1989 Johnson 3hp/2cyl J3BRCEC. Need Some Guidance Please. - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 12-08-2008
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1989 Johnson 3hp/2cyl J3BRCEC. Need Some Guidance Please.

Hi everyone how are you all doing? I've been the lurkness monster for awile on this forum and finally decided to make it official and register. I'm sure I'll have more questions, and even some answers to others, but my most pressing issue is my kicker right now. I'm missing some good fish because of it and now need to get it back in good shape and catch up on the fishing I've missed out on.

So here's the rundown. I'll try and be brief, but I have to explain it, so I apologize in advance if this post gets a bit long. I had it out on the lake and it was doing great, but all of a sudden it stopped running well and couldn't take a load. It sounded like it was starving for fuel, but it had fuel in the tank. I shut it off and ran in on my main engine.

So now it's sitting in my shop. I got all the cowling off and found a couple issues I need to address. So you control the throttle by pushing the little rod which in turn pushes the throttle which moves the inner plate in the carb. That's attached to another contraption that opens another plate right at the entrance of the carb. The problem is that it broke off the little rod, so now the throttle works, but it doesn't move the plate closest to the inlet of the carb. My guess is that's the choke. Am I off on that? What's the other knob for? The one you can fully unscrew and remove that has a pointed end? A/F ratio? I thought there wasn't a knob for that though, just a screw. Maybe it was modified?

I know I need a manual so I can answer these questions myself, but in the meantime any help would be appreciated. Also, where is the best place to get a true manual, not one of these 1965-1989 ALL Johnson outboard? I'd like one specifically for this model or at least close to it. I figure if I can put a name to these parts and see how they all work together; I'll be able to figure it out easily because there really isn't much to these little motors. I've rebuilt car motors before and this is pretty simple compared to that. I feel like a noob though because I don't have a clue what these parts are called.

Also, anyone know where to get used parts for these things? I think it'll be easier to just buy a new carb than try and fix this broken contraption that I think is the choke set-up. I saw another thread about the same motor where a guy had some spares. Maybe I'll PM him if he doesn't respond here. Anyone have the same experience with their motor and care to offer insight into why it started to run like crap?

Thanks in advance to anyone who reads through my thread and offers their advice, opinions, a funny picture, whatever you'd like haha. Thanks for the space guys, and I look forward to learning and contributing.
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Old 12-08-2008
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The butterfly plate closets to the outside of the carb is the choke. If it is closed that is your problem.

Three choices for the thing with the knob--

Idle adjustment--all out side the carb on the linkage--just holds the throttle butterfly open a little.

Idle addjustment--screws into th carb body and has a sharp point on it.

Float bowl drain--screws into the bottom of carb and has a flat or very dull point on it.

Often times there is a rod from the throttle linkage to the choke butterfly that opens the choke when you advance the throttle.

Small linkages can be bent from welding rod or spring steel from a hobby store.
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Old 12-08-2008
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I've had good luck getting parts from these guys - Johnson Outboard Parts

The have nice exploded views of the parts and how they go together.

I've worked on two carb problems on small outboards. In both cases, a new carb was cheap enough to not make it worth fooling with the old one. That said, if it's really just the linkage, that might be an easy fix.
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Old 12-09-2008
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Yes, it was partially closed. It (butterfly for choke) was just loose hanging there and partially obstructing the inlet of the carb. The motor ran fine, but it wasn't taking a load very well. It may be something else though. I think some good old preventative and general maintenance is in order. I'd just buy a new kicker, but since it's a 2cylinder it has good torque and moves my little 16' just fine.

I've found some parts and will start with rebuilding the carb, replacing the fuel filter, changing out the headgasket, changing the impeller, and changing the gear oil (zerk fitting under powerhead?). I need to get my hands on a manual before I start tearing into this thing regardless of how simple it looks. Anyway, thanks for the help guys; I think I've got it from here. All I need is a surefire place to get a proper manual from. Thank-you.
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Old 12-09-2008
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I had a similar problem with my '91 Johnson 3hp. I took apart and cleaned the carb, tried all the adjustments and nothing worked. Finally I noticed that my model had a very small and simple fuel pump along side the fuel inlet to the carb. Inside was a tiny rubber bladder (~3/4inch x 1/4inch) that had a pinhole leak in it. I replaced the bladder for about $10 and the problem went away.

I use the Seloc manual that is available online at Seloc Marine Home Page.

The screw that you can remove with the pointed end = low speed needle.
Adjusts the fuel mixture at idle.
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Old 12-10-2008
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I appreciate the insight and information my friend. That'll help me grealty. I just bought a service manual from a closed down marine shop that should be here soon. I just don't know if it'll be the right one. The guy selling it said it was, but the little J3BRCEC has some differences over the others of that vintage as it's internal fuel tank. We'll see. If it's not; I'll buy the Seloc and be delayed another few weeks while I'm ordered all my parts for the rest of this maintenance session. Funny that a fuel pump costs more than one for car.
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1970 16' Seaswirl Tri-hull open bow-1978 Evinrude 85hp V4 with fresh reman, new floor this year, new bilge pump, new 12 gallon tank sunk in stern, Eagle fish finder, and a 1989 Johnson 3hp/2cyl kicker.
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