Checking timing

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Checking timing

Postby Pony Master » Sat Nov 15, 2008 11:18 am

I am going to dig into the starting problem with the 54. I am going to start by checking the timing. The front pulley only has one mark in it, and I am using a mag. I will be using a timing light, so does anyone have any advice.
1947 Circle Cub, 193, 189
1954 Cub w/FH, IH100, 194, F11
1956 Cub Loboy w/FH and 194
1960 Cub Loboy w/FH and L-54
1953 Super A, 2 seater B, Avery V, Avery A, JD M, MH Pony, Leader D, Allis Chalmers C, and my Great Grandpa's ZA Minneapolis Moline.
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Re: Checking timing

Postby Former Member » Sat Nov 15, 2008 11:24 am

Chad, if it runs fine after it starts, it is not the timing.

I bet you have an air leak at the manifold to carb gasket or the manifold itself. check it with a propane torch while it is running. Just put the nozzle of the torch in all those places(unlit) while at idle. if there is a leak, it will pick up the gas and run faster.
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Re: Checking timing

Postby Eugene » Sat Nov 15, 2008 11:39 am

First thing. Do a very accurate static timing.

To double check. Remove the coil wire from the distributor. Insert a spark plug into the distributor end and ground the spark plug on the engine. Put the timing light on the coil wire. Have some one crank the engine while you check the pulley timing mark to pointer position. Adjust the magneto so that the timing mark on the pulley and pointer match.

Actually, if you do an accurate static timing, you do not need to double check with the timing light. Or if you are unsure on static timing the mag you can use the timing light. Just remember that there will be 4 flashes of the timing light per 2 revolutions of the crankshaft. Only two of the flashes will match the mark on the pulley.
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Re: Checking timing

Postby Cecil » Sat Nov 15, 2008 1:51 pm

Here is the process for timing a mag.

1. Remove #1 spark plug (front plug on engine)
2. Place finger over spark plug hole
3. Turn engine until pointer is in line with notch on flywheel and compression is felt
4. Check mag coupler for proper alignment
5. Install magneto and move against engine block
6. Turn engine 2 revolutions until it lines up with the pointer once again.
7. Slowly rotate magneto away from engine block until a distinct click is heard
8. Tighten magneto. Engine is in time.
Last edited by Cecil on Sun May 17, 2009 7:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Checking timing

Postby Pony Master » Sat Nov 15, 2008 2:03 pm

Cecil, that is what I did the first time. Everything was working great. I guess I did not tighten the bolts down tight enough, and it slipped. I have not been able to get it to start right since. I have moved the mag in an attempt to get it to start, but without any luck. I was going to double check myself to be sure a I have it right on before I keep looking elsewhere. I went and bought a fancy new timing light that is powered by "D" batteries. Hopefully it will do the job nicely.
1947 Circle Cub, 193, 189
1954 Cub w/FH, IH100, 194, F11
1956 Cub Loboy w/FH and 194
1960 Cub Loboy w/FH and L-54
1953 Super A, 2 seater B, Avery V, Avery A, JD M, MH Pony, Leader D, Allis Chalmers C, and my Great Grandpa's ZA Minneapolis Moline.
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Re: Checking timing

Postby Barnyard » Sat Nov 15, 2008 2:54 pm

Chad, Could it possibly be 180 out?
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Re: Checking timing

Postby Hengy » Sat Nov 15, 2008 3:18 pm

If it ran right when you first timed it and if you didn't change or remove any wires from the mag after running it the first time, then I wouldn't say that it is 180 out. However, it can't hurt to verify the timing as Cecil said. When you feel the pressure coming on the #1 plug hole and when it is right at TDC, make sure that the rotor is pointing to the #1 tower on the distributor cap. The other thing to consider is that if the mag is rotated all the way with the cap towards the engine and the mag snaps before you get to that line on the pulley, then you are off a tooth on the governor...

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Re: Checking timing

Postby grunt » Sat Nov 15, 2008 3:29 pm

I hope to be doing this my self soon. When I was at WisconsinCubMan house getting my PTO installed he said that it sound like my timing was off during starting of the cub and now it is beginning to take a toll on my battery.
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Re: Checking timing

Postby pappy43 » Sat Nov 15, 2008 3:52 pm

i saw that u got a new timing lite some of them wont work with a mag learned the hard way whem we were drag racing hope u get your problem fixed
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Re: Checking timing

Postby Eugene » Sat Nov 15, 2008 6:01 pm

Question. Do you hear the magneto snap when cranking the engine? If not the impulse coupling has failed - this will put your spark at 16 or 17 degrees in advance of TDC during engine cranking speeds.

Poney Master stated that the Cub was running fine then the hard starting problem occurred. So, correct procedure would be to make doubly sure the ignition timing is correct then start looking for the problem in other areas.

Edit: Have you tried pull starting the Cub?
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Re: Checking timing

Postby Former Member » Sat Nov 15, 2008 6:57 pm

It pull starts fine Eugene. Or at least it did. :D
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Re: Checking timing

Postby Pony Master » Sat Nov 15, 2008 7:06 pm

Yep Eugene, it pull starts just fine. If I happen to kill it, it will usually restart with the starter. It takes some cranking, but it will do it usually. I have plowed with it and not had a problem. It does not seem to lack power, it just requires a pull start.
1947 Circle Cub, 193, 189
1954 Cub w/FH, IH100, 194, F11
1956 Cub Loboy w/FH and 194
1960 Cub Loboy w/FH and L-54
1953 Super A, 2 seater B, Avery V, Avery A, JD M, MH Pony, Leader D, Allis Chalmers C, and my Great Grandpa's ZA Minneapolis Moline.
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Re: Checking timing

Postby John *.?-!.* cub owner » Sat Nov 15, 2008 10:00 pm

Pony Master, I have one with the same problem. What is happening to mine is that when it has run a while and the battery is real well charged and the engine is hot and limber, it cranks over so fast the impulse on the mag does not catch (6 volt system). Replacing the impulse springs ( all 3 ) helped considerably, but still hasn't completely solved the problem. I have one magneto that works good, and 2 that have problems on that tractor. they all 3 work on the other tractor which cranks more slowly.
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Re: Checking timing

Postby Eugene » Sat Nov 15, 2008 10:32 pm

Yep Eugene, it pull starts just fine. If I happen to kill it, it will usually restart with the starter. It takes some cranking, but it will do it usually. I have plowed with it and not had a problem. It does not seem to lack power, it just requires a pull start.
Impulse coupling problem. Magman used to post on this board. He would be a good solution. There is also, I haven't checked in several years, a magneto repair shop in Bayard, Iowa. The guy in Bayard repairs magnetos for airplanes.

If you feel up to it. Try to fix the magneto yourself. I ordered a book on magneto repair. While waiting for the book to be delivered I read up on magneto theory for small engines. By the time the book arrived I had figured out how the magneto worked and repaired two magnetos for farm tractors.
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Re: Checking timing

Postby Rudi » Sat Nov 15, 2008 10:46 pm

When I take Ellie's head off to be replaced with the yaller one from Md... would it be a good idea for me to loosen the mag and roll back to the block, then when the head comes off, watch for number 1 to piston to come up to the top of the stroke... and would that then be in time?

I had to take the governor off and it was 1 tooth off... so now it is out of time again.. and I messed it up trying to get it back..

Would this approach work?
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