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Subject: '51 *N starting problem

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Rich    Posted 12-01-2020 at 07:47:34 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [Email]  
  • '51 *N starting problem
  • Any insights, help on this would be appreciated! After a no-start situation (engine cranks over but will not fire up) I replaced the old battery( a bit low) with new, along with new plugs. The old plugs were fouled quite a bit-I showed one to a mechanic and he thought it was running too rich. It fired up the best it has since I bought the tractor this summer. I then replaced the plug wires, which were really old/worn looking, doing them one at a time. Got a look at the distrib.cap and rotor-not bad looking, and cleaned off the end of the rotor. No start. Replaced the distrib.cap/rotor - still nothing. So then I had a small engine mechanic give it a try- everything was getting spark. He reset the timing (hopefully correctly-he's pretty good, but young and fairly new with his small engine business), emptied some partially murky gas from the bowl beneath the carb.Sprayed starting fluid- still no start.Thanks!

    Rich    Posted 12-12-2020 at 10:03:21 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [Email]  
  • Re: '51 8N 6v sidemount distributor rebuild
  • Tim- You had said in an earlier email that most, if not all, parts are rebuildable. I was told by a mechanic that my sidemount 6v '51 8N would benefit by a fix-up sometime down the road(for one, the advance is not up to par). Do you do rebuilds on them, or if not, anyone else on here? I know this is a very general question, but what might be a ballpark low to high range cost on doing this and what kind of time frame? Thanks.

    Tim Daley(MI)    Posted 12-02-2020 at 06:19:43 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [No Email]  
  • Re: '51 *N starting problem
  • Heed Bruce(VA)'s advice. Also go to out HOW-TO's and find WIRING PICTOGRAMS by JMOR under ELECRTICAL, download a copy for yourself (it's FREE), and get copies of the ESSENTIAL MANUALS, some are here, all can be found at suppliers like JUST8Ns. The 8N side mount distributor needs to be timed correctly using a timing light --- 4į BTDC. Did your small mechanic do that? Cannot tell by 'looking' if contacts are good or bad. Plug wires were swapped out with new "...doing them one at a time..." but did you verify firing order was correct to begin with? Firing Order: 1,2,4,3 CCW. No Spark would indicate a distributor issue most likely -you have spark. Work on one system at a time. Did fuel test pass? Leave it alone. Get correct wiring diagrams --- 99.98% your issue lies within mucked up wiring somewhere. You say 6V/POS GRN. A 6V battery does not mean it is wired correctly for a POS GRN system. I suggest you disconnect the battery, disconnect the lights from the circuit, N's didn't have factory lights---can reinstall once root cause problem is solved, and using the OEM sketch go thru the entire wiring circuit and verify via VOM Continuity (not wire colors) is correct. Once affirmed, go thru distributor and set timing with a light. Don't assume anything.


    Tim Daley(MI)

    Rich    Posted 12-02-2020 at 08:07:09 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [Email]  
  • Re: '51 8N starting problem
  • Thanks for your help, Tim!

    Bruce(VA)    Posted 12-01-2020 at 13:55:35 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [Email]  
  • Re: '51 *N starting problem
  • First, you need to tell us what model tractor you have, if itís 6v or 12v and if it has a front or side distributor.

    These tractors are pretty simple machines; itís usually pretty easy to get them running with some basic troubleshooting steps. You can:

    1. Replace every part you can until it starts or you run out of money.

    2. List every possible cause of the problem and then randomly pick your favorite to check. It could be your coil. Or your ignition switch. Or about 10 other things.

    3. Like diagnosing any other equipment failure, take a step-by-step approach, working from the most likely to the least likely, one system at a time.

    Iíve tried all three approaches. The third one always worked for me.

    I might not be able to tell you why your tractor isnít running, but I can tell you how to figure it out for yourself.

    You could have a spark issue.

    You could have a fuel issue.

    Donít guess. Troubleshoot. See tip # 13 at the link below.

    You need to answer 2 questions before you do anything else:

    With the bolt in the carb bowl removed and the gas on, will the fuel flow fill a pint jar in less than 2 minutes?

    Next, get out your adjustable gap spark checker * , open the gap to 1/4", hook it up, turn the key on and crank the engine. Does the spark jump 1/4"? Post back with the answers.

    And do not buy a new part for the tractor until you can answer this question: how do I know the part on the tractor is defective?

    Once you narrow the problem to spark or fuel, post back and tell us what you found (and how you found it) and you will get plenty of help to get your tractor running.

    * Don't own an adjustable gap spark checker? Buy one! Not a test light! Until then, take an old plug, open the gap 1/4" ground it to the head & look for spark. Itís not the color of the spark that counts; itís the distance it jumps.


    Rich    Posted 12-01-2020 at 15:46:01 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [Email]  
  • Re: '51 8N starting problem
  • Thanks Bruce. The tractor is a 6v with a side mount distributor.

    Bob in KS    Posted 12-01-2020 at 09:39:28 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [Email]  
  • Re: '51 *N starting problem
  • A 51 would have the side mount distributor

    Did you lose the spring clip that goes on end of distributor shaft and inserts into the rotor?

    Did you get the plug wires in the right order?

    Do you have good quality points and are they properly gapped at .025?

    Coil is probably not your problem

    Rich    Posted 12-01-2020 at 16:29:14 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [Email]  
  • Re: '51 8N starting problem
  • I didn't see any spring clip so it looks like it's missing. Can they be bought separately? I took off the plug wires one by one so that they went back on correctly. I left the same points in there and did not check the gap. Thankyou Bob for your info! - Rich

    Bruce(VA)    Posted 12-01-2020 at 17:27:32 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [Email]  
  • Re: '51 8N starting problem
  • Just8N's has the clip. $4.50

    Check the gap, .025

    Rich    Posted 12-02-2020 at 08:04:13 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [Email]  
  • Re: '51 8N starting problem
  • Thanks for the info Bruce!

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