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Old 03-18-2010, 10:53 AM   #1
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First Chain Saw


Hey Guys - I have another thread going over the the 'Landscape' area (Brush/Vines/Small Trees) but my main question for you is that I need to get my first chain saw to cut down the brush that's discussed in that thread.

Know that I have never used a chain saw before I dont want to get one thats too powerful, but I also don't want a wimpy POS either. Can you guys recommend some exact models that would be good for me?
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Old 03-18-2010, 11:23 AM   #2
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First Chain Saw


Those are some pretty decent sized trees to cut if this is your 1st time
The problem in many cases is when the tree starts to fall
If it falls in the wrong direction it can damage property or kill you
Another problem is the wind picking up & blowing the tree over in the wrong direction as you are cutting it

An 18 inch saw is a pretty standard size
But it needs to be long enough to go thru the tree you are cutting
So you need to know the diameter of the tree

I bought a Husqvarna model with a 28" blade & a 20" blade
I cut quite a bit of wood & had a tree trunk ~54" across that I needed to cut up

I actually use sawzall to cut smaller trees down
Blade is easily replaced in case it gets stuck
And the sawzall was only ~$80
I tie the tree off in the direction I want it to fall - actually pulling it in that direction 1st
I then cut most of the way around the tree
Then I use my truck to pull the tree down, or if smaller by hand
I've topped 5 trees around my property using this method

B4:



After


One on the left topped, one on the right started

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Old 03-18-2010, 11:56 AM   #3
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First Chain Saw


There is no such thing as a perfect "do-it-all" saw. If you get a saw with a 16" bar, you can cut a tree 32" diameter. But it will be very dangerious and difficult to cut a larger size tree.
On the other hand, a saw with 20" bar will cut a bigger tree but will be heaiver and more difficult to use on small stuff.
I have three saws--16"-18" Husky, a 20" Stihl, and a 12" Jonsered that I use trimming small limbs.
So-----I would suggest that you purchase a 14" or 16" saw.
The higher priced saws, are usually lighter and just one pound makes a big difference when you are using it for several hours.
I would also suggest that you buy from a reputable dealer that can advise you as to what brand and size saw that you would be happy with.
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Old 03-18-2010, 12:32 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Giles View Post
There is no such thing as a perfect "do-it-all" saw. If you get a saw with a 16" bar, you can cut a tree 32" diameter. But it will be very dangerious and difficult to cut a larger size tree.
On the other hand, a saw with 20" bar will cut a bigger tree but will be heaiver and more difficult to use on small stuff.
I have three saws--16"-18" Husky, a 20" Stihl, and a 12" Jonsered that I use trimming small limbs.
So-----I would suggest that you purchase a 14" or 16" saw.
The higher priced saws, are usually lighter and just one pound makes a big difference when you are using it for several hours.
I would also suggest that you buy from a reputable dealer that can advise you as to what brand and size saw that you would be happy with.
Great advice - Thanks, nothing I have to cut down is no where near that big so I think I'm going to shoot for a 16''. Now to figure out exactly which one.
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Old 03-18-2010, 12:42 PM   #5
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First Chain Saw


Ok I'm compairing these ones here:

http://www.husqvarna.com/us/homeowne...,166319,188833

Anyone have any experience with these? recommend one over the other?
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Old 03-18-2010, 01:18 PM   #6
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First Chain Saw


This is no joke: Recently I got out my green chain saw, which had not run in at least three years. NO, I never got it to run and was fed up with trying. I happened to go to a big box store for something else, and decided to price a new chain saw. They have electric chain saws out now! There were two on sale so I bought the 16" one. After getting home and getting it ready to trim small tree limbs, etc., my wife comes out and--of course--what's that? Well, she tried it and I have not been able to use it since---that's a shame . Solution: But an electric chain saw. Women don't like gas powered anything's, but do like electrical appliances. David
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Old 03-18-2010, 04:22 PM   #7
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First Chain Saw


personally the 2LB difference between the homeowner and other models would be a big factor. lugging a saw around all day gets pretty tiring and any weight you can trim off (no pun!) is good.
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Old 03-18-2010, 04:59 PM   #8
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First Chain Saw


I have a Husqvarna Rancher 55 with a 20" bar. It was great for felling trees. It had enough power to tackle anything as long as I kept the chain sharp. It's relatively easy to start, and has been completely bulletproof.

When it came time to start cutting up all the small branches, the thing killed me. It's no lightweight, and hefting it around to cut up small branches was VERY tiring. You don't want to have your arms cramping up while you're handling a chain saw.

I really recommend a light-weight saw for light-weight work.
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Old 03-18-2010, 07:35 PM   #9
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The only thing I can tell is that the homeowner saw has alot more 'features' than the lighter ones... Do you think those features are worth the extra weight?
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Old 03-18-2010, 08:07 PM   #10
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First Chain Saw


Quote:
Originally Posted by Giles View Post
There is no such thing as a perfect "do-it-all" saw. If you get a saw with a 16" bar, you can cut a tree 32" diameter. But it will be very dangerious and difficult to cut a larger size tree.
On the other hand, a saw with 20" bar will cut a bigger tree but will be heaiver and more difficult to use on small stuff.
I have three saws--16"-18" Husky, a 20" Stihl, and a 12" Jonsered that I use trimming small limbs.
So-----I would suggest that you purchase a 14" or 16" saw.
The higher priced saws, are usually lighter and just one pound makes a big difference when you are using it for several hours.
I would also suggest that you buy from a reputable dealer that can advise you as to what brand and size saw that you would be happy with.
A days worth of sawing is brutal with a heavy saw. I have a Stihl homeowner - the same one that my tree-guy keeps in his truck for when he doesn't want to fire up his big bar.
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Old 03-19-2010, 08:39 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tb582 View Post
The only thing I can tell is that the homeowner saw has alot more 'features' than the lighter ones... Do you think those features are worth the extra weight?
a lot of those features are on that list twice

even with all that stuff that i don't even know what it means - i would buy the lighter saw. as everyone has mentioned using a lighter saw will save your arms and back in the long run, unless you really need a huge saw for some reason.
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Old 03-19-2010, 11:36 AM   #12
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I recommend the Stihl MS170! (MS = "Mini Saw")
I use it more than my larger Dolmar just because it handles 80% of what I do with ease.
The Dolmar rocks for anything larger......
I also keep a 14amp electric in the woodshed for the odd piece that needs it.

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Old 03-19-2010, 01:47 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by DangerMouse View Post
I recommend the Stihl MS170! (MS = "Mini Saw")
I use it more than my larger Dolmar just because it handles 80% of what I do with ease.
The Dolmar rocks for anything larger......
I also keep a 14amp electric in the woodshed for the odd piece that needs it.

DM

I read your post figuring that the MS170 was actually Mini Saw only to go onto Stihl's website and find that 95% of their saws all have MS in the model number - I was also looking at the weights of some compared to the ones I have above from Husq. and they are heaver in most cases.

Is it worth the extra weight? I'm looking to spend <=350 for my new saw and really dont want to get something too powerful. I dont have anything huge to take down just very small trees and brush type stuss... I want to get the best saw I can without going overboard.
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Old 03-19-2010, 01:53 PM   #14
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My 170 is pretty light, and it only ran $160 new....
It was on sale for that much last year too. (mine is 5 or 6 yrs old)
It seems like a good saw for your needs IMHO.

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Old 03-24-2010, 12:27 AM   #15
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First Chain Saw


Dangermouse is right about the MS170. I have a MS170 and a MS660. The 170 is a great little saw and you can get a low kickback chains for it(which would a great idea for a new user). I've had mine for about 6 or 7 years and still starts on the first pull.
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