Ignition Coil Pickup Distance from the Flywheel

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by EX20, May 25, 2005.

  1. EX20

    EX20 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 7

    I have a 9 year old McCulloch 2816. Yes, I know it's a piece of crap after reading all these posts for awhile. But, it has been fairly decent for my needs of home use. I almost ready to dump it and get a Shindaiwa, but I'm putting in one last ditch effort to fix it.

    My problem is that I'm getting barely any spark, if any at all. It has always been weak since new. I've seen some posts on coil pickup distance from the flywheel vs timing, but does the distance affect the amount of energy the coil produces. I think my spark is weak or non existant because the gap is too big. There is some slight adjustment, from right on the flywheel to about a 1/8". I think it has been set wrong since day one.

    I'm getting a new plug tonight to eliminate that possibility first before readjusting the gap.

    Any ideas?
  2. partstree

    partstree Sponsor
    Messages: 79

    unfortunately mcculloch has been known for ignition problems. mcculloch usually uses a 0.025" plug gap for their gas products.

    if you can get a visible spark during cranking, ignition is most likely fine. if the spark is really weak, try cleaning the coil and realigning the magnets
  3. Mikes Machines

    Mikes Machines LawnSite Member
    Messages: 112

    While there can be many causes for weak spark, the air gap between the flywheel and the coil is critical. Most engines need about .012" to make a good spark.
  4. KINGjosh

    KINGjosh LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 531

    I usually just use a regular bussiness card. The thickness of that has always worked for me.
  5. EX20

    EX20 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 7

    I readjusted the gap to as little as possible without rubbing on the flywheel and sure enough it started right up and kept running.

    I pulled the spark plug out so there would be no compression resistance and set the gap so that I felt a really good magnetic "pull" when the flywheel magnets went by the coil. I could really feel the magnetic attraction to the coil pickup. There was barely any before closing the gap.

    Thanks for all the input.

    Oh, by the way, anyone need a new coil assembly for one of these motors. Here I bought one without checking the gap first. Oh well, live and learn.

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