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No spark for Maytag

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I need some expert advice on my maytag twin. I have replaced the old spark plugs, checked the contact for proper gap (.20), cleaned the inside of the flywheel and magneto, inspected the plug wires, and tested it per the instructions found in the owners manual. No spark. I was told that it had spark when I bought it, so I feel the problem might have occured when I took it apart. Although it was easy to take apart and reassemble, perhaps I knocked something out of adjustment?. I admit that I am a novice at this and may be missing something obvious. Any suggestions?
Since you didn't mention it, did you change the condenser? What kind of shape is the coil in?
Hi Tom, I would first suggest checking the condenser you can use an Eklin FA 66 condenser avalible at Napa parts stores the bracket is different but condenser will work. It will run you five bucks. Next check the spark on your coil by Grounding sparkplug with wire attached to top of fins,BE SURE TO ground other wire.These coils where made of one piece of wire so if not grounded on both sides it goes looking for ground and will burn out the one side of your coil.This is in most common found twins with only one sided spark.Next if you have spark in both sides try using a power drill with socket turning the crank shaft over. I'm not sure why this works but I replaced a coil before and had similar problems,tried the drill after everything else could be checked and was.And it started sparking from then on.Good Luck
Hi Tom, since you say you feel it may have happened when taking it apart, one thing you might check is if you put the ring back on the shaft that opens the points. It will be round, of course, with one side flat, it has been a while, but I believe it is keyed. If it is put on turned around from the way it came off, I am not sure it will open the points properly. Later.
Thanks so far for the input. Please continue any suggestions. I have not checked nor changed the condenser. The guy who sold it to me said that it had spark just before he sent it and I have no reason to believe otherwise. I assumed that the condenser must be good enough for the mag to at least generate some spark. Like I said, I am new to this and am not sure how to check to see if the condenser or coil is any good other than visually inspecting them. I may try getting a new condenser. Thanks for the input about what type to buy. Finally, I did check the cam to make sure it was indeed on the shaft correctly and adjusted properly. It all seems to be together and in the right place. One thing that I was curious about was adjusting the winding core heads to the proper clearance from the magnetic pole shoes (per maytag manual instructions). Could this be the problem? Thanks again in advance for your help. This forum is a great place for inexperienced folks like myself to get good advice.
Tom Have you tried cleaning the points? If it hadn't been ran in awhile they may have got oxidized.To clean use emery paper or points file then drag a clean business card through to finish cleaning. You can ck them with a continuity tester. With them closed you should get a reading.Bobrr
I once had an old Clinton engine on a used roto tiller that I picked up. After I got the engine cleaned up I tried to start it. It fired once but after that it had no spark. I tried cleaning the points with a point file and adjusting them to spec afterwards. Still no spark. I tried changing the condensor and magneto, still no spark. Finally not thinking of what else it could be, I took the points off and touched them to a grindstone lightly, put them back on, adjusted the gap and presto, it started up on the first pull and on the first pull every time after that. Perhaps you have a similar problem??

Just had another thought, did you try the old spark plugs before you replaced them? Don't assume the new plugs will be good. I've had brand new spark plugs right out of the box that were no good from a major spark plug manufacturer. I know several people who have had similar problems with this brand of plug. I won't mention the name but it starts with a "C". I don't buy this brand of plug for my air cooled engines any more.

Had the exact same thing happen to me after disassembly and reassembly no spark and I was shown by a Maytag man at a show that the cam will go on the shaft either direction but the part number must face outward!!!! Now my twin runs like a new one!!! Also the previous post about the particular spark plug brand holds true in my book as well!! I prefer Autolite or AC Delco.

Hi Tom,

The point breaker cam has an arrow on it,the arrow has to be visible when installed on the crankshaft.The arrow will indicate a clockwise rotation.To test the coil and condenser I make sure the points and condenser are well grounded to the backing plate.Install a piece of insulating material between the points,such as a piece of thick paper.Make sure all wires have a good connection.Remove one spark plug,leaving the wire connected to it,ground it to the engine, well.Remove the other wire and ground it to the engine.From the negative side of a battery,I connect a jumper wire to the backing plate.Another jumper wire connected to the positive side of the battery I brush quickly against the screw that connects the coil wire to the points.A spark should occur at the spark plug.If it does not I disconnect the condenser wire from the points.If a spark now occurs by brushing the wire at the same location the condenser is at fault.I always set the points on a twin maytag at .020 and the spark plug gap the same.I do not suggest nor recommend that anyone do the same,only relating how I do it. Ed Kinch
Hi Tom that thing about the "ring" point cam, is right. if it is backwards it will close the points when the flywheel magnets are nowhere the coil. These guys know their stuff don't they. keep asking and trying until it goes, it will be just like a new birth. Al
I think I am finally getting somewhere with everyone's help. Here is what I have done so far: I cleaned and polished the contact points, I checked the cam to make sure the arrow was facing out and clockwise, then I followed the suggested instructions for checking the condenser, coil and spark plugs. That test produced SPARK. I was very happy with this small victory. Both plugs checked out ok, so it seems that the problem is not the coil, condenser or plugs. By the way, when you guys mention "cleaning the points", I assume you mean the contact point next to the cam. I have also cleaned and polished the core head points that the magnets on the inside of the flywheel pass across. Could there be any problem at that area? Also, is it possible that the shaft could be turned such that when the cam is placed on the shaft and keyed into place that the magnets on the flywheel are now out of sync with the core heads? When I last reassembled the flywheel, I noticed that the magnets do not cross the core heads at the same time that the contact point reaches the thick wall of the cam (just past the irregular side). Thanks again for the help. Please send along any more suggestions.
You have a lot of information in the above thread.I collect Maytag washers with gas motors on them. I'm not a maytag engine expert but I did have a similar problem on one of my engines.After restoration I had no spark but I did previsoly.After doing a lot of the things listed in this thread there was only week spark. When I finally asked a old Maytag repairman he said to clean the mounting area where the ignition plate mounts to the main engine casting. Sure enough there was paint separating the two parts.Cleaned it off and had enough spark to light up your life.So now when I have a problem like that you know the first thing I clean. KEN
Hello Ken,

That is very good advise that I forgot to mention.

Ed Kinch
SPARK FOR THE MAYTAG! It is too long of a story to post here, but I finally got it. Isn't discovery great. It still isn't quite running yet, but I suspect it must be something other than the mag. I will check the fuel lines, etc... Thanks to all of you for your input - I learned a lot with this project and am definitely hooked on old gas engines.
Following Ed Kinch's advice on setting the points on a Model 72 Maytag at .020 has solved a spark problem that has bugged me for some time. Going from no spark to a beautiful BLUE spark is a real joy. Thanks, Ed.
Hello Norbert, I am very pleased that I could be of help.Your kindness makes it worth while to help.

Merry Christmas,Ed Kinch
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