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7117 Electrical Issue

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I have a spare 7117 with snowblower I loan to my brother for the winter, got a call from him today after our most recent installment of snow.  He said it cranked for about a second then nothing after that, not even a solenoid click.

Battery is connected to a 1 amp tender, and battery is only about 6 months old.  Figuring maybe it was just a dud battery I went over to his place and after jump starting it the tractor ran, so I left and just told him to not shut it off until he was completely done.

Got a call from him about 30 minutes later, he had just finished up and while making a turn in the street to bring it back in the motor spit a couple times then died.  Would not restart.  Went back over there, jump started it again.  I took the jumper cables off and as I was putting my cables away it died again.  Jumped it one more time and hurried it to the garage.

I had to leave work to do this, so didn't have much for tools but removed the battery and brought it home.  It tested very well on my bench in both voltage and cranking amps, so it seems to be okay.  Battery terminals on the tractor were replaced last summer and were clean and tight.  Electrical system is stock, no modifications to it that I have ever noticed.

I'm not sure where to go next.  Electrical short somewhere?  I would think if that were the case jumping it wouldn't help.  It is possible to have an intermittent battery short?  It will probably be Saturday before I can be back to his place, just looking for any ideas beforehand so I bring spare parts if needed.


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I’m thinking resistance from battery to ignition switch.  Not enough voltage to activate solenoid and once running, occasionally not enough voltage for the coil to make good spark. 

Ignition switch/harness connector a good place to check for loose or corroded connection as stated above.

Another nasty possibility is a wire rub that’s not bad enough to cause a major short, but a slight one drawing down the voltage.  Wetness makes the problem worse.  


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I second the back of the ignition connector.  My Allis 917H was giving me intermittent starting problems and I finally took off dash cover to inspect wires after confirming all other ignition components were good.  Turned out connector was severely corroded on two terminals. I decided to just replace switch and clean connector.  Has started great ever since.

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