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Craftsman saw questions

Post in 'The Gear' started by Stihlmike, Aug 23, 2013.

  1. Stihlmike

    Stihlmike Member

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    As many of you know my Stilh is in the shop. My dad picked up a new Homelite saw to replace his craftsman back up saw. He gave me the craftsman last night, and I cut my first load with it. The saw worked OK at best but it can be expected for a back up saw. I have a few questions on this saw. It is an 18" 40 "something" cc.

    First I had to adjust the chain at least 5 or 6 times during the 1 hour or so session. Is this normal?

    Second, through out this whole session the oil level never went down. When I would stop cutting and adjust the chain the bar would be scalding hot. I mean super hot.

    Third, If the oiler is not working could this be leading to the bar heating up and causing the links of the chain to expand, causing the need for many chain adjustments? My dad claims that the saw never used much oil, but compared to my Stihl it used practically nothing.

    What are some ways to test and be sure the oiler is in fact working. If it is not, how do I fix it? I want to take the saw apart tonight and give it a good cleaning for starters. I think maybe it is just gummed up from saw dust and wood chips.

    What other things should i look at to increase the saws perfomance and tune it up. It felt like it would dog out a bit, but I was also thinking that it could have been do to a loose chain.

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  2. Stihlmike

    Stihlmike Member

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    Did a little research and found that there should be a shield overtop of the weep hole for the pump. Going to take the shield off and look to see that it is not plugged. I will clean any debris out of that. Next move would be to take off the clutch and inspect the gear that drives the oil pump. I am imagining that this gear is spent and not spinning that pump gear. Just a hypothesis but that is what I am going with for now. I can spin the oil gear and see if it will put oil or bubbles throught the weep hole to see if it is the drive oil drive gear that is messed up.

    If the oil drive gear is fine and the oil gear spins but does not produce and oil or bubble what would my next move be?
  3. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    Lines and the pickup in the tank.

    To test oiler function, run the saw at full throttle over concrete, cardboard, or a fresh cut stump etc. You should see a well defined line appear from oil slinging off the nose of the bar.

    How sharp is that chain? That will give the saw more "power" than anything you can do to it otherwise. Also make sure the air filter is clean.

    If the chain tension is adjusted via a screwdriver slot located in the bar itself.... then yes, frequent adjustments is the norm. That style of adjuster is notorious for that.
  4. clemsonfor

    clemsonfor Minister of Fire

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    Sounds like your oiler is not oiling. Unless the chain is so dull its visibly dull your bar should not be that hot. You should be throwing dust or actually burning the wood if your that dull though. ANd a hot chain does require more adjustment, but i also think like he said its the style of adjustment.

    MM did tell you the correct test, you should see an oil line develop if you hole the say 3-5 inches from concrete or a box or wood within a few seconds to confirm your oiling.
  5. clemsonfor

    clemsonfor Minister of Fire

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    When i got my 390 like 8 years ago, which is adjustable oiler. I turned the oiler up, it still seemed to leave a lot of oil in the tank when i ran out of fuel and i did not "see" the oil. I carried it back told the tec oiler is all the way up. he took me out back ran it Wide open onto the concrete and saw the line, said "yep its working" he made like 3 new lines of oil and said its fine. I told him i was concerned as the only other sthil i used was an 026 about 5-8 yrs older than mine. After it idled for like 15-45 seconds and you grabed the throttle it would sling a rope of oil off the chain. He said yep the "epa is cracking donw on that stuff and frowns upon that ". said the old saws " oiled a lot more". personally they use so little oil i would rather use more oil to reduce heat etc.


    Side note. the guys on the forestry forum were all about useing veggie oil in their saws???
  6. gmule

    gmule Feeling the Heat

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    I was given one of those saws because the oiler was not working. I ordered a new oiler and installed it in about an hour.
    The hardest part was getting the chain brake back on. You will need a piston stop and the poulan clutch tool to get the clutch off. I bought both tools from Baileys for around 20.00 and the oiler was 12.00 at the sears parts online store.

    Here is a link for the clutch tool
    http://www.baileysonline.com/Chains...nk/Clutch-Tool-for-Husqvarna-Poulan-Sears.axd

    Here is a link for the piston stop.

    http://www.baileysonline.com/Chainsaws/Repair-Tools/Piston-Ring-Clamp/Metal-Piston-Stop.axd

    Some use a rope but for 6.00 I bought the correct tool because I have lots of other small engines I can use it on.
  7. DanCorcoran

    DanCorcoran Minister of Fire

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    I made a clutch tool for my Craftsman from a bracket from Lowe's that's used to hold a 2x4 across a door for security purposes. I just drilled two holes, properly spaced to match the clutch, then put two threaded bolts in. Voila, works fine.

    I also threaded rope into the spark plug hole to keep the piston from moving. The most difficult part was remembering that the clutch is reverse-threaded, so you turn the tool clockwise to remove the clutch. :)


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    Stihlmike, Joful, gmule and 1 other person like this.
  8. Those saw are bad about stripping the oiler worm gear.....
  9. Stihlmike

    Stihlmike Member

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    Where would I go to get the replacement part. Sears?

    I cut with it this weekend, and just gave up on it. I cut 2 loads on Saturday after I sharpened the chain, as instructed above, and it cut decent with much more "power", only had to adjust the chain 4 times.

    I took it out Sunday, after spotting a nice standing dead tree on our family walk Saturday evening, it took me about an hour to get through the tree, and when I dropped it, something in my wedge did not cut the whole way and it turned about 30 degrees and landed into another tree. I tried to cut a bit out of it but just got saw dust. The chain kept getting loose and after an hour and a half I just gave up.

    I figured I would just end up burning up the saw, and not have a back up then. Can't wait to get my 230 back. The salesman sent me an email and told me we "should" have that saw to you by this weekend. I am hoping they do. If they do not I may be taking my business elsewhere.
  10. gmule

    gmule Feeling the Heat

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  11. Stihlmike

    Stihlmike Member

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    Thanks this looks like it should save a bunch of time, instead of going to a store in person
  12. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Did you remove the chain from the bar, clean the groove, and verify the oiler hole in the bar (between bar mount and groove) is not clogged? All should be clean.

    If the bar's getting that hot, you've got an oiler issue, whether due to a bad pump / gear, or a clogged port. Watch out on tightening that chain... could lead to something breaking as it all cools back down and shrinks.
  13. Stihlmike

    Stihlmike Member

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    I took the bar off, and unclogged the two slots. There was no hole as you speak, unless missed it, but it has a plastic insert with two slots in it. I spun the clutch and gear and nothing came out of the two slots, so I assumed the gear has the teeth worn off to spin the oil pump. I did not know how to remove the clutch so I decided to wait to check that gear, until i figure out how to take the clutch off.
  14. HittinSteel

    HittinSteel Minister of Fire

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    the clutch likely has LEFT hand threads
  15. clemsonfor

    clemsonfor Minister of Fire

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    Buy a 16$ chain. Dust means your dull. I can fill 2 trucks in an hour!!!
  16. clemsonfor

    clemsonfor Minister of Fire

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    Hate to ask but are sure the chain is on the right direction??
  17. Stihlmike

    Stihlmike Member

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    Yeah, they are on the right way LOL

    They cut good for the first few cuts, but then the chain and bar get heated up from not getting oil, which in turns makes it loose, then causes slop and friction, then dulling. That is how I am breaking it down in my head.

    I have 4 different chains that my dad gave me. They only want to stay tight for a few minutes. Its annoying having to adjust the chain so many times, and sharpening so much.

    I think what it boils down to is it is a tired old saw that got me 2 extra loads, while the new one is in the shop. I am starting to get irritated with not having my new saw... Not sure that putting money into the craftsman is the best idea either. Might be better off, putting that money into that 015l that is not running.
    MasterMech likes this.
  18. DanCorcoran

    DanCorcoran Minister of Fire

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    The photos in my post above show my Craftsman 42cc 18" chainsaw. To the left, in the top photo, you can see the clutch. You can see the letters "_FF", which are part of the word "OFF", and below them an arrow pointing clockwise. This indicates that the clutch has reverse threads and you must turn it clockwise to remove it. There is a semi-circular opening to which the arrow is pointing. This is one of the two slots which you use to turn the clutch to remove it. As you can see in the second photo, the two machine screws on my home-made wrench are sized and spaced to fit into the two openings on the clutch.

    Going back to the first photo, the metal plate on the right is covering up the oiler hole. You pry off the plate and you can tell whether the hole is plugged.

    Enjoy...
  19. Stihlmike

    Stihlmike Member

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    Thanks for explaining the wrench better. I was a bit confused at what it was. Would needle nose pliers work?
  20. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    I think you're missing a few things, clemson:


    No new chain is going to fix a broken oiler.

    Are we assume this old saw has an automatic oiler? No oiler button on the grip. A lot of old saws had manual oilers.

    No hole in the side of the bar? This would be the small circular hole in the side of the bar, to the left of "38" in this image. Oil goes from saw into this hole, to be distributed along groove. If there's any clog in the system... no oil.

    Stripped oil pump gears and failed pumps happen, but a clogged oil channel is much more common.
    6643933-0-large.jpg
  21. gmule

    gmule Feeling the Heat

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    Here is a how to video on replacing your pump. The saw in the video is green but it is still the same procedure.

  22. basod

    basod Minister of Fire

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    If you want to bend your needle nose pliers yes. The homemade tool above is a spanner wrench - except it's a one size only. In a pinch a pair of vise grips and the right sized bolts will work better than bending needle nose pliers.
    Before you take it all apart take the clutch cover bar and chain off and fire it up, juice it a few times and see if oil is coming out the port - if you have oil than clean the bar, I keep stainless bailing wire around to scrape the groove out and knock crud from the bar hole
  23. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    Savvy Poulan dealer should be able to help with parts too.

    Regarding your Stihl. Turn time is everything in this business and smart dealers know it. It is the biggest struggle for any shop I've ever been in. The most successful have the shortest turn times, imagine that! ;)
    clemsonfor likes this.
  24. Stihlmike

    Stihlmike Member

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    Thanks for the insight. I will take a picture of the plastic insert on the saw. I was just thinking this is where the oil comes out but i am most likely wrong. I will try and get the clutch off, and get a better look at it. Gotta cut the grass tonight and with the rider down, it may be a little while. At least my wife will be at her mothers so if I hurry and cut the grass I can get some tinkering time in before she gets home with the baby.

    I am trying to be understanding with the dealer, and maybe I am expecting too much from them. I had just thought that since I bought the saw 4-5 days before bringing it back they would have looked at it ahead of the other repairs that they had in the shop. I gave it to them on Thursday the 15th at noon. I would have anticipated they look at it that day, and order the parts on Friday as to have them in during the week. I would have expected them to have the saw fixed by this past weekend, being that is when most guys cut their wood. At least that is how I would fix a mistake if a customer had an issue with one of my fly orders or something. I want to keep their business and know that unhappy customers don't come back. These "issues" get moved ahead of the other orders. I am not sure on how long STIHL takes to get parts to their dealers, but I hope that they get the saw done at least by Thursday, a whole 2 weeks after turning it over to them. I am thinking, I should have just asked for a new saw or something like that.

    Would you guys have waited this long, I could have probably ordered a new carb from ebay, last Monday, and had it on the saw already, but didn't want to void any warranty or anything like that. Would I be in the wrong to email the salesman and tell him that if it is not done by Wednesday I want a new saw.
  25. DanCorcoran

    DanCorcoran Minister of Fire

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    I'm not sure why you're confused. I posted a photo of the saw disassembled (above, the top photo). The oil comes out from behind the silver-colored plate, which surrounds the two threaded studs. Pry off the plate and see if the hole is clogged.

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