Craftsman Lawn Mower Problems

I have a Craftsman Eager series self propelled mower that my son used in the neighborhood to make a few bucks mowing lawns until it suddenly developed a problem and I can't tell if it's a gas problem or a timing problem which leads to the following questions...
Do lawn mowers have a proper 'timing' adjustment? The reason I ask is because when it ran, it seemed to be having a timing issue - misfiring and such as it barely ran following the problem surfacing.
How does a person determine if the coil is creating the problem? I assume that with an ohm-meter, one can tell if the primary is OK but how about the secondary part of the ignition? I held the spark plug cable and gently pulled the start cord but couldn't feel much 'zap' but notably, some was there.
I think this might be down to the ignition system side or perhaps even the carb (filthy air cleaner I pulled off that may have allowed dust through) and really don't want to just keep throwing money into it if the money would be better spent on another mower but obviously, would like to save it if I can.
Does the magneto (or coil) have a surface that can be cleaned (air gap with the flywheel) to help the spark issue ???
Would appreciate any pointers from any lawn mower mechanics to help me decide again, if I should just dump it and buy another one... It's a 7hp motor on approx a 3 year old walk behind, self propelled mower. TIA for any feedback...
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spray a shot of starting fluid in the carb, if it runs on that ,then you have a fuel supply problem.there is a small passage in the bowl nut that gets dirt in it. if it doesnt run on the starting fluid, take out the plug and lay it on the engine while connected to the plug wire. crank the engine over to see if it sparks,if it does , coil is good. then procede to take off sheetmetal to get to flywheel to see if flywheel key is sheared, if so , remove flywheel and replace key. ant tecumseh dealer wil have the new key. then reassemble.
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And of course, make sure the threaded portion makes contact with the metal of the chassis.

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I would jump on the 5.5 Honda engine. Briggs is good but Honda engines are great.
From Mel & Donnie in Bluebird Valley
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I think Craftsman Mowers are over priced. You pay a lot for gray paint. Wy not just buy a MTD if that is the type of mower you want. Green paint is really high. Did anyone ever hear of a Dixie Chopper. Man you talk about a mower. Look it up. I think it s www.dixiechopper.com
From Mel & Donnie in Bluebird Valley
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