Re-built Evinrude 18 HP 1960 won’t start

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  • salnaes

    International Member - 1 Year
    Replies: 38
    Topics: 8
    #269463

    I have totally overhauled my Evinrude 18 HP Fastwin 1960, and today time had come to start break-in procedures for the first time. I had made myself a test tank and mounted the outboard in it with plenty of water to do a first run after assembling all parts (new pistons and rings, honed cylinders, and plenty other parts).

    It wouldn’t start.

    It was fairly good compression, so I think the job is ok with the power head. This evening I tested for sparks. I used spark plug testers and mounted them on the spark plug leads. In the dark I could see sparks in both. So I guess it’s not a problem with ignition. I have an inspection hole in the fly wheel, and I checked the points gap. 0.20 fitted perfectly with the points fully open. So I recon I did a fairly ok job with the multimeter and the points before I mounted the fly wheel couple of days ago. I used the timing tool from Richards Outboard tools and a multimeter with buzzer to set the points a few days back.

    So since it’s not starting, I guess it’s a fuel problem. Right? One thing to mention is that the manual choke lever is not maintaining it’s “ON” position when I drew it out. It slowly moves back, and it won’t stay in the out position. I don’t know if this is the problem or if it’s another issue with the carburetor not having fuel.

    I have new fuel pump, new filter in bowl, new fuel pipelines from the tank to the carburetor. All pipelines are new. There is fuel in the filter bowl. I can see it. I have totally re-built my carburetor with a complete service kit. The kit also had float and needle. My high-speed and low-speed needles are both set to initial values according to manual. They are not worn.  Carburetor should be fine, I think.

    Any ideas?


    Buccaneer

    US Member - 1 Year
    Replies: 6452
    Topics: 958
    #269470

    Squirt some mixed gas into each spark plug hole and see if it fires.
    If so, I’d concentrate on the fuel system.
    I’ve had trouble on a couple of carbs in the past where the carb
    bowl vent was either plugged, or had the wrong bowl gasket,
    preventing from gas actually filling the carb bowl.
    Of course, I’ve had float needles “stick” as well.

    Prepare to be boarded!


    dave-bernard

    US Member - 2 Years
    Replies: 1939
    Topics: 29
    #269473

    OR did you put the pistons in wrong ??


    salnaes

    International Member - 1 Year
    Replies: 38
    Topics: 8
    #269475

    If you mean I put the pistons with the slanted side facing towards the intake? No. The slanted side of the pistons face against the exhaust side. The steep side face the against the intake ports.20221001_133944

    Should be right.

    May be it did not start because fuel did not come to the carburetor and fill up the bowl properly? Or may be it did not start because the choke lever did not stay out? It’s cold here now, and I suppose the engine need full choke, but I’m not able to set it at full choke. It returns back to no choke as soon as I let the choke lever go from my fingers. I guess it needs a repair.

    Attachments:

    salnaes

    International Member - 1 Year
    Replies: 38
    Topics: 8
    #269478

    Talking about pistons reminds me of something that happened when I ordered new pistons and rings on ebay. I looked up part numbers on marineengine.com for the 1960 model 15032 (18hp) and found #385338 (piston std). The part numbers for rings on marineengine.com was not recognized as valid part numbers, so for some reason  I ordered ring set #378415 (rings std).

    It turned out that the rings I received (3378415) had 3 rings in each set, and they did not fit the pistons I had received, which only had 2 grooves. In addition the two grooves were different. The upper was slanted. The rings I received did not fit the pistons. So I had to find out what pistons I had become from the seller. After some searching on marineengine.com I found out that some later models 18hp around the year 1970 had only 2 rings. I found out what the part number those two rings were, and ordered them. They did fit my pistons, so now I have installed pistons #385338 and two rings on each piston (It might be #383473, but I haven’t made a note of the part number, so I’m not sure).

    Long story short: I now have pistons in my 1960 18 hp with two rings on each piston, and they fit in the cylinders. Now I wonder if this could cause any problem like the engine does not start?


    Steve D


    Replies: 626
    Topics: 57
    #269479

    As far as the choke issue you mentioned, yes, having the choke out helps a lot on a fresh start like that. Can you get someone to hold it out for you while you turn it over? Or wedge something in near the knob that you can pop out quickly once it starts. It’s probably a missing or worn choke detent #7 that holds the notched choke link #6 in place.

    detent-7
    detent

    Attachments:

    salnaes

    International Member - 1 Year
    Replies: 38
    Topics: 8
    #269484

    Thank you very much, Steve. I think you are right. I will take a look at the detent tomorrow. It’s just before midnight here in Norway now, and I have to get some sleep.

    I will try to get the choke to stay out the next time I give it a try. Probably tomorrow.

    I hope the issue with the piston rings that I wrote previously about does not mean I have to disassemble the power head to swap pistons and rings back to the piston with 3 rings. That would be really dreadful.


    Steve D


    Replies: 626
    Topics: 57
    #269485

    You can slit a piece of rubber hose lengthwise and place it over the choke knob to help keep it open.

    As far as the pistons and rings, others with more knowledge about those 2 ring pistons and what I believe are called pressure back rings will have to chime in about those.


    salnaes

    International Member - 1 Year
    Replies: 38
    Topics: 8
    #269486

    Thanks a lot for this good tip, Steve. I will do that tomorrow.

    May be I also could use starter spray directly into the carburetor?


    Steve D


    Replies: 626
    Topics: 57
    #269487

    I would avoid the use of starter spray. It strips away the oil and lessens protection of moving parts. Spray some pre-mix in the throat if you have to but a good working choke might just be all you need. And of course make sure the throttle is advanced far enough in neutral, the cap is tight on the tank and pump it up until the you see fuel in the glass sediment bowl and the button is nice and firm.


    fleetwin

    US Member - 2 Years
    Replies: 4397
    Topics: 45
    #269488

    Talking about pistons reminds me of something that happened when I ordered new pistons and rings on ebay. I looked up part numbers on marineengine.com for the 1960 model 15032 (18hp) and found #385338 (piston std). The part numbers for rings on marineengine.com was not recognized as valid part numbers, so for some reason  I ordered ring set #378415 (rings std).

    It turned out that the rings I received (3378415) had 3 rings in each set, and they did not fit the pistons I had received, which only had 2 grooves. In addition the two grooves were different. The upper was slanted. The rings I received did not fit the pistons. So I had to find out what pistons I had become from the seller. After some searching on marineengine.com I found out that some later models 18hp around the year 1970 had only 2 rings. I found out what the part number those two rings were, and ordered them. They did fit my pistons, so now I have installed pistons #385338 and two rings on each piston (It might be #383473, but I haven’t made a note of the part number, so I’m not sure).

    Long story short: I now have pistons in my 1960 18 hp with two rings on each piston, and they fit in the cylinders. Now I wonder if this could cause any problem like the engine does not start?

    OK, let’s talk more about this.  You bought the pistons/rings on ebay.  You didn’t get them from marineengine.com using the original part numbers?  Ebay sellers oftentime mismark parts, or make false assumptions about “what will work”.  Another big mistake made my many is “reverse superceeding”.  In other words, marking older parts with newer part numbers, this is a mistake that can bite you in the butt big time.

    It sounds like someone has sold you newer style pistons that used the two ring “pressure backed” piston rings for your engine.  I’m not saying this won’t work, just saying you can get in trouble making switches/assumptions like this.  If OMC wanted these new style pistons to be used as replacement parts for older three ring piston units, the piston part numbers would have changed/superceeded to a “kit” part number.  This kit would have come with directions, along with the two pressure backed rings that are to be used on the newer pistons.

    I’m thinking the no start situation is due to something much simpler though.  That choke detent is a poor design and a constant issue for hard cold start situations.  You mention there is good spark on both cylinders but are you sure the leads are connected to the correct plug?  It is easy to get this mixed up when reworking the mag plate with new wires, etc.  The engine won’t run at all with timing off 180 degrees, although it might backfire loudly while trying to start it.

    I guess I would take the advice about priming the cylinders with fresh fuel/oil, then trying to start it.  If the engine still makes no attempt to fire, then I would swap plug leads and retest.


    crosbyman

    Canada Member - 2 Years
    Replies: 2991
    Topics: 287
    #269507

    and….. what is      fairly good compression ……   recheck and post #s   !!

    Joining AOMCI has priviledges 🙂


    billw

    US Member - 2 Years
    Replies: 1961
    Topics: 63
    #269508

    I know what Fleetwin is saying and totally agree with him, about reverse supercession. However, in this particular case, it would SEEM TO ME, that those pistons and rings would work. One stupid question, though…You do have the pistons in the block the right way, in the picture, but that is not a picture of the final installation, because BOTH pistons are at the tops of the bores….

    As for your ignition wires, it may be tricky to see, but the forward-most ignition coil is the top cylinder and the rear-most coil is the bottom cylinder. If you are careful, you should be able to trace the wires without taking anything apart.

    An actual compression test, with readings, would be good to know, before you go down the wrong path.

    Putting a small amount of fuel/oil mix in the cylinders and seeing if it fires, like Buc and Fleetwin say, is a good idea. If it does fire, then try squirting some directly into the bore of the carb and see if it again fires briefly. If it fires with fuel directly in the cylinders but NOT in the carb, then you may have sealing issues with the crank case or reed valve issues. But one step at a time.

    Long live American manufacturing!


    salnaes

    International Member - 1 Year
    Replies: 38
    Topics: 8
    #269512

    Hi fleetwin and all others. Thank you very much for participating in these issues. I really appreciate every single post here. You are all fantastic, and it really helps this old guy(me) in making the right decisions and solving problems.

    I was very happy when I found marineengine.com, because there’s not really many parts to find by dealers here in Norway for such an oldtimer like my eighteen horse from 1960. So I thought I could purchase from marineengine who had mostly everything I needed. But I was wrong. Marineengine does not sell to Norway. Period. What?!!  The didn’t even answer my emails because my email address was Norwegian. So I had to find other ways to purchase parts. Purchasing on ebay is not what I want, but sometimes I have no other choice.

    The pistons marineengine.com have on their parts catalog for my 1960 18hp mod 15032 is #377262 and #385338. At the time of purchase #377262 was unavailable, so the only choice was to purchase #385338. But they does not sell to Norway, so I was stuck with ebay. I found #385338 on ebay by a seller in Cypros in Europe, and according to an experienced friend who had bought lots of items from this seller, my friend have had very good experiences with this seller and recommended him. So I ordered two pistons #385338 and two sets of rings #378415. It’s my own fault to order wrong rings.

    #385338 has only two grooves. This pistons is also used many years after 1960 on 18 hp. I received two sets of three identical rings, and not two sets of two different rings, because I ordered the wrong part number for rings.  So I don’t blame the seller on ebay. He just sent what I ordered.

    Now the pistons #385338 is provided by marineengine as pistons for the 1960 modell I have. They are on the marineengine Power Head parts page for my model 15032, although not in stock. So I feel confident now on using these two pistons #385338 with the special rings which I was lucky to acquire later by a dealer in Sweden. Those two pistons are now correctly installed, and should work just fine since marineengine have them on their parts page for my power head.

    The image I posted previously show both pistons in the same position, and that’s because the rods are not connected to the crankshaft at the time the image was captured. Since the rods are not connected to the crank shaft it’s possible to slide the pistons up and down the cylinders in parallell so they are in the same position.

    So my little worries concerning the pistons and rings are now gone.

    Now to the other possible problem, connecting ignition leads to the right cylinders. I studied so many resources (youtube, repair manuals and other stuff) to connect coils to the right cylinders. I have installed new coils, condensers and points on the armatur plate. The ignition leads and spark plug caps are all new too. When I did this job I followed the recommendations I found in the sources of info I had. The two ignition wires that goes to the spark plugs are installed in this way:

    Wire to the top cylinder is connected to the first coil the wires meet when they are travelling onto the armaturplate. Wire to the bottom cylinder goes further around the edge of the armaturplate about 180 degrees and then disappears into the second coil. So the ignition wire to the second coil is the longest of the two wires. The wire to the top cylinder is labeled with a small metal clip with the letters “UP” on it to not interchange the wires by accident. This is how I did it, and correct me if I’m wrong.

    I have tested sparks on both cylinders with two spark testers, and they both show good sparks when I rotate the flywheel. I feel confident that the ignition is correct.

    I did a search on the Internet to find the Detent #204490 which is holding the choke lever in the ON position. It seems that this part is gone out of production, but it still exist on ebay. But who would pay USD $42.50 pluss shipping and taxes for a little plastic piece? It’s crazy.  So luckily I found a dealer here who had one piece. And the price was ok too.

    Well. Now I will spray a little fuel in the carburetor intake and try starting again. Just one final question. How much throttle do I need to set before I begin to pull the starter handle?


    The Boat House


    Replies: 4074
    Topics: 102
    #269516



    Check and see if the points that the coil is
    connected to open and close when the
    piston gets to the top of the cylinder that
    it’s going to.
    Tubs
    .

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