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Author Topic: demands on saw? " just firewood"  (Read 1733 times)

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Offline 20ozjolt

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demands on saw? " just firewood"
« on: March 24, 2018, 10:51:01 AM »
Haven't been on in a bit... howdy all.

So I'm reading about some saws i found on CL I'm thinking about picking up, both are mid tier. When I'm reading I keep seeing they will be good if "all you do is cut firewood".

I have seen that a lot about a lot of saws, and i don't get it, If I'm doing firewood I'm felling, limbing, and rounding its a lot of cuts with very few breaks, and for the untrained cutter more dirt then some one that cuts a lot... it seems like a very demanding on a saw, what am I missing?

or is it an expectation that most people who are cutting firewood do a cord or less a year?

Offline teakwood

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Re: demands on saw? " just firewood"
« Reply #1 on: March 24, 2018, 11:39:10 AM »
Maybe they are referring to the size of the saw. a small saw that is good for just firewood?? 
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Offline sawguy21

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Re: demands on saw? " just firewood"
« Reply #2 on: March 24, 2018, 11:49:43 AM »
It depends on durability. The low priced entry level consumer saws won't stand up to hard use day after day, as you suggest the average weekend warrior probably cuts less than a cord per year. The more serious woodcutter needs to step up to a mid range farm/ranch or pro saw to make efficient use of his/her time.
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Offline Tin Horse

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Re: demands on saw? " just firewood"
« Reply #3 on: March 24, 2018, 02:52:39 PM »
I'm doing about 35 bush cords a year . Much of the work is by the processor. All 3 saws ( Husky 372, Dolmar 5105, Husky Arbourist). I like them all and am as careful as possible. Each is a year or two old. Each has gone back for small issues under warranty. It's then that I hear about technical ( design and function problems). These saws are expensive. 
Lately I've looked at cheaper Home Depot saws ( with 3 year warranty) and wonder what's the better deal. :-\
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Offline DelawhereJoe

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Re: demands on saw? " just firewood"
« Reply #4 on: March 24, 2018, 09:36:00 PM »
Echo seems to have the best deal going on an all metal saw and a 5 year consumer warranty.  Check out the cs 590 timberwolf 60cc should be a good saw for a firewood cutter for under $400 its a great bargain.
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Offline Spike60

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Re: demands on saw? " just firewood"
« Reply #5 on: March 25, 2018, 07:35:26 AM »
"Just firewood" and "good firewood saw" can mean a lot of different things. I always say that firewood all looks the same when it's split and stacked, but how big the logs were and how they were processed can be quite different. A log load in the front yard is way different than going in the woods and doing the felling, limbing and bucking. Just as it's a lot different cuttting 10-12 inch logs vs getting into 26-28 inch wood.

One possibility on those ads are pro level saws that have seen a lot of use and are getting a little tired. They are past the point of running 8 hours a day, all week long, but are still a great option for someone cutting 4-5 cords of firewood a year. We see the same thing with commercial mowers; not reliabe enough to run all week, but a good mower for someone with a large lawn.
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Offline mike_belben

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Re: demands on saw? " just firewood"
« Reply #6 on: March 25, 2018, 11:06:42 AM »
Number one issue is heat.  A timber faller isnt running wide out all day long buried in wood.  If you run a firewood saw like that.. Just bucking over and over.. It better be a big displacement commercial unit.  Your big box plastic clamshell will melt down before too long.  

If you want to cut big wood with a small saw you really need to take your time and not dog in hard.. then let it idle between next cut to reject some heat.  Keep the chain razor sharp.  
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Offline 20ozjolt

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Re: demands on saw? " just firewood"
« Reply #7 on: March 25, 2018, 05:55:35 PM »
I'm gathering that I'm not crazy and it is very demanding on the saws... 

I was looking at a used ms 250 that was bundled with a MS 310 

was thinking the 250 would be good for small stuff and selling the 310. 

I have a MS 362 and a 048av.. 

I just thought it was odd that on a lot of forums i see it would be good as just a fire wood saw... makes me laugh. 

Offline Woodcutter_Mo

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Re: demands on saw? " just firewood"
« Reply #8 on: March 25, 2018, 06:24:58 PM »
 I've seen ads worded like that also. I just assumed they meant the saw would best serve a seasonal firewood cutter that goes out in the fall and cuts some firewood for themselves and puts it back in the garage for the rest of the year, and not for someone that will be running it all day everyday to make a living and plan on it reliably holding up for years to come.  ???
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Offline starmac

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Re: demands on saw? " just firewood"
« Reply #9 on: March 25, 2018, 06:53:38 PM »
Maybe light or occasional use saw would be better description of them. In the diesel world we call engines that do not have cylinder liners throwaways. They can be rebuilt, but it can be costly, I consider many saws the same, when the design means shop labor to rebuild one will be in excess of what it costs.
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Offline Pclem

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Re: demands on saw? " just firewood"
« Reply #10 on: March 25, 2018, 07:20:35 PM »
Your pro saws are going to have a better power to weight ratio, and generally higher revving rpm's. Homeowner [ firewood saws] are going to be slower rpm's. And, as previously stated, durability and longevity.
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Offline wild262

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Re: demands on saw? " just firewood"
« Reply #11 on: March 26, 2018, 07:09:30 AM »
      
Haven't been on in a bit... howdy all.

So I'm reading about some saws i found on CL I'm thinking about picking up, both are mid tier. When I'm reading I keep seeing they will be good if "all you do is cut firewood".

I have seen that a lot about a lot of saws, and i don't get it, If I'm doing firewood I'm felling, limbing, and rounding its a lot of cuts with very few breaks, and for the untrained cutter more dirt then some one that cuts a lot... it seems like a very demanding on a saw, what am I missing?

or is it an expectation that most people who are cutting firewood do a cord or less a year?

As a supplement with whats already been said, I will say this.
        Most saw manufactures offer 3 categories of saws.  Homeowner (occasional use),    Farm/Ranch or semi-pro (Mid-range use),     and professional for all day use.  This is not to say that you can't use a homeowner saw all day long,  Sure you can.  But it may or may not hold up to that day in and day out for very long.  There not made for that.  Yes there will be exceptions as with any category discussed here.  But I would purchase a saw within the limits recommended by the manufacture of my intended use.  Wood burners that heat there homes or sell firewood on the side as myself mostly run semi-pro and pro saws.  If you only have a shop stove to warm off and on, or clean up yard after a storm,  you could get by with a homeowner saw quite well.  The Pro models are meant for everyday hard use, or guys that make a living with them.   Its the construction that makes the difference.  And routine maintance is important with any of them.  I've rambled enough.  Hope its clearer for ya. :)

Offline wild262

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Re: demands on saw? " just firewood"
« Reply #12 on: March 26, 2018, 07:34:49 AM »
         One more thing I forgot to add to this.  If your intended saw use falls under a homeowner category, there's certainly nothing wrong with buying a "pro" saw if that's what you want.  Simply "wanting" is reason enough.  And, you may never have to replace it for many years or your lifetime depending on your age. More money up front may pay better in the long run.  That's what you have to decide.  ;)

Offline alan gage

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Re: demands on saw? " just firewood"
« Reply #13 on: March 26, 2018, 11:58:19 AM »
I bought a Stihl 250 with 16" bar as "just a firewood" saw and it did fine. Firewood processing for me is visiting a friend's pasture every fall and cutting the downed bur oak trees, about 3-4 cord/year. Most of the trees are in the 24" or less category but some are larger and I did up to 32" with the 250. I think of a firewood saw as something that will be used intermittently throughout the year.

A larger saw that could handle a longer bar would be nice for the bigger logs but the low weight and compactness is definitely appreciated when cutting up smaller trees and branches. The 16" bar can handle anything I'm likely to encounter around here although it might take a little longer. It helps that most of the wood I was cutting was already down so no need to drop many trees. 

Now last year I picked up a sawmill and suddenly I'm in need of a lot more logs. Wood collection is happening more than just during a couple weeks in the fall and I find myself cutting down quite a few trees. So I went out and bought a larger saw with 24" bar. It mainly gets used for dropping trees and cutting the trunk up for logs. I still pick up the 250 for anything where I don't need the larger saw. Much more comfortable to use. 

I addition to about 60 logs for the sawmill I also cut up about 6 cords of firewood since last fall and I think both saws are still seeing pretty light duty.

Alan
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Offline gspren

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Re: demands on saw? " just firewood"
« Reply #14 on: March 26, 2018, 07:36:49 PM »
        One more thing I forgot to add to this.  If your intended saw use falls under a homeowner category, there's certainly nothing wrong with buying a "pro" saw if that's what you want.  Simply "wanting" is reason enough.  And, you may never have to replace it for many years or your lifetime depending on your age. More money up front may pay better in the long run.  That's what you have to decide.  ;)
This sort of describes me, I live on a small farm and heat with wood mostly. I bought my Stihl 044 well over 20 years ago and my neighbor thought I was nuts to spend that much. I don't remember what I spent but by now the cost per year to run a pro saw was negligible and it's still a great saw!
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Offline mike_belben

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Re: demands on saw? " just firewood"
« Reply #15 on: March 26, 2018, 09:04:25 PM »
I think of the "its a firewood saw" disclaimer about the same as i do the "farm truck" disclaimer.  Which loosely translates to 'youre gonna need a lot of spare time to get any use out of this thing.'


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Offline John Mc

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Re: demands on saw? " just firewood"
« Reply #16 on: March 28, 2018, 09:51:22 AM »
        One more thing I forgot to add to this.  If your intended saw use falls under a homeowner category, there's certainly nothing wrong with buying a "pro" saw if that's what you want.  Simply "wanting" is reason enough.  And, you may never have to replace it for many years or your lifetime depending on your age. More money up front may pay better in the long run.  That's what you have to decide.  ;)
One thing I'd add: Buying a pro saw in that situation might make sense if you take care of your equipment properly. If you are the type that never tunes your saws (or never takes them to someone for tuning), doesn't follow recommendations for use and storage of the saw or just regularly seem to have bad luck with things like running over your tools with a tractor (I that case, for the most part I believe you make your own luck - and yes, I have bene a victim of such "bad luck"), then it might make more sense to go cheap. If you are going to treat your equipment like it's disposable, then it's likely to become that way, even if it was designed for the long haul.

For as much as I cut, I could probably get by with a mid-range saw. I'm not operating it 40+ hours a week.  I tend to buy pro-level saws, or occasionally a higher-end mid range saw for two reasons: (1) I appreciate a well-made piece of machinery and (2) I like to keep the weight as light as I can: some old neck and upper back injuries tend to bother me when I do a full day of sawing, and keeping the saws lighter minimizes this.
If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.   - Abraham Maslow

Offline Bosco

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Re: demands on saw? " just firewood"
« Reply #17 on: March 30, 2018, 09:48:21 AM »
I recently picked up a saw on craigslist , a stihl 180 for a hundred bucks, "only used once and now wont run" cleaned the carb and runs like new! I never had a small saw before and I love it , cuts everything , I beat it bad and it takes it, been through a couple chains, I'm cutting logs for the mill, and tons of firewood, my next saw will be another "little girls saw" I'm way out producing the other old timers with their big saws, and I do have a big saw if needed.


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