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  1. #1

    Default 1990 Johnson 9.9 Sailmaster

    Good evening,
    I found a 1990 9.9 Johnson Sailmaster with electric start at the marina, it had a cracked cover, a fair amount of grease as well as mud under the cover.
    The motor turned over but would not start, it did misfire once on my first attempt.
    I cleaned it up, rebuilt the carburetor, changed the fuel pump, having broken a connector, changed the fuel lines, spark plugs, spark plug wires, CDI's, ignition coil assembly, charge coil assembly, intake manifold gaskets. It has close to 100 psi in both cylinders, has spark to both cylinder, it will not start, does not pretend to start, I have sprayed started fluid in the cylinders, have poured gasoline in the cylinders, directly in the carburetor, the things does not do anything besides turning over. The fuel will find its way down to the exhaust in small quantity but nothing happens.
    I have followed the advice posted online: clean carburetor, use fresh fuel, adjust needle on carburetor, I know the pump works because I checked the vacuum, I have checked the timing with a timing light after following the suggestion from the service manual to introduce a pencil into the top cylinder until the piston gets to the top and marked it on the flywheel, it does not seem to match my marks on the top cylinder when I turn the motor over.
    I took the intake manifold cover off this evening, it does not seem to have much fuel inside after turning the motor over for a few minutes, is it to be expected?
    Any advice? It was meant to be a project for the winter months, it is turning out to be a challenge.
    Thank you in advance for the help.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: 1990 Johnson 9.9 Sailmaster

    Switch plug wires ?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Duluth Mn
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    4,237

    Default Re: 1990 Johnson 9.9 Sailmaster

    Do you have spark? Check to see a 7/16" to 1/2" crackling, white/blue lightning like snap. Use a #2 Phillips pushed into plug boot and hold shank 1/2" away from a head bolt. Have both plugs out for test and disconnect the fuel supply line.

  4. #4

    Default Re: 1990 Johnson 9.9 Sailmaster

    I have spark on both cylinders, I checked with a spark plug tester and a timing light, the wires are installed correctly based on the manual, although I have reversed them just to make sure to no avail. The only thing I can think of would be that not enough fuel gets into the manifold, which I looked into yesterday and looked fairly dry, but as I mentioned the motor wouldn't fire up even when I introduced gasoline directly in the cylinder.

  5. #5

    Default Re: 1990 Johnson 9.9 Sailmaster

    Would a bad of broken kill switch allow for the motor to make sparks at all? The motor will turn over and produce sparks even when clip is disconnected.

  6. #6
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    Jun 2013
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    Duluth Mn
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    Default Re: 1990 Johnson 9.9 Sailmaster

    No, the kill switch would not change spark in that way. Either it's cancelling out spark, or it's not.
    If your mark on the flywheel at Top Dead Center, doesn't line up, then it could be the flywheel key.
    Last edited by timguy; 03-03-2021 at 09:55 AM. Reason: Add info

  7. #7

    Default Re: 1990 Johnson 9.9 Sailmaster

    Quote Originally Posted by timguy View Post
    No, the kill switch would not change spark in that way. Either it's cancelling out spark, or it's not.
    If your mark on the flywheel at Top Dead Center, doesn't line up, then it could be the flywheel key.
    I have changed the key, although just out of an abundance of caution, there were not much wear to it, I am confused about the kill switch: the motor does turn over even if I disconnect the clip and I have spark which is how I was able to see that the flywheel does not quite line up while using a timing light.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: 1990 Johnson 9.9 Sailmaster

    How far will the spark jump? What kind of spark plug wires did you use, are they copper core?

  9. #9

    Default Re: 1990 Johnson 9.9 Sailmaster

    Quote Originally Posted by timguy View Post
    How far will the spark jump? What kind of spark plug wires did you use, are they copper core?
    I bought Sierra wires, he blue one, I am not sure about the copper core.
    I will try your method to check the spark jump and report back.
    Thank you for the advice.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
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    Duluth Mn
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    Default Re: 1990 Johnson 9.9 Sailmaster

    If they are Sierra, they are likely copper core. Remember, spark under compression, may act differently than spark out in the air. That's why we test for a 7/16" hot white/blue crackle....lightning like spark.

  11. #11

    Default Re: 1990 Johnson 9.9 Sailmaster

    Quote Originally Posted by timguy View Post
    If they are Sierra, they are likely copper core. Remember, spark under compression, may act differently than spark out in the air. That's why we test for a 7/16" hot white/blue crackle....lightning like spark.
    I tested following your suggestion, the sparks are nowhere near 1/2", 1/4" is more like it and I had to hold it at that distance from the block to get a spark.
    What does this signify?

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