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Stihl MC 170

Post in 'The Gear' started by 1750, Oct 23, 2013.

  1. 1750

    1750 Feeling the Heat

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    A good friend gave me this saw out of his dad's garage -- his dad passed a few years ago and the saw has just been sitting around. It's got a new 16" bar and chain, and looks great from what little I know. My friend put new gas in it and was able to fire it up, but it took quite a bunch of pulling to get it running.

    I don't know really anything at all about chainsaws. From reading here, it sounds like you folks have a favorable impression about Stihl saws. I'm reading through the online manual for operational tips. But wondered if anyone has a shortlist of things I should do to tune this up (like a new spark plug) before I try and use it?

    Thanks in advance for any suggestions you might have.

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  2. pen

    pen There are some who call me...mod. Staff Member

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    If it's running on new properly mixed fuel, my best advice is to run it!

    After you have some experience with the unit, let us know what it is or is not doing well such as:

    Is/is not:

    starting well cold
    starting well hot
    idling
    smoothly / quickly revs
    has good power (doesn't seem to bog out for no reason)
    good throttle response
    smoking (from bar or exhaust)
    use of most of the tank of bar oil to a full tank of fuel

    Saw might just need a little exercise, but in the meantime, you need to know what you have.

    Sounds like a good friend looking out for you.

    pen
  3. Swampy

    Swampy Member

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    Sharpen the chain and clean and or change the air filter and plug is all I can add to the above...and then cut some wood and see what you got. Then pick up a chain, file, and bar cover...that should get you going- oh and deliver a bit of wood to the family as a thank you...i wish i had friends that gave chainsaws away!!!
  4. 1750

    1750 Feeling the Heat

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    Yes, he's a good friend. The best.

    I'll let you know what I know after I run it a bit maybe this weekend.

    Thanks to you both.
  5. Swampy

    Swampy Member

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    Another thing worth mentioning since it sounds like this may be your first saw is safety gear...and the mindset that goes with it.

    There is a lot to consider when cutting downed wood and much more when its standing-take your time and be careful!
    Beer Belly and pen like this.
  6. 1750

    1750 Feeling the Heat

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    Yes, my first saw. I've only even used one a few times.

    I tend to be safety-minded and cautious by nature, but I appreciate the reminder. I would guess that with chainsaws, as with most everything else, you don't know what you don't know. And that it's what you don't know that gets you.

    Thanks again.
  7. tom dee

    tom dee Member

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    Learn to Start it correctly Choke Burp N fart 1/2 it (choke) Burp off choke Start RRRrrrr Squeeze trigger and run it a few secs.. You shld be able to Start a 2 cycle in 3-4 pulls everytime I dont care Who made it im Not partial to any Brands really As most are designed By think tanks Like White consolidated Industries For U.S. Markets.. I try n buy the original Stuff Before the USA Big Buis Buys it out or Buys in and Makes the Changes I dont like . Dont get me wrong MANY need the save us from ourselves Saftey changes Etc Just look at you tube Vids of the Stoopidity of others using things absolutely weediculous..
  8. 1750

    1750 Feeling the Heat

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    Thanks, Tom. I'll give that a try directly. I probably need the safety changes!
  9. 1750

    1750 Feeling the Heat

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  10. tom dee

    tom dee Member

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    Thats Gr8 1750 Make sure ya do get a couple wedges just to have on hand to keep from getting pinched in ther cut thats hell on a laminated bar . Good you enjoyed the Experience ..
  11. Clarkbug

    Clarkbug Minister of Fire

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    Glad it worked out well for you!

    As others have mentioned, keep the chain sharp, that will go a long way towards solving a lot of problems that come up. If you need tips on that, feel free to post here for some.

    Dont forget to use a quality two-cycle oil in your gas. I use a synthetic mixed with 93 octane and some extra fuel stabilizer. Fuel seems to be the second biggest issue when dealing with saws.

    If you intend to do lots of cutting, probably a good idea to pick up some chaps (cheaper than a trip to the ER!), but at the very least hearing protection, safety glasses, and good gloves. If you dont know what kickback is, head over to the Stihl site and download the owners manual for that saw. ( Right HERE http://www.stihlusa.com/WebContent/...s/ms-170-180-chain-saw-instruction-manual.pdf) Read up on that for some good tips.
  12. 1750

    1750 Feeling the Heat

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    Thanks for the link! I'm reading through the manual now.

    The first 18 pages are nothing but warnings....
  13. Clarkbug

    Clarkbug Minister of Fire

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    Chainsaws are great tools, but very unforgiving. It only takes a split second for your mind to wander and bad things can happen. Heck, I tried to drop start a saw back in August while wearing shorts, and I pulled the bar into my knee. Its still not healed up right, and it went in deep. It wasnt even running!

    Respect the saw, and you will be fine.
  14. 1750

    1750 Feeling the Heat

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    I just finished the manual, and took all the things apart that I'm supposed to be able to take apart. Cleaned the air filter, adjusted the chain, etc, just so I have a better sense of what's what.

    I'm cautiously good-to-go. Careful with that axe, Eugene! :)

    Thanks again for the link to the manual.
  15. 1750

    1750 Feeling the Heat

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    There doesn't seem to be bar oil lubricating the chain. The reservoir is full, and I've cleaned the crud out from in back of the bar. It's not clear where the oil actually is supposed to come from and the manual doesn't include a diagram.

    Is anyone familiar enough with this saw to make a suggestion on how I should start to identify the source of the problem?

    Thanks in advance.
  16. Clarkbug

    Clarkbug Minister of Fire

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    Take off the bar and chain, and clean out the bar groove. On the side of the bar that is against the saw there is a hole. Make sure there is no crud in there.

    If the saw sat for years, you might want to dump out the bar oil and make sure there isn't gunk or tar in there.

    If there is goo in there, swish some mix or kerosene around, dump it, and refill with new bar oil.

    These are good places to start, if they don't work, it just is a little more tricky....
  17. 1750

    1750 Feeling the Heat

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    Thanks for your reply. The oil and gas are all fresh. I took the bar off and cleaned the holes... I'm not sure which of them supply the oil.

    The bar is new -- but I noticed it is an Oregon 16, and not a Stihl. I wonder if there is problem with these two not being compatible?

    Thanks again.
  18. pen

    pen There are some who call me...mod. Staff Member

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    Did you try and run the saw a little with the bar and chain off? You should be able to see the oil come running out if the pump is working and it is not clogged.
  19. Clarkbug

    Clarkbug Minister of Fire

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    Fresh oil now doesn't necessarily mean there wasn't gunk in there from before...

    If you look at the saw above the bar studs, you should see a horizontal groove with a hole in the end of it. When the bar is on the saw, the small hole that is just under the bar rails should line up with the groove.

    I'm going off of memory from other still saws, so what you see may be a little different.
  20. 1750

    1750 Feeling the Heat

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    I haven't tried that, but I will. I just figured out how to take the bar and chain off!

    Thanks. I'll go and take another look at it. I cleaned a lot of crud out of the general vicinity. Maybe the horizontal groove is just filled with crud and I missed it. Hopefully the Oregon bar works with the Stihl.

    Thanks to you both.
  21. 1750

    1750 Feeling the Heat

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    Alright, I've located the oil groove and see where it lines up with the hole in the bar.

    My kids are in bed so I'll have to wait until tomorrow to fire it up without the bar to see if oil is still moving through the groove. There was a little crud in the rail, so that's cleaned out now,

    On a brighter note, I have a much better understanding of how this stuff all works together.
  22. Clarkbug

    Clarkbug Minister of Fire

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    Thats the best part!

    I clean my bar rail out with an old metal card cover from a PC (the slots on the back where you add video or network cards). Thin enough to get in the groove and I always have them kicking around! If you have a sprocket tip bar, always scrape from that to the back of the bar so you dont put goo in there.

    You may be able to see if you get oil just by spinning the chain sprocket by hand with the saw off, bar and chain off. Spin the sprocket clockwise, and you should see oil come out of the groove mentioned previously. I mean, really try and keep it spinning to see what you get.

    If nothing, pull the sprocket off, and make sure the small notch in the sprocket has engaged the spring underneath it that drives the oil pump. Might be an easy fix!
  23. tom dee

    tom dee Member

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    clean hole with the likes of paper clip or pin. oregon bar has numbers on it you look up those numbers on oregon.com tell what saws it fits if this saw not listed it may bolt up but not oil or require diff gauge chan etc .
  24. 1750

    1750 Feeling the Heat

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    I just fired it up without the bar and confirmed there isn't any oil coming out of that groove. I cleaned out the hole with a paperclip, and still nothing.

    I've watched a couple of videos about removing the flywheel and replacing that pump. Before I tackle that, I'd like to go back to the suggestion that maybe there could be gunk in the oil reservoir. I don't have any kerosene, is there anything else I can use to rinse the oil reservoir out?

    Thanks.
  25. Clarkbug

    Clarkbug Minister of Fire

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    Use some two cycle mix, since you should have that handy :) That might help dissolve whatever is in there. Shake it around good, dump it, and put a little fresh stuff in. See if you turn the sprocket by hand if you get some mix out of the groove.

    Also, I dont think you need to pull the flywheel, thats on the other side of the saw. Did you mean the sprocket? Its also a big circle. That should pop right off if you remove the e-clip. (If you remove it, keep your hand over it, since they like to go flying!)

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