Craftsman rear tine tiller won't start


Old 04-23-15, 01:32 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2015
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Question Craftsman rear tine tiller won't start

My tiller model #917.299080 won't start. It sat for about 3yrs, with fuel. I drained the fuel, took off the carburetor bowl and cleaned it out(the bowl and nothing else), changed out some oil and filled it, changed the spark plug-still didn't start. Tested if we had spark by taking the plug out of the chamber, and trying to start, no spark. Friend said to make sure the flywheel was free of rust. I got to the flywheel and yes it was covered in rust, so I lightly sanded it and the contacts. The broken spot with the shiny metal plate had no rust. I put it all back together and still no spark! Help! I have no problem doing the work, I just don't know what to do. I don't want to order parts, willy-nilly, just to trouble shoot. Thanks! (I've already learned so much from previous posts!)
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Old 04-23-15, 02:53 PM
Join Date: May 2006
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A little rust on the flywheel isn't a big deal breaker. Make sure you have a good plug and it's well grounded to the engine for testing. It's best done in a dark garage to more easily see the spark. If no spark, disconnect the kill wire (small wire) from the coil/module and recheck for spark. If no spark the module is likely bad. (The coil is what the spark plug wire comes out of)
Your tiller was made in '91, it looks like, so there would not be any points/condenser.
Old 04-24-15, 04:28 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2015
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Thanks for the suggestion, I hadn't thought of trying it in a dark garage. I will try that.
Old 04-24-15, 02:43 PM
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Well, I tested for spark in a darkened shed, good news, there was a spark. Bad news, what now? I checked for compression with the plug out, when I pulled the string, it sucked my finger and then blew it back out. I will try to get some gas into the plug hole and start it that way. Maybe the gas isn't getting to the chamber? I know it's getting to the carburetor - it leaks a little. Thanks!
Old 04-24-15, 06:44 PM
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Sometimes putting some gas in the plug hole and running it a bit works to clear the carb. Sometimes you have to start it and then choke the engine off and on to keep it running for a minute to clear it. Sometimes you have to clean the carb. Try backing out the mixture screw a little too.

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