N Board Forum - Expanded Thread Page

Subject: 9n woes

[Back] [Return to Top of Forum]

David    Posted 07-17-2018 at 16:45:04 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [Email]  
  • 9n woes
  • ok so I tested all the different parts
    the ignition,coil,battery,starter solenoid and I have no spark
    I pulled a plug put the wire back on and held it to the frame while
    trying to start no spark...
    I should see spark correct?
    I did test at the top of coil and have 6.3 something volts but when I tried to test the plugs going into the distributor I got no reading at all
    should I have gotten 6 there as well
    I am at a loss its not gas I have gas flowing out the bottom of the carb

    Tim Daley(MI)    Posted 07-18-2018 at 08:20:08 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [No Email]  
  • Re: 9n woes
  • You haven't verified the wiring is correct have you? ALL 9N and 2N tractors never had a starter solenoid. The 8N Model introduced the starter solenoid which was mounted on the body like shown in the picture below. The 9N/2N starter has only 1-Wire a shown in the diagram. It connects to the battery NEG post via the starting switch. Do not cornfuse the starting switch/button for a solenoid as some do. They are two different animals altogether. It is a bit misleading, partly due to Ford, because the 9N/2N starting switch is also numbered 11450. It is the prefix code that defines them. The 9N-11450 is the switch connected to the button -see diagram. On the 8N, the 8N-11450 is the starter motor solenoid. The 8N-11500 is the button switch -on the 8N. Be sure the spot where you ground plug to is free of dirt, paint, rust, and crud. Pick a spot on the head, or the stud/nut closest to dash is good, sand it down to bare metal and check spark there.



    Tim Daley(MI)

    Tim Daley(MI)

    Bruce (VA)    Posted 07-18-2018 at 06:46:13 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [Email]  
  • Re: 9n woes
  • " I did test at the top of coil and have 6.3 something volts but when I tried to test the plugs going into the distributor I got no reading at all "

    It's just as well that you had no spark. Because if you did have spark, it would be around 22kv and burned up your meter.

    That's not how to check spark.

    The front distributor on the N tractors may be a bit of a surprise & mystery to some folks, but it was the norm on V-8 Ford cars and trucks from 1932 to 1948.

    The front distributor was designed to come off of the tractor to replace/adjust the points. To do this, remove the wire on the coil, remove the coil bail, remove the distributor cap & take the two bolts off. The base of the distributor has an offset tang & can only go back one way unless you really force it on.

    The first thing you need to check is bushing wear. If the shaft has any sideways movement AT ALL, the bushings must be replaced. (see Note 1, below) Next, if this is the first time you have had the distributor off the tractor, make sure the advance weights are in working order. (See Note 2, below)

    Next, look at how the points & condenser are set in the distributor before you start pulling it down! Turn the tang & observe how the points open & close. If this is your first time doing it, draw a sketch! Make sure you are using quality points. I use only Wells, Blue Streak or Echlin brand points (See Note 3, below). Be careful not to ground the tip of the condenser wire to the body of the distributor when you replace the points. Do not break the little copper strip that go to the points. (If you do, make another out of the old set of points). Check the insulator w/ your meter. If it's bad, replace it with a Hillman Group square .375 license plate screw, Item # 138916, model #881189. Also, make sure the condenser wire does not go through the same opening in the distributor as the coil pig tail. The condenser wire goes through the opening on the top right.

    Look at the old points; are they burned, pitted or misaligned? Check the point gap, .015 on all four lobes. Make sure the blade is at a perfect right angle to the points. You want to feel just the slightest bit of drag when you pull the blade through the points. Set the points on the high side of the cam and ensure they align correctly. Make sure you have the star washers under the screws on the points. If you need to replace the 8-32 X.19 fillister head screws, ensure that the new screws do not interfere with the advance weights. Dress the points by running a piece of card stock or a brown paper bag through them. New points sometimes have an anti-corrosive dielectric coating on them & old points can corrode or pick up grease from a dirty feeler gauge or excessive cam lubricant. And, don’t forget to lube the rubbing block w/ cam lube; not Vaseline, not bearing grease, but cam lube . (See Note 3, below).

    If you are using quality points and cannot get the gap to open to .015, chances are you need to replace the bushings. (See Note 2, below)

    Now, set the timing. Get a meter or test light, a 21/64” drill bit (See Note 4, below) & a metal straight edge. Put the distributor face down w/ the condenser on the left & the timing plate lock screw on the bottom. Look at the end of the shaft: it has a narrow side & a wide side. Make sure you can tell the difference. Now, place the drill bit in the bottom mounting hole (this will be your reference point for measuring). Next, place a straight edge on the wide side of the tang on the shaft as shown in fig. FO83 in the picture. Rotate the shaft CCW (as viewed from rotor side OR CW as viewed from back/tang side) until the straight edge is ¼" beyond the outside edge of the drill bit you stuck in the distributor mounting hole. At this distance, the distributor points should start to open (get your meter/light out now & check). If not, loosen the timing plate lock screw and turn to advance or retard the timing (move the plate down to advance timing, up to retard). Remember, each one of those little hash marks represents about 4° of timing. Keep adjusting until you get the proper ¼" setting. (if the plate won’t move, you might need to remove the big C clip to loosen it a bit) As you’re adjusting, eliminate backlash by turning the shaft backwards (CW as viewed from the front) and bring the shaft forward (CCW as viewed from the front) to measure your setting. This ¼" setting will get you static timing at top dead center.

    After you set the points & timing, do a continuity check before you put the distributor back on the tractor. Do not skip this step! Before you start, make sure your meter/light works.

    With the distributor still off the tractor, follow these steps:

    1. Coil off, cap off, points open. One probe on the brass screw & the other on both sides of the open points. On the side closest to the cam, you should have continuity. Not on the other side! If you do, you will also have continuity everywhere because the points are grounded.

    2. Coil off, cap off, points open. One probe on the brass screw & the other anywhere on the body of the distributor. You should have no continuity! Now, rotate the tang on the distributor....as the points open & close, you have continuity (closed) and lose it when they open.

    3. Put the coil on the distributor, cap off, points open. One probe on the lead on the top of the coil, the other on the cam side of the open points. You should have continuity!

    4. Coil on, cap off, points open. One probe on the lead on the top of the coil, the other anywhere on the body of the distributor. You should have no continuity!

    At this point, I just put the distributor, coil & cap all back on the tractor as a unit. The reason I do this is because it is real easy to get the cap or coil misaligned trying to put it back together, one piece at a time. The result is something gets broken or you get a ‘no spark’ problem.

    It's possible to put it back on wrong & break it. Look at the slot on the end of the cam shaft. Whatever angle it happens to be, turn the distributor tang to match it. Make sure you can tell the wide side from the narrow side on both the cam & distributor! (close counts). Place the distributor on the front of the engine, gently push it in place & slowly turn the distributor body until you feel the tang slip into the slot. Rotate the distributor body until the bolt holes line up. Hand tighten the two bolts until the distributor body is flush with the timing gear cover.

    Double-check your firing order & plug wires. It’s 1-2-4-3, counterclockwise. It’s very easy to cross 3 & 4 both at the cap and on the head.

    And finally, do not forget to remove the distributor on at least an annual basis (more often, depending on use) to check the point gap and re-lube the cam.

    Note 1: Unscrew the plate hold down screw & remove the C clip to get the plate out. Remove the shaft & weights. The weights should freely move.

    Note 2: There are three ways to replace the bushings in a front distributor:

    1. Buy new bushings (part numbers 9N12120 front & 18-12132 rear). Press out the old ones, press in the new ones and ream to fit. CAUTION: do not try this unless you have a press & know how to use it. If you break the base, a new one costs $130. If you bend the tower which holds the front bushing, a new plate will cost you $30.

    2. Take the new bushings and distributor to your local machine shop.

    3. Send the distributor out for bushing replacement if you do not have a
    local machine shop.

    Make sure your distributor isn’t worn out; check the wear parts with a micrometer and compare what you have to the factory specs (below).

    Factory Specs:

    Shaft top .4367 / .4370

    Shaft Bottom .8625 / .8630

    Cam Flats .789 / .791

    Cam Lobes .869 / .871

    Base Tang .177 / .178

    Note 3: Just8N's kit:

    Heavy-Duty Point Set, Condenser, Heavy-Duty Rotor, Heat Range Matched Spark Plugs. Packed 6 to Master Carton. Contains: 1-9N12107 Point Set, 1-AONN12300A Condenser, 1-9N12200 Rotor,1-9N12104 Gasket Kit,4-AL437 Spark
    Plug,1-015 Gauge, 1-025 Gauge.

    Note 3: Distributor cam lube NAPA:


    Note 4: Rather than the drill bit, a jig made by Dan Allen (The Old Hokie) will make this task quicker & more accurate.


    David    Posted 07-18-2018 at 08:52:18 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [Email]  
  • Re: 9n woes
  • thank you all for your advice
    trouble is my tractor is some distance from my domicile
    so I can't get to it as easily as I wish and it takes time
    for me to preform these tasks but I will do them
    thanks again

    Rustyal    Posted 07-17-2018 at 18:43:07 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [No Email]  
  • Re: 9n woes
  • I usually use the spark plug closest to the dash. File or sand the top of a head bolt. Set the tip of the plug on the head bolt. Be sure the battery is full charge. A weak battery can turn the starter and not make a spark.

    HCooke    Posted 07-17-2018 at 17:41:48 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [Email]  
  • Re: 9n woes
  • Attach one lead from a test light to the post and the top of the coiol and attache the other lead to a good ground. Turn the ignition key on. It should light up. Now with the ignition on crank the motor. Light should alternate between bright and dim. Do this and report back.

    duey    Posted 07-17-2018 at 17:21:36 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [No Email]  
  • Re: 9n woes
  • Do yourself a favor and READ up the KETTERING IGNITION SYSTEM... it will give you a basis for troubleshooting... Where you should find voltage etc. You will never see 6 volts AT a spark plug... (There *IS* an air gap IN the distributor..)

    Better yet, get with an old-timer kind of mechanic and have him do you a session of Show & Tell on YOUR tractor. It's worth your time and gain you some BACKGROUND.

    [Back] [Return to Top of Forum]