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  1. #1

    Why am I still not getting spark?

    Alright - so I did my research many times over on the site before posting this. I'm also an engineer and I've been working on PWC engines for years. But I am completely stumped on this one!

    2000 GP1200R, rebuilt the motor from crank up, won't start at all. I used to be able to spray some starter fluid in the chambers and it would fire up for a second then die - so I thought it was fuel related. Bypassed the fuel sending unit to see if it would start - nothing. Pulled the return line - fuel was still coming back. So I thought it was maybe the carbs? Rebuilt the carbs - nothing. Compression tested it - little low on #1, #2 and #3 are ok - none low enough to cause a no-run condition.

    Now I think it is electrical. I replaced the spark plugs and spark plug wires - still nothing. At this point, I exploded my waterbox because fuel vapors built up - and I must have had at least a weak spark to ignite them. Anyway, I pulled the Electrical box - took the plugs out and stuck them in the plug boots - saw a weak spark on #1. #2 and #3 have nothing. So I pull out the voltimeter and start testing:

    • Plug wire resistance SAT
    • Ignition coil resistance SAT
    • CDI Output Peak Voltage is not reading
    So it indicated maybe the CDI is bad. Replaced CDI - still no spark. Maybe it's further down the chain?

    • Pickup Coil peak voltage SAT
    • Rectified/Regulator peak voltage was reading low but battery was dead - so I consider it SAT
    • Lighting Coil (Green-Green) peak voltage is not reading correctly
    Ahh, so it's the stator not sending a pulse to the CDI.... Replaced stator - still no spark!

    Where else can I go from here?


  2. #2
    This is how I run a jetski shop in the desert nmpeter's Avatar
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    1st off..lay off the starter fluid..that's amateur mechanics and you're lucky you didn't get hurt when your wb popped. A little pre mix in a small squirt can is how that has to be done.

    dealing with an issue like this is a reverse autopsy..so lets see..( what I've had happen over the years)

    engine was rebuilt...

    I'd be looking at the flywheel placement..did you use an OEM woodruff key?...generic keys are soft and often shear..tricky to track down as no many folks like to pull the stator cover off multiple times

    If I am not mistaken ( as I often am) this ski uses three trigger sensors..some manuals are incorrect and show only one.

    you seem to have the electrical pretty much under control..but how are the engine grounds and the connections in the e-box..maybe pinch a wire under the cover..or catch one with a bolt during install?

    I'd most certainly have a close look at the kill switch..there are two circusts..one allows the engine to crank..the other powers the cdi.

    correct plugs?..some HP heads use the longer BR8ES plug

    so..let's see how you did..let's do a little live testing of spark timing now

    squirt some fuel ( teaspoon tops) in number three ground the other plug lines..crank the engine..get anything?
    put the number 2 plug lead on jug 3..crank it..anything?

    and then number one on number 3.

    this will help if the engine coughs at all, it's a spark timing issue

    the spark is not as big and fat as you'd expect..i'd use a plug tester..or perhaps a guy that comes 0ver and drinks your beer..but never brings any with him.

    think about stupid stuff..as this surely sounds like something overlooked..take another hard look a the ebox and check that the ground lug in there is actually a zero resistance path to the engine block.

    check all the stator lines for grounding also

    keep track of your fuel lines and other flammables..this kind of stuff is where accidents tend to happen.(like leaving off a return line when starting the engine)

  3. #3
    Thanks for the reply. Starter fluid was only to check if there was even fuel getting to the cylinders. Usually my last resort and a go-no-go test.

    I did use the OEM key on the wheel - and that has been floating in my mind as the last possible issue that could cause this - flywheel placement. Nevertheless, I should still be seeing at least a spark since the magnets would send the signal. If I can get spark - then I can work on timing issues, if any. I can't even check for timing issues as I have no spark. Plugs are 11ES, they're the correct ones.

    I also thought about the ground as you mentioned, so I removed the ground wires, wire brushed the connectors, then reinstalled in a different location. These should be good. Im going to retest the rectifier - thats about the last item I haven't replaced separate from the wires themselves.

    I agree that it has to be something small. I've run over the system so many times at this point - I can't figure out what I am missing. Hoping somebody on here will chime in and make me feel stupid.

  4. #4
    YudLuz2's Avatar
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    Replace your temp sensor located in the stinger pipe. They go bad or the wires get damaged. Make sure it is plug up first.

  5. #5
    Yud - Will a bad temp sens cause it not to fire?

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Black Z-24 View Post
    Yud - Will a bad temp sens cause it not to fire?

    Yes sir it will. You also just can't unplug it as it will not fire if unplugged either.

  7. #7
    All hail the Chief! fullboogie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by YudLuz2 View Post
    Replace your temp sensor located in the stinger pipe. They go bad or the wires get damaged. Make sure it is plug up first.
    Bingo.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by chevyrocks3 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Black Z-24 View Post
    Yud - Will a bad temp sens cause it not to fire?

    Yes sir it will. You also just can't unplug it as it will not fire if unplugged either.

    Ill look into replacing this. In the meantime - not sure if this changes anything - but if I pull my plugs out, stick them in the boots, and lay them near something metallic - a spark will jump between the plug and metallic piece.

    Could this mean my plugs aren't gapped correctly? I gapped them each myself to .039in to make sure.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Black Z-24 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by chevyrocks3 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Black Z-24 View Post
    Yud - Will a bad temp sens cause it not to fire?

    Yes sir it will. You also just can't unplug it as it will not fire if unplugged either.

    Ill look into replacing this. In the meantime - not sure if this changes anything - but if I pull my plugs out, stick them in the boots, and lay them near something metallic - a spark will jump between the plug and metallic piece.

    Could this mean my plugs aren't gapped correctly? I gapped them each myself to .039in to make sure.

    Gap at .045 in.

    Check the wireing harness connections. Sometimes they corrode inside the connector.

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