Craftsman tractor engine compression or timing issue
I have inherited a Craftsman Lawn tractor and am trying to get it going. The engine seems to be having either timing or compression problems.
A mouse had made a home behind the petrol tank and chewed through some wires. I fixed the wires and the electrics are now good. It has a new starter and spark plug just before I started working on it. A neighbor has checked the timing and believes it to be good but doesn't have the knowledge to work out what is wrong.
The engine spins freely with the spark plug out but not with it in.
Spark plug in:
Spark plug out:
So I had the mower running for a whole season but it got worse so I decided to strip it down and indeed the compression release spring was in pieces inside the engine case. I installed a new camshaft (changed out the oil gov and all seals rebuilt the engine and it started up first time with no compression or turnover issues at all. See Below:
I then left it for about a month, went back and it started again first time. I let it run for a while and all was good. Then the next time I came to start it I forgot to turn the fuel cut off valve on and so it ran out of gas and stalled after a minute. I turned the valve on, and got it started but then it began to run rough and now won't start at all. I thought it was still fuel starvation but checked the carb and was letting fuel through fine. Checked the spark plug and it works fine - did smell heavily of gas when i removed it. See vids below - any thoughts? Has the timing gone?
I stripped down the carb, all looks good. Spark plug working good and valve spacing is all good. Here is another video of it trying to start and the good spark plug.
Is this a good question?