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I have a 394xp that I can’t gwt running, the guy I purchased…

I have a 394xp that...
I have a 394xp that I can’t gwt running, the guy I purchased from fed a little gas into the carb and got it going, I knew you shouldn’t need to do that so I took it to a local saw shop and he cleaned the carb changed the spark plug and fixed a cracked fuel line. When I picked it up he couldn’t get it started so he pulled the plug and sprayed starting fluid in the cylinder and told me the saw was touchy but he couldn’t find anything wrong with it. I got it home and was able to start it just fine. Yesterday I tried to start it to cut a large maple down and couldn’t get it going for anything. I don’t want to take it back to the same guy, any ideas would be helpful. I have torn down car engines plenty of times but never worked on small engines. (Not that this beastie is small)
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Answered in 3 minutes by:
2/19/2018
Donald
Donald, Small Engine Technician
Category: Small Engine
Satisfied Customers: 2,477
Experience: I have 25+ years of experience repairing 2 & 4 cycle engines
Verified
Hello. My name is***** will be happy to assist you. Have you checked the compression on your saw?
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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
I personally have not but the guy at the saw shop said he did.
Thanks for your response. Do you have some carburetor cleaner in a can?
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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
I do have that,

I would like for you to try something for me.

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Spray a small burst of carburetor directly into your carburetor, to see if your engine will start up and run briefly.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Ok what can I do?

Spray a small burst of carburetor cleaner directly into your carburetor, to see if your engine will start up and run briefly.

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This is a troubleshooting procedure.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Nope, it just pulls and pulls doesn’t want to start at all

Thank you for checking. Keep in mind that an engine needs three things in order to start up and run. Your engine needs fuel, spark, and compression. Have you checked to see if you are getting spark to your spark plug?

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
I had the spark lug out yesterday and could see spark when I pulled the start cord

This leaves compression. Do you have a compression gauge?

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
No but I can get one.

Awesome! After you get one, check to see if your compression is 100 psi or above. Also, remove your muffler and check for scoring on your piston and cylinder.

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This information will help to determine what is causing our problem.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Ok, first pull on the saw goes to 80 second pull goes to 100 and third goes to 125psi. The decompression valve is currently depressed. Also bought new carb cleaner and tried that to no avail

125 psi is fine, unless you have a build up of carbon on top of your piston. Have you checked for scoring on your piston and cylinder?

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Not yet takin the muffler off now

Very good! Use a flashlight to inspect your piston and cylinder after you remove your muffler. Also, inspect through your spark plug hole.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Ok, so there is a fair amount of carbon on the top of the cylinder. The side of the cylinder does have some scoring but not much. I put everything back together and with the top plastic off I notice a puff of smoke coming out of the side of the saw when I pull the cord, not sure where exactly it’s coming from yet. Need another set of eyes to watch while I’m pulling. Also there was a fair amount of gas in the muffler when I removed that.
What about your spark plug. Check to see if your spark plug is also wet. Check to see if your engine will start without your muffler installed.
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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
The spark plug doesn’t look wet at all, I will try without the muffler on in a few minutes, thank you for your help this far!

You are very welcome! Take your time.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Ok, so I removed the muffler and that didn’t do anything for me. No change whatsoever.

Thank you for the update. There is another possibility that comes to mind. You stated that you are getting spark to your new spark plug, and your carburetor cleaner temporarily served as your fuel supply, but your engine still will not start. Check to see if your flywheel key is sheered. Sometimes if your flywheel nut loosens, your flywheel key can sheer. Although this is rare, it is still a possibility.

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If your flywheel key is ok, you could have a leaking crankshaft seal, a leaking crankcase gasket/seal.

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You would have to do a vacuum test and a pressure test to confirm a leaking seal.

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Check to see if all of your crankcase screws are tight ...

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
I just took the cover off, and looked the pin is not sheared, but while I was in there, I noticed all around the flywheel was packed with wood shavings and bar oil, I cleaned it all out and in the process noticed the coil was loose, also found that there is a bare spot of wire on the blue switch lead and a wear spot partially through on the spark plug wire, I checked for spark again and get spark very intermittently so I’m wondering if that may be compounding/contributing to the problem.

It could be. Set the gap between your ignition coil and your flywheel at 0.10" and put some electrical tape on the bare spots on your wires, then check for spark again.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Success!! I set the gap on the coil taped the wires and put it back together and it starts right up!! Two pulls was all it took.
Awesome! Thank you for letting me know. I do hope all continues to go well for you. So it turned out to be spark.
Donald
Donald, Small Engine Technician
Category: Small Engine
Satisfied Customers: 2,477
Experience: I have 25+ years of experience repairing 2 & 4 cycle engines
Verified
Donald and 87 other Small Engine Specialists are ready to help you
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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
thank you so much for all your help today!!
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