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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone. I'm in the process of ressurecting a john Deere 212. 1979 model with the original Kohler. I bored the engine 10 over and rebuilt it. Unfortunately I don't know the where 2 wires go to. I know 1 goes to the coil, just not certain which. I tried looking at wiring diagrams and the machine and left more confused than when I started. Any help would be much appreciated.
 

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I believe both of those go to the coil. One is the positive side coming from the ignition switch and the other is the negative side from the points. Take a test light, place the ignition in the run position and test each wire. Battery voltage will be present at the ignition feed wire. Place this wire on the positive side of the coil. The other wire along with the condensor will go to the negative side of the coil. Of course the battery will need to be connected and charged.
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I'll give the test light a try. I've been hesitant to put the engine back in just in case one of the wires went under the tins. I've seen that wiring diagram before but I can't make heads or tails of it unfortunately. None of the colors seem correct and mine sure looks to be original. Will keep you posted, hope to have it in this weekend if time allows.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I just went to the garage. I don't see how those wires can possibly go to the coil. The wires are far too short unless the coil were inverted in which case the spark plug lead will not reach. Wiring diagrams don't match my colors and I apologize in advance for being an idiot.
 

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Are you missing the voltage regulator?
 

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Motor vehicle Machine tool Gas Electrical wiring Electric motor
 

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More pictures might help. Debugging electrical problems is hard. Doing it remotely without all the information is nearly impossible.

The schematic shows how the various components are hooked up. Sometimes the colors of the wires change over time. Sometimes they get replaced with the wrong color. What really matters is where they go, which is what the schematic tells you. Learn to read schematics is no harder than learning to read a map. If you can read a map, you can learn to read a schematic. Start with the major components and see what wires are hooked up or nearby. Trace where they go by following the wire. Sometimes wiggling it is enough to identify the other end, sometimes not. If all the wires are the same color, it is like those jigsaw puzzles that have all the pieces the same color. But, most of the time it is possible to figure out which wire is which.
 

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Its just the two wire with ring ends? I assume this has a battery?

If so, turn on the key (sit on seat, neutral, and anything else required to start.) Check voltage on the two wires. I'm guessing one will have 12V. It should go to positive side of coil.

For the other wire, I'm guessing it will have no voltage. Turn your meter to read ohms. (Touch the meter leads together and you should see the ohms go to near zero). Now place one meter lead to ground and the other lead to the remaining wire. It may read zero - maybe not. Pull the spark plugs(relieve all compression) and slowly rotate the engine. You should see the ohms jump from zero to something much higher. That's the points opening and closing and shorting to ground when the ohms go to zero. That wire goes to the negative of the coil.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
If anyone is interested in a 79 JD 212 and is near Ohio, message me. Completely rebuilt Kohler 12 horse, bored 10 over. Has a 46 inch deck that comes with it. There are 2 wires i cannot figure out where they go. Motor mounts replaced. Pictures available upon request.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Overall I'm done with john Deere. I've got running and rebuilt dozens of tractors. This machine is overly complicated for the sake of being overly complicated. I'm looking to offload this headache and go back to wheel horses, simplicities and cub cadets.
 

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The 200 series is the least complicated of ant John Deere’s.
.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
That's a great warning sign then. I shall refrain from owning any John Deere in the future. I like the 300 series but I'm tired of rebuilding the hydro erratic transmissions in any tractor.
 

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Wise decision 👍
 

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Its just the two wire with ring ends? I assume this has a battery?

If so, turn on the key (sit on seat, neutral, and anything else required to start.) Check voltage on the two wires. I'm guessing one will have 12V. It should go to positive side of coil.

For the other wire, I'm guessing it will have no voltage. Turn your meter to read ohms. (Touch the meter leads together and you should see the ohms go to near zero). Now place one meter lead to ground and the other lead to the remaining wire. It may read zero - maybe not. Pull the spark plugs(relieve all compression) and slowly rotate the engine. You should see the ohms jump from zero to something much higher. That's the points opening and closing and shorting to ground when the ohms go to zero. That wire goes to the negative of the coil.
This exact statement was posted in post #2. However the OP feels that these wires are too short to connect to the coil. I'm not sure where he has the coil mounted but the factory mount puts the coil exactly in that area and both connectors look to have the ring terminal size only found on the coil.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I thought john Deere was supposed to mean quality. I'm disappointed to learn its overcomplicated Kohler with extra wires. I suppose its still better than Honda anything. At least the Kohler oil lasts longer than any Honda engine. For 2022 honda is deleting oil drain plugs and dipsticks. They know by now the oil will far outlast anything they're capable of producing.
 
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