Clinton magneto test

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  #1  
Old 03-03-07, 06:21 PM
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Clinton magneto test

I'm working on a 3.5 hp Clinton engine that has no spark. I've cleaned the magneto, installed new points and condenser and a new ignition wire, but spinning the engine by hand with no spark plug fails to elicit any spark. I suspect the magneto is dysfunctional, but before I try to find a replacement, is there any way I can test it further or any other functions to check? This magneto is solidly mounted and not adjustable to change the gap.
 
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  #2  
Old 03-04-07, 12:40 AM
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I doubt that spinning the engine by hand is going to be fast enough to generate a spark. Try cranking it.
 
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Old 03-05-07, 07:55 AM
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Still no spark

I spun the engine with an electric drill at whatever speed that is, and still no spark. Any other means to trace the problem?
 
  #4  
Old 03-05-07, 09:27 AM
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I have spun lawnmower engines by hand and been able to generate a spark (spark plug connected & grounded but out of engine)

Since it is a point & condenser ignition, you can check the continuity of the magneto coils with a digital multimeter. Primary continuity from the point wire to the coil frame/ground wire might be 10-20 ohms (I really don't remember exactly). The secondary resistance from the plug wire to coil frame/ground will probably be 10K -20K ohms or something like that.
 
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Old 03-05-07, 01:02 PM
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Although this is for an outboard it may help you with the magneto. Have a good one. Geo

http://assets.fluke.com/appnotes/electricalpower/B0271b_u.pdf
 
  #6  
Old 03-06-07, 06:54 AM
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I would agree with the specs the link geo posted uses. (3k to 15k ohms) However if the coil passes the resistance check it does not guarantee it is good. If the readings are out you can assume it bad, however my research and experience says there is no ABSOLUTE testing good/bad except to replace with a known good one.
 
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Old 03-07-07, 12:33 AM
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I agree...you can check for obvious dead shorts or open circuits in the coil with a meter. Beyond that, you can diagnose a bad coil by verifying that the rest of the ignition system is good, calibrated, and working properly. If so, and there is no spark, then the coil is bad. Check continuity across the points to be sure they are breaking the circuit when open, and closing the circuit when closed. Make sure the condenser is not open, or shorted with the meter. A condenser should read a certain resistance to begin with, and slowly climb as you hold the test leads to it. Then, you can switch the meter to DC volts and test the condenser. The reading should get progressively lower as you hold the test leads to it...especially with an old analog meter.
 
  #8  
Old 03-07-07, 06:18 AM
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Cheese, correct me if I'm wrong but isn't the Clinton ignition coil the exact same as the Tecumseh 30560A, coil? If so, dbuelke, find your local Tecumseh servicing dealer and purchase one of these Tecumseh coils and give it a try. If you have an under-the-flywheel coil, the Tecumseh should be the same one.
 
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