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Author Topic: MS441 Project  (Read 434 times)

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Offline BeerFarmer

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MS441 Project
« on: September 06, 2020, 02:15:48 PM »
Hi everyone,

I've been a long time lurker on the forum, and have always been able to get my answers to my questions without having to register. Recently I decided to try and find a fun project for my son and I to work on together, and after a couple weeks a gentleman messaged me and had a complete Stihl MS441 that he would sell to me for $200 (that's Canadian, so like $14 US). It turns out he got to drinking in his garage with the neighbor and decided to big bore it, but ordered the wrong kit on Amazon. After tearing it down he lost interest in putting it back together and saw my ad while looking for another saw. It turned out I had a MS660 I was willing to sell and we came to an agreement that we were both happy with.




 

 

Since it was still sitting on his work cart and we literally scooped it up into a box I have to assume that everything is still there. I haven't done chainsaw engine work other than muffler mods and tuning so this will be a good learning experience for me, my son who isn't quite 5 has lost interest already but he's got lots of time to learn. At first I didn't know much about the MS441, but I've read up on it quite a bit. It doesn't seem to get a lot of love from anyone, and as a non-Mtronic version it's very rare to even find comments about it, 95% of comments seem to be about the M version.

As the saw was already apart a long way, I decided to take it further and take off the cylinder. I found the cylinder to be in good shape, but the piston had a couple small chips in it on the exhaust side. Rings were still good, just the top of the piston with the chips and a bit of corrosion pitting seems to be of any concern.  Would any of you recommend a new piston, or just slap it back together?



 

 

Anyways, I'm waiting on a parts washer so I can give some of the parts a good cleaning, and any other suggestions I get from the forum. Actually posting on here about the rebuild really adds to the fun for me of the overall rebuild. Goal for the project is just to get it back together with no extra parts lying around afterwards, possibly do a muffler mod. I'd love to try porting it but I really have zero experience or proper tools for that, so I'll skip it. Unless I fall in love, I'll likely just sell this saw on Kijiji as I'm waiting on a new 462 CM-VW to arrive (gave up waiting for the 500i).

Offline Pine Ridge

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Re: MS441 Project
« Reply #1 on: September 06, 2020, 04:15:58 PM »
New piston if it were mine.
Husqvarna 550xp , 2- 372xp and a 288xp, Chevy 4x4 winch truck

Offline BeerFarmer

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Re: MS441 Project
« Reply #2 on: September 06, 2020, 09:01:44 PM »
Thanks for the feedback, thats what Ive been thinking. I expect a new OEM piston kit to be at least $200 in Canada. Cant find a Meteor dealer in Canada, so I think its OEM or nothing. 

Offline sawguy21

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Re: MS441 Project
« Reply #3 on: September 06, 2020, 10:21:03 PM »
Nothing wrong with the MS441, it was very popular. You could order a Meteor out of the U.S. but shipping and the exchange rate might not make it worthwhile. I wouldn't consider reusing the old piston, price out OEM. It may not be as painful as you think. Where are you?
old age and treachery will always overcome youth and enthusiasm

Offline Al_Smith

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Re: MS441 Project
« Reply #4 on: September 06, 2020, 10:34:28 PM »
Everybody has an opinion .Being a cheap skate I'd hang a set of Caber rings on it and call it a day .For general info I'm not particularly a fond of a 441 but that's only my opinion .

Offline BeerFarmer

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Re: MS441 Project
« Reply #5 on: September 07, 2020, 10:36:25 AM »
Thanks for the replies guys. I'll definitely put a new piston in. Now that I know about it I couldn't in good conscience sell it on Kijiji knowing the piston is like that.

SawGuy, I'm in northern Alberta. I see you're in BC, do you have any good recommendations for parts? Long weekend has my dealer closed so I'm just online shopping this morning over coffee.

Are Hyway pistons any good? I see a replacement piston assembly on sawparts.ca, it's only $40, and they have a 25% off code for the weekend. 


Offline Al_Smith

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Re: MS441 Project
« Reply #6 on: September 07, 2020, 11:08:21 AM »
Some insist on OEM some go with after market .Personally for AM I've have good luck with Meteor which come with Caber piston rings.They too sell for around $40 with shipping on E-bay .I have no idea about Hyway . 

Offline BeerFarmer

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Re: MS441 Project
« Reply #7 on: September 07, 2020, 11:13:05 AM »
Thanks, I'll keep shopping for a Meteor then. If a guy with nearly 11000 posts on here doesn't know about Hyway I'll stay clear.

Offline BeerFarmer

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Re: MS441 Project
« Reply #8 on: September 08, 2020, 03:36:57 PM »
I got in touch with a small engine shop and my guess for a Stihl piston was actually very close. Total price of $203 (ouch). I couldn't find a Canadian place to buy a Meteor piston, and duty and taxes were very expensive so I ordered the Stihl. Parts washer showed up today, just need to get some Varsol and the saw should be clean soon. If the piston arrives Friday I can get it back together, and I have a guy already waiting to buy it from me. The same guy has about a half dozen other saws for me to go and look at so I could be coming into some more projects!

And to top it all off, the Stihl rep emailed me and said to hold off on the 462 as I should be able to get the 500i in the near future. Great start to the week!

Offline hedgerow

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Re: MS441 Project
« Reply #9 on: September 10, 2020, 10:46:02 AM »
BeerFarmer  Welcome to the forum. I think putting in a new piston is a good idea since you are flipping the saw. Buddy has as a 441 and its been a good saw but I wouldn't trade my 461 for it. Good luck with the project. 

Offline BeerFarmer

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Re: MS441 Project
« Reply #10 on: September 12, 2020, 01:09:50 AM »
Thanks! I was able to grab the piston just before closing time today and a pail of solvent to continue the parts clean up. I have a lot of honey I need to extract over the next few days so I'll probably have to put the 441 on the backburner until I can get all the honey into pails and my bees tucked away for the winter. The 441 is basically sold to a guy who has a bunch of other parts saws for me to work on, so I might try to get it back together late one evening.


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