I'm confused - and I realize this question has been asked dozens of times before.........

sailor61 Posted By sailor61, Dec 26, 2007 at 5:03 PM

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  1. sailor61

    sailor61
    Burning Hunk 2.
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    Nov 28, 2006
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    Loc:
    Warwick, RI
    I'm in the market for a new general purpose saw - had one of the entry level Husqvarnas and was failry happy with it though it always seemed as if the bar (16) was too short. The saw "went for a walk " last year and I now need to replace it.

    Plan on sticking with the Husqy line - and had it narrowed down to the 350 or 455. Friend has the 350 and thinks it's great. Reading a few comments on here reminded me that his opinion of "great" and mine can vary widely on occasion, generally about beer, boats and women but.....

    The 455/Rancher seems to do what I want but for the extra $75.50 from Norwalk it seems as if the 346XP would give me the same power, 20% less weight, 10% less vibration and be a more solid piece of equipment. Does this make sense to you guys? Oh, and this time around an 18 inch bar - 20 seems too big for what I'm doing.

    Also what do you guys think of the newer square style carry/storage cases? Seems as if there is more space in them.

    Thanks for taking the time to read and reply.
     
  2. jklingel

    jklingel
    Feeling the Heat 2.
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    Oct 23, 2007
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    Loc:
    Fairbanks
    I am no expert, but the local Husky (and several other brands) dealer will not stock the 455. Many other Huskies, yes, and they advocate them. I had the choice of one of the pro-ish Huskies (not in stock) or a 488 Shindaiwa (pro, in stock) for the same money, so I bought the Shin (has not been changed for 13 yrs. That says a lot to me.) The 488 (I hope that is the right model) is a wood-eating hummer, as I am sure the better Huskies are. All I can say is "Buy a quality saw. For an extra $100, which you will still have in your bank account when you die, you will never regret it, and will love how it works and works." You'll be using a good chain saw for 20-25 yrs. My friend has had a Stihl for 25 yrs, and he heats almost exclusively w/ wood; all he ever does is sharpen the chain, etc. Same engine, carb, etc. In the long run, expensive is cheap. Good luck w/ your call, and I really feel that all the hoopla about whether or not a 345 out-saws a 344 B is just that. Hoopla. Buy quality, saw wood. Brand, schmand.
     
  3. cmonSTART

    cmonSTART
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    Nov 29, 2007
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    My order of preference for those saws:

    346XP
    455
    350

    Go with the XP if you can. It's built better.
     
  4. TMonter

    TMonter
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    Feb 8, 2007
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    Absolutely get the 346XP, it's a better, lighter saw that also has the added benefit of a higher top rpm and thus chain speed. That will be $75.00 well spent.

    I owned a 455 Rancher for a while and trust me it is an okay saw but it's a much lower performance/quality saw than the 346XP.
     
  5. Sandor

    Sandor
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    Dec 9, 2005
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    I bought a Stihl 025 consumer saw instead of the 026 Pro Saw about 8 years ago to save a hundred bucks. I didn't regret the decision until I used a friends 026 Pro Saw. The 025, now called the MS-250, is about the same as a Husky 350. The 026, now called the MS-260, is about the same as the 346XP.

    I have no complaints about the 025 I have, but:

    You can read the specs between consumer saws and Pro Saws and try to make up your mind, but they can't be compared that way.

    The Pro Saw's feel different when using them. The horsepower figures may appear close on paper, but they run different.

    Buy the 346XP and don't look back. In a couple of years, you will not know what you did with the 100 bucks you saved, but you will be still using the saw.
     
  6. sailor61

    sailor61
    Burning Hunk 2.
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    Nov 28, 2006
    123
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    Loc:
    Warwick, RI
    Guys -

    Thanks for the feedback - ordered the 346XP from Norwalk a few minutes ago.

    Also went ahead with the new style case and safety equip package. Figured the saw chaps were not an item I ever want to be saying "should have had..." about.

    Happy New Year.

    Tom
     
  7. cmonSTART

    cmonSTART
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    Nov 29, 2007
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    Ya, I don't know what happened there. The old 55 Ranchers were decent saws, but these newer 455's seem a bit cheap and wimpy.
     
  8. carpniels

    carpniels
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    Dec 6, 2005
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    HI Sailor,

    You will be very happy. I upgraded from a Husky 359 to a 346xp and I can say I have never been happier. Same reasons you quoted.

    Good luck and keep it close. Dont let it walk away again!!!

    Carpniels
     
  9. caretaker

    caretaker
    New Member 2.
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    Dec 25, 2007
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    Portland Maine
    I got a husky 51, don't know if they make them any more, had it for about 15 years and never had a problem with it, and used it at work for years to clear lots, starts like it new all the time
     
  10. bjorn773

    bjorn773
    Member 2.
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    Sep 12, 2007
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    Loc:
    Rockford, Illinois

    Not sure if I did that quote right. Anyway, I'm confused by "upgrading" from a 359 to a 346xp. You went to a lower cc and lower hp saw. How is that an upgrade? The only difference I can see is an extra 1000 rpm at the top end and a little lighter. Please let me know what I'm missing.
     
  11. sailor61

    sailor61
    Burning Hunk 2.
    NULL
    

    Nov 28, 2006
    123
    40
    Loc:
    Warwick, RI
    The new Husqy 346 arrived last Friday - must have gotten the order into Norwalk just before the policy change. It's GREAT - relativelt light, great pick up and power, low vibe. Should last me for many years.

    Also got a pair of safety chaps, feel a bit silly in them (stupidly got the orange ones) but fairly comfortable.

    Thanks everybody for the advice.

    Tom
     
  12. Lignums

    Lignums
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    Oct 14, 2007
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    Loc:
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    Does the 346xp have a Magnesium Crankcase, or Plastic? A guy at work is looking to get a good saw, and I haven't read any bad reviews yet on this saw. I know it is new, but a any bugs or complaints should have shown up by now.
     
  13. sailor61

    sailor61
    Burning Hunk 2.
    NULL
    

    Nov 28, 2006
    123
    40
    Loc:
    Warwick, RI
    Yes it has a magnesium crankcase. Had Norwalk ship mine with an 18 bar. Have to say that I'm in love with this saw.

    Starts easily, great pick up, balanced, low vibe, and feels good in my hands. Can't reccomend it highly enough for a good all around saw.

    Neighbor has been into Huqy 350's - mainly 'cause he can buy them at Lowe's - let him play with my 346XP abit and now he's beginning to see why I always say that the big box storess are not necessarily where you should be buying certain types of tools............
     
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