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Old 02-23-2009, 07:21 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Tracking Electrical Problem

I've messed around with old snowmobiles the past couple of years. Most knowledge is self taught or learned from reading posts on this sight. Electrical issues are my biggest weakness. I have an 1981 Ski-doo Blizzard 7500+ (what does the Plus stand for?) with an ignition problem. There is no electrical start. I've read a lot of posts on the subject.

I began the season with this baby purring like a kitten. I noticed some rpm drop off at WOT on occassion when last riding. Made me a little nervous as I have never had an issue with this sled. I had done a good job at 'summerizing' the machine last year so I didn't clean the carbs this fall. So that was the first thing I did. After cleaning the carbs, she fired right up. Idle well, etc. Revved the engine and it seemed okay. Went out the next day to show my son. It started, but with some effort. Went through the same routine, and thought I heard a couple of misses. Got busy doing other things. Couple of days later I happened to be walking by the sled and decided to start it. I broke a sweat getting it to start. Thought maybe the plugs were fouled so I put in fresh ones. Didn't seem to help.

Did some research on the electrical problems since she seemed to run well when started. Went out and pulled the plugs. Spark seemed to be intermittent to non-exisent on some pulls. Just happened to have a new coil laying around so I installed that. Purchased an inline spark tester and gave it a few pulls tonight with spark testers on both cylinders. Very sporadic spark. Might spark on two pulls in a row, then not again for 10 pulls. I did have all the lights off and noticed that the headlight still lit up on each pull.

Since eletronics are my weakness, I'm open to any and all suggestions.
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Old 02-23-2009, 07:24 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Old 02-24-2009, 02:45 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Intermittent and/or weak spark usually points to the stator failing.
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Old 02-24-2009, 06:36 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I've heard both terms. Is the stator and magneto the same? I believe both are by the flywheel.
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Old 02-24-2009, 12:09 PM   #5 (permalink)
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7500+ would be a CDI ignition, the liquid cooled Blizzards were all CDI, the fan cooled (5500 and 5500MX) were magneto.
I've had intermittant spark be the CDI box failing. If you can find somebody with a known good one you can borrow thats an easy test.
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Old 02-24-2009, 07:27 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Let me theorize and have some of the experts chime in....today my teenager spoke up and said he just realized he ran 5 gallons of regular gas through the sled (no oil). That would have been the last time we rode it. I was along for the tail end of the outting and that is when I noticed the performance issue described above. I read a nice post by Excel V describing a no spark issue and solution...that got me to thinking...how would this scenario fit the problem...

Possibly the crank shaft seals are now toast...Throw in the 'ran without oil to the original post'....cleaned carbs (and did a bunch of other things while it was apart like change coolant, chain case oil, etc)...put back together, started (with correct premix) on first pull...probably has run a total of 20 minutes since back together...now if the seals were ruined and I'm now reintroducing oil into the system, could it be feasable that the oil has leaked past the seal and through the spinning motion, covered the points (or stator or magneto) or whatever happens to be down there and is now the cause of the no spark issue? Again remembering that electrical stuff is my weakness, I'm thinking that since the lights come on when I pull the rope, that something in the electrical area has to still be generating current. So hopefully one of you seasoned experts can chime in on this possibility and if you think this is plausible, what other than the seal might need to be replaced or would just replacing the seal and a good cleaning of the parts take care of the problem?

If this is a possibility, can a crankshaft seal be changed externally? I've torn other snowmobile engines down to the case to replace rings, but never went as far as completely taking one apart down to the crankshaft.

I really appreaciate this forum and all the knowledge that is shared.
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Old 02-24-2009, 08:45 PM   #7 (permalink)
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No oil in the gas wouldn't trash the crank seals it'd kill the rings from lack of lubrication. I presume you mean he mixed 5 gallons of regular gas into some mix gas. I'm reasonably sure the motor would not survive 5 gallons of gas with no lubrication what so ever. I ran an old Ski-Doo at 50:1 when it wanted 20:1 and within 2 gallons of gas I needed a piston, rings and cylinder.

So you need a compression test at the least.
You also need to check and see if this is a CDI or points ignition. The Snowmobile book confirms an '81 type 354 should be CDI ignition but its pretty easy to figure out. Find the spark plugs, follow the wires back to the coil, follow the wires from the coil to a mysterious box which should then have wires into the engine. The box is the CDI unit. If the wires go into the engine without going into a box it'd be a points ignition.
Assuming its CDI (it is, the one I have was a year older and it was CDI) then your theory is pretty much all wet (which I'm pretty sure it is anyway), besides which the lighting circuit has its own coil completely separate from the ignition circuit.

I'm still saying CDI, the CDI box is pretty easy to get aftermarket and not all that expensive. If you've replaced the coils and they're good and you've at least glanced at the wiring and its not all cut up then I'd go ahead and try a replacement CDI. If that doesn't work you've got to look at the ignition coil under the flywheel but at that point at least you know everything outside the engine is good.
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Raising sleds from the dead in north central MA.
'70 Ski-Doo Olympique 12/3 - The Yellow Bullet
'71 Arctic Cat Panther 303 - Wankle Panther
'78 Arctic Cat Pantera 5000 - Back from the dead!
'79 Polaris Cobra 340 - Back from the dead!
'95 Ski-Doo Grand Touring SE 670



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Old 02-24-2009, 11:24 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Thanks for the lengthy response. There is a CDI box next to the coil. As soon as he told me about the gas, I grabbed the guage. Both cylinders check out okay at about 120-122. I'll look into finding a CDI box and swap that out. That seems like an easy test. Much easier than pulling the engine apart.
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Old 02-25-2009, 12:07 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Any ideas on where to get a CDI box? I checked Dennis Kirk and Kimpex websites (as well as several others fromt he parts post) and can not locate model on their charts. I put an email into Al's to see if they have anything. Would prefer new.
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Old 02-25-2009, 03:07 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Old 02-25-2009, 06:35 AM   #11 (permalink)
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What is partsusa.com? I went there and I didn't find anything related to CDIs. Could buy all the copier toner I wanted but no CDI. Found a link on there for JC Whitney, etc.
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Old 02-25-2009, 06:39 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Sorry, wrong link.
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w/ Comet 108 Pro-4 clutch & 01 ZR skid

'90 Wildcat Project in progress.

Vintage (sorta)
1980 Indy Trail 440 (for sale)
1980 AC Pantera (donor engine to the 90 wildcat)


http://www.dcdrifters.net/


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Old 02-25-2009, 09:08 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Thanks. Part ordered. Will keep fingers crossed and report back next week.
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Old 03-04-2009, 09:39 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Okay the new CDI box came in and I slapped it on during my lunch break. I gave a tug with the inline testers installed and there is now good spark. Came home from work and really got after it. It now starts in one or two pulls. However, thats about it. It idles terrible and has absolutely no throttle responsed at all. 1/4, 1/2 or full....not even the slightest rpm increase and will die.

I have messed with the main screw and the small screw. On both carbs I have the idle air at about 1 1/8 out as I have seen recomended many times. The big screws are out 2 1/2 turns. I have tried various in/out combinations with virtually no difference. I pulled both fuel lines and they pump out fuel when I pullthe rope. I did notice an air pocket at the top of each fuel line as they go over the top of the carbs. They seem not to move, grow or shrink when idleing. The engine does not rev so I don't know if they would suck through at higher rpms.

So as a recap, during this process I cleaned both carbs, changed all fluids, replaced fuel lines, primer lines and filters just because I had everything apart. I don't remember the technical name, but I also replaced the vacum? line from the engine to the fuel pump.

As mentioned at the top of this post, when I originally put this back together and managed to get it started 3 or 4 times (before the CDI completely gave out) it would purr like a kitten until suddenly it would die. I then posted and through your help figured out to get a new CDI.

So now I'm stumped. A sled that ran perfectly fine until I noticed a sporadic miss at WOT, was cleaned real good, and then ran well until the spark issue came up and now that that is fixed it barely runs.

Any suggestions? Could it be an incorrect CDI box? Here are some numbers off the old box "Nippondenso" 070000-0680 Made in Japan. The new one is a Kimpex 01-143-22.

I'm again officially stumped. I'm open to any suggestions.
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Old 03-05-2009, 07:11 PM   #15 (permalink)
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something tells me the cdi box is wrong i was stumped at that too a while ago, as for your boy running straight gas thats bad, mine did that too, then when i changed the gas and premixed it and put it back in i went sledding needless to say my rings mustve weaken because i blew a ring after an hour of sledding so if i were you i would change the rings before the big bad happens. before that happened the sled was hard to start but once it started it was good but then thats when i shouldve known, at the time my compression was the same reading as yours now 122 120 psi.
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Old 03-12-2009, 06:26 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Any of you experienced guys know how to figure out if I have the right CDI box?
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Old 03-12-2009, 08:52 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Unfortunately without complicated test equipment theres no way to test the CDI to know if it works at all and there doesn't seem to be a good way to know if its correct. The Desno part numbers you posted don't seem to come up with anything.

Have you tried your Everest's CDI on it? Theres one for sale on eBay that indicates that the Everest l/c engines CDI is the same. Might be worth trying yours even if its a f/c engine just to try. If it reacts exactly the same as this one I'd guess this is the wrong CDI. If the sled ran perfectly I'd say this is the wrong CDI. If it did nothing we still don't know...
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Raising sleds from the dead in north central MA.
'70 Ski-Doo Olympique 12/3 - The Yellow Bullet
'71 Arctic Cat Panther 303 - Wankle Panther
'78 Arctic Cat Pantera 5000 - Back from the dead!
'79 Polaris Cobra 340 - Back from the dead!
'95 Ski-Doo Grand Touring SE 670



www.deadsledwrenchers.net
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Old 11-02-2010, 03:20 PM   #18 (permalink)
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What ever happened with the sled? you ever figure out what was the culprit?
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Old 11-03-2010, 12:46 PM   #19 (permalink)
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I am having the same exsact probleme with my sled. 1981 Ski Doo Blizzard 7500+. What ever happened with the sled? You ever figure out what was causing you those prblemes?
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