Very low compression on my club car FE350 engine.....

Gerald Rowell

New Member
My club car engine, FE350, suddenly shut off with no warning. Checked engine compression, was only 35 psi...should be at least 135 psi. Disassembled engine, ground valves and seats, checked valve springs, polished both valve stems so they don't stick, removed piston, installed new rings, honed cylinder, new head gasket, installed new ignition coil, reassembled everything, new plug, good spark, good fuel. Checked compression again, still only 35-40 psi. With such low compression, it will not hit a lick even with starting fluid. Been working on small engines for 65+years. Totally buffaloed! Any ideas? What have I overlooked? Thanks for any comments. Yes, checked head for cracks.....
 

HotRodCarts

Cartaholic
I've seen carbon on the valve stems cause the valve to stick open a little but if you polished the valve stems that shouldn't be the problem. Have you re-checked the valve lash?
 

Gerald Rowell

New Member
Do you mean remove the valve cover and check movement? No, there is no adjustment on these valves. Haven't tried cranking over the engine with the valve cover off and observing the movement. That is a good idea....thx
 

Gerald Rowell

New Member
Correct....logically it has to be valve related somehow....thx.....can someone recommend an appropriate valve spring compressor tool for these Kawasaki engines. Just rigged up one that doesn't work too well....thx
 

Gerald Rowell

New Member
Pulled my FE350 engine out of the cart again, removed the cylinder head and under closer examination discovered a small hairline crack on the inside surface adjacent to the spark plug threads. Everything else still looked good. Think maybe this crack may be the reason for the compression pressure not exceeding 40 psi. Now, I'm trying to find a reasonable source for a new head. If anyone knows a source, please let me know. Most of the sources I've found want approx $200, which is out of my budget. Thanks for listening. JR
 

Nubs

Cartaholic
Well if the compression will not go up after you squirt oil in the cylinder then about all that's left is the valve timing is off somehow, are the valves closing on the compression stroke?
 

Gerald Rowell

New Member
Haven't tried oil in the cyl yet. New valves are arriving fri. Will install them and try it again. New head, new valves, new rings, new adjusters. Dots were meshed after reinstalling the piston, it should run. Thanks for your response.
 

Nubs

Cartaholic
well with a new head and used valves there still is a chance of leaking, always best to spray brake/carb cleaner into the ports after assembly checking for valve to seat leakage before installing.
 

Gerald Rowell

New Member
Installed new valves, did the cleaner fluid on back side of valves, no leaks, oil on cyl, no chg. Compression still same, 40-45 psi. Discovered ACR on cam shaft. That keeps compression low till engine start. Compression should be at least 70 psi with ACR. Engine still will not start. Does the cam just slide out to inspect spring on ACR? It won't. This engine more complex than V8.
 

Gerald Rowell

New Member
You have to pull out the lash adjusters before the cam will pull out. Got it out and the ACR looked ok, spring looked ok, not sure it wasn't stuck shut. It has a weight which supposedly slings out at higher rpms. Put it all back together and this time ACR compression was up to spec. (70-80 psi). Bet it will run now. PTL
 

Gerald Rowell

New Member
Hate to keep taking up space on this forum. Engine started and ran for a few seconds until it ran out of temporary fuel. Then it would not restart. Compression was back to 35 psi, which means the ACR was again locked in the release position. Disassembled again. Now, I'm studying the simplist way to totally disarm the ACR. Tried to take a couple pics...also wondering about starting with no ACR. Understand some of these FE350 engines don't have the ACR.
Thanks
image.jpeg image.jpeg
 

Nubs

Cartaholic
People learn a lot from threads like yours so thanks for posting:hattip:

can't you just grind the rivets and pull it off? I can't tell where or how it holds the valve open, i would say the starter should work fine without it.
 

Diode

Cartaholic - V.I.P.
So what I’m seeing is basically a centrifugal clutch so lightning the springs pull should help
 
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