BR600 Valve Cover Gasket

cranheimDecember 12, 2007

I called my local STIHL dealer to see if he had a valve cover gasket in stock for my STIHL BR 600 blower. I wanted to have one on hand in case it is needed after checking the valve clearance. He said he did, and the price would be $11.00. Isn't that a little high for a small gasket? Charles Ranheim

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Prices on seasonal items are generally higher than one would expect. There is a huge mark up on seasonal items. And again about any part on Stihl equipment would be considered high because of Stihls high quality. We have one dealer in our small town that claims he can get parts for about anything, but you will have to pay higher prices for him getting the parts and if you don't like his prices go somewhere I usually do.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2007 at 6:00PM
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Permatex makes a high temp RTV silicone that
I have used for such applications. It is red
and takes a little longer to cure than the blue

    Bookmark   December 13, 2007 at 3:57PM
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canguy(British Columbia)

I checked the price at work today and yours is not out of line. Stihl parts are high quality and priced accordingly.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2007 at 11:22PM
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As a follow-up to my original post, this is what I found. Instead of paying $11 for a valve cover gasket, you can buy a Valve Setting Kit (p/n 4282 007 1001) for $9.13. This kit includes the special feeler gauge, a small washer, and the cover gasket. I then proceeded to check/adjust the valve lash using the information provided by others. I was unable to get an initial reading on the gap prior to any adjustment, because it requires a special feeler gauge with a narrow width to fit in the channel shaped rocker arm. I had to turn down on the rocker pivot nuts to bring the gap down to the 0.10mm specification. There are no "locking nuts" to hold the settings. The adjusting nuts are a very tight fit, and should hold the setting without locking nuts. The intake and exhaust valves needed about the same adjustment. I replaced the cover gasket even though the original one looked OK. When I mentioned this to my dealer, he said they usually don't have to replace them. After re-assembly, it started right up and seemed to have more torque when I accelerated the engine. I thought this must be my imagination, but my dealer said they found the same thing. Their thought was that even though the gap change was small, it affects the valve timing enough to make a noticeable difference. I am only passing on my experience FYI. I cannot verify the dealers comment about the change I made in valve lash changed the timing enough to make the difference I experienced. This was my one and only experience in setting the valve lash on my BR600. Perhaps someone with more experience can comment on their observations. Charles Ranheim

    Bookmark   December 16, 2007 at 10:37AM
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nevada_walrus(Boulder City)

Stihl recomends a check of the valve setting early on because break in can cause a change. Don't think I've ever found one that needed the gap increased, always decrease as was yours. This means after adjusting the valves open more allowing better flow of air/fuel in and exhaust out. These are small engines and a little makes a big difference.

As your dealer told you, valve cover gaskets are rarely needing change at this first adjust. And yes, those are lock nuts for the adjustment and unless you were rebuilding an old worn out engine there is no need to worry about them.

    Bookmark   December 16, 2007 at 11:35AM
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There was one other observation I did not mention. I use the STIHL Ultra oil. While it calls for 2.6 oz per gallon, I have been using 3.0 oz to make sure it had enough. When I removed the valve cover, I was surprised to see how much oil there was around the rockers. It looked like it was lubricated by an oil pump. The spark plug did have some carbon build-up on it. Based on this, I will go back to the recommended 2.6 oz per gallon (50:1 mix). The 3.0 oz was giving me a 42.7:1 mix, which may cause excessive carbon build up. Charles Ranheim

    Bookmark   December 16, 2007 at 12:09PM
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Hi Charles,
Thank you for posting the part number for the kit along with your experience with the adjustment. Valve lift is critical to getting the best performance out of that engine. Dont be afraid to use a little extra oil in your fuel mix.

Overall, would you say your happy with the unit or would you have preferred a two stroke engine? Do you feel that the power (push) of the unit is as good or better than some of the other brands?

    Bookmark   December 21, 2007 at 1:35AM
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The only reason I may reduce the amount to the recommended 50:1 mix (2.6oz per gallon vs the 3.0oz per gallon I have been using) is to reduce carbon buildup. The 4-Mix engines are more prone to carbon buildup. I did have some carbon buildup on the spark plug. STIHL still recommends "De-Coking" the engine from time to time. Based on the amount of oil I found under the valve cover, I feel safe in reducing the amount of oil I have been using. STIHL recommends not going over the 50:1 ratio. I am completely satisfied with the performance of the BR600. It is much more powerful than the BR420C I used to use. These two are the only backpack blowers I have used, so I can't comment with experience on the other units. If there is a downside to the BR600, it is the fact that it may need periodic valve adjustment and de-coking because of the 4-mix engine. A two stroke would not need this extra attention. However, this is a small inconvenience that I am willing to live with for the sake of getting a very powerful blower with less weight and noise than a comparable 2-stroke unit. Would I buy the BR600 again? Absolutely. It starts easy, runs great, and has lots of power. From what I have read, some say the Redmax 8000 has more power. I did not go that route because they are heavier, make more noise, and there are no Redmax dealers near me. Charles Ranheim

    Bookmark   December 21, 2007 at 7:24PM
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