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Antique Gas Engine Discussion

Sparta help.


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  #1  
Old 05-14-2005, 04:03:17 PM
Greg Shipley Greg Shipley is offline
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Default Sparta help.

A while back I posted that I was having trouble getting my 1913 4 HP sparta running. Seemed to be an ignition problem. Running on a battery and coil. I still have this problem. Getting fuel, just no spark. Per a suggestion, I tightened the ignitor spring 1.2 turn, this made the ignitor closed all the time and promptly blew up my coil. I went to autozone and picked up an automotive coil for 10 bucks. wired it up as follows:
Positive of the coil to the positive of the battery, negative of the coil to the post on the ignitor, negative of the battery to the ignitor body. Alot of sparks when I connected the ground up, but still not running, backed off the ignitor spring 1/2 turn and still no running. This engine has run in the past but would run for a while, soot up stop and I would have to clean the ignitor with carb cleaner to get it to run again.
Would like to hear ideas on this as I want to hear it run again. Also have a JD E 1.5HP that is not running either, no wonder they went to spark plugs.

Greg
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Old 05-14-2005, 04:08:31 PM
Harold Guy Harold Guy is offline
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Default Re: Sparta help.

Try new gas
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Old 05-14-2005, 04:24:12 PM
Rex Pyles Rex Pyles is offline
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Default Re: Sparta help.

I agree, new gas turns real old real quick!
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Old 05-14-2005, 05:06:58 PM
Greg Shipley Greg Shipley is offline
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Default Re: Sparta help.

tried the new gas, just put some in the intake of the lunkenhiemer. no luck, I have verified with a volt meter that the ignitor is open, is pushed closed then snaps back open, also, cleaned the contacts.
I will try draining the gas tank next.
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Old 05-14-2005, 06:06:13 PM
Kevin O. Pulver Kevin O. Pulver is offline
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Default Re: Sparta help.

Greg, it could be that your ignitor is shorting out. It might look good with an ohm-meter but the spark could jump to ground when you hook up the coil. Sort of like a bad spark plug wire, it checks good, but in running conditions the spark jumps through the cracked insulation instead of through the plug. Something to check on. If you can snap the points and watch how it operates off the engine (still wired hot with your coil)it might give you some ideas. BUT even spark plugs will show good sometimes and then break down under compression and not run inside the engine. Sometimes I'm amazed they could keep these ignitor engines running at all when you think about how many times your mower won't run until you change the spark plug... and the old one looked and tested fine.... By the way, I too use the primary side (pos and neg) of a 12 volt automotive coil and a 12 volt battery and my Chore Boy runs good on it. Kevin
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Old 05-14-2005, 06:06:58 PM
Greg Shipley Greg Shipley is offline
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Thumbs up It Runs!

several causes I think, new gas, partially clogged fuel line, badly pitted and dirty ignitor contacts.
long story short, it runs and I think I will get a lawn chair and just sit and watch it run this evening.
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Old 05-14-2005, 06:10:27 PM
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Alan Fannin Alan Fannin is offline
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Default Re: Sparta help.

Sounds like your mica has failed (shorted),on the stationary connection.
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Old 05-15-2005, 12:18:53 AM
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Paul Spence Paul Spence is offline
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Default Re: Sparta help.

Greg: I assuming you were drinking ice tea while watching it run , just in case it started acting up . Usually non running problems are a comedy of errors caused by a single fault we try to fix and just make it worse . Glad you got it running and could sit back and enjoy (that's the best part).
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Old 05-15-2005, 02:02:53 AM
Andrew Mackey Andrew Mackey is offline
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Exclamation Re: Sparta help.

The new gasoline shorts electrical things under compression. This means spark plugs and igniters! If the fuel has gotten on the surfaces (flooded engine), then it will short under compression, especially if there is carbon on the offending item..A plug may arc, and an igniter flash out of the engine, but once it has a compression load on it it will short out. Look at your mica on the igniter carefully, if there is carbon on it, and it gets wet with fuel, then it is time for a rebuild. Do not use a wire brush to clean the igniter - the metal in the brush leaves microscopic traces of the metal on the mica surfaces, and it will short the igniter.
Andrew
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