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Re: no spark at spark plug center of Coil
Most of the older 8n 9n and so on's were converted to 12 volt systems, so when you go into the parts stores to get the new coils there are the old 6 volt version and they won't work on the 12 volt systems.
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It sounds like you must have a relatively old bike to be dealing with breaker points. If you are sure your points are OK, I would suspect the condenser next. They are relatively inexpensive (if still available for your bike) and usually require only a mounting screw and a connecting screw to replace.
Next, check the ignition coil and the high tension wire to your spark plug. Of course, I'm assuming that you are working with a good spark plug.
You are correct, you have a flywheel with magnets in, an electronic ignition unit which when the magnets pass the ignition unit core at speed energises and creates a spark via the plug, the earth wire simply takes the unit to ground and shuts off the spark, the unit you changed was it definetly an electronic unit or just a coil? if electronic and you are cranking the engine fast enough and have the plug well earted against the cylinder with the earth wire not connected it should spark.
It has a set of points and condenser in the distributor that grounds the coil. Have you checked the points to see if they are burnt or out of adjustment ? Is the distributor turning when you crank the engine ?
Hi Gavin, I will try to give you a few suggestions for your problem. With no spark at the spark plug what you will have to work on is the wiring, switch and coil also anything that is hooked up to that system in some way. Do you have a V.O.M. (volt, ohm, meter)? If you do check the continuity of all the wiring, switch and coil. Start with the plug wire, the plug connector sometimes comes out of the wire and the coil end of the plug wire sometimes slides out of the coil connect point. Take a look at the switch to make sure it is working like it should and not staying grounded. Check the coil for cracks and damage to the windings. All the wiring should be checked for damaged insulator or fraying that could ground out the electrical system. Does this new engine have points and condenser? If yes then that system has to be checked also. But if this is a new engine it has no points and condenser, most haven't for the past few years. Have you checked the spark plug, sometimes they are bad even if new? Check for any safety systems that saw might have to make sure that it is working properly. I have heard about a saw that had good spark with the cowling off but when the cowling is on there is no spark. The answer was that a wire was pinched and grounding out with the cowling on and was very hard to see on the wire. You could check the coil to flywheel gap and make sure it is to spec. and get the rust off the magnets. I have seen rust ground out the system so that is a possibility. I hope these few suggestions help you out even a bit. All the best and good luck. Any questions welcome.
If the points are working correctly you are having a problem with the condenser ,coils,spark plugs,or spark plug caps. Honda condensers are notorious for being week. Spark plug caps have resisters that burn out or corrode. Coils can go bad but do not usually go out in pairs. Plug wires can short out the spark if the are old and cracked or wet. One coil does two plugs so on shorting wire on each coil will kill all the spark.You can see this if the bike is running at night where it is dark. Aftermarket Accel coils($150-$200) might be a good option along with an after market CDI ignition (may still be available through Parts Unlimited about $200). I suspect that your problem is still the points. Power is going to them but not leaving them. Even new points may have to be reinstalled several times before they decide not to short to ground.
Have a look at the coil and its supply lead, standard it has a 9v coil and a resistor wire in the harness, this gives trouble ar resistor wire is odd and will not solder or weld and its expansion when hot loosens crimps!
If you put 12 volts into a 9v coil it overwhelms (magneticly) the windings and gives a poor spark, also burns the points.
Repair Manual (Antique) - CE8069 for engines built prior to 1981
Point setting should be .020" after they are full open. I am nut sure that TDC will give full open.
Armature/coil air gap should be 'the thickness of the cardboard' of the box it came in.
*note: the coating on the wire from the coil to the points should be sanded off where they connect to the points.
The voltage coming from the coil is DC and may be as much as 8,000 to 15,000 volts. You WILL know it when it has spark, as in, you may have to change your underwear if it sparks and you are touching the end of the wire.
The 'afterthought' is that an electronic coil could have been mounted to eliminate the points to aid in a sharper spark and easier starting.
Final note: make sure all snwoblower frame wiring and switches are working correctly, as this can 'kill' the spark.
Check for power getting to the center top connection at the coil. Are the points opening? Are they fully closing? Check for a grounded connection/wire in the dist? Be very careful how you set the coil onto the dist.