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Re: cold blooded to20

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Author  [Modern View]

01-12-2013 02:38:18

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The tractor should be wired Positive to ground unless you have an Alternator fitted.
Fit a longer Ground Lead, instead of attaching it to the back of the Dash Panel, attach it to one of the bolts close to the Starter. Make sure that the points and plugs are gapped correctly. Be sure that the feed wire to the Coil from the ignition switch is attached to the negative terminal of the coil. When you operate the starter it may be that the spark you are getting is not as good as it should be. If it is the Starter that is sluggish when it is cold, check the starter switch on top of the Clutch housing as the contacts burn and no longer make a good contact but it takes all the power from the battery. You can check if it is the switch by jumping the Starter direct from the battery cutting out the starter switch..John(UK)

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01-13-2013 04:33:50

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 Re: cold blooded to20 in reply to John(UK), 01-12-2013 02:38:18  
This is a comment about the "should be wired with a positive ground" statement; I don"t think it is good to get that embedded in the thread without contesting it. John, I know you have a world of experience and knowledge about these Fergies, but most autos for decades ran with negative ground. I run my TO-20 quite happily with a negative ground. There are things that must be done to switch to a negative ground system but they are very simple and it works perfectly well. Note that DIS (waste spark) automotive systems run with one plug getting positive spark polarity and one plug getting negative. The difference is where the most erosion of the plug electrodes will occur, and on a +ve HV plug the center electrode will tend to have more erosion because the +ve ions have more mass than the -ve electrons; but the center electrodes are typically made with more durable materials than the grounded protruding electrode. And I don"t really think most of our tractor plugs die from electrode erosion anyway. But this could be a discussion for another thread!

My advice for poor starts:
Good heavy battery cables with very clean connections at all points (terminals, frame ground and at all points to starter. Plus clean starter to frame mating surfaces.
And check your starter - check the brushes and commutator surface; shouldn't be too much scoring and the brushes should float freely and be long enough and show evidence of mating all across the commutator and not just in a small strip (can judge but color and wear. Make sure the commutator segments are not shorted.

And make sure you have changed gas with the season - the winter blends are more volatile and if you have old gas it is likely going stale anyway.

Storing in a shed is the best most of us can do but tractors are massive and condensation and moisture will work to corrode and oxidize things like electrical connections. Store inside if possible; regular use is the best medicine.

And don't mess with too many things all at once! If it was running in summer, it is probably pretty close to being right! These tractors with their 6V systems worked reliably for decades and there is no good reason that can't still be true; but time allows all the degradations of electrical contacts and connections and that is the most likely issue.

Best of luck with it.


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01-13-2013 05:00:51

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 Re: cold blooded to20 in reply to grits, 01-13-2013 04:33:50  
I Did't read anything in John's commentary that said positive ground was BETTER but merely that it came that way originally and a good way to tell if that had been changed then the alternator is a sign of change.

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01-13-2013 06:50:32

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 Re: cold blooded to20 in reply to 2tractors, 01-13-2013 05:00:51  
They don't always read what is written and put their own interpretation on it. Thank you for your observations as always....John(UK)

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01-13-2013 06:44:29

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 Re: cold blooded to20 in reply to 2tractors, 01-13-2013 05:00:51  
Well, first I've got to say that I should have proof read better; with a +ve HV the center is +ve and the positive ions are attracted to the grounded outer terminal where most of the erosion will occur.

However, I think my reading comprehension is OK, and "should be wired Positive to ground unless you have an Alternator fitted." (noting the parts following "should" and "unless") is what lead me to believe John was conveying the way it "should" be. And since the poster said it was a 6V system "with a new rebuild generator", John's statement then reduces to the meaning that it "should be wired Positive to ground" and all I am saying is that polarity isn't a significant issue in the least - especially if it was previously running.

And the original post didn't distinguish between slow cranking and failure or weakness to "hit" so we have all made a large heap without getting clarification of the actual issue at hand. His statement that it can be jump started from 12V truck (assumption on the 12V thing) suggests contact resistance for something electrical which is overcome by the assisting higher voltage of the truck jump; with 6V systems contact resistance is just a much bigger issue and yet, properly maintained, a 6V system works just fine.

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