35 thoughts on “Installing and adjusting points and condenser on Briggs and Stratton engines Tutorial

  1. you should have seen the condencer on my wisconsin abn when i first got the engine. something had smashed the back cover of the mag pretty good. the condencer had a huge dent in it. despite all that amazingly i still was able to get a hot spark out of it.

  2. I just finished working on a 1962 Wisconsin 9 1/2 HP with a distributor! Odd massive engine. Probably weighs 50-75 pounds more than an equivalent Briggs.

  3. @ZippoVarga i like wisconsin engines. the single cyl ones are very straight forward engines it seems. i havent dug far into any of mine yet. i am trying to get the magneto on my BKN back into time still because i cant find the timing mark that is supposed to be on the cam gear. but wisconsins were known as severe duty engines in ads. built extreamly heavy but they were expencive engines. they have loads of torque and are extreamly reliable engines though

  4. @scottsamonek A little off the beaten path of a garden tractor engine, but I'll give it a whirl. Under no load the engine sounds as though it is fine. Under load, it's misfiring. Get an in line spark plug tester, put it to each spark plug and run the engine. My guess is one of three things are happening. Points or ignition module, bad coil or improper timing advance. Let me know.

  5. @bcarbaugh Absolutely…..and make sure when they are properly adjusted that you lock the nut down securely. The points will float out of adjustment even though the screw is hard to move. They are made this way to make it easier to make minute adjustments. Best of luck!!

  6. @nathanmeitzler Any Authorized Briggs and Stratton dealer or Lawn care dealer can get you the points. Just copy all the numbers off the engine and they will be able to tell which points are correct for your engine. Good Luck! By the way….they will set you back about 45 bucks.

  7. This was very helpful. That motor looks like the 12hp that is in my homelite. Currently I am getting no spark. I have a feeling it is the coil or the points. Points open and close as motor turns. I cleaned up the points with some sandpaper and also bypassed the key switch to eliminate any safety switches and also tested with known working plug. If points are out of adjustment would you get no spark at all or weak spark?

  8. @wckdkl0wn You would get no spark or a weak spark depending on the condition and gap of the points. The standard is 20 thousandths of an inch, but I have many engines that miss that mark by as much as 3 or 4 thousandths. The way I adjust the points is to get to the "home" position of 20 thousandths and with the spark plug resting on the head with a good ground, I turn the engine over while adjusting the points and watch for the bluest spark. Best of luck buddy!! Cheers!!

  9. @ZippoVarga I replaced the coil and now motor runs great. I'm now having issues with the hydrostat but thats a whole different problem than this. Seems like I narrow 1 thing down and find out something else doesn't work. But I guess it wouldn't be called a project if it ran perfect. ūüôā

  10. thanks for the tip!…I have a 70s B&S 5Hp pulsa-jet carb on a old red snapper tiller that was given to me.It ran 5yrs ago and just stopped.I got it and it had old gas in the tank.I cleaned out the tank and carb and replaced the pump diaphragm and cleaned out the jets the best I could.I put it back together and tried to start it but it had no spark so I bought a new coil and installed it.The points and condenser looked good so I did not mess with them.I tried to start the darn thing…no luck?

  11. continued..I do have spark now and spray starting fluid in the carb and the engine just coughs a little but will not run….any suggestions on what to do next?
    I pulled a muscle 2 weeks ago trying to get this dinosaur to start up and run and haven't tried to start it sense…but I would like to try to restart it this weekend…thanks for any advice

  12. @04Dasani I can explain it here very simply. Loosen the coil bolts, put a business card between the flywheel and coil, rotate the flywheel around until the magnets pull the coil to the flywheel, pinning the business card between. Tighten the coil bolts, rotate the flywheel to remove the business card and the coil it perfectly spaced. Works EVERY time!

  13. @forku2umf What a wonderful compliment Dave! I am OCD, so my work shop is always neat and orderly. Sure…….there's clutter…….but it's organized chaos…lol. I've been doing self help videos and video requests for about three years now. I'm always learning and I love to pass on my experiences to save someone a headache. There are a lot of people on here that use unorthodox methods of making repairs and you just have to laugh at the degree of ignorance some times. Thanks Again Dave!!

  14. I need some help with my 18 horse Briggs. Please check my 2 videos. It starts occasionally I think the points are causing trouble.

    Please help

  15. I need you to please e mail me about this i have a early 70's homelite t-16 made by allis, with the briggs 16hp i dont have any spark and im not sure if you are supposed to feed the points with 12v or not i have a wire that goes to my ignition switch and everything but if you e mail me at Benedict_2010@hotmail.com i cant send you pics of what im doing. Thanks and your vids are awesome!

  16. Great Video. I would imagine that the installation would be very similar for a Kohler 12 h.p. (K301) engine? I've never installed points before. I seem to remember hearing that you pur grease on something? Maybe that is for a car, and the grease goes on the distributor shaft. Thanks!

  17. Grease is the last thing you want anywhere near the points and condenser. And yes, the installation is basically the same on all points fired engines. So long as the end result is properly adjusted points that gives you the hottest possible spark. Nice thing about these smaller engines is you have no distributor to mess with. Best of luck to you! Cheers!! Zip!

  18. Love the video! I'm rebuilding a briggs 16hp, the book says .20 point gap. I set them to .20 and when rotating the crank the points don't close all the way. New camshaft so i was rulling that out. The largest gap i can get is around .10. Does this seem right to you? I plan on watching the carb rebuild video next. Hopefully it fires when i'm done. Thanks.

  19. I shot a video on where to look for the many places Briggs and Stratton has placed their ID numbers over the years. Give that a look, and if you still come up with nothing, we can dig into the engine to determine approximate year and HP through bore and valve size as well as certain key features that changed over time. Cheers!

  20. hey i really need your my 23d briggs keeps shearing the flywheel key as soon as it fires up. Im using the correct key but it keeps doing it. I made my own too which is 3x more beef then the other one… Im about to just weld it because im only using it as a show tractor to start once in a while so i have no plans to remove it again but id rather do it right instead of cutting the crank just to replace a seal!

  21. Zippo,
    Can you make a video that shows how to get to the points if they are beneath the flywheel on a B&S 7hp. This video has the points in the wrong place. Do you need special tools to get the flywheel off? I just installed a new coil and I am still not getting a spark, so I figure I have to check the points…..?
    Thank You,

  22. Zippo,
    I have a Landlord 2110.  My condenser and points are in great shape and my tractor runs and fires.  I have a wire coming from the engine that I cant figure out where it goes. It is coming from the middle of the engine, the same place the ignition wire and sparkplug wire are coming from.  The ignition wire is connected to the point box along with the condenser wire.  What is this second wire coming from the engine and where does it go??

  23. I changed the points and condincer. On my 16 hp B.S. I can feel spark but not getting spark on my plug. And if I don't touch the engine while spinning motor I don't feel spark. Help. Could it be magneto?

  24. Hey Zippo, been watching and enjoying your videos. You said don't hesitate to ask questions, so here is my story. Before my grandpa passed he gave me his AC big ten, about ten years ago it ran. I went to college and it sat in a garage until recently. This weekend I had plans to get it running. After cleaning the mice high rise out of it I noticed they chewed the magneto wire and that is why I had no spark. My big ten has Briggs 243431 0123-02, all I could read of time code was 602081. Went to weingartz and they gave me magneto 398811. Installed it without the kill wire and with "this side out" facing out. Still no spark so I reversed it and get a spark but it doesn't seem to want to start. It came with a plug am I suppose to remove the condenser and points or connect the kill wire to it?

  25. got engine like that and i need spark plug someone has put weed eater plug / could you give me plug number so i can install right one thanks /dale

  26. i've got a 3416h simplicity with the 16hp engine. I put new points, condenser in and rebuilt it cant figure out the wiring I tried every thing got any ideas or got a video?

  27. I have an old 1972 ss 15 sears tractor. Can't find the right point gap or about where I should set it. Numbers on the engine are to worn. And the local small engine shop help. I know you know but the engine is 15 hp

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