Home | Classifieds | History | Technical | Links | Store | About Us | Email
Topics Topics Edit Profile Profile Help/Instructions Help Member List Register  
Search Last 1|3|7 Days Search Search Tree View Tree View  

Magneto Tips

Old Marine Engine » Timers, Magnetos, Ignition » Magneto Tips « Previous Next »

Author Message
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Andrew Smith
Username: andy_smith

Post Number: 4
Registered: 01-2008
Posted on Wednesday, February 04, 2009 - 12:03 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I've spent the winter tinkering with my Stuart Turner and its Lucas SR1 magneto. The engine has always started okay cold, but never when hot. This is what I found by experiment and gleaned off the internet (applies to most magnetos I suspect):-

Keep them clean and gapped correctly. 10 - 12 thou for the Lucas SR1.
Make certain the pivot post is clean and lightly lubricated. Over time it does gum up, so strip, clean and reassemble.
The SR1 does not have a felt pad to lubricate the cam. A very small smear of light grease will suffice.

Condenser (Capacitor):
If the points are burned it is safe to assume the condenser is u/s. If the condenser is original, it is safe to assume it is u/s. Get a new condenser and points set.
A faulty condenser also messes up the ignition timing.
Never buy an original condenser (old stock). Those left on the shelves are so old they will have deteriorated and probably no better than the one you're replacing. Get a modern equivalent.

Make sure the LT coil, condenser and points connectors are clean and bright when you re-assemble (don't forget the condenser case to magneto case connection). The lower the resistance here the higher the generated LT voltage. This is then multiplied a thousands of times to create the HT voltage. Maximise the LT and you maximise the HT.

LT side will have a resistance of just a few ohms. The HT side several thousand ohms. If HT coils is in the megohm range it is almost certainly open circuit! The HT might jump the break inside, and the coil will still work . . for a while. Get a new coil assembly.

Magnetic Rotor:
Leave it alone. Never remove it from assembly or tap with a hammer, the magnets can lose their magnetism. Clean and lubricate the bearings as best as you can in-situ. Clean out as much of the old grease as you can, replace with fresh, then remove most of it. That will leave about the correct amount.
Note: When you rotate the rotor between your fingers it will feel 'sticky' or easy/hard/easy/hard. If it doesn't you may need to send the magneto away to be re-magnetised.

HT Connection:
The end cover on the Lucas SR1 has a conical spring which is supposed to make contact with a solder button on the HT coil. Check the diameter of the spring as it may be greater than the diameter of the button. That means no physical contact and the HT has to jump the gap to reach the HT cable. You may have to improvise to ensure a good connection.

HT cable:
Use solid, or stranded, copper cored HT cable; silver plated if you can find any.
Get rubber or silicon insulated cable, not woven cloth even if it looks 'period'.
Never, ever, be tempted to use modern graphite impregnated cores.

Spark Plug Cap (Boot):
Use a non-resistive un-suppressed cap. Your neighbours may not be happy with fuzzy TV and crackly radio, but you will maximize the HT at your spark plug.

Spark Plug Gap:
Set 18 thou to 20 thou; no wider.

Magneto Body:
It is essential the magneto has the best possible electrical connection between the casing and its mounting on the engine. Keep the base of the magneto scrupulously clean and free from paint, oil or dirt.

The magneto case must be allowed to 'breath'. Why? Because every time the points open there is a little discharge of ionised air inside the magneto. Ionised air conducts electricity, and if it isn't allowed to dissipate it can build up until the HT arcs to the case inside the magneto instead of at your spark plug. So don't block any breather holes!

Consider running an earth cable from a cylinder head stud to a magneto mounting bolt. Rather than relying on a fortuitous return path for the HT across several gaskets and potentially high resistance joints to the Magneto, wire it direct.

The biggest NO-NO to remember is this: Never, ever, ever, under any circumstances, spin the rotor without having a spark plug connected to the HT lead and earthed to the magneto casing. If you do, the HT coil cannot discharge and it will, one day, burn out.

The second biggest no-no is don't use your body as the HT return path. Trust me on this one. 20,000 volts hurts like you wouldn't believe, though you will have reason to be confident your magneto is working.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Nicholas Vassallo
Posted on Sunday, January 08, 2012 - 02:57 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Hi,recently I acquired a Sturat Turner marine R3M and wish to make it work. I think everything is OK, however I would like to check its magneto and service it. Could you please help me what I should do and how to remove it from the engine? I unscrewed the three bolt from beneath but it won't come off. Thanks in anticipation

Add Your Message Here
Bold text Italics Underline Create a hyperlink Insert a clipart image

Username: Posting Information:
This is a public posting area. Enter your username and password if you have an account. Otherwise, enter your full name as your username and leave the password blank. Your e-mail address is optional.
Options: Automatically activate URLs in message

Administration Administration Log Out Log Out   Previous Page Previous Page Next Page Next Page

Home | Classifieds | History | Technical | Links | Store | About Us | Email
&copy 2005 OldMarineEngine.com, P.O. Box 188, Forest Dale, VT 05745-0188 • Phone: 802-247-4864 • All rights reserved.
   Marine Engine Seloc Repair Manual Lookup Tool

marine gas engine repair and restoration