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Tom Deutsch

weak spark or ...???

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Tom Deutsch
As the snow fell yesterday afternoon evening, I went out to the barn, removed the deck, installed the plow and rigged up some automotive chains borrowed from a neighbor. Ready to plow! Check the oil, pull the choke, nudge the throttle, grab the key, hey, the starter is even working today -- crank crank crank crank...nothin'! I know I'm getting fuel (I cranked it and played with it long enough to flood it and have unburnt gas dripping out of the muffler). I had it running about a week ago so I'm not sure what could have gone wrong between now and then (aside from the temp being 10 or 15 degrees colder). It just seems like I'm getting no spark or weak spark (if I'm getting occassional black-ish "puffs" while cranking I have to have at least some spark, right?). Checked the plug and coil connections. The gas is fairly new too. Soon after I got the tractor last year (it's a D/A 917H with a Koehler series 2 by the way) I had a similar starting problem and "fixed it" by replacing the new-looking points and condenser with new points and condenser. Since then, I probably have about 10 hours running time on it. So, do I try that trick again? How many spare condensers do I have to keep on hand?? Any ideas for what to check? (I know, "get a Briggs" -- you won't get an argument from me today!)

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rhribarron
Make sure battery is fully charged. I would suggest changing oil also. Do you have a fuel shut off valve in line. If not would suggest putting one in. put a new set of plugs in. When this is all done it probaly will start immediately.Ihave found Kohler likes fully charged battery. And mine have a tendecy to leak gas into cylinders when sitting. so need fuel shut off valve. Ilike Briggs but only have Kohlers now. Ronald Hribar Also open up throttle a least 3/4 open

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Tom Deutsch
Thanks. I've thought I should install a fuel shutoff -- just haven't done it yet. Battery was fully charged -- plus had the charger on it while cranking. I'll try what you suggested with new plugs and throttle (it usually starts for me a little below halfway, I'll try it higher). So you don't think I need another new condenser?

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rhribarron
I've never had that much problem with condenser. Last year my son in law could not start KT 17 Series two. I had to put new ignition switch and terminal block on. And on 20 hp magnum it has electronic ignition that starts very good like a Briggs

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goatfarmer
Plugs are probably fouled,change 'em to be sure.Try cranking it with the plugs out to help clear it. My 712 has a Kohler,and it likes the throttle to be barely open when starting.

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MrSteele
Not completely familiar with your engine, but you might try cleaning the points as a start. My Briggs is so worn that oil occasionally bleeds thru into the void of the cover over the points and condenser. A simple cleaning of the points and I'm off and running. Something to look at about your condenser before you change it is HOW the points are burnt. If they are burnt, but burnt even across the contacts, the condenser is ok, simply either clean or file the point surface. If the points are burnt uneven, such as one one side or the other, replace the condenser.

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