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Old 01-12-2009, 07:49 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Arrow 1995 Arctic Cat Cougar 550

Hello all, hope you all may be able to help a newbie out. Recently purchased a Arctic Cat 550 Cougar with about 2400 miles on it. When I had bought the sled, they had told me that the upper end of the motor had just been rebuilt (psitons, ringd, gaskets, etc,) anyway they had taken it out and went about 30 miles or so and the left cylinder had lost compression. Well after putting a compression test on it when I went out, the right one was at 150 and the left at 60, well I knew right away that the psiton was prob. toast. So I purchased two new pistons wiesco along with new sleeves, gaskets, etc. (and no I am not a mechanic, but my friend works for a Mets Auto and they rebuild motors from everything from drag cars to pulling tractors so I had some great help in the rebuild in this. So after we got it all back up and together we tested her out and 147 both sides roughly ran great and strong. So went out after about 10 miles going along at about 45 mph. just shut down, well thinking maybe fouled a plug or something and changing them out both, after sitting about 20 minutes, fired back up another 3 miles did the exact same thing, so then we loaded it up and hauled it back home, tore it down same psiton started doing the same thing. So we pulled the new sleeve and took the old piston that was still good from the 1st build from the previous owner and honed the sleeve had a small groove and when I mean small could not tell without a mic. so we put it all back together. Well I had purchased a new fuel pump previous to all of this so during this last time we went ahead and installed this, the plug on that side looks light brown with a bit or white on the outside of it. We also took and disconnected the oil injection pump and plugged all hoses off. Then mixed the fuel with arctic cat 50:1 oil in the main gas tank. Well did a test run and now the plug has a light grey color to it. Well before I blow her up again shut it down after small test run 500 yards or so. I am leaning towards a carb issue of a crank case seal. Looked at the carbs jets are clean and properly sized. Plugs are gapped corect and using good clean gas and all. Any help on this would be great. Thanks for reading and I hope I left all the info. to be of help.
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Old 01-12-2009, 10:18 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Sounds like you are looking at the right stuff... with the plug color, it sounds like it's burning lean on that side. Checking for air leaks would be my first step. While the engine is running, spray carb cleaner on the PTO seal to see if the RPM changes, also spray the rubber carb boots, and anywhere else you think could be causing an air leak.

It could be a plugged main jet in the carb, but if you just cleaned those, that is not as likely. I would check the jet anyway to see if it's the appropriate jet for your temperature and elevation.. the previous owner may have changed out jets.

Good luck iwith it.. pretty soon you will be the go-to guy on AC 550 engine repair
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Old 01-12-2009, 10:32 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Well

Thanks for the reply, I checked the size and they call for #330 jets and they are both correct. Also replaced the carb boots during the last rebuild as well. Forgot to put that in there. Lets keep this up all ideas and helpful hints are great! Thanks again!
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Old 01-12-2009, 01:52 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Check that crank seal!
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Old 01-12-2009, 03:29 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Just an update, ordereda complete gasket seal with crank case seals as well, do you think I should have the carbs rebuilt. Like I had stated I checked the size the were correct for the alltitude and temp. and she did run like a mad women when she was up and going. Kit will be here tomorrow will keep updated....any other ideas while I have this tore down would be great.
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Old 01-12-2009, 09:14 PM   #6 (permalink)
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There's really not much to rebuilding the carbs, cleaning is usually the problem. When gas sits and evaporates in the float bowl and all the passages in the carb over summer, it builds varnish in all the passages and clogs the jets. Sometimes you have to clean 'em a few times until all the crud comes out. I'm not sure how much it would cost to have a shop do 'em. Your call.
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Old 01-13-2009, 01:30 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Update: Took the complete motor out and tested both sides. Well the one that one running fine and with good compression was fine. The other guess what.....leaking air out the crank seal! ! ! ! ! Wish I would have found this board 299.00 dollars ago...but hey you live and learn. This was a great learning experinece for me on this motor. I would like to thank all for the great help. I will let you know when she is up and running which should be tonight. We have a huge front coming in around 8:00 PM hopefully she will be ready! Thanks again!
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Old 01-14-2009, 12:00 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Glad you got it!
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Old 01-19-2009, 09:28 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Update again: Well now another issue, since this whole mess, we got her all back and runnong but now having some issues with it idleing. What do you think timing....off Carbs are clean and gap and slide is good in the carbs......Anyone have any input on the timing?
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Old 01-19-2009, 09:55 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Will it clear up (idle smoothly) if you flip on the choke?
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Old 01-19-2009, 10:04 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RJ Gleason View Post
Will it clear up (idle smoothly) if you flip on the choke?

Yes it will then when you take off you can take the choke off and then when you stop if you dont flip the choke back to the middle she wont stay idleing......
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Old 01-21-2009, 10:05 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Any---------------help........>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
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Old 01-21-2009, 10:50 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Pilot jets are clogged.
Clean the carbs and use a fine wire to clear the jets.
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'93 Wildcat 700EFI
w/ Comet 108 Pro-4 clutch & 01 ZR skid

'90 Wildcat Project in progress.

Vintage (sorta)
1980 Indy Trail 440 (for sale)
1980 AC Pantera (donor engine to the 90 wildcat)


http://www.dcdrifters.net/


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http://www.masonicdryden472.org/

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Old 01-21-2009, 08:13 PM   #14 (permalink)
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how many turns out do you have the idle screw should be 1 1/2 turns out
make sure both sides are synced the same
have the exact same sled
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Old 01-26-2009, 11:30 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Final Update: Well dont I feel like a total idiot. During this whole process, when we had taken the oil injsction pump out. Mixed are own gas and oil, we replaced the carb boots to the block with new ones....well we think that the heat from that application then caused those to heat up and warp. Well after carbs being cleaned, same problem then we looked after setting carbs back to factory setting. Those boots were not making a complete seal. The only time it would idle is when you had choke half way on.....well put old boots back on and guess what idled like a champ....up and running like my hair is on fire now. Thanks for all the help. Look forward to trying to help out others down the road on Cougar 550 Arctic Cat rebuilds or issues.....I will personally say that this was a great learning time. What fun we had doing this along with large amounts of profane words and a large amount of adult beverages consumed.....Thanks again and happy sledded'

Mark.....OUT!!!
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