Made a mess of things!

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Tim in MN
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Made a mess of things!

Postby Tim in MN » Sat Apr 30, 2022 7:57 pm

I'm in a pickle and just figured I would stop wasting time and ask for help. Painted a '55 last fall and recently put it all together. Among other things, I replaced the seal next to the governor so I had to remove the magneto. A PO added an external coil as the mag must have gone bad. When i try to start it, it just fires once in a while so would imagine I messed up the timing. When I set the number one cylinder to what I think is TDC, I cannot get the contact on the rotor to be real close to the #1 cylinder contact point in the distributor cap. I also replaced the fly wheel pully as the one on the tractor had been busted in the past and was welded. Given the key slot in the pully I would think the timing notch would be ok but it is off a little bit. Maybe I'm incorrect in thinking I'm at TDC??

Anyway, I'm stuck and could use some direction. I looked at timing posts from the past but cant really figure out the issue. Please let me know your thoughts if you would.

Thank you.

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Re: Made a mess of things!

Postby SamsFarm » Sat Apr 30, 2022 8:32 pm

Tdc is when the piston is on the compression stroke.

If your #1 piston is up on the exhaust stroke, then your 180° off!
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Re: Made a mess of things!

Postby Jim Becker » Sat Apr 30, 2022 9:03 pm

A '55 would have been battery ignition from the factory. Your coil arrangement may be normal (or maybe it isn't really a '55). There are ways to verify the TDC mark on the pulley. As Sam said, you could be on the wrong TDC to set the timing. You can try it on one. If it won't run, turn the distributor shaft 1/2 turn and try again.

With the magneto off, and engine at TDC, what is the angle of the slot that drives the magneto? It should be at about 2 o'clock (35 degrees from horizontal).

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Re: Made a mess of things!

Postby Glen » Sat Apr 30, 2022 10:40 pm

Hi,
They also say on here to check the position of the spark plug wires on the distributor cap, in case wires are in the wrong positions.
It can fire on only part, or none of the cylinders if wires are in the wrong positions.
If it has an IH magneto, the number 1 post is originally at the top of the cap.
You probably know the firing order, 1, 3, 4, 2, going clockwise around the cap.

It's possible someone has the wires connected in the wrong holes, number 1 at the right side, or at the bottom, or the left of the cap.

Below are pictures.
The 1st pic shows where the magneto drive should be turned when the engine is at number 1 cylinder TDC.
The 2nd pic, from TM Tractor, shows the crankshaft front pulley from the rear, and shows the keyway and the timing mark.
The keyway is at the top, like it would be when the engine is at TDC, the timing mark should be in line with the pointer then. :)
Attachments
Cub gov gear.jpg
Cub Pulley 5.jpg

Tim in MN
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Re: Made a mess of things!

Postby Tim in MN » Sun May 01, 2022 12:27 pm

Guys,

Without doing it on purpose (dont know electrical stuff to save my butt), one of the ways I tried to start it was actually TDC. This is a 55 based off the serial number and sheet metal- I haven't checked the casting on the motor to see what year it was made. I'd thought a 55 with a mag was unusual but thought it was maybe an option??- apparently it wasn't. I've tried it with the magneto drive in the position shown in the picture. When I do that, shouldn't the contact point on the rotor be on the contact point for cylinder 1? It is off a bit in reality. I've tried so many different set ups I cant keep 'em straight. The plug wires are where they should be. I've pulled a coil from another cub and tried it with that to no avail. I really appreciate the replies. I'm going to go work on the tractor in a bit and give it another shot. Or, as it has been feeling, pound my head against the side of the tractor!

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Re: Made a mess of things!

Postby ricky racer » Sun May 01, 2022 4:23 pm

Tim, with the #1 piston at TDC indicated by the cylinder on it's compression stroke and the pointer on the front of the engine pointing at the "v" groove on the front pulley, your rotor should be in the 1-2 o'clock position. If it in the 7-8 o'clock position it's 180 out of time.
Verify that the timing is not 180 out of time. If the rotor is positioned in the 1-2 o'clock, you just need to fine tune the timing to get it to run unless you have unintentionally created another problem.
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Re: Made a mess of things!

Postby Eugene » Sun May 01, 2022 5:13 pm

Remove the spark plugs. Put 1 or 2 tablespoons of engine oil in the #1 cylinder, closest to the radiator. Spin the engine over 2 or 3 times, starter or hand crank. Then put finger in #1 cylinder spark plug hole. Rotate engine over until you feel good compression. That will be the TDC, #1 cylinder

You can use the fan or hand crank to turn the engine over by hand.

There may be two of the V's in the pulley. Use the second V that lines up with the pointer when rotating the engine. Only one V use it.
ricky racer wrote:Tim, with the #1 piston at TDC indicated by the cylinder on it's compression stroke and the pointer on the front of the engine pointing at the "v" groove on the front pulley, your rotor should be in the 1-2 o'clock position. If it in the 7-8 o'clock position it's 180 out of time.
Verify that the timing is not 180 out of time. If the rotor is positioned in the 1-2 o'clock, you just need to fine tune the timing to get it to run unless you have unintentionally created another problem.
I have an excuse. CRS.

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Re: Made a mess of things!

Postby Glen » Sun May 01, 2022 6:40 pm

Hi,
The J 4 magneto was available on Cubs in 1955, so was the Battery Ignition unit.
They are both in the 1955 Cub operator's manual.
Timing the magneto to the engine is in the manual also.
Below is the page telling how to time the magneto to the engine, if you need it.
It has pics of magnetos, you can see if you have a magneto or not.
It tells how to find number 1 cylinder TDC at number 2, at the lower left of the page.

http://farmallcub.com/rudi_cub/www.clea ... age-30.jpg

The magneto should make snapping sounds as you turn the engine.
They have said on here that when the engine is at each cylinders TDC, the impulse trips, that is when it makes the snapping sound.
Then the rotor is just past the post in the cap that the spark went to.
You might not be able to have the rotor point exactly to the posts in the cap.

The Cub and LoBoy parts manual shows the magneto was available until Cub serial number 227700, which was made during 1966. The Cubs had 12 volt electrical systems then. 12 volts began during 1964.


The Cub operator's manual can help you learn about maintenance that the Cub needs.

Below is the 1955 Cub operator's manual. The experts on here recommend people read it. It has lots of info about operation, maintenance, and lubrication. There is a table of contents on page 1.
It shows how Cubs originally looked in it. The lube section begins on page 14.

http://farmallcub.com/rudi_cub/www.clea ... index.html

It shows the electrical system that a 1955 Cub originally had.
Cubs made before mid 1964 originally had 6 volt, positive ground electrical systems.
They have said on here that IH didn't make a new manual every year.

The Touch Control fluid mentioned in the manual for the Touch Control, was changed later to Case IH Hy-Tran fluid. It is sold at Case IH dealers.
There are other brands, be sure it works with IH hydraulic systems before buying one.
The manual tells how to check and change the fluid, and remove the air from the system.
Check the fluid with the arms in the rear, or down position, the manual says.

I would check or change all the oils before using the Cub. Using it with low oil in a gear housing can damage the parts in the housing.
There are 3 separate gear housings, with 3 separate oil levels to check, in the rear area of a Cub, the transmission, and 2 final drives.

The transmissions in Cubs commonly get water in them, from rain, or condensation inside the housing over time.

The air cleaner is an oil bath air cleaner. Dirt that is sucked in settles to the bottom of the oil cup. It should have clean, light motor oil in the oil cup to work right.

There are 2 pages gone in the lube section, pages 19 and 20.
Below are pages from the manual made after this one with the missing info. :)

http://farmallcub.com/rudi_cub/www.clea ... e%2026.jpg

http://farmallcub.com/rudi_cub/www.clea ... e%2027.jpg

http://farmallcub.com/rudi_cub/www.clea ... e%2029.jpg
Last edited by Glen on Sun May 01, 2022 6:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Eugene
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Re: Made a mess of things!

Postby Eugene » Sun May 01, 2022 6:50 pm

Have you ran compression checks?

Do you have a timing light? You can check to see if you are firing on all cylinders, adjust the magneto to TDC, etc..
I have an excuse. CRS.

Tim in MN
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Re: Made a mess of things!

Postby Tim in MN » Sun May 01, 2022 8:23 pm

Wow, you guys are the best. I just got back from working on the tractor- it's in a friends heated shop. Discovered the problem but then ran into another one! Hoping it will be an easy fix though. Last fall when I replaced the front pully seal and sleeved a new (used) pully, I noticed a PO didn't have the front crank case cover centered exactly on the engine. The reason I noticed this was when I drove the pully onto the crank shaft, the back edge of it tore the new seal- @!$*&%!. I had to pull the front of the motor off to get it exactly centered. In doing so I took off the governor and decided I would replace he seal between it and the broken mag. Earlier today when I went over to work on it, I started by looking everything over . Again. Remember how I said earlier the contacts between the rotor and cap didn't line up like you would think they should? The drive groove in the governor was where it should be- ALMOST. I noticed what looked like a a small mark in the housing that the mag slides into at appx the two o'clock position. I took a wire brush to it and could see it's a definite notch. The drive groove on the back side of the governor wasn't perfectly lined up with that. When I re-installed the gov after centering the front engine cover I was slightly off on how the gears should mesh. As frustrated as I have been this was a very good sight to see! I loosened the gov and got the gears to mesh correctly so the drive groove is exactly in line with the notch in the housing. Put everything together and pulled the starter. Engine stared immediately. Was running perfectly for a 3-5 seconds and I looked at the oil pressure gauge on the other side of the tractor to make sure I had pressure. I then noticed the condenser had moved against the side of the mag, there was a spark on the condenser, and it quit. Remember, this tractor has a bad mag and a PO had installed a coil with a condenser on it. Again, I am not knowledgeable with electrical stuff so I don't know- would that spark ruin the condenser? I put new points in along with the new cap and rotor, could I have damaged them? It's a process to take get to the points- have to remove the generator, voltage regulator, the top of the mag just to remove the mag so I haven't look at them yet. Got fed up and headed home.

What do you guys think? Could it just be as simple as the condenser going bad?

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Re: Made a mess of things!

Postby Glen » Mon May 02, 2022 2:25 am

Hi,
You can use the operator's manual I posted and identify what you have, magneto or Battery Ignition unit.
The IH units are horizontal, the points are down near the upper part of the block level.
Neither of them originally have a condenser on the outside of the units, the condenser is inside, to the left of the points. The operator's manual shows that, and the points.

There is no need to remove the generator, or the voltage regulator to get to the points.
Some pics of yours would be helpful.

There are timing marks on the governor gear, and on the rear side of the idler gear, which runs the governor. They need to be aligned so the magneto will work right.
The marks are single dots. Use a good light to see them.

Below are pics.
The 1st pic, from TM Tractor, shows a J 4 magneto for the Cub. The original coil is under the cover on top of the magneto.
The 2nd pic is inside showing the points and condenser.
The 3rd pic shows the rotor and it's drive gear. They have timing marks that should be aligned.
Also, clean the old grease out of the area under the cover that holds the rotor on, and put new grease on the gears, if it hasn't been done lately.

The 4th pic, from TM Tractor, shows a Battery Ignition unit. It as no coil in the pic, the coil goes on top on a bracket.
The 5th pic shows the Battery Ignition unit on the Cub, with the coil on top. :)
Attachments
Cub magneto 5.jpg
Cub magneto 8.jpg
Cub magneto 8.jpg (25.14 KiB) Viewed 738 times
Cub magneto 4.jpg
Cub magneto 4.jpg (25.13 KiB) Viewed 738 times
Cub Battery Ignition unit 4.jpg
Cub.jpg

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Re: Made a mess of things!

Postby Eugene » Mon May 02, 2022 3:46 pm

Tim in MN wrote: I then noticed the condenser had moved against the side of the mag, there was a spark on the condenser, and it quit. Could it just be as simple as the condenser going bad?
Yes, or the condenser wasn't fastened down tight.

Condenser location can be outside/external of/for the distributor or magneto. Example; the condenser on the narrow framed Cub Cadets is mounted adjacent to the ignition coil.
I have an excuse. CRS.

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Re: Made a mess of things!

Postby Tim in MN » Fri Aug 26, 2022 8:22 pm

Ok guys- I give up. I got the tractor running nicely last spring with all your help. I have let it sit until just the last couple days as I needed to paint the hood. Now when I start it, it is hard to start. Once it is running, barely, it almost kills, then speeds up, then drops RPM's again. It eventually dies. If i give it throttle it kills. I put a different carb on it- no help.

I'm about ready to roll it into the swamp. I'm throwing out an sos- I live 7 miles outside of Milaca. Is there anyone that would be interested in taking a look at this thing? I could tow it to your location or you could come to my place. I hate to throw my hands in the air but I'm at the end of my rope.

Any takers in the central Minnesota area?

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Re: Made a mess of things!

Postby Mike in Louisiana » Sat Aug 27, 2022 9:26 am

You should pm Jim Becker he is only 39 miles away
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Tim in MN
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Re: Made a mess of things!

Postby Tim in MN » Sat Aug 27, 2022 10:26 am

Mike, thanks for the reply. I have never private messaged anyone yet but just sent one to Jim. Hopefully I did it right.


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