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I need a good chainsaw

Post in 'The Gear' started by Benchwrench, Oct 20, 2012.

  1. bcfarms

    bcfarms New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2012
    Messages:
    13
    Loc:
    Chaplin, CT
    I've got a husky 346xp as a limbing saw but for an all around saw I'm hooked on the Makita/ Dolmar DCS6401. I've got two

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  2. DexterDay

    DexterDay Guest

    Yeah. I do know ;)

    Let me call the gentleman tomorrow on the Pro.

    If he hasn't sold it, I will PM you.
  3. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    Absolutely no reason to abandon your 036 (Pro?) for a MS360. MS361, maybe, but I wouldn't, especially as clean as your 036 is.
    StihlHead likes this.
  4. StihlHead

    StihlHead Guest

    I was gonna post the same. The 036 is a 360... same saw. Pro model has a decomp button. Not worth swapping out IMO.
  5. StihlHead

    StihlHead Guest

    Something is definately wrong with your 390 if a 290 ran with it. With a light mod my 310 runs just behind my stock 361s. My 026/260s are all modified, and they do not keep pace with my 310, which has the power of a stock 390. ????
  6. DexterDay

    DexterDay Guest

    I know there the same. Its tamato - tomato. ;)

    Wont hurt to look..... It may be cleaner than my 036 (be hard pressed to find one cleaner) and the 360 is slightly newer and its a Pro. Which makes it, no different really.

    Its gonna have to truly check out, to even be considered. But.... Ah hell, I have a problem :) Still calling.
    MasterMech likes this.
  7. StihlHead

    StihlHead Guest

    Ah well, we are rooting for you then. Come out and say it... you want TWO 036/360 saws! You know you want it.

    I have more 026s and 361s than I need. But who cares about need when we can collect.
    amateur cutter, DexterDay and Thistle like this.
  8. wdenton

    wdenton Member

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2011
    Messages:
    35
    Loc:
    MI
    I upgraded for ma homelite 16 inch bar to a Stihl MS260 2 years ago and I have never looked back.
    My one bit of advise is get a 20 inch bar. Man has that saved on reaching up and limbing down trees
    TreePointer likes this.
  9. tlc1976

    tlc1976 New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2012
    Messages:
    68
    Loc:
    Michigan
    I have one of those same Craftsman saws that was given to me, 18" bar. I cut about 6 cord a year average. It has been a surprisingly very good saw. I leave the top cover off so I can run it hard and it doesn't get too hot. It has a full large air filter so no worries. I learned to keep the carb clean and adjusted so it runs strong. There is no massaging this one. I got rid of that sissy chain and put a real chain on it which made a huge difference. I hand sharpen it, keep it out of the dirt when I can, and I hate to say it but it actually cuts faster and stronger than my dad's small Stihl, also kept up well with another guy with a small Stihl. Yes I am in Stihl country too. Been cutting 7 years and no problems with kickback, I think it is more in paying attention to what you are doing. On a cold engine I either shoot it with starting fluid for instant start, or just pull 5 or 6 times and it starts. Warm engine starts right up and it runs till the tank is basically dry. Actually my only gripe is the gas cap, for some reason the threads have tightened up to where it takes channellocks to turn it. And the bar adjusting screw, not really a gripe but it broke through the plastic years ago so I added a washer to keep it on the outside and it works just fine. Just a few days ago I cut up a cord of ironwood with it.

    I'm sure a Stihl or most anything else is built a lot better and made for serious use, but for as little as you use the thing, what you got is probably fine. Just might need a little work. It's up to you.

    I am also not totally sure about it being a rebadged Poulan. My first year cutting I got 3 Poulan 18" saws for $50 total. It didn't take long to burn the compression out of them. Yes a lot of the parts are interchangeable but the engine and everything seems to be better and stronger in the Craftsman. Even the body plastic is better. If anything the air filter is different and a lot better.
  10. amateur cutter

    amateur cutter Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2010
    Messages:
    1,170
    Loc:
    West Michigan
    RE: gas cap. Buy a spare, & trade them out every couple months, the ethanol swells them up, & if you let them cure out, they'll fit again. A C
    tlc1976 likes this.
  11. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    I think we just figured out how you burnt up those Poulans so quick. ;)
    Thistle likes this.
  12. StihlHead

    StihlHead Guest

    Hmmm..... starting fluid in a 2-stroke.... <> ... along with running the gas tank dry... where is the smilie with the hammer hitting itself in the head?

    Poulan is owned by Husqvarna these days. Husky makes a lot of low-end saws that are re-branded out there.

    By the way, using starting fluid in a 2-stroke engine is not good, as it has no lubricating properties and it will likely cause engine scoring or seizure. Running a 2-stroke engine gas tank dry will cause it to run lean at the end of the tank... not good, as running 2-strokes lean can cause overheating and engine scoring.
    ditchrider likes this.
  13. tlc1976

    tlc1976 New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2012
    Messages:
    68
    Loc:
    Michigan
    Thanks, never would have known some of that. Thankfully the Craftsman has been keeping up that way for many years but I know some things better now. I do know about the dangers of running it lean, I keep the carb adjusted to avoid that.
  14. fabsroman

    fabsroman Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2011
    Messages:
    958
    Loc:
    West Friendship, Maryland
    Yep. I have a MS261 with an 18" bar and really like the saw. Cut up about 10 cords of wood with it so far after buying it about 14 months ago. I cut some wood with a guy that had a Farm Boss and the saw cut about the same, but the Farm Boss just felt a decent amount heavier. Now, for the really big stuff, I also have a MS660 with a 25" bar. I like that saw on the big stuff because it does the job so quick, but I would not want to use it all day long Also thinking about going with a 36" bar for it, but will hold off a little bit on that decision. My MS261 runs circles around my dad's 16" Craftsman, even with the full chisel chain on the Craftsman that I got him last year. In fact, we were at the local dealer the other day looking for some hardware and he started looking at saws. My response was the same as his when he saw me looking at a splitter "What do you need that for? You can use mine whenever you want." However, he was probably thinking the same thing as me "I don't want to have to drive to your place to have to borrow it."

    In short, take a look at the MS261.
  15. Kevin*

    Kevin* Burning Hunk

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2011
    Messages:
    117
    Loc:
    Monroe, WA
    x2
    i've got a ms180, ms250 and ms310. i use the 250 the most.
  16. WoodPorn

    WoodPorn Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2009
    Messages:
    1,494
    Loc:
    South of the beloved Patriots
    I run a Husky 365 Special, It is slightly larger than the 353 and way more saw than I need to fell/buck the 5-6 cord p/yr I process. I run a 24" bar as I am a tall guy.
    The saw is perfect for my needs, I got it for $400 on ebay.
  17. WoodPorn

    WoodPorn Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2009
    Messages:
    1,494
    Loc:
    South of the beloved Patriots
    I've found Husky ranchers to be much lower quality (box store) than the pro/ -semi pro saws...
  18. jonwright

    jonwright Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2011
    Messages:
    137
    Loc:
    Little Rock, AR
    Stihl MS250c. Been a good all around saw with 18" bar. Seems good power for the weight for a non-saw-as-a-profession-or-hobby kind of guy. I've felled maybe 15+ trees and limbed and such. I like the choke mechanism for starting and I DO like the easy adjuster without using the scrench (but I do have to tweak it a bit more than the nut setup - granted). The easy start wasn't a big selling feature, but it's kinda nice when you get used to it.

    If I made my living sawing wood I'm sure I'd have many more saws for particular tasks. But for just having one saw it's been freakin' great. I've cut up 40"+ tree tunks repeatedly and I've been happy with it. I CAN bog it down with pressure, but it's still rather fast with a sharp chain.

    It would be nice to have a full handle on it so you could fell with EITHER side of the saw. But not enough to buy a new one.

    I buy Stihl like supporting a local dealer and being able to take it to him with questions and have someone actually know a bit more than I do about the equipment.

    Not going to find that in a box store.
  19. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    Full wrap handle on a MS250C...... ;lol love it.
  20. Benchwrench

    Benchwrench Member

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2011
    Messages:
    196
    Loc:
    State of Confusion
    Eureka!

    I just wanted to share what I found and let you guys know what happened in my quest for a chainsaw.

    My neighbor GAVE ME a MS 260 Pro!
    [​IMG]That's right- GAVE as in "here you go"
    Cosmetically, It looks very good, has a 20" bar and 4 random chains that I haven't figured out yet what the difference is, however the top end is crispy (as in fried). It needs a new piston and cyl head (as far as I could tell)
    I took the exhaust off and can see mondo excess carbon and some piston scoring, the rings are all gummed and stuck to the piston. I also noticed it was set for "winter" having the shutter still in place (at the air filter box).
    I could tell it got extremely HOT and burned up most likely due to the shutter in winter mode, stale/low octane gas, improper mixture or no lube or a combination of these and terrible operator skills.

    The story is that his son burned it up and he just bought another MS261 to replace it and it was just lying around in the need to cannibalize it for parts. Luckily all the parts are still on it. He even gave me the owners manual! [​IMG] (that's me doing a jig)

    NOW all I need to find out is where to buy the right brand (not China) for a new top end. Then learn the simple tricks of disassembly to do a rebuild.
    I'll know more once I check the crank bearings for run out and remove the head.
  21. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    You need to talk to DexterDay, He just rebuilt his MS260.

    Damn that's one helluva neighbor. Any houses for sale in your neighborhood? ==c
  22. Benchwrench

    Benchwrench Member

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2011
    Messages:
    196
    Loc:
    State of Confusion
    [​IMG]
    StihlHead likes this.
  23. DexterDay

    DexterDay Guest

    Just did my MS260. Meteor makes a good kit. Or you could just go OEM. Either way is fine. IMO.

    You will need to check the serial number . To see if you need a 44 mm or 44.7 mm piston and ring. A whole kit (cylinder, piston, rings, wrist pin, circlips, etc) isn't to bad, price wise..

    Getting the saw for free, I would definitely put some good parts in it. And if it shows signs of being hot, I would replace the seals also. No need to put good money into the saw, only to have an air leak and fry it again (may be why it happened to begin with?).

    Cheers.
    Benchwrench and amateur cutter like this.
  24. jonwright

    jonwright Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2011
    Messages:
    137
    Loc:
    Little Rock, AR
    Actually, by "it" I meant as a feature consideration on a saw.
  25. WoodPorn

    WoodPorn Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2009
    Messages:
    1,494
    Loc:
    South of the beloved Patriots
    What have you done to mod these? Exhaust?

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