chainsaw recommendation?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    chainsaw recommendation?

    I need to pick up a chainsaw for trail maintenance in the next few weeks, just looking for suggestions or advice.

    thanks

  2. #2

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    Just like bikes

    the more you spend, the better you get. More $$ = lighter, easier to start / use, more status and better resale, more durable. Stihl, Echo, Husqvarna (sp?) are all good brands. Stihl are my personal favorite but lots of $$$ is generally needed. If you go cheap you'll probably regret it. IMHO of course

  3. #3
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    Buy a new stihl or husqvarna.

    Buy the smallest and lightest, that will do your job.

    They come with different blade lengths, each saw has a recommended max blade length, estimate saw length required (max diameter plus oh 2 inchs), buy saw that has a max blade length one size greater than this, in case you screwed up.

    Buy at least three chains, and a 12 volt rotary sharpener. Sharpen and oil blade often.

  4. #4
    Builder of Trails
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    I agree with Huskies, Echos, and Stihls, as well as the advice given.

    Definitely buy the proper length. If you're not going to be cutting huge trees, stick with 14" to 18".

    Clean it after each use, including pulling the bar cover off and cleaning beneath it. Keep an eye on the air filter.

    Also, don't use gasoline mixture older than 30-45 days. Fresh gas is the best.

    Any decent model should have a kickback brake. Some will have a bar tip protector, too.

    Lastly, buy some chain saw chaps and a helmet with ear muffs built in. I also wear shatter proof glasses under the face shield of my helmet.

    Try not to cut stuff about chest/shoulder level without a ladder and proper safety precautions.

    Oh, and RT(F)M.

    D

  5. #5
    Nice no rass
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    How much will it be used?

    I have a cheap 18" Poulan that I bought about 9 years ago. I live on 22 acres, 15 of it wooded so I use it multiple times a year to limb trees, cut stormfall from my atv/mtb trails and for firewood. I got it for $150 new at Lowes or something and to date it's been flawless. Always starts fast, has decent power, never let me down.

    That said, my inlaws own a business where they have half a dozen Stihls, Johnsonreds and Huskys. Theirs are used ALOT in the Summer/Fall months and there is no comparison for quality and power. Extremely nice stuff. If I had disposable income of $500+ to put into a saw, it would be Stihl or Johnsonred hands down. But...my cheapo Poulan has served me very well for maintaining 22 acres and using it 5-6 times a year for hours a day.

    Depends how much trail maintanance you do and how often.

  6. #6
    Ride Responsibly
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    sthil 028

    are you cleared to do trail maintanence with a chainsaw?
    ok. I am probably the ony one this has ever happened to so you shoulld not worry about it, but, on one "quick, easy, excursion" I took only the saw and the bar tool. I often tackle trees half again in diameter longer that my 18" bar and midway thru this one the tree shifted and my bar got bound up. at least I had the bar tool so I could remove the motor, leaving only the bar to be stolen if found by someone so inclined. I came back the next day with the wedge and axe that I should have had with me to begin with, and retrieved the bar and finished the job.
    also stupid of me was going out alone in the first place, but that is what you have to do in most cases to get anything done.
    oh yes, sthil 028/farm boss

  7. #7
    featherweight clydesdale
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    I have a Stihl Farm Boss. It's a larger medium size saw. You should ask your self how far you'll be packing it in. While my saw cuts every thing, I'd probably go a model or two smaller since I fequently hike or BOB with it for over an hour.

    That quick start BS will add a little weight as well. I agree with carrying the bar tool. I also carry a wedge, hand saw, sharpening kit, and extra gas/oil.

  8. #8
    zrm
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    I'm a Sthil guy. I have an 026 and a 036. My saws and been flawless over the years. I use the smaller saw if I have to pack it in any real distance. I use an old Kelty extenal frame that I strap the saw to or else sometimes I'll use a BOB if I need to go more than a few miles.
    Ditto on what everyone said on you get what you pay for, safety, etc

  9. #9
    FM
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    Hey guys, I just fond this thread and was wondering if you had any thoughts on my situation.

    We had a big windstorm this winter, and the trails got hammered with blowdowns. Around the same time, I inherited a little 14" Poulan micro. I dropped $100 on repairs (kind of stupid in retrospect) to get the saw running....

    Anyways: I find that it starts right up now, runs well for :20-30 minutes.... then after that (usually about 3/4 of a tank of gas) it stops and won't start again. After that I usually let it sit a few days, clean the air filter & take a lighter to the spark plug, next time I take it out it does the same thing.

    Chain is in good condition, (I have two) and the gas mix is typically less than 4 weeks old...would it help if I bought premium instead?

    oddly enough, my friends saw has the same problem: starts fine, but won't idle or start once it's hot.

    we are cutting small stuff, 16" or less, usually cedar..... usually lots of time in between cuts as we travel.

    Any thoughts- user error or just a crappy old saw?

    PS, I do love the 14" size, I can ride with it in my camelback, and it seems powerful enough (when it runs) to get the job done....

  10. #10
    Double-metric mtb man
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    I'm a Husky fan myself. On top of the other tips (like bringing bar tool, wedge, axe, sharpener and extra gas / oil) I'd also strongly recommend a chip shield and armor.

    I've known guys whe have gone out to do some work in their own "back 40's" who are alove today because they were smart enough to be in armor (one of the guys has his old armor hanging up in his garage as a reminder...the saw went through everything but his undies and I'd hate to think what it would have done if he hadn't worn the armor.
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

    Moran? Let your opinion be free -> F88me

  11. #11
    gmoney was gmoneybike
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    Quote Originally Posted by FM
    next time I take it out it does the same thing.
    Some inspiration...

    Were looking at balz

  12. #12
    featherweight clydesdale
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    Quote Originally Posted by FM
    Anyways: I find that it starts right up now, runs well for :20-30 minutes.... then after that (usually about 3/4 of a tank of gas) it stops and won't start again. After that I usually let it sit a few days, clean the air filter & take a lighter to the spark plug, next time I take it out it does the same thing....

    oddly enough, my friends saw has the same problem: starts fine, but won't idle or start once it's hot.
    Sounds like a dirty carborator. If you're mechanically inclined enough to sit down and disassemble, clean, and reassemble your rear hub, then you can do the carb. Draw a picture or something as you take it apart. Shouldn't be more than a dozen pieces.

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