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I have a John Deere 325 garden tractor model year 1995. Serial # < 70000. 48” mower deck. Kawaski 17 HP engine. All have been working fine for 20+ years but have a little problem that I can’t figure out. The last month or so the yellow light on the dash has been flashing intermittently but I haven’t had time to figure out the issue. So here is the sequence of events:

• Just finishing up about an hour of mowing when I noticed a faint smell something akin to a belt sticking & burning. Then the mower deck quit.
• Quickly disengaged the PTO and headed for the driveway.
• Looked underneath and the drive pulley looked a little crooked. Wiggled it and it fell off the shaft !
• The bolt looked fine so I took the 3 nuts off the clutch assembly. The plates looked pretty worn so I ordered a new clutch assembly.
• New one arrives and when reading the instructions, it becomes obvious to me you need pretty specific voltage to the clutch for it to work properly.
• Install new clutch and torque to 55 ft-lbs.
• Measure the battery: 12.6v. Start it up and at full speed still 12.6v.
• Measure the output of the genset: 14.6v. So I figure the voltage regulator needs replacement.
• Install new regulator, start it up but the yellow light is still flashing. Hmmm, that’s odd.
• With the mower deck off, engage PTO and the drive pulley spins. Good news I figure.
• Install mower deck. Let’s cut grass. Engage PTO and deck rotates for 5 seconds and engine kills – that’s weird. Try to start and engine just cranks doesn’t want to start.
• Tried many times and almost seems like no spark or no fuel.
• Reinstall old voltage regulator – same problem.
• Remove line from discharge of fuel pump, crank engine, fuel spits out.
• Remove spark plug and it is dry, looks ok. Ground it, crank engine. Could not see spark.
o So it appears no current to spark plug. What do you suggest? What needs to be replaced now? And where is it?
 

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How old is the battery. The other thing is the cables I've had a positive look fine but peel the casing back a bit and it was all green.
 

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• Measure the output of the genset: 14.6v. So I figure the voltage regulator needs replacement.
I'm not sure what you mean by "genset" but if you are referring to the output of the stator, I would expect the output to be closer to 40 VAC. You could have a bad stator.
 

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Hi, just thinking, if you've been cranking the engine over a bit, and the spark plug is dry you probably aren't getting fuel. If it's wet, you are getting fuel but not spark, or you've flooded the engine.
If the spark plug is dry try squirting a little gas into the spark plug hole, screwing the plug back in, and attaching the spark plug lead and turning the engine over. If the engine tries to fire or runs for a few seconds it's not getting fuel. How old is the spark plug? If in doubt, replace it. Good luck. Let us know how it turns out....
 
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