Husky 288XP Compression Improved too Much.

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Trogdor

Trogdor

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I am brand new to this forum. Just bought a Husky 288XP. It ran well, and I could start it back when I bought it with modestly increased effort, when compared to my 272XP. The saw had a dead chain-oil pump so I started taking the saw apart to deal with that. One thing lead to another and by the time I got the saw back together today, I had replaced many other components, including the compression ring. The old ring was right at 1mm gap, the listed service limit. Well, now, the saw is so hard to turn over that I am lucky to get past TDC once! The saw has no decompression valve and I am sure tempted to explore fitting one. The cylinder has a boss for it but it is not drilled or tapped. So, is this level of compression expected for this saw? I can rule out some expected and potential issues with good confidence. The ring is installed correctly. The cylinder is in fine shape. The brake is not an issue. The starter functions properly. When the spark-plug is out the turnover is easy and smooth. When I fitted the piston back into the piston I put a couple drops of 2-stroke oil in the plug hole and wonder if that has sealed up the compression too much. With thorough enough instructions I'd be capable of doing the machining / drilling / tapping for a decompression valve. It baffles me that I have read posts on here that some members have absolutely no trouble starting their 288s without a valve. Either their compression is low or I'm a wimp.
 
Wood Doctor
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I'd say get it started and cut a truckload of wood that might use up a tank of fuel. Then try to start it again with a new tank of fresh fuel. That might make a big differnce in the cold starting difficulty. I doubt that you are a wimp. I once owned a Stihl 064 with no decomp valve that was a bearcat to start, regardless of how many times I ran it. I sold it to a guy who wanted to brag to others that he had no trouble cold starting it. He loves the saw and it runs today.
 
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TBS

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I am brand new to this forum. Just bought a Husky 288XP. It ran well, and I could start it back when I bought it with modestly increased effort, when compared to my 272XP. The saw had a dead chain-oil pump so I started taking the saw apart to deal with that. One thing lead to another and by the time I got the saw back together today, I had replaced many other components, including the compression ring. The old ring was right at 1mm gap, the listed service limit. Well, now, the saw is so hard to turn over that I am lucky to get past TDC once! The saw has no decompression valve and I am sure tempted to explore fitting one. The cylinder has a boss for it but it is not drilled or tapped. So, is this level of compression expected for this saw? I can rule out some expected and potential issues with good confidence. The ring is installed correctly. The cylinder is in fine shape. The brake is not an issue. The starter functions properly. When the spark-plug is out the turnover is easy and smooth. When I fitted the piston back into the piston I put a couple drops of 2-stroke oil in the plug hole and wonder if that has sealed up the compression too much. With thorough enough instructions I'd be capable of doing the machining / drilling / tapping for a decompression valve. It baffles me that I have read posts on here that some members have absolutely no trouble starting their 288s without a valve. Either their compression is low or I'm a wimp.

Sounds like my 5601 after I did a base gasket delete. You may have to pull it over a few times before it will loosen up. My 5601 has to be cranked a few times before it can be pulled over fast enough to fire, sometimes you get a nasty knuckle hurting kick back.
 
Robin Wood

Robin Wood

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288 are high compression saw even in stock form, it could be fine. But if you're not comfortable pulling high comp motor over, you might want to add a decomp or d handle. Always pull it to tdc slowly before starting with full force, its easier that way

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Trogdor

Trogdor

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Did you grease the piston and cylinder before you assembled? Or just put oil through the plug hole?
I did use 2-stroke on the rings and skirt. Thanks for responding! My younger/ stronger nephew was finally able to get it started. It has loosened up some but is still a bugger. Not sure whether to try to fit a decomp to this cylinder or buy one already machined to accept one. Also, the chain still throws no oil. That was the original problem I was trying to deal with. New oil pump but drive gear may be worn.
 
Trogdor

Trogdor

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Too much assembly lube on a healthy saw can do that. Once you get it started it may loosen up

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Thanks Red-85-Z51 for responding! I think you hit the nail on the head. It finally started with a stronger operator and somewhat easier to turn over now. Still really hard.
 
Huskybill

Huskybill

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Th 288 had compression releases. Was the top cover n the left side have a hole for a c/r?
My 181se is like new they had no c/r it’s a bear to start, I’m old. I have a 288 we’re the PO put a big bore kit with no c/r I haven’t touched it yet.

My plan on drilling to add a c/r if it has a boss is to use a smaller carbide drill first. Then use a small 1/8” carbide ball cutter and chamfer the small hole so the chrome is clear of the bigger drill bit. That’s what I seen in one of the last cylinders I purchased. I gather they drill them after they chrome them.
 
Kenskip1

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Th 288 had compression releases. Was the top cover n the left side have a hole for a c/r?
My 181se is like new they had no c/r it’s a bear to start, I’m old. I have a 288 we’re the PO put a big bore kit with no c/r I haven’t touched it yet.

My plan on drilling to add a c/r if it has a boss is to use a smaller carbide drill first. Then use a small 1/8” carbide ball cutter and chamfer the small hole so the chrome is clear of the bigger drill bit. That’s what I seen in one of the last cylinders I purchased. I gather they drill them after they chrome them.
Th 288 had compression releases. Was the top cover n the left side have a hole for a c/r?
My 181se is like new they had no c/r it’s a bear to start, I’m old. I have a 288 we’re the PO put a big bore kit with no c/r I haven’t touched it yet.

My plan on drilling to add a c/r if it has a boss is to use a smaller carbide drill first. Then use a small 1/8” carbide ball cutter and chamfer the small hole so the chrome is clear of the bigger drill bit. That’s what I seen in one of the last cylinders I purchased. I gather they drill them after they chrome them.
Before you go drilling holes, how long is the recoil rope?Reason being ,if the rope is short you will loose leverage on the recoil pulley making the saw feel like it has two much compression.
 
Wood Doctor
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Before you go drilling holes, how long is the recoil rope? Reason being, if the rope is short you will loose leverage on the recoil pulley making the saw feel like it has too much compression.
Good point. A lot of men don't realize how much leverage you lose on a small spiral wrap produced by a short cord. Torque = Force x Radius.
 
superwd6

superwd6

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I am brand new to this forum. Just bought a Husky 288XP. It ran well, and I could start it back when I bought it with modestly increased effort, when compared to my 272XP. The saw had a dead chain-oil pump so I started taking the saw apart to deal with that. One thing lead to another and by the time I got the saw back together today, I had replaced many other components, including the compression ring. The old ring was right at 1mm gap, the listed service limit. Well, now, the saw is so hard to turn over that I am lucky to get past TDC once! The saw has no decompression valve and I am sure tempted to explore fitting one. The cylinder has a boss for it but it is not drilled or tapped. So, is this level of compression expected for this saw? I can rule out some expected and potential issues with good confidence. The ring is installed correctly. The cylinder is in fine shape. The brake is not an issue. The starter functions properly. When the spark-plug is out the turnover is easy and smooth. When I fitted the piston back into the piston I put a couple drops of 2-stroke oil in the plug hole and wonder if that has sealed up the compression too much. With thorough enough instructions I'd be capable of doing the machining / drilling / tapping for a decompression valve. It baffles me that I have read posts on here that some members have absolutely no trouble starting their 288s without a valve. Either their compression is low or I'm a wimp.[/
Your saw is late 80s or very early 90s to have no decompress valve. My 1989 didn’t and my dad used to keep his in the house in the winter to get it started lol . Used my 288 to limb with as my 550xp quit and boy I’m in bad shape. 288 was all we every used for the whole tree back then [emoji23]
 

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