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Cushman Scooter Engine With no Spark


I asking for a friend .
This engine has a Wico magneto. It mount to the the engine on a plate with other coils to make a 12 volt light circuit.
So far he has replaced the coil, points ,condenser . Spark plug .
We have clean and tested new points ,do open and are timing is correct.
Tested magnets on flywheel , they all reverse polarity from nort to south using a compass
I was wondering if you all have had exiperence with this engine not firing .
It so simple a design ,it has to be something .
We are using a resistant plug wire , also wonder if we have the wrong plug wire?
Please suggest things to try.


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Re: Cushman Scooter engine with no spark

Get rid of that plug wire and get a copper conductor plug wire. Carbon core spark plug wire and resistor plugs should not be used on any older equipment.

Pat Barrett

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If the magnets have been out, they could be set back in wrong. All the norths need to be pointed to one side, ,left or right, and the souths all on the same side.

David M. Lyon

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You can put a battery in series between the points and the coil using alligator clips to just hook it up like that momentarily and break the points manually with a screwdriver to be sure all is well with the points, condenser, and coil. Then that would only leave you with the flywheel magnets. DON'T leave the battery hooked up but just a few seconds while you check to see how well it fires or you'll burn the coil up. ...And YES! get rid of that resistor wire and get solid core wire. :bonk:


I had a big Allstate,(sold by Sears,built by Cushman) while in high school. The flywheel cracked right through the key way and messed up the timing. Local machine shop shrunk a band over the flywheel inner hub which corrected the point timing, I replaced the defective Wico coil with a 6-volt automotive coil, made a battery rack in the front of the floorboard where the V shaped metal went up to the handle bars and wired it up using an on-off switch . It would run for most of a week on one good battery charge, All was well till it slid in the ditch coming into the driveway late one rainy afternoon and I never got it out. Traded it for a guitar and sold the guitar for $5.00 and never looked back.


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Last year I ran into the same problem.

The problem in my case was, I had bought a 4hp engine for parts.
The ignition system was better condition than the original parts.
Come to find out, there are CCW backing plates and flywheels and CW assemblies.
You need the CW assembly.

Did you check the magnet strength?

Look on the flywheel and the coil mounting plate. One of these sets of letters will be stamped on each with a arrow indicating direction of rotation.
I don't have the parts here to take pictures.

To elaborate on the "don't solder the coil wire", The wires would break from vibration, no support.

The wire attached to the coil would be looped, with the loop being soldered to its self. Then the loop would be squished tight to the lug on the coil. This would allow the wire some movement. The wire wouldn't break as quickly.

You can also solder, and use epoxy on the soldered area and part of the insulation to the coil body to support the wire. Wrap a string around the wire and coil, then epoxy.

Tattoo Tom

I have ‘57 Cushman pacemaker with the husky engine with a weak spark. I do notice someone did solder the plug wire directly to the coil. What else can cause a weak spark. I have the correct champion plug too. Thanks Tom


The armature of the magneto, he took it apart the corrosion was extensive between plate from moisture.
We will clean it and reassemble .
Any suggestions
Cleaning ? Bead blast or chemical?
I think there is a coating like lacquer to insulate. .any one know what they use ?
Is Wico still around with customer service to ask ?

Dick DeBuse

I would replace the laminations. There are plenty good used laminations out there, especially since guys have started changing over to electric starters. Bad condensers have been a chronic problem with Cushman engines. Even new Chinese repro condensers are sometimes bad right out of the bag. Try a condenser from a different source.

Dick DeBuse

Some scooter owners have reported having trouble with the new Chinese made ignition parts due to the gold paint they are coated with. Apparently, this paint is non-conductive. You must sand or scrape off the coating in the area of contact to get good conductivity. Whoda thunk?


I was told today by a Dennis Carpenter employ that the magnets on the old (mines a 1946) flywheels get weak and are useless at that point. To test he said to place a screw driver on the magnet and pull off, if not much resistance it is gone. Mine about fell off all by it self. The fix is a $1000 electronic set up which comes with a new flywheel. I'm gonna go with an engine swap this winter. Any suggestions on what to use??? TY j

Fred M.


Is it practical to re-charge the magnet? You might be able to establish the correct polarity using a compass.



I wanted everyone to know what he found that finally got it going. Had to be something simple.
There were two engines a 12 volt and a six volt magneto system. The points cam on the crankshaft was not as pitted and rusty off the six volt . So he used it .
Well there is timing difference between the two. There are two listed in Dennis carpenters catalog.
So he cleaned up the old rusty pitted 12 volt point cam and installed it.
And it started right up .
There’s the story , I hope by posting this it help anyone with this problem , good luck