Model 18 Packard ignition question
I have a 1912 Packard Model "18" Packard that I inherited a while back. It has been problematic getting started from the first. Sometimes it will start right off, sometimes an hour of cranking will not do it. Sometimes, I can get a "freebe" by advancing the spark. I am gradually working through the possibilities with both carburetion and ignition. At the suggestion of several members, I fitted a more modern BB1 carb. I have also had a new condenser put in the buzzer coil. At this point, something has occurred so that I do not get a buzz from the coil. I have checked battery charge, point cleanliness and gap, checked for loose wires, etc. The only thing I see that might not be right is that in the commutator, there are what appear to be several cracks around the outside ring. I don't know if this is the normal appearance or if there is a problem. Suggestions from those who have any ideas gratefully accepted.
What type of ignition system does Packard use on your Model 18?
This is where my lack of knowledge comes in. It has a single coil that runs off the battery, and a magneto. There is also a commutator, which I think, but am not sure, distributes the spark from the coil/battery system. The spark plug wires all come off the mag, no separate plugs or wires. The wiring diagram is not much help to me.
Right now, I have nothing through the coil. I cannot crank fast enough to get anything from the mag, so I don't know if the problem is there or not. I had a new condenser put into the coil, then everything got put aside for a while while we moved. I'm not sure how to test the coil to make sure that it works.
What make is your Magneto and model. From what I can gather, you are describing a "low tension" magneto/ignition system. Knowing information from your magneto will help us to help you. There is a big difference between a "low tension" and "high tension" magneto ignition system. I am not familiar, does your Packard Model 18 use two spark plugs per cylinder or one? What brand and model is your ignition switch? The more information we get on what your Packard ignition system has will certainly help. I would guess that by 1912, Packard would have progressed from a low tension ignition system to a high tension Dual Bosch or equivalent ignition system. The good thing about the high tension dual system is that it allows you to start your engine on a battery and points, then when your RPM's are up switch over to magneto. This system is all integral with the magneto and your switch. Does your magneto have an impulse? The impulse provides for a quick snap of the magneto to get a hot spark for starting. We will help if we can..... Another thought, pictures are good of your system.
This Packard has only 1 plug per cylinder. The ignition switch only has a Packard logo on it-Mag to the left, off in the center and batt to the right. In the past, we started on Battery, then manually switched to Mag. No impulse. Magneto is an Eseman? In the one photo, you can see the cracks in the commutator.
Let me know if you would like to see different photos/angles.
Hello Steve, Have you tested all circuits for continuity?
I have been working on that. I need to get a couple of clips, because I do not have the reach to check a couple from inside to the engine. So far, everything looks good.