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Author Topic: "Hobby" saw  (Read 10340 times)

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Offline Phil

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"Hobby" saw
« on: February 07, 2002, 08:36:17 AM »
I have an old Husky I acquired secondhand that was never cared for properly, and as bad as I hate to face it, it's now beyond repair.

Since I'm a tightwad, and since I only use a chainsaw around my home as a hobby -- cutting up firewood for neighbors, clearing the occasional tree lost to wind or snow -- I've been eyeing the "Mickey Mouse" saws at my friendly neighborhood Lowe's store.

I hope McCulloh (sp?) and Poulan aren't offensive words to anyone in here, but I'm looking at the $100 range in these saws.  Even given my limited need for a chainsaw, would I be wasting my money to get one of these?  Should I instead loosen the purse strings a bit and invest in a small, $200 Stihl?

Phil

Offline psychotic1

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Re: "Hobby" saw
« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2002, 10:13:30 AM »
Well, I'll tell you what I would do...
I'd go ahead and buy the Stihl.
I too do mostly "hobby" sawing (right now) and the thing I like best about my stihls is the ability to leave it sit in my storage unit for weeks and even months without ever doing anything to it or for it, and as soon as I want it, it fires up within the first couple of pulls and runs like a champ.  Seems like the folks I know who run homelites and other "off brand" saws have to fiddle with them for an hour or two to get them running again.  Of course, all these folks don't take care of their saws, but then, I don't do so good of a job maintaining mine either (sorry Kevin,  I promise to do better).

Bruce
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Offline L. Wakefield

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Re: "Hobby" saw
« Reply #2 on: February 07, 2002, 11:26:37 AM »
   You want em to start, you want em to run, you want em to cut, and you want em to stay in adjustment..I only knew one Homelite to speak to (and the words I said were not kind..) I have not met a McCulloch that was at the time of acquaintance a good working saw- but I have heard tell that in their younger days they ran quite well. I will echo the words that if you spend a bit more for a good *new* saw, the starting will be the thing that really makes you happy. Some people have that genius to be able to tweak almost anything and get it to start. That would not be me.

  How many of you-all can say you either own now or have owned in total a 'whack' of saws? That's gotta be in the double digits, eh? :D :D :D   lw
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Offline Jeff

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Re: "Hobby" saw
« Reply #3 on: February 07, 2002, 05:59:55 PM »
Hey welcome Phil! Good question. I am thinking about getting a hobby saw for my daughter's proposed business venture this spring. We learned to make slab benches from Tom while we were in Florida, and we are planning on making some when winter breaks to see if they will sell up here.

We have an axe and a sledge and a draw knife and 5 misery saws without handles :D I think its time for a small saw.


Phil, dont forget to dig up the old threads "Funny Story" and "Old Folks" from the general board. As a writer, you may find them quite entertaining.
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Offline timberbeast

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Re: "Hobby" saw
« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2002, 06:58:04 PM »
I'd go with the Stihl.  I did have a McCulloch in my "whack of saws",  it was a Pro-Mac 10-10,  it was a decent saw,  but the muffler was in a bad position and would get awfully hot on the "triggerhand".  The Stihls I have,  I can leave them sit for a month,  and they fire right up.  I have an old Lombard you can have free!  Has no bar,  I only got it to pop once,  weighs ten tons,  and I'm not sure if it's all in one piece :D :D
Where the heck is my axe???

Offline Phil

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Re: "Hobby" saw
« Reply #5 on: February 07, 2002, 07:16:58 PM »
Looks like the Stihls have it.  Thanks for the excellent input everyone.  And, Jeff, thanks for telling me about "Funny Stories" and "Old Folks."  I'll go have a look at those threads right now...

Phil

Offline Kevin

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Re: "Hobby" saw
« Reply #6 on: February 07, 2002, 07:43:48 PM »
Phil, Husqvarna is a darn good saw with great anti vib design.
The size of engine depends on the stock you plan to saw and the length of bar you`ll need to saw it with.
I would certainly give consideration to a 3/8" pitch bar and chain.
Dealers are another consideration.
If you take care of a Stihl or Husqvarna it will last you a life time.

Offline Tom

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Re: "Hobby" saw
« Reply #7 on: February 07, 2002, 08:14:43 PM »
If you don't baby them Husky's last and last and last.....too.
My 61 lives on the back of my flatbed truck in the weather and has since 1993.  It cranks in about 3 pulls cold and 1 pull after that.  The only problem I've had is the adjustment screw keeps falling out.

I've had poulans and liked them, McCullochs and didn't like them(even though I ran my business with one for 4 years.)

Most of our farmers use Homelites and are especially proud of a homelite called Big Blue.  The only place I've seen it sold was in northern tool Note:Please read the Forestry Forum's postion on this company's catalogue. 
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Online Don P

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Re: "Hobby" saw
« Reply #8 on: February 07, 2002, 08:43:11 PM »
I like Stihl, have had three, Dad liked his too. I had a Mac once, never again. It was last seen nowhere near running but rolling ...down the hill. Thinking about it the situation was the same as yours. Stihl #1 was used and abused when I got it, The mac was a hundred dollar saw, it crapped out, then I broke down and got another Stihl, good money following bad. Stihl #2 still runs, the tire marks through the handle and the cracked case kinda put a damper on it. I've seen guys swear by Poulan, and swear at them. You only cry once when you buy quality.
A laborer works with his hands
A craftsman uses his brain and his hands
An artist uses his brain, his hands, and his heart

Offline Phil

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Re: "Hobby" saw
« Reply #9 on: February 08, 2002, 06:30:11 AM »
Well said, Don and the rest of y'all.

I've noticed a common thread in this group:  nobody takes good care of their chainsaws!  (Myself included, but until now, it's always been my badge of shame.)

Maybe we should start a 12-step program in this forum.  Hello, my name is Phil, and I don't practice proper maintenance.  

Offline Frank_Pender

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Re: "Hobby" saw
« Reply #10 on: February 08, 2002, 06:39:39 AM »
 I have been running nothing but a Stihl for 33 years.  I would not have it any other way.  I don't any other kind on the farm.  They have to be checked at the gate :D  I have five at this time: 015, 025, 2 044's, 066.  I gave the  028 to my son for his forestry missionary work in Haiti.  I have had several 031's in the old days and a 056, I only changed to upgrade because of use and need or wants. ;)
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Offline woodmills1

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Re: "Hobby" saw
« Reply #11 on: February 08, 2002, 10:41:08 AM »
all stihl all the time 009, 028, 028, 028parts saw, 031 my baby, 045 old heavy with 3" bark eater on the end, fs 96monster tree cuttin weed whacker.  also had 2 other 028 traded in.  I cut firewood so must take pretty good care of them clean filters, clean bar slot, adjust carb, blow off with compressed air.
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Offline craigc90

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Re: "Hobby" saw
« Reply #12 on: February 08, 2002, 09:21:25 PM »
  I am new here but want to add my 2 cents. I have a poulan wild thing 18 inch bar thought it was the best thing. It does cut respectable. Then last year I won a homelte with 18 inch bar nice saw with anti vibration and chainbrake. The homelight does not cut as nice as the Poulan. This year after useing my friends stihl I decided it was time for a real saw.
I only cut firewood and tsi work so I dont need a huge logging
saw. I got a good deal on a MS290 with a 20 inch bar and the .325 chain. I am in heaven. I dont know why I wasted my time on the cheaper saws. I still think they have there place and if I didnt spend so much time in the woods I would still be useing a throw away saw. Its all in what you want to spend and how often you need to work with it.

Offline DanG

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Re: "Hobby" saw
« Reply #13 on: February 08, 2002, 09:39:00 PM »
I'll chunk in another 2 cent worth.
Last year, I picked my nose at an auction, and "won" a lil' ol' Poo-lan twigging saw, for cheap. The thing ran pretty good, but when I tried to cut with it, the bar would waggle up and down. When I tightened the bolt(note the singular), the steel bolt pulled a chunk of beer can material out of the side of the engine, placing the machine into a permanent state of deadness. The *DanG thing wasn't even heavy enough for a boat anchor. >:(
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Offline Tillaway

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Re: "Hobby" saw
« Reply #14 on: February 09, 2002, 10:08:36 AM »
OK my  2 cents worth.

I am also in need of a new saw, fortunately I have had the opprotunity to use most of them.  Also some friends own a saw shop so at one time I have seen most of them torn down.

Jonsered, Husky and Poulan are owned by the same parent company.  Most but not all Jonnnie reds and Huskies are indentical saws with minor cosmetics.  The only difference (as far as I know) between Husky and Jonsered now is the starter cover.

Poulans Pro big saws (over 60 cc's) are generally poioneer clones under that size and I am not aware of any differences between the green ones and Sears Craftsman.

Poulans according to my friends are repairable and usually worth fixing.  They can share some common parts with huskies.  Notably Poulan Pro made a model 480 at one time that used a husky piston and cylinder.

If you decide to go cheap, be sure that the saw you buy has common parts and are easy to get at.  My friends shuttered any time a customer would bring in a Homelite or Mac.  Homelite would change parts suppliers several times during a production run so stocking parts was nearly impossible.    
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Offline Corley5

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Re: "Hobby" saw
« Reply #15 on: February 10, 2002, 05:33:26 PM »
How long has Poulan been owned by Electrolux?  That's new to me 8)  If you want a lower maintainance saw I'd consider a Husky or Jonsered.  With their Turbo or Air Injection systems the air is something like 97% clean when it reaches the filter.  Really cuts down on time spent cleaning air filters.  I clean my Husky 395's filter the same way I cleaned the Jonsered 2094's, spray it out with some ether (starting fluid).  Neither one has ever appeared to really need cleaning when I've done it.  I'd recommend a 51 Husky.  A friend has one that he has cut ALOT of firewood with, never treated real well :( and it performs just like it was new.
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Online Don P

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Re: "Hobby" saw
« Reply #16 on: February 10, 2002, 05:49:44 PM »
Since I've never twisted a thread before I figured on starting :D.
You don't buy a boy a Caddy when he turns 16, the leaning has been to a poulan starter saw then a better one later, watcha think?
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Offline Kevin

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Re: "Hobby" saw
« Reply #17 on: February 10, 2002, 05:55:37 PM »
Don, I say buy the kid a good one then if he doesn`t take care of it punish him with a poo`ln replacement.

Offline psychotic1

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Re: "Hobby" saw
« Reply #18 on: February 10, 2002, 08:08:37 PM »
Had an opportunity to deal with this subject the last couple of days.
Couple years ago I inherited a  "skilsaw 1616" from my ex-landlord.  He'd just gotten himself a new stihl 028 for puttering with, and didn't want to move this one with him.  Well, I dug it out of storage the other day, and went to chop up some limbs we've had sitting around at the rod & gun club, and she won't oil the bar.  I'm pumping and shaking and cursing, and nothing.  Take it down to the shop area (a workbench with a light over it)  and tear it apart.  Had to take the air filter, carb, and manifold of just to get to the oiler pump!  Get it apart, change o-rings, check springs, check filter etc. can't find anything wrong, but won't pump.  Give up, come home, check for parts on web. (only stihl dealer on island, won't touch anything else)  Not only are there no parts, can't even find anybody willing to admit to saw.  Made a couple of calls, get asked why I'm cutting firewood with a circular saw!!.  
Decide to heck with it.  Put saw back together, run till bar wears out, pitch in ocean.  
Cut up tiny little whack of firewood.  Got about three 8-ft pieces of 2" branches to go.  Try to start saw-- pull starter rope out.  Spent another hour fixing it.  I think this saw wants to go swimming in the ocean.  Might just get its wish.

Bruce
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Re: "Hobby" saw
« Reply #19 on: February 10, 2002, 08:14:28 PM »
I know that feeling!

There are two Mac's under an Azalea bush next to the house that had a death wish several years ago and ended up buried in the mulch.  When the leaves rot down and I begin to see yellow I know it's time to put more mulch under the plants.
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