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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
recently purchased a jd 1020 from a guy at work for a pretty decent price has alot of new or recently replaced parts had a small miss at idle so I replaced plugs check points gap lashed vavles ran pretty good after. Ran it around the yard used the loader alittle and seemed way underpowered for what it should be so wanted to try all the gears and it will not even go down the road in higher gears fall right on its face so I check the timing and it's way out I line the timing mark up with the "s" mark on crank at 2500 rpm and engine doesn't sound right and won't run under 1000 rpm or start until I move timing back to were it was is there something I'm missing that could make the timing be so far off and not run right? Haven't messed with many John Deere tractors but turned alot of wrench's on equipment
 

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Chief Stick-picker-upper
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Have you visually/manually checked? Is it moving it's full range?

Have you checked the intake system between the carb and head, for vacuum leaks?
 

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Chief Stick-picker-upper
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Causes of low engine power:
  • Carb out of adjustment
  • Carb needs rebuilding
  • Vacuum leak
  • Air intake restriction
  • Clogged air filter
  • Choke plate and/or throttle plate not fully opening
  • Incorrect timing/advance
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Intake manifold is new along with all gaskets sprayed it with starting fluid to check for leaks nothing found when running no black or white smoke even on cold start up seems to be getting correct fuel, will dig farther into the distributor today to check advance range of motion, my timing light is digital with timing delay feature when at 1500 rpms the timing is 35 degrees out of time almost wondering if we put the distributor in wrong
 

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I'll start off by saying I know NOTHING about a 1020. You have dynamically checked the timing instead of static so you know the spark timing? Is there any chance that the cam gear was installed wrong/skipped a tooth in relation to the crankshaft?. Just a WAG and thinking out of the box. That may explain the low power. Not sure why the timing is so far off to make it run though.
 
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To me it sounds like the previous owner advanced timing to accommodate for a different type of problem. At 2500 rpm the timing should be advanced. If I had someplace to start I would pull the carb off and clean it real good and reset the high and low speed air mixture screws. Usually 1 1/2 turns out from bottom is pretty good starting point.

Also as others said, Definitely check for a vacuum leak (perhaps intake manifold) If you have a vacuum leak no amount of carb tuning is going to get it to run at an idle until that is addressed first.
 
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