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Author Topic: Advice on choosing new chainsaw, my first "real" one not borrowed  (Read 1907 times)

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Offline ALScott

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Advice on choosing new chainsaw, my first "real" one not borrowed
« on: September 16, 2015, 10:39:58 AM »
Props to all of you for making a great forum.  I got a Poulan years ago discontinued at Lowes, offered them $50 and they took it.  It is a nightmare to crank now and as I suspected when I got it, pretty much sucked for anything.  Just got it for clearing limbs that had fallen in my in-laws yard at the time.  I will be using the new saw to fell some small (under 12" dia) dead trees in my yard.  I will be cutting firewood at hunting farm every year and that will vary in size greatly, small to large limbs.  Plenty of trees on the ground to collect from for years.  With our work days this will be an all day kind of deal.  I have experience with chainsaw, grew up cutting tons of firewood with my Dad.  I saw Stihl's promo on MS250 but local dealer has none.  I can get a MS271 Farm Boss for $365 or MS251 for $299 (family deal).  After reading on here found a Husky dealer I have dealt with before, not my favorite, and was looking at the Husky 450 for $369.  My uncle had a Jonsered forever that I would borrow for years and there is a dealer here but I know nothing of them and when I talked to them didn't think they would be great for service if needed.  My original budget was $300 but $60-$70 won't kill me unless it's a waste for my needs.  Also, 18" or 20" bar?  There are Echo dealers that are great here too.

Offline sawguy21

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Re: Advice on choosing new chainsaw, my first "real" one not borrowed
« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2015, 11:19:11 AM »
Welcome aboard. There has been lots of discussion here on this very topic, grab a coffee and scroll through the forum. Have a look at the Echo CS590, bang for the buck it's pretty hard to beat.
old age and treachery will always overcome youth and enthusiasm

Online beenthere

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Re: Advice on choosing new chainsaw, my first "real" one not borrowed
« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2015, 11:42:59 AM »
I'm very happy with my Stihl MS250 with 18" bar.

Know little about any of the others except what I read on this Forum and some frustrations of friends with other brands.

Hard to sort out complaints from people who just don't know how to operate the chainsaw and maintain them. Tendency is to blame the Brand.

Another Welcome to the Forestry Forum.
south central Wisconsin
 It may be that my sole purpose in life is simply to serve as a warning to others

Offline CTYank

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Re: Advice on choosing new chainsaw, my first "real" one not borrowed
« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2015, 01:14:28 PM »
Way before any homeowner stihl, I'd go to VMInnovations (dot) com for a refurbed Husqy from 435 to 455r as you choose. Else a PoulanPro 5020. Much better values IMO. Much more easily serviceable, which hasn't come into play much at all. No dealer involvement has been necessary, at all- good thng with all local saw dealers.

I've beaten on a refurbed 455r and a PP5020 for ~3 yrs each and worked on some homeowner stihls. I'll go with the former. (Bud is now very happy with that 455.)

You could also be delighted with a Dolmar PS-421. Excellent A/V like the 455 & 5020. Powerful little cuss. Selling for $325-350. Much better value than the plastic stihls, also, IMO.
'72 blue Homelite 150
Echo 315, SRM-200DA
Poulan 2400, PP5020, PP4218
RedMax GZ4000, "Mac" 35 cc, Dolmar PS-6100
Husqy 576XP-AT
Tanaka 260 PF Polesaw, TBC-270PFD, ECS-3351B
Mix of mauls
Morso 7110

Offline samandothers

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Re: Advice on choosing new chainsaw, my first "real" one not borrowed
« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2015, 02:35:46 PM »
I have Ms 250 and have liked it.  Also have a small echo for limbing and using around Mill and have had good luck with it.

Offline gfadvm

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Re: Advice on choosing new chainsaw, my first "real" one not borrowed
« Reply #5 on: September 16, 2015, 09:14:16 PM »
I bought a CS400 Echo 6 years ago and still love it! It is super light weight, starts on the second pull EVERY time, and the 18" bar has handled some big/hard trees including dead hedge! It has seen a lot of use and abuse. I would buy another tomorrow if this one died.

Offline dougand3

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Re: Advice on choosing new chainsaw, my first "real" one not borrowed
« Reply #6 on: September 16, 2015, 10:20:21 PM »
So, the many years old Poulan is now hard to start and before that it sucked for anything. Have any ideas on difficult starting? Hard fuel lines from ethanol gas? Cracked fuel lines? Hole in purge bulb? Carb diaphragms are stiff? Dirty carb screen? Muffler screen clogged?
It sucked as a saw - could cutters be dull? Did you try yellow pro chain?
All of the above can happen with a new pro built saw. It'd be good to diagnose the old Poulan and not repeat trouble.
Husky: 372xt, 272xp, 61, 55 (x3)...Poulan: 315, 4218 (x3), 2375, 2150, 2055, 2000 (x3)...Stihl 011AVT...Homelite XL...Saws come in broken, get fixed or parted, find new homes

Offline ALScott

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Re: Advice on choosing new chainsaw, my first "real" one not borrowed
« Reply #7 on: September 17, 2015, 08:37:41 AM »
Hello to a fellow Alabamian dougand3.  I was being tough on the Poulan it did serve well for cutting up small limbs that fell out of trees etc.  And did so for a long time.  It doesn't have a purge bulb on it, wish it did. After about year two it got tough to start to now impossible without a tear down.  I have been borrowing my Dad's Stihl and want to get my own decent saw for firewood.  I have tons of small engine experience as I was the defacto Tanaka mechanic where I worked in high school when the full time mechanic quit.  I have always maintained my own stuff.  I just don't think this little Poulan is worth the effort as it was never great.  It shined for $50 though.  It's a very small saw and only has a "14 bar. 

Offline dougand3

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Re: Advice on choosing new chainsaw, my first "real" one not borrowed
« Reply #8 on: September 17, 2015, 09:00:06 AM »
Greetings, fellow Alabamian. WAR EAGLE! What's the model of the old Poulan? Ones like 1800, 2000, 2300CVA, S25DA, Micro XXV are sturdy metal saws that are worth rehabbing, esp simple things like fuel lines and carb work. I'll even go as far as a new ring in one. Now, a new / NOS piston and/or cylinder might be too pricey.
As far as buying new, you have 2 choices - homeowner clamshell or pro built. If I was gonna spend $350+ on a saw, it'd be pro built.
Husky: 372xt, 272xp, 61, 55 (x3)...Poulan: 315, 4218 (x3), 2375, 2150, 2055, 2000 (x3)...Stihl 011AVT...Homelite XL...Saws come in broken, get fixed or parted, find new homes

Offline grandgourmand

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Re: Advice on choosing new chainsaw, my first "real" one not borrowed
« Reply #9 on: September 17, 2015, 09:03:10 AM »
I'm very happy with my Stihl MS250 with 18" bar.

Know little about any of the others except what I read on this Forum and some frustrations of friends with other brands.

Hard to sort out complaints from people who just don't know how to operate the chainsaw and maintain them. Tendency is to blame the Brand.

Another Welcome to the Forestry Forum.

Having just purchased a new saw (my 2nd) and having gone through reams of comments, reviews and quasi-reviews I think beenthere's comment rings true.

When I was shopping between Stihl and Husky, I'd ask the dealers what the most common repairs were on each model, to see if maybe some of the newer technology or parts were frequent problems.  But no...it was all stuff like putting in the wrong type of fuel, leaving fuel in the tank over winter with no stabilizer, getting the bar stuck in a tree and attempting to rip it out instead of using another saw to cut it out....all operator stuff.  Not that certain brands or models don't have problems, but keep in mind why some people might be complaining.

I'm a total newbie, but I'd just say find the saw that you like (feels good in your hand), fits your budget, fits your needs in terms of power, has a good dealer behind it and, heck, is a good deal at the time you're shopping. 

Offline Engineer

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Re: Advice on choosing new chainsaw, my first "real" one not borrowed
« Reply #10 on: September 17, 2015, 09:53:17 AM »
I am really happy with my Dolmar PS-421.  It's a great saw for the money.  I used to have a Stihl 025 (predecessor to the MS-250) and while it was a decent homeowner saw, was not too durable.  I wound up giving it away as it died as I was trying to sell it.

A lot of folks really like the Echo CS-590.  It's a lot of saw for the price and if you have a local reliable Echo dealer I would definitely look into it.

Offline ALScott

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Re: Advice on choosing new chainsaw, my first "real" one not borrowed
« Reply #11 on: September 17, 2015, 12:19:54 PM »
Greetings, fellow Alabamian. WAR EAGLE! What's the model of the old Poulan? Ones like 1800, 2000, 2300CVA, S25DA, Micro XXV are sturdy metal saws that are worth rehabbing, esp simple things like fuel lines and carb work. I'll even go as far as a new ring in one. Now, a new / NOS piston and/or cylinder might be too pricey.
As far as buying new, you have 2 choices - homeowner clamshell or pro built. If I was gonna spend $350+ on a saw, it'd be pro built.

WAR EAGLE!!!!!  What pro saw is out there for around $350?  I am looking at the CS 590 now.

Offline dougand3

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Re: Advice on choosing new chainsaw, my first "real" one not borrowed
« Reply #12 on: September 17, 2015, 05:32:08 PM »
CS590 is best bang for your buck. It's probably the lowest price you'll find (~$400). Reviews are 90% + pro. The only bad reviews I've seen are by Norwegians who don't like it because it's not a Husky.
Husky: 372xt, 272xp, 61, 55 (x3)...Poulan: 315, 4218 (x3), 2375, 2150, 2055, 2000 (x3)...Stihl 011AVT...Homelite XL...Saws come in broken, get fixed or parted, find new homes

Offline sawguy21

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Re: Advice on choosing new chainsaw, my first "real" one not borrowed
« Reply #13 on: September 17, 2015, 08:30:49 PM »
 :D :D :D
old age and treachery will always overcome youth and enthusiasm


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