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Update: I have a McCulloch saw that's hard to star
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Dave Mertz in MI    Posted 09-16-2003 at 21:54:57       [Reply]  [Send Email]
A couple days ago I posted a message about my McCulloch chainsaw (Timber Bear, 20" bar, early 90s model) that I've been having trouble with.

I don't know what's wrong with it, but I've got some ideas, and I've got a better handle on what it's actually doing. The trouble with it flooding was actually my own doing. I realized that I was priming it too generously. *d'oh*

What the problem seems to be is a lack of enough fuel to the engine, or perhaps an air leak.
I can get it to sputter with a little prime or ether, and after quite a bit of that, it will reluctantly begin to run. It seems to get some fuel, fire up, but then when that little burst of fuel is burned up, the engine cuts out, then it gets some more fuel in there, fires up again, burns it all, cuts out, fires up, cuts out, and fires up, until finally it is running smoothly.

Maybe it is a problem with the fuel pump, or a leaking gasket in the carb, or something else.

I think I've ruled out an air leak in the fuel line, because I troubleshot it today by hooking a different fuel hose up to it and running it to another tank of gas, and the engine seemed to behave the same way.

The mixture screws aren't the cause either. I've got them pretty well adjusted.

Something interesting is that if it's warmed up, and I shut it off, it'll usually start up again, no prime, no problem. But, if I run it out of gas, refill it, and try to restart it with a hot engine, it's impossible. Even with priming.

See, if it were a problem with not enough gas actually getting into the engine (a bad pump or fuel line or something), shouldn't priming allow it to at least fire a little bit here? But if there's some sort of a bad gasket in there or something, that allows too much air into the system, maybe that could be the cause of too lean of a mixture, even with priming it hot, maybe?

Chainsaws frequently drip some oil out of them after use right? Well, this one seems to leak large quantities of what seems to be 2-cycle oil, not chain oil, from the engine area. Could this be a sign of a leaking gasket where the cylinder connects to the crankcase? I'd suppose that air getting in there would cause these problems, right?

What do any of you guys think? Am I right?

RN    Posted 09-18-2003 at 18:52:49       [Reply]  [No Email]
Have you checked muffler/spark arrester? Carboned up exhaust system on two-stroke engines can cause hard starts, lack of power, dying after start. Suggest removeing muffler and checking exhaust port area and muffler for carbon build up. Cylinder decokeing is more work- check port and muffler first. RN

Spence    Posted 09-18-2003 at 12:04:45       [Reply]  [No Email]
I have a Mac. They always work fine for a year then they have a gas problem. I had 2, I don't learn easy. Seems like the filters on these things aren't fine enuff.

Get a Stihl, the extra bucks are worth it. (nothing shorter than 16, better 18 for a homestead)

Ron in TX    Posted 09-17-2003 at 07:57:38       [Reply]  [No Email]
My luck with all McCollough power equipment is that the engines lose compression fdrom premature cylinder and ring wear. When this happens they become hard to start but run good once you fight through the starting process.

Dave Mertz in MI    Posted 09-17-2003 at 20:04:08       [Reply]  [No Email]
Well, I just checked that. 130 psi. Must be something else.

Gary, Mt. Hermon, La    Posted 09-17-2003 at 06:06:42       [Reply]  [No Email]
Dave, been there, done that, rebuilt the carb, new needle valves, gaskets, new plug, new gas tube to carb, new gas line filter in the tank, removed the gas tank drained it blew it out with compressed air, put fresh gas mix, still the same situation as you. I even looked real hard at the coil and the gap for the magneto, but I got spark so didnt think more about it finally I quit and bought a new one of a different brand.

Ludwig    Posted 09-17-2003 at 04:46:06       [Reply]  [No Email]
Hard to tell from your post...
If it were leaning out you'd see it on the plug after running for awhile.
Sounds like a carb rebuild is in order no matter what though. Whenever I do that I also burn off the exhaust and clean the air intake screen.

Dang...    Posted 09-17-2003 at 04:04:44       [Reply]  [No Email]
Does this rig have oil injection?

Dave Mertz in MI    Posted 09-17-2003 at 19:47:23       [Reply]  [No Email]
Nope. Regular oil-gas mix.

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