Farmall Super A, AV, 100, 130, & 140 1939 - 1973

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Postby stevenefuller » Tue Jul 20, 2010 9:55 pm

hi gang. my 17 year old son and i are new to the farmall world. this has been a very helpful forum. we own a '47 A. have made some minor repairs to it and it runs famously. well, it ran famously until recently. my son was powerwashing the engine and got water in the points. could be water elsewhere, but i definitely know the points were wet. the distributor cap was dry, but when i loosened the screws to get to the points, about a teaspoon of water came out. oh, i should mention that i'm checking all this because after he washed it, it wouldn't start. so i exposed the points, let them dry out a few days, put everything back together, nothing. checked all the plug wires. started for a minute, backfired a few times, then i shut it down. looked like a couple of the plug wires were in the wrong places. used the manual to make sure the wires were correct, put new plugs in it, nothing. pulled a couple of plugs to see if there was spark, and there was. can't be sure if it's a "hot" spark or not, but it definitely sparks. but will not start. i've tried it every day for a week. would timing be an issue? or would it not spark at all if it were out of time? magneto? i have limited mechanical skills, and am willing to call a tech if that's what it takes. but i'm all about learning too, so if anyone has any suggestions, i'd love to try them out. thanks.

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Re: timing

Postby DanR » Wed Jul 21, 2010 5:44 am

Does this A have a magneto?
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Re: timing

Postby Rudi » Wed Jul 21, 2010 6:01 am


Yup sound like moisture issues. Every now and then when I have to store Ellie outdoors and it rains, I have starting issues until the moisture escapes. Check the points to make sure they are not pitted, if so, then file em with a points file or an emery board - blow off any emery dust. Condenser might need checking too.

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Re: timing

Postby Bigdog » Wed Jul 21, 2010 6:53 pm

It does indeed sound like a water issue. If the plug wires are old they may be breaking down where you can't see it. I recommend a full tune-up - plugs, points, condensor, rotor and cap. If there was breaking down inside the cap there may be some unseen carbon paths that are arcing to ground.
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