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Old 08-20-2011, 03:17 AM   #1
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Yet another. Coleman Generator

Ok, I finally tried out the generator last weekend (or was it the weekend before? It all blends together now). It started for about 10 seconds at low RPM, then died, and wouldn't restart.

I took off the carb and cleaned it, and put it back on today. Wouldn't fire. Tried starting fluid. Nothing. Replaced the spark plug, and it will now fire when I put starting fluid in, but will promptly die after that burns off. So it isn't getting fuel. I'm used to gravity fed small engines, so I'm not sure where to go on this.

Yes, the gas is old, but it has the Stabil red tint to it at least.

What should I be looking at, and what steps can I take. We are leaving to boondock for 5 weeks on Sunday morning (for financial reasons and moving for school we have no choice), and would prefer to have some form of electricity in that time, if for nothing more than lights and running water.

It is a Series 54 Coleman Powermate generator with a 5hp Briggs & Stratton, circa 1978.

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Old 08-20-2011, 08:00 AM   #2
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You need three things to run. Gas, Air, Spark. You are getting two. First off, GET NEW GAS. If that doesn't work, Pour about 1 teaspoon of gas in the plug hole, replace the plug and try. If that works, your carb has plugged internal orifices. Take the carb apart again and try to blow air thru all the holes you can find. Canned air for cleaning keyboards works well for this.

Did you take the carb far enough apart to make sure the needle seat is not stuck? Some of the internal orifices in the carb may be gunked with varnish up and need to be cleared.

Looking at the pic, it looks like a lawn mower engine that has the gas tank below the carb and just sucks the gas from it. If the gaskets are stiff and not flexible, it may not be allowing gas to flow to the venturi. You could also try removing the air cleaner and manually choking it with a finger or hand or pouring a small amount of gas in the carb bore and also seeing if the choke is operating. If I remember right, the choke is normally closed and air flow thru the carb opens it.

Post any further test and results. I have been working on internal combustion engines for over 50 years and they are not that difficult. I once fixed a lawn mower engine by listening to it over the phone.

Think Gas, Air, Spark.
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Old 08-20-2011, 09:33 PM   #3
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From your picture, I cannot see a spark plug wire. Please just tell me that it is just me.................ronspradley
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Old 08-20-2011, 09:45 PM   #4
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Zoom in if you can. It's the old clip on type. I thought the same thing at first.
He said it does briefly run with start fluid, so he has spark.
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Old 08-20-2011, 11:40 PM   #5
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Yeah, the plug wire is green just like the rest of it lol.

Got a can of compressed air, shoved the little red tube into every opening I could find, and blew away. Got it to start up and run finally! Saw a couple small bits of something at one point, but wasn't sure if it came off the outside of the carb or not. Apparently it came from inside. Adjusted the new needle to get it to run as close to smooth as I could tell. The muffler really makes it harder to tell lol. A lot quieter than I thought it would be, but obviously not /that/ quiet
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Old 08-21-2011, 12:46 AM   #6
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It was probably gas varnish that popped out of one of those holes. Glad you go it running.
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Old 08-21-2011, 12:32 PM   #7
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Ok, I looked around for wiring diagrams that might clue me in on this, but haven't found anything (probably just missed them) that will help me on this.

My generator produces AC, so I'm not sure if that has anything to do with the wiring for the battery. We can't afford a battery yet, but when we can, I want to know I am hooking it up right.

There are 3 wires in the battery compartment, and the only one I know for sure of is the positive wire (thanks to the red on it lol). The other two I'm not sure of what goes where. They all immediately exit the battery compartment through the same hole. Any advice would be much appreciated!

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Old 08-21-2011, 12:54 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SyrenSkywolf View Post
Ok, I looked around for wiring diagrams that might clue me in on this, but haven't found anything (probably just missed them) that will help me on this.

My generator produces AC, so I'm not sure if that has anything to do with the wiring for the battery. We can't afford a battery yet, but when we can, I want to know I am hooking it up right.

There are 3 wires in the battery compartment, and the only one I know for sure of is the positive wire (thanks to the red on it lol). The other two I'm not sure of what goes where. They all immediately exit the battery compartment through the same hole. Any advice would be much appreciated!

Check your resistance to ground; zero ohms indicating your ground wires..
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Old 08-21-2011, 01:35 PM   #9
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I would not assume positive is red on this generator. Maybe you can find the wiring diagram before you get a battery.................good luck..........ronspradley
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Old 08-21-2011, 01:51 PM   #10
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WAG. One ground, one positive from the inverter/charger and one positive to the MH 12V accessories/appliances. Take a VOM negative to ground and start the generator. Check for positive on the leads. The one that shows +12V is from the inverter/charger. Follow the other two wires and see if one goes to the frame. That be negative/Grd. Again, just a guess, but the other one should be the +12V to the MH
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Old 08-21-2011, 01:53 PM   #11
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I would not assume positive is red on this generator. Maybe you can find the wiring diagram before you get a battery.................good luck..........ronspradley
Since the red one is taped up, it's a pretty good guess it is positive 12 volts.
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Old 08-21-2011, 10:05 PM   #12
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Since the red one is taped up, it's a pretty good guess it is positive 12 volts.

You might be correct but on house wiring any colored wire is considered hot so if you are using a white wire and want to indicate it is hot then you put black tape on it. Just saying..........do not assume.............ronspradley
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Old 08-21-2011, 10:23 PM   #13
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Interesting. Never heard of doing that. My 5er confused me for a while. In the battery compartment, it had white, black and red. I zip-tied all the plus wires and all the negatives together.
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Old 08-30-2011, 02:16 PM   #14
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So, I have yet another issue. Decided to fire it up last night, partly for its weekly run, and partly to get a little electricity. Problem is, is I found out that the generator doesn't actually create any electricity.

I have absolutely no money available to fix it, so I am curious if there is anything I could look into that might just need tweaking, or if it needs parts replaced.

Wish I could give more info, but that is all I have at the moment.
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