Wolseley Merry Tiller engine

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John Wrigg

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Wolseley Merry Tiller engine
« on: July 13, 2021, 13:32 »
Hi, everyone,
I help to run a community farm in Barton-upon-Humber, which aims to provide care for people who are lonely or depressed. We have only recently started, and have received some donations of equipment, including 2 Merry Tillers. One has clearly had an engine transplant (receiving  a Honda Power unit), but the other appears to have its original B & S engine. The machine is a model 714394, serial no M122965, but I have yet to locate the engine nos. Unfortunately, the plug lead has been pulled off (easy to fix), but there is a red lead attached to the coil, which has a free end. To what should it be attached, and whereabouts on the engine is it located?

Many thanks for any help which you can offer. By the way, if anyone is interested, our website is
EcoSerenity Project (Barton) CIC - Mental Health Serenity & Green Space Education in Barton-Upon-Humber

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R Tallentire

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Re: Wolseley Merry Tiller engine
« Reply #1 on: July 14, 2021, 08:52 »
On original coils it goes down behind the flywheel to the points. Another goes from the points to a brass contact strip on the throttle mechanism. When you pull the throttle back far enough, one of the throttle levers touches the strip and shorts the wire to earth, killing the spark. If a contactless coil has been put there to replace the original, the lead will go direct from coil to brass strip. Plug lead won't be an easy fix, as they are moulded into the coil on all but very early magnetos, and your machine is from about 1972. Usually easiest to get a replacement contactless coil/lead assembly.
R Tallentire

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John Wrigg

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Re: Wolseley Merry Tiller engine
« Reply #2 on: July 14, 2021, 10:39 »
Ok. Thanks for that information. Can you tell me where to obtain a replacement coil/lead assembly, and are there any problems in fitting one?

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R Tallentire

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Re: Wolseley Merry Tiller engine
« Reply #3 on: July 14, 2021, 12:49 »
I would go for Garden Hire Spares, last time I looked they stocked 3 coils for the same engine, cheapo Chinese, an "aftermarket" and genuine B & S. I usually go for the aftermarket version. You need to know if your engine is 3hp, 4hp or 5hp to get the right size. Details are on the fan cowl behind the air filter, stamped very faintly, so rust can hide them. The "air gap" between flywheel magnets and armature is important and depends on engine size.

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John Wrigg

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Re: Wolseley Merry Tiller engine
« Reply #4 on: July 14, 2021, 16:29 »
Thanks again for that. I intend to remove the motor on Friday, and try to fully identify it. It's definitely a 5hp, but any id marks will only surface after a wire brush has been applied. Hopefully, I'll have a more positive response in the next few days.


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