Vanguard as with Onan powered Ingersolls have a flywheel alternator which puts out AC voltage. The AC goes to the engine mounted regulator/rectifier which turns the AC into pulsating and regulated DC which goes to the battery positive thru the key switch. Wired into the tractor electrical harness is a voltage sensor which senses system voltage and turns on or off the charging system indicator light on the tractor panel.
If you have a multimeter and know how to use it, check the battery voltage before starting the engine, start the engine and monitor the voltage. If the charging system is operating correctly and with the engine running at half throttle or higher you will see a rise in voltage to 13.5-13.8 VDC.
If this is the case, then you may have a faulty voltage sensor which has been a common problem with Ingersoll tractors. The voltage sensor is a plug in part that is easily removed from the harness and replaced.
If the battery voltage does not change from the before starting voltage to 13.5 VDC or more after starting and running then you have a charging system problem.
Bob MacGregor in CT :winterrules: Unfortunately!!
FWIW, I had the charging light come on in my 4016 with the Vangard, and it ended up being a weak battery. I replaced the battery and all was well with the world. I would only suspect this if it doesn't crank over like it should, or discharges the battery quickly while starting.
Ok, I have struck out on both counts... The battery was putting out 12.26 VDC prior to starting the engine and after starting only 12.02 VDC.. I also switched to a new battery that I had in my T-444 and still no luck, so Houston, I have a charging problem... where is my next item to attack?? Rectifier??
Please post the PIN number of your tractor along with the Vanguard engine series number. The Vanguard number will start with 305--- and more.
I have a B&S V twin service manual but it is lame with Vanguard engine coverage. I will lookup what the specs are for the resistance in the stator and post them back here.
But at this time the basic trouble shooting process begins with checking the source of the charging system electrical power to the reg/rect and going from there. Evidently your tractor voltage sensor is working as it should.
Bob MacGregor in CT
Having done more research on 4016 models, your Vanguard is a 303447 model with a basic charging system.
There is a two conductor plug on the reg/rect that connects to the stator output. Disconnect this plug and connect the leads from your multimeter to the stator output, put the multimeter in the AC Volts in a range higher than 30 VAC.
Run the engine at WOT (3,600 RPM) and if the voltage reading is 26 VAC or higher then the stator is OK.
Shut the engine off, disconnect the battery positive, disconnect the plug from the rear of the keyswitch and inspect and clean the contacts in the plug. You can remove them one at a time and clean the contacting surfaces with a small wire brush. If you find that the plastic plug has melted and causing problems with the contacts then you need to correct this problem by replacing the plastic connector or replacing each connector with a spade slipon connector.
The melting of the plastic plug is cause by heat from a connector that has corrosion which causes a high resistance connection.
There is a 3rd wire coming from the reg/rect and it is the DC output to the battery and it has a plug on it, check it for corrosion and security.
When you have done all this, reconnect the battery positive, reconnect the stator/reg/rect plug and run the engine with a multimeter across the battery in DCV position and check the high RPM voltage.
If the voltage rises to 13.5 or higher then your system is OK, if not then you will need to replace the reg/rect and recheck the system.
Meanwhile, charge the tractor battery as troubleshooting charging system problems is much easier done with a fully charged servicable battery.
As these tractors get older all plug connections are suspects for corrosion and all should be disconnected and cleaned and reconnected.
Bob MacGregor in CT :mrgreen: :winterrules:
Bob, I got the tractor fixed, it was the rectifier.... It wasn't cheap though... $76.00!!!!! :thumbdown: I checked the stator and it was putting out 29VAC at almost wide open throttle, and nothing was coming out the DC side after plugging the AC side back in, so I went and bought a new rectifier at my local Cub dealer... Now, I got another question, is there a carb adjustment??? this thing runs great off idle but at idle it lopes, (keeps kicking the govenor)
I'm happy that your machine is back charging. A caution regarding these charging systems is that they always need an output to go to or the reg/rect gets cooked very quickly so if you found any problems with the DC output from the reg/rect to the keyswitch and then to the battery you need to address these issues such as a connector that may be loose so it could disconnect from vibration, an intermittent key switch, or fuse/holder.
All Vanguard engines have an adjustable idle circuit, but they also have a safety cap over them that is removable. My Vanguard 18 is doing the same thing but I recently replaced the throttle cable. I need to get into the service manual and possibly do a minor adjustment to the throttle cable positioning.
Almost all small engines need a seasonal idle circuit adjustment particularly in cold ambient temps when the air is most dense. Removing the safety cap from the idle circuit adjustment screw will expose it so adjustments can be made. You may need to remove the carb to get at the safety cap and then modify a screw driver to fit into the area to make the adjustments.
Briggs parts are readily available so check at your local auto parts like NAPA etc.
Bob MacGregor in CT :winterrules:
Hi again Dave,
I was just looking thru the Vanguard service manual and I had highlited the throttle cable install proceedures as the manual covers so many different Vanguard models. Tomorrow I will look back into the service manual and my 4018 to see what the problem is. I repowered my 4018 6 years ago so what I did that may have been different has slipped back into the almost dead zone of my memory if you know what I mean!!!! I had totally forgot to replace the rivet in the throttle lever with a bolt and locknut and I installed the nice new knobs on both levers and I probably will have to break the nice new throttle knob to remove it and get the throttle lever assembly out to do the adjustable friction mod.
The Vanguard service manual is 272144-6/04 with 6/04 being the the update date, there may be a newer version available. Everyone with a Vanguard engine should have a service manual for their engine unless they get dangerous when they read service manuals!!!
Bob MacGregor in CT :winterrules: Unfortunately!!!
Hi Dave and group,
I finally got around to addressing the throttle issues. My 4018 is a late 1989 production as a 1990 model year machine and it was originally Onan P218 powered and I have repowered it with a Vanguard 18 that was actually slated to go to Ingersoll but wasn't delivered to Ingersoll due to their financial condition at the time.
OK, back to the main subject, several weeks ago I had to replace the throttle cable and ended up with several problems following the cable install. First it started hunting at initial startup and would not stay at full throttle. It hadn't done this prior to the cable replacement and this PM I was able to address the problem and learned a few things along the way. The new style choke and throttle knobs that are black and egg shaped are removable by removing the part of the knob that turns and releasing the spring clip that grips the throttle lever. The throttle lever actually has a full throttle detent. So I setup the throttle cable adjustment on the engine with the throttle lever at full and everything is working just fine. While I had the throttle lever assy out I removed the rivet and installed a 1/4" bolt and locknut to have an adjustable throttle friction.
Bob MacGregor in CT :lol: :crazy: :clap: :mrgreen:
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