I have had sluggish starting issues for quit a while, but recently the gen would not start at all. I assumed the smallish battery they come with was marginal. I replaced the battery with a full size AGM battery and the unit still would only turn until the first compression stroke (I assume) and stall the starter. Must be a weak starter from straining with a weak battery.... Nope. Put in a new starter (actually two.. the first one OEM the gear didn't fully retract and disengage the flywheel. Replaced that with a aftermarket one). This turned it over great with the plugs pulled but when I installed them, it did turn over and crank good, but only after completely stalling at that first hi compression point again. After a second it did finally groan past that point and start cranking nornally (I guess). I haven't run fuel back to it yet until I see if this is an issue. I know on some briggs engines they put a bump on the cam shaft to release the valve a tad (decompress) until it is up to higher rpm's. I have the valve lash set to .003 and can feel a normal bit of rock when they are disengaged. I havn't messed with the valves themselves , but looking in the exhaust ports while the muffler was off, I didn't see anything unusual. Didn't look in the intake side though.

Has anyone got any thoughts or suggestions before I button it back up? Is this normal? I'd hate to have to buy starters in bulk.

The generator is Model 0044561 (12kv)
SN 3685403

Engine - 992cc. ID# D8547 03272
SN 1398874
Do you have a fully charged battery rated for minimum 450 ca? Can you measure voltage drop while cranking engine. Should not see more than a 2vdc drop during cranking. Said you have new starter motor wouldn't think you need to do amp draw test. Check for good ground for starter motor and check positive cable. Have seen faulty internal crimp connections.