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Old 12-21-2010, 05:11 PM   #1
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No spark 1973 Panther 440 Questions

Hi, I am new to this site but from what I have read so far the people on here are very knowledgeable about "Cats". If you would please indulge me I'd like to try to get some answers. I got my first sled which is a 1973 Panther 440. I have seen some posts on this site about the same model. I also have a second '73 440 parts sled. From what I've learned and what I think is true, there were 18,002 440 Panthers produced in 1973. The "rider" I have has a '72 engine (T1A440S1B) and the parts sled has a '73 engine (T1B440S1A). The plug and point gaps are different but they seem to be more or less the same engine. To be honest I was going to try to "flip" my sled now at the start of winter and get an off-season dirt bike. With what I have invested in the sled now I would have made a bit of a profit. I went to start it Sunday, it fired and ran about 10 seconds and died. It now has no spark. Reading the postings on this topic it is probably one or more of the following: 1.) points/condenser(s) 2.) coil(s) 3.) crank seals. Being the sled has sat (inside) for the last 13 years my initial guess would be crank seals. I had rebuilt the carb, cleaned/sealed the fuel tank, new lines. Getting fuel isn't a problem, the burning of it is. I have had it running at various times but never with snow to ride it. It looks like I need to rebuild the motor (it wouldn't hurt anyway) and there would go all my profit. There are worse things in life than having to "keep" a vintage snowmobile. If I am going to rebuild the sled I will aim for reliability over stock. I want to ride it, not have it sit. First, where do I buy the crank seals? I've found some parts on feeBay but not c-seals. I have found Alpha Sports and Babbit's but it does not look like they sell engine rebuild kits. One post mentions moving the coils to a different location. Has anyone done this and would you be willing to offer suggestions as to where to relocate them to? Is there a way I can install a CDI instead of the points/condensers etc? If yes, what unit should I go with? My sled does have a (new) battery/electric start (I'm 55-I based part of my decision on this sled for that reason). My intention is to take the whole sled apart in the spring/summer/fall (as I can afford it) and replace the bad/marginal parts. It would be a good teaching aid to understanding these animals also. As I said, I will strive for reliability. I am open to any suggestions to keep this sled running. Sorry this thread is so long-winded. I am trying to include as much info as I can.
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Old 12-21-2010, 05:59 PM   #2
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the crankseals are 30x62x10mm. You need to find a parts source like a local bike/sled shop that has access to parts unlimited or western powersports or even your local cat dealer can get you some parts. Do not buy NOS oil seals as they are 30 years old and will fail. WINDEROSA has the best gaskets sets on earth and a complete set comes with oil seals. I have never moved a set of coils. Yes you can go CDI. You need a stator plate and flywheel from a 74 or 75 CDI motor and I believe everything swaps out. I just cant remember if you need to change cranks. I did this swap, but it was years ago and only once. I would put a center seals in the motor as well. http://www.vintagesnow.com/Arctic_Ca...-73_Manual.pdf
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Last edited by sixty8cat; 12-21-2010 at 06:05 PM.
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Old 12-27-2010, 01:37 PM   #3
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Center seals are very common to go out on Kawasaki motors. They make a 2 peice seal now that you DON"T have to split the crank to replace them, they work great! Try HIPERF.com or Dennis Kirk
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Old 12-28-2010, 08:39 PM   #4
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73pumamod, Thanks for the heads up. I placed an order today at mfgsupply/sledparts.com for the professional gasket kit and the center seal. They had the best price for both pieces that I found on the net.
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Old 12-28-2010, 09:36 PM   #5
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Here is a link,Hi-Performance Engineering Miscellaneous Engine Parts for a center seal. Scroll down almost half way to the Kawasaki center seal. If your going to do a rebuild, you might as well split the case and replace the center seal also. IMO

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Old 12-29-2010, 04:24 PM   #6
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73pumamod,09-1319 - Arctic Cat / Kawasaki Center Seal These are the parts I ordered. I think it is the same seal. 711033 - Arctic Cat Professional Engine Gasket Set They are the least expensive from what I found and both pieces shipped at the least
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Old 12-29-2010, 07:05 PM   #7
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Just wanted to make sure you got the right one. Good luck with the rebuild.
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Old 12-29-2010, 08:08 PM   #8
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disk-O

Chances are if the engine already has the aluminum disk in there, you won't need to replace it unless it looks beat up. Alot of folks just replace the o-rings on it. The original run of those center disks years ago were of better quality than the ones you can purchase today.
If the o-rings get worn or flattened enough, the newer disk can chatter back and forth like a set of wind up teeth.

The older disks had closer tolerances and clamped up better. I upsized the o-rings on my newer disk to make sure it stayed put "this time", yeah the first time I put it together 2 years ago it did not stay put.
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Old 12-29-2010, 08:41 PM   #9
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 Quote: Originally Posted by Cheetah73 View Post
Chances are if the engine already has the aluminum disk in there, you won't need to replace it unless it looks beat up. Alot of folks just replace the o-rings on it. The original run of those center disks years ago were of better quality than the ones you can purchase today.
If the o-rings get worn or flattened enough, the newer disk can chatter back and forth like a set of wind up teeth.
YouTube - awesome chattering teeth

The older disks had closer tolerances and clamped up better. I upsized the o-rings on my newer disk to make sure it stayed put "this time", yeah the first time I put it together 2 years ago it did not stay put.
Some good info. I have never had any problems with mine, I think i installed mine 2yrs. ago also. Funny video!
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Old 12-30-2010, 03:27 AM   #10
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07-08 Mileage: 1
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That's good it's working Pumamod. I wouldn't have thrown a flag if I hadn't had the issue. Only ran it about 30 minutes total before it chattered. It was only the o-rings supplied that were too thin. Woulda been fine otherwise.
Oh, hey I forgot to mention you have to discard the steel half-rings which are normally near the center rubber seal. Here's the original service bulletin with helpful tips. I don't use the "sealant" method.
No spark 1973 Panther 440 Questions-bulletin-7.jpg
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