Who has a chainsaw they don't use anymore?

Abutler392

alex
User
Hey guys I'm in the market for a chainsaw and I'm hoping someone has one collecting dust. I would like to stick with a well known manufacturer, 20" bar and in decent overall condition. I'm trying to find that sweet spot between cost and quality. If anyone has any suggestions, warnings or personal experiences (relevant to the chainsaw) I'd like to hear them also.
 

TBoomz

Ron
User
as far as recommendations, i"ve used a couple of poulans e.g. woodshark and stihl ms140 & 029 & 028. The 029 is my heaviest. My stihl 029 is set up with an aggressive chain - no kickback protection. The 029 can be PITA to crank up, but once it gets going, it does the job with ease. The 028 was my favorite - till a repairman "lost" it.
Contrary to public opinion, poulans are a good saw and I've gotten over ten years use out of a couple. They can handle a lot of abuse - except being run over by a tractor. I have cut down and [up] some big logs with poulans, but generally prefer them for limbing. It's far easier to find a stihl dealer who can fix their own brand. ACE hardware stores will handle poulans. Unless you are planning on cutting big wood, a 16" bar is adequate for most jobs. Have not used any of the new electric models. I don't wear chaps, tho have been cut a couple of times. I make it a point of wearing ear protection. Have only been wearing eye protection last couple of years; although not every time I use a saw. I've been selling firewood since 1975, from trees taken off my own farm.
Carbide tipped chains aren't worth the cost, unless you are cutting extra dirty logs or dried hickory/locust. A local dealer said it would cost me twice the [cost of a new chain] to sharpen a carbide-tipped chain. Better to just buy a new chain.
When sharpening a chain's teeth, be sure to take down the "rakers" when needed.
 

Abutler392

alex
User
as far as recommendations, i"ve used a couple of poulans e.g. woodshark and stihl ms140 & 029 & 028. The 029 is my heaviest. My stihl 029 is set up with an aggressive chain - no kickback protection. The 029 can be PITA to crank up, but once it gets going, it does the job with ease. The 028 was my favorite - till a repairman "lost" it.
Contrary to public opinion, poulans are a good saw and I've gotten over ten years use out of a couple. They can handle a lot of abuse - except being run over by a tractor. I have cut down and [up] some big logs with poulans, but generally prefer them for limbing. It's far easier to find a stihl dealer who can fix their own brand. ACE hardware stores will handle poulans. Unless you are planning on cutting big wood, a 16" bar is adequate for most jobs. Have not used any of the new electric models. I don't wear chaps, tho have been cut a couple of times. I make it a point of wearing ear protection. Have only been wearing eye protection last couple of years; although not every time I use a saw. I've been selling firewood since 1975, from trees taken off my own farm.
Carbide tipped chains aren't worth the cost, unless you are cutting extra dirty logs or dried hickory/locust. A local dealer said it would cost me twice the [cost of a new chain] to sharpen a carbide-tipped chain. Better to just buy a new chain.
When sharpening a chain's teeth, be sure to take down the "rakers" when needed.
Thanks for the insight! The saw will have to have a 20 inch bar as I'll be handling a lot of large logs hopefully, got an oak about 30 inches across waiting on me now. I've looked at the sthils and they're a little too rich right now, And I looked at the poulan today too, hate to judge a book by its cover but 179 for a saw from harbor freight and a 16 inch bar, I cant do it.
What about Craftsman? The 46cc with a 20 inch bar is at 199. The reviews are mixed but I'm thinking I might pull the trigger on it if nothing better comes up soon.
 

Mike K

Mike
Corporate Member
I have been using Stihl for many years. I went from a ms 251 to a pro series ms 261. The difference is unbelievable. The power to weight ratio makes a huge difference. If you are going to handle big logs, you don't want to be fighting them all day long. Also learn how to sharpen your own chains. The pro series are a bit pricy but you get what you pay for. You can find them used also which keeps the price down a bit.
 

ptt49er

Phillip
Corporate Member
I picked up a Husqvarna 460 Rancher for less than $400 through these guys.


They were fantastic to work with when there was some ID10T errors on my behalf.

It doesn't look like they have any in stock but I'd keep my eyes out for what the list.

Good luck!
PTT49er
 

Jeff

Jeff
Corporate Member
The saw will have to have a 20 inch bar as I'll be handling a lot of large logs hopefully, got an oak about 30 inches across waiting on me now.
I've had at least 2 Husqvarna 455 Ranchers with an 18" bar (14 lbs total)S and I've cut some trees up to a 36" diameter (2 cuts are required) but 18-24" is more typical. It has a cylinder decompression button for easier cold starting (not required for restarting a warm saw).

The chains are Oregon chipping chains which are pretty aggressive and good for cutting larger logs. I keep 3 or 4 on hand so if one starts to get dull I just change to a fresh one. The used chains are taken to the sharpening service when needed (it's not that expensive).
 

Roy G

Roy
Senior User
Have you talked to any stores that sell saws? Sometimes they have a used one in the back. A while back I got a Stihl 076 from Wilson's in Raleigh that somebody had traded in. I used it for almost 20 years before it gave up the ghost.

Roy G
 

Sourwould

Taylor
Senior User
Thanks for the insight! The saw will have to have a 20 inch bar as I'll be handling a lot of large logs hopefully, got an oak about 30 inches across waiting on me now. I've looked at the sthils and they're a little too rich right now, And I looked at the poulan today too, hate to judge a book by its cover but 179 for a saw from harbor freight and a 16 inch bar, I cant do it.
What about Craftsman? The 46cc with a 20 inch bar is at 199. The reviews are mixed but I'm thinking I might pull the trigger on it if nothing better comes up soon.
Honestly, I think you're going to want a lot more than 46 cc to be pulling a 20" bar through 30 inches of oak. I used to sell firewood a few years back. I started with a 026 (~50cc) and moved up to a 62 cc Husky after like a month of standing on the stihl waiting for it to chew its way through logs (I kept my chains very sharp, that was not an issue). I think those 50cc class saws are really for limbing and slashing brush.

Chainsaws are expensive and you really get what you pay for, unlike some things. I feel like most of the big box saws on the market are built and priced so a homeowner can use them once, and put it away for the winter never to start again.

Seems like the only real deals to be had on saws are for the old McCulloughs and Homelites. They seemingly run forever and no one wants to touch them because they are completely devoid of safety features and have empty cans for mufflers.
 

Willemjm

Willem
Corporate Member
LOL, I immigrated here and started off in California ending up in North Carolina. The Southern culture here taught me that to be an American man, you have to own both a pickup truck and a chainsaw.

So, you have no excuses, buy a new Stihl or Husqvarna.
 

TBoomz

Ron
User
and priced so a homeowner can use them once, and put it away for the winter never to start again.
no one wants to touch them because they are completely devoid of safety features and have empty cans for mufflers.
have noticed that you can't buy aggressive chains that'll fit the homeowners' saws - not that one can't do work arounds. "sides only "real" men, use devices devoid of safety features. ;)
 

Sourwould

Taylor
Senior User
have noticed that you can't buy aggressive chains that'll fit the homeowners' saws - not that one can't do work arounds. "sides only "real" men, use devices devoid of safety features. ;)
Yes, the big box stores only carry safety chains. You can get a regular chain at a dealer. I don't think they're worth trying to modify.

The lack of safety features keeps you on your toes! I usually cut in sneakers and shorts and still have the majority of my legs.
 

shanghaipete

Pete
User
I recently purchased a Makita 60cc with a 20" bar, which is actually a Dolmar, and have been very pleased. This machine is a beast. I cut through a 30 inch maple log in no time.
 

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