Kawasaki fb460v problems - won't start

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by mjmart, Aug 16, 2010.

  1. mjmart

    mjmart LawnSite Member
    Messages: 3

    Hello All! New poster to the site - very helpful for past issues.... I know little about engines other than minor maintenance...
    I'm having problems with an old Kawasaki fb460V recoil engine on a 20+ yr old JD 52" walk behind. Ran great until this year, when it began surging real bad when running at all throttle positions and was hard to start. I also noticed gas in the breather body. Took it to a friend who looked at it and said the compression was bad, so he ground the rods/cylinders and replaced the head gasket etc. Told me it was still not running right and that it needed a carburetor. After a long ordeal of trying to find a carb, it finally showed up 2 weeks ago. I put it on, along with new gaskets and a new spark plug. Had to makeshift a piece out of the back of the breather body - seems to be some sort of air flow connection, but got it back together and tried to start it......started immediately and ran great! Mowed 3/4 of the yard before it got dark, shut it down and put it away to finish the next day. I was so proud! Got up early to finish the yard, and it wouldn't start. I figured it was flooded or something simple, so I let it sit with the fuel line shut off. Tried later in the day with the choke on and off, fuel line on and off, drained the bowl and tried, sprayed some ether and tried - NOTHING! Pull after pull after pull...you get the picture. I took out the spark plug and pulled to see that I have spark. It's been 2 weeks trying here and there....I can't for the life of me figure this thing out. Any ideas for me to try???
  2. Andover Landscape Co.

    Andover Landscape Co. LawnSite Senior Member
    Male, from Lexington,KY
    Messages: 573

    Does it create a spark? At the plug when you pull the cord? If you have spark and you have gas then you have bang!!! There is no way around it... When you try to start it it should at least sound like it's trying to run....

    I would check spark, If yes then have a buddy spray some started fluid in the carb while you pull. You should have something.....Even if it sounds like **** there should be something...

    If that doesn't work and it's a overhead valve then it could be timing...You can put your finger in the plug hole to see if you have any compression... If no then problem timing...
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2010
  3. Ruben Rocha

    Ruben Rocha LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 577

    When you pulled the plug was it wet with fuel or completely dry?
    That should tell you if if are getting gas to the cylinder.
    And then I would check for spark.

    Just a guess here but since the engine is so old have you checked the valves.
    Could be a stuck valve or they are so loose a push rod has popped off the rocker arm.
  4. mjmart

    mjmart LawnSite Member
    Messages: 3

    I do have spark when grounded against the block while pulling. The spark plug was dry when I pull it out. There is no blackage in the fuel line. Is the next step to pull the carb apart and clean out to be sure fuel is getting through to the plug?
    Starter fluid helps it sound like it wants to start, but after 1 or 2 pulls, it doesn't even sound closer to starting. Fuel problem?
  5. Ruben Rocha

    Ruben Rocha LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 577

    Well you said you have a new carb.
    Of course that does not mean is is not defective or some trash got in the carb.
    If you are spraying starter fluid in the carb and it fires then it is some fuel problem.
    I did not look up your engine but maybe your fuel pump crapped out if you have one.
    Or possibly the vacuum line to the pump ?(You did say you had a problem with a connection to the oil breather?)
  6. Andover Landscape Co.

    Andover Landscape Co. LawnSite Senior Member
    Male, from Lexington,KY
    Messages: 573

    Indeed, that's exactly what that means.... Either you missed something while installing or you missed something while installing.... Lol, just kiddin but at least you are narrowing it down. It's definitely fuel shortage related.... I would try to pull start it while covering the carb inlet completely with your hand.. That will create a suction that should draw the fuel up into the carburetor forcefully. Wait you did have the choke applied in your previous attempts right ?
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2010
  7. mjmart

    mjmart LawnSite Member
    Messages: 3

    No fuel pump - gravity feed. Also, no fuel filter (guess I should add one). Yes, I did have to add a makeshift piece to the oil breather - would that be causing a problem? I did have the choke applied while trying to start. Someone also told me that the timing could be off. Should the plug be wet or dry when operating correctly?
  8. DT Lawn Care

    DT Lawn Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 850

    Yes, the plug should be wet after several pulls with choke. However, when you spray starting fluid, you should take the choke off. The 460V is not an OHV, so getting to the valves is a pita. I might check the compression with your finger in the plug hole to check. Good Luck
  9. paul kellam

    paul kellam LawnSite Member
    from bis nd
    Messages: 27

    i have a john deere sx-95 that i am having the same issue's with i wonder who decided to put the pilot screw next to the block with 4 spines for adjustment?? anyhow i broke the screw and when i finally got a new screw i lost the spring that goes with it. You guessed it yet? the screw ended up in the carb and then ended up stuck in the exhaust valve thus holding it open and no start. this engine is either over-engineered or you need to be from the far-east to work on it :)
  10. piston slapper

    piston slapper LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,324

    Install a fuel filter between the tank and the carb ......remove and clean the carb ( remove the fuel needle and blow out the fuel inlet )....install the carb and unscrew the bowl drain to make sure you have fuel going into the carb. Crank the engine.

    If it doesnt start, check your linkages to make sure the choke is closing all the way.
    If it still doesnt start, check your compression....Valve train components wear after 10-20 yrs ....as the valve faces wear into the seats you lose your valve lash and the valves dont fully close causing a loss of compression ....

    Dont let it whip you , its just a lawnmower engine

Share This Page