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Craftsman ignition issue


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#1 camdigger OFFLINE  

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Posted May 04, 2015 - 03:18 AM

Craftsman Model and Serial Number.JPG Hi All

 

I have a Craftsman 18.5 HP about 15 years old (when they were green). Model and serial number below.  It has the B&S engine.  It has developed a loose connection either in the switch or in the plug connector.  At times, it is completely dead, but wiggling the harness behind the switch makes it roar to life.   We've been putting up with it for the last couple of mowing seasons hoping it would heal, but...  :D

 

My question is would it be possible to find an aftermarket switch for it?  IIRC, it has off, run, run w/lights, and start positions.


Edited by camdigger, May 04, 2015 - 04:54 AM.


#2 KennyP ONLINE  

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Posted May 04, 2015 - 05:28 AM

Morning! I just tried to find your model at Sears Parts and had no luck. The only 944 #'s they had were:

944609040

944609940

944609810

944609900

944603620

944601880

944601881

Are you positive of that #?

 

Sometimes you can pull the connector off and clean the back of the switch. I have removed wires from the plastic connector and either squeezed them a little to tighten the connection or put a new connector on.

I am sure there is a switch out there, but you need to know which switch it is. Sometimes the back of the switch has letters on it to help cross it over.


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#3 boyscout862 ONLINE  

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Posted May 04, 2015 - 05:36 AM

Welcome to GTT. Kenny's advice is right on. I will add that I've had a little luck with folding a small piece of fine sand paper and using it to clean wire plug sockets. The problem may be inside the switch so you will just have to replace it. You did check the safety switches too? Good Luck, Rick



#4 camdigger OFFLINE  

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Posted May 04, 2015 - 06:26 AM

Morning! I just tried to find your model at Sears Parts and had no luck. The only 944 #'s they had were:

944609040

944609940

944609810

944609900

944603620

944601880

944601881

Are you positive of that #?

 

Sometimes you can pull the connector off and clean the back of the switch. I have removed wires from the plastic connector and either squeezed them a little to tighten the connection or put a new connector on.

I am sure there is a switch out there, but you need to know which switch it is. Sometimes the back of the switch has letters on it to help cross it over.

 

 

Not sure how else to verify the model number, that is a picture of the number plate on the machine.



#5 Hobal OFFLINE  

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Posted May 04, 2015 - 11:22 PM

attachicon.gifCraftsman Model and Serial Number.JPGHi All

 

I have a Craftsman 18.5 HP about 15 years old (when they were green). Model and serial number below.  It has the B&S engine.  It has developed a loose connection either in the switch or in the plug connector.  At times, it is completely dead, but wiggling the harness behind the switch makes it roar to life.   We've been putting up with it for the last couple of mowing seasons hoping it would heal, but...  :D

 

My question is would it be possible to find an aftermarket switch for it?  IIRC, it has off, run, run w/lights, and start positions.

If you cant find one, which would be fairly impossible given the brainpower of some of the fine gentlemen around these parts. Could you not, take any three position switch and bastardize the wiring configuration to what is existing on your rig? Or strip the ignition harness from a junker car or truck?



#6 camdigger OFFLINE  

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Posted May 05, 2015 - 02:32 AM

If you cant find one, which would be fairly impossible given the brainpower of some of the fine gentlemen around these parts. Could you not, take any three position switch and bastardize the wiring configuration to what is existing on your rig? Or strip the ignition harness from a junker car or truck?

 

I could do that.  It becomes a question of time and effort.  Replacing a switch is a lot more attractive to me than redoing the wiring harness.  For other reasons my time for this issue is quite limited for the foreseeable future.  The lawn mower operators are starting to fuss about an outright replacement rather than repair.  The lead of the lawnmower department has been eyeing one of those zero turn units....  even to the point of forwarding adverts for the homeowner class machines now competitively priced with the better lawn tractors at the +/- $2400 mark.


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#7 KennyP ONLINE  

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Posted May 05, 2015 - 04:08 AM

I didn't see that pic earlier. But that is a Canadian Sears, so may not show in the Sears parts site. I was hoping to find a wiring diagram for that tractor. Does the engine have the solenoid on the bottom of the carb?



#8 camdigger OFFLINE  

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Posted May 06, 2015 - 04:24 PM

Sadly, I couldn't tell you. I am not home now. The engine is a Briggs model. Yes, the tractor is a Canadian model. Sears US wants nothing to do with it, and Sears Canada hasn't answered my part request.

WhenI get a chance, I'll try the fixes suggested, then if that doesn't cure it, I'll try visiting Sears in person, or just try aftermarket like Napa.
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#9 redtailvision OFFLINE  

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Posted May 17, 2015 - 08:43 AM

I found a ignition switch for my 18/6 at Walmart of all places. Was $6.95



#10 camdigger OFFLINE  

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Posted June 10, 2015 - 08:33 AM

Well, I think I have this resolved. Not what I expected.... I put the unit up on my service ramp and proceeded to tear into it. After dealing with the deck issue ( fried the belt cutting some long grass ), I decided it was time to figure out wth was the story.

I took the switch off, and discovered one of the terminals had been arcing. I looked at the matching socket and poked it a bit to check the contact pressure and the contact pad fell out. Seems the socket either got hot from a cold weather start, or just fatigued and broke at the bend. The only way to replace the 7? Pin socket would be to order a wiring harness.

Mini- me and I sought another solution. The offending socket was on the outside of the plug. We cut the socket away with a utility knife and removed the wire. A quick search through my NAPA crimp on terminal set revealed a crimp on connector that was a good fit for the switch lug. A few minutes later, all was back on the unit.

I'm pretty sure we've found the issue. The tractor is still up on the ramps waiting on annual service and a new deck belt. Searched the big city of Red Deer for a new deck belt yesterday without success. Ordered a new belt from Sears, but it won't get here til next week.




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