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Saw questions

Discussion in 'Chainsaws' started by JayTx, Jun 12, 2018.

  1. JayTx

    JayTx Well-Known OPE Member

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    Hey guys first post here. I'm in need of a saw and have been reading for a while on and off weighing my options. I had a Stihl 010 that was going to be rebuilt since it was my grandfathers but tropical storm Harvey took that unfortunately and I've finally gotten to the point I need another saw.
    What I've been reading about the new Husky and Stihl saws are some of the saws are or were having bearing issues a couple of years back. It sounded like Husky was having more issues than Stihl but were working on a fix? The Stihl ms261 was having some issues with the sprocket bearing tearing up the crankshaft but heard there's a V3 out now did they modify the areas that were the problem or was is just a electronics update for the m-tronics? There's also a thread talking in more detail about the bearing issues and one point that was made is that there were only a few saws coming thru some shops that had the issues. Then again it sounds like it was enough of a issue for Husky and Stihl to say there was an issue and try to address it.
    The main saws I have been looking at are the ms362 and ms 261. I'm not sold on the M-tronic as long as you can still adjust the old school carbed versions and don't need a shop to adjust them. In all honesty the ms 261 should be plenty of saw for what I need which is mainly firewood just a couple of cords a year and keeping everything on my property cleaned up. I do have some pine trees 20"+ in diameter that need to come down and a beech tree that is at least 30"diameter. Also living along the gulf coast this saw will be used for hurricane clean up so no telling what I could get into.
    One of the main things I'm looking for in a saw is longevity as long as it's well taken care of. It seems these new saws may be more proned to issues and maybe just rebuilding an older saw might be another route to look at. That's why I'm here you guys seem to have a lot of knowledge on this board and I appreciate any answers you could throw my way.
     
  2. Czed

    Czed Jon1212 Approved!

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    Welcome to the site
    Not a autotronic fan myself but a lot of these guy's like them.
    I have a first edition 261 that has been excellent with a real carby only stihl i own mostly husky for me.
    The 362 are proven saw's i don't own one
    Can't comment.
    There's a little company called echo that has the 490 590 and 620 with real carbs
    I like them.
    If your looking for a one saw plan a 70cc
    Is what i like but a 60cc will fit the bill.
     
  3. Dub11

    Dub11 Some body poisoned the watering hole!

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    I'd be looking at them Echos too. A lot of saw for the money.
     
  4. Bigmac

    Bigmac Pinnacle OPE Member

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    Welcome to the site! I like older pro saws, if you like Stihls then an older 026-ms260 or 036-ms360, I really like the ms361!! Just be look for clean and good running saws! It always a good idea to pull the muffler and take a look at the piston! Also if you fine a nice used saw make a test cut with it before you buy!! Good luck!! Also check the for sale section on here, most saw for sale on here are from good people that know saws!!
     
  5. Wilhelm

    Wilhelm Pinnacle OPE Member

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    Dolmar/Makita 6100 , not too big, not too small, good power at just under 4.5hp.

    Just a thought.
     
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  6. Bigmac

    Bigmac Pinnacle OPE Member

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    If you have a lot of wood over 25” I would recommend a 70cc saw

    What dealers do you have close by? That makes a difference as well!!
     
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  7. jacob j.

    jacob j. Jon1212 Approved!

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    I think you've already made a fine choice. Most of the guys here are going to tell you to go with a bigger saw. Unless you plan on getting into saw milling or professional work, a 261 will do the job in up to 30" wood.
     
  8. JayTx

    JayTx Well-Known OPE Member

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    I only have a handful pines over 25" and that beech tree. My firewood can get to around 20" anything larger than that and I have trouble getting it home.
    There's 2 Husky dealers and 4 Stihl dealers that work on saws locally.
     
  9. Stump Shot

    Stump Shot Old *pretty boy dipstick of Quality

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    Welcome to OPE. As per your question, you will get a lot of differing opinions, mine would be a 562XP from Husqvarna, the firewood guys around me that turned on to them love them for their power. Even at 10-12 cord a year will last them forever. Also the little brother to it the 555 is a great saw for the money. If dead set on a Stihl, I would go with the smaller 261, the 362 just lacks in the power department. No matter what you get a good sharp chain will help keep your saw running healthy for a long time. Most die from being forced to try and cut with a dull chain. Also if you hang around here long enough it won't matter as you will end up having lots of saws of all different makes and sizes.
     
  10. treesmith

    treesmith Tree Hugger/Cutterer

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    There's a NIB 361 in the ad section, a saw recommended by the great Sawtroll and he hates stihls

    Otherwise a 261c is a great saw
     
  11. MustangMike

    MustangMike ONE OF THE GREATEST!

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    I have both a 261 and 362 and like em both. Never felt the 362 lacked power.

    The new Version IIs of both of these saws are 1/2 lb or more lighter than the previous versions making them excellent choices in the power to weight department, and I believe both saws are available either with or w/o M-Tronic (both my saws have M-Tronic).

    If you want lighter weight, go with the 261, more power the 362. With proper care, either one will give you many, many years of service.
     
  12. AlfA01

    AlfA01 All Thriller, No Filler

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    Welcome. I see you've already gotten some pretty good suggestions and feedback from the guys here. I would also recommend most of the saws that have already been suggested. For the wood you've described, and for your style of usage, I'd be concerned with three to four main factors: price or value, power to weight and dealer service.

    I say price or value, as the price doesn't matter if you can't get any value out of the saw. $1k saw that sits on the shelf isn't worth much to the owner, and a much more economical saw may fit the bill. This is where the Echos really shine--great saw at a great price.

    Power-to-weight ratio is a major factor for me. I try to buy a saw that has a high power output compared to it's weight. If I'm going to carry around a heavy saw, it should be worth it in performance, or otherwise you are breaking your back and not getting as much wood cut as you should. Fatigue can be a big factor in whether you are satisfied with your saw or not.

    I say dealer service, as it can be extremely annoying when something breaks and you have warranty, but no where to take your saw. I'm pro DIY saw maintenance, but not on warranty saws. You're paying for that warranty as a part of your price and you should be able to use it.

    Next is cutting style and wood you'll be cutting. After you've narrowed down those first three factors, you can narrow your decision on a saw that can handle the jobs you have for it to do. And a saw that can carry a bar length that you want to use.

    Saws I'd recommend for what you've described: 50cc (up to 18" bar) MS261, Echo CS490, Dolmar 5105 and Husky 346XP. All are pro-level saws or have pro features.
    60cc (562XP, Dolmar 6100 and Echo CS590) Same on the pro features.
    70+cc (MS461, 372XP and Dolmar 7900/7910) Ditto on the pro features. In the 70cc class, the best power-to-weight is hands down in favor of the Dolmar--70cc weight with 80cc power.

    If you want one saw to do all your jobs, I think I'm with @Stump Shot, the 562XP is hard to beat. It can pull a pretty good size bar for 60cc's and it flat out cuts. The bar mount is common, so you can easily find larger and smaller bars when you need them. Also, you have a dealer for warranty service and parts.
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2018
  13. Stump Shot

    Stump Shot Old *pretty boy dipstick of Quality

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    Best to find just one good one out of the bunch. One that actually works on the stuff they sell and not just sell you another if/when a problem does occur. Which brand doesn't matter so much.
    Also the MS361 mentioned really is a great saw and will cut circles around a MS362.
     
  14. longleaf

    longleaf Super OPE Member

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    If we are talking new saws in stock form. This has been my experience. 50cc I like both the 550 and 261. I also have a 545 and really like it. I’m not going to bash the echo 490/500 series but there is a lot I don’t like about them. My brother bought one new and traded it back in on a 550 the first week. In the 60cc the echo 620 has a great price point. It has a lot of torque. Nice saw. The 562 is a little lighter and handles great to me. It’s quick in the fire wood sized rounds. I have not run a 362. Don’t know any one who could afford one lol. Although I don’t use them for a livin like some of the guys here I’ve had no issues with auto tune.
     
  15. JayTx

    JayTx Well-Known OPE Member

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    Thanks for all of the input guys. This gave me a few more saws to look at.
    Visiting with the local dealers is on my to do list.

    What about the bearing issues some of these saws have had? Anyone know if Stihl or Husky has updated the bearings/design to eliminate this problem?
     
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  16. Czed

    Czed Jon1212 Approved!

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    Read some oil threads for info.
    I think most saw's fail
    Because of lack of oil on the bearings.
    The one's i've worked on seemed to be the most common issue.
    Oil threads are the lifeblood of any saw forum
     
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  17. huskyboy

    huskyboy Sorta a Husqvarna guy.

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    Get a new echo 590 for 400$ and learn chain/bar/saw maintenance before you run a larger more powerful saw. Lots of videos on youtube, I recommend watching buckin billy ray on chain filing. The 590 isn’t the best 60cc ever made in history, but it is a simple, tough and good value for what it is. It has a pro mag case and decent enough air filter setup. Enough torque to pull a 20” bar good, which imo is the ideal firewood size bar for hardwoods.
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2018
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  18. huskyboy

    huskyboy Sorta a Husqvarna guy.

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    The catch with 590 is you need to richen the h jet about 1/8 - 1/4 turn as they are set kind of on the edge. At least mine was. Drywall screw into red carb limiter, line up with tab, pull it out richen jet then put back the limiter. That saw will last a lot longer tuned properly. The 590 is fairly easy to work on.
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2018
  19. MustangMike

    MustangMike ONE OF THE GREATEST!

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    IMO, the bashing of the Stihl MS 362 is completely unwarranted. I was told 1,000 times my 362 would not stand up to the Husky counterpart (both with just muff mods), but at a chainsaw get together, my 362 did just fine, and the new Ver II (same power) is more than 1/2 lb lighter than a 562. That said, I think they are both very good saws worthy of consideration.

    The Dolmar's are very light for a 79 cc saw, but IMO, unless you have real large wood, the 70 cc saws make more sense, and I think the Stihl 044/440 (used) or Husky 372 (new or used) are a good deal lighter and make a lot more sense for your situation. The 6100 is a VG saw, great power with a bit of extra weight.

    Echo saws are the value leader, very rugged, just usually not as light as their Stihl or Husky pro counterparts, so that is your call.

    Truth be told, while most of us have our biases, there is no one saw or brand that will be the only saw that will put a smile on your face, and your concerns over reliability on any of them are likely over blown. Many pros will use any/all of these saws for years in harsh conditions w/o any problems.

    Buy something that feels good in your hands, and will meet your needs, and you will be happy.
     
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  20. Dustin4185

    Dustin4185 Pinnacle OPE Member

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    First, Welcome to OPE.

    I am a Stihl head and only own one Husky and one Echo. Out of the current Stihl Pro lineup, I own or have access to all current models except the 880. The 261 is my most grabbed saw for storm cleanup, but I also throw the 461 in the truck as well.

    If I was going to buy one new, current model Stihl, it would be a 362 MTronic. It will cut bigger stuff if needed but is light enough to brush trees quickly.
     
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