity standard of >HFRR 460. Some say that's not quite enough, others say it's OK. The industry people say it's OK. The people selling additives say it's not. Who do you believe?

Last edited by Sooty Jim; 06-29-2018 at 08:30:13 AM.
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Old 06-29-2018, 08:16:23 AM
Oil Power Oil Power is offline
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Default Re: John Deere 4239 Diesel Engine Wonít Start and Wonít Fire on Ether

I do not find it surprising the plungers should have been stuck. In Australia we have had an ongoing problem with wax separating out of our fuel. This mainly occurs under low temperatures and I have seen filters choked after a single frost. Admittedly you would not expect a pump to be gummed up in such a short time but I wonder if it had been exposed to very low temperatures. A contributing factor would have been the low cranking speed as those pumps do like a quick spin to get their plungers moving.
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Old 06-29-2018, 08:58:13 AM
ronm ronm is offline
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Default Re: John Deere 4239 Diesel Engine Wonít Start and Wonít Fire on Ether

Happens all the time if an engine sets for any length of time. And this is the desert here, so it ain't moisture...
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Old 06-29-2018, 12:09:15 PM
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Toesmack Toesmack is offline
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Default Re: John Deere 4239 Diesel Engine Wonít Start and Wonít Fire on Ether

The Stanadyne is decent stuff as is Howes fuel treatment. Good clean #2 fuel is normally fine on its own, but a little extra insurance never hurts. I would never pour any oil or ATF into my own fuel tanks, it was accepted practice back in the 60's and 70's, but with todays oil additives and the ready availability of good fuel treatments it is an unwarranted risk.

I have seen that same engine in a Deere tractor dragged out of the barn after sitting 10 years with untreated fuel. New battery and spin the starter. Running fine within 2 or 3 revolutions. And dozens of other similar examples. Plenty of companies I made service calls to have fleets that sit for many months untouched. "Sitting up" normally equals new batteries, nothing more. (except for the wildlife issues)

Sounds like you may have gotten a bit of water past the filters at some point, or more likely, just not received the pump rebuild you paid for the first time around. The "sitting up" theory sounds like the pump shop is trying to cover its ass for a job not done properly the first time.
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