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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've got a decent Stihl FS44 string trimmer that works well and is now even better now that I've put bicycle handles on it.

It starts, runs, fine and the motor has never given me a bit of trouble but its now starting to make a rattling sound.

The sound appears to be coming from the clutch drum assembly.

Its more of a 'ringing' sound than a rattle. The sound is louder than the motor running.

I've removed the 4 screws and separated the halves so that the clutch assy is visible and you can grab the clutch drum and wiggle it and it moves about 1/4 inch 'in and out' but not side to side like its worn out on the shaft.

Anybody know how much play there should be?

The cable is fine, the trimmer head is good but the sound can't be normal and sounds like the trimmer is coming apart.

What can I do to silence this 'ringing' sound?

Don't want to replace the trimmer. There should be a fix.
 

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More Liberty, Less Tyrany
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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Might be the clutch springs stretched,seen it happen before!
I've had this trimmer for many years and its used weekly

Now to figure out how to get to the springs to check.

Now to figure out how to get the drum off?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I've had this trimmer for many years and its used weekly

Now to figure out how to get to the springs to check.

Now to figure out how to get the drum off?
This is fixed and now I have egg on my face.:banghead3

I always wear hearing protection when I run any of my lawn equipment. Yesterday when I started it I didn't have them on and the ringing noise was very loud, making
me think something was wrong as I haven't heard this sound before. The ring was probably there for a while but I didn't notice. I have some hearing loss due to work environments and age on me. I try to keep the ear protection on every time and can't say why this time I didn't have them on.

While I had it apart to start looking at the clutch I took off the screen on the muffler and I could not see through it. It was packed full of carbon. I guess over time the motor was slowing down and I never paid that much attention to it.

The carbon was hampering the motor to run at its proper rpm and keep the clutch engaged and it slowed down enough to start the ringing.

Once the screen was clean I fired it up and the rpms are noticeably higher and the ring is gone. Back in business for a while longer.
 

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I know, it really hurts to find that the machine is fine & the operator is worn out/defective, with no possibility of repair.
 

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Keep in mind that the FS 36/40/44 were not Stihl's finest efforts. Fits in with the SG/BG 17 leaf blower and the early 019 chain saw, the guy who designed that is picking up acorns in the Black Forest.
 

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More Liberty, Less Tyrany
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Keep in mind that the FS 36/40/44 were not Stihl's finest efforts. Fits in with the SG/BG 17 leaf blower and the early 019 chain saw, the guy who designed that is picking up acorns in the Black Forest.
Well it can't be too bad if I still have a running unit after all these years.

My problem was... ME...

I'll run it till it blows up and then find another but for now it does the job. I just have to make sure I don't have a repeat performance on a clogged screen.
 

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If you compare it to an early Shibauru unit or one of the later Virginia Beach machines, you'll see the difference.
 
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