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Pics of my new MS-261 Pro

Post in 'The Gear' started by SmokeyCity, Nov 28, 2012.

  1. SmokeyCity

    SmokeyCity Feeling the Heat

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    edit: Can't believe I wrote 291 instead of 261 in title..oh well)

    Just came back from my Stihl Dealer with the new 261 . Dealer set me up with an 18" bar with full chiz .325. He assured me this 261 will pull an 18" chain just fine. He also said that it will take a 20" but he does not recommend. I am happy with an 18" - it's plenty for my application. Also recommended I use only Stihl's synthetic oil and use ethanol free gas if I can get it. Ethanol will not void warranty but real gas is better for the saw in the long run. Grabbed some Stihl oil and even a few cans of premix to tide me over until I can make the trip to my ethanol free gas station up north to stock up on the good gas for the winter. Got extra chain at half off and a protective carry case. Kicked myself on the way home when I realized I forgot the most important thing - A STIHL HAT!. Oh well, I'll ask for a free one when I come back for my Stihl trim saw.

    I'm now reading up on the break in process. I will not push the saw hard until I know it is broken in. As soon as I tackle the big logs I'll post some battle pictures.

    P.S. The first dealer I went to tried to steer me to a 362 because (he didn't have a 261 in stock and) he said the 362 will pull a 20" chain all day buried into big hardwood logs. I insisted on the MS 261 so he sent me to his Irwin store (he owns both so he still made the money) for the 261.

    Of course now I'm wondering whether the 362 is every bit as good as the 261 but with more power ?
    At least I now have a question to waste hours of research and speculation on :confused:

    The guy at the Irwin store took a fair amount of time with me to show me where the adjustment screws are, fire it up for me and show me how to start it and use the choke & decomp . He very answer my questions and volunteered some useful info. The first dealer (who sent he to Irwin) is primarily a repair/rental shop and gave the impression of being a bit more hurried and too busy for small talk. Both stores however a have good reputation for their warranty and repair support.

    I did OK today.



    MS-261-Reciept.jpg

    MS-261-PRO.jpg
    quads, MasterMech and PA Fire Bug like this.

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  2. HittinSteel

    HittinSteel Minister of Fire

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    Great saw for running an 18" bar.

    Run it normally and do not baby the saw. It needs run at full throttle in the cut to seat the rings properly, just don't wind it full throttle out of the cut for an extended period of time.
  3. schlot

    schlot Minister of Fire

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    Sweeeet!
  4. Researcher1

    Researcher1 Member

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    Just don't run the saw at full throttle out of the cut for a while and it will be fine. Put the hammer down when in wood. The captive bar nuts and air filtration are awesome with this saw. Congrats on the new saw from a pittsburgh boy.
  5. lukem

    lukem Minister of Fire

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    Good saw. I've run a 260 (FIL's) and a 361 (mine) on the same day...in the same trees even. The 260 is no slouch and you won't really notice a lot of difference when cutting stuff up to about 12"...go much above that and the 361 is going to pull away.

    Run it like you'd run it if it were 5 years old, EXCEPT when it is not cutting. Don't give it WOT out of the cut until you have several tanks of gas through it.

    Great saw. Now you just need a 460 and you'll be all set.;)
  6. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    Nice saw Smokey !

    Its not in your sig must not be true ;)

    Pete
    ironworker likes this.
  7. bogydave

    bogydave Minister of Fire

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    Very nice.

    I see you already thinking about bigger & more power LOL :) It's a Guy, tool thing.
    I think you'll be impressed when you start cutting.
    Have fun :)

    Out of curiosity; the chain 26 rsc 74.
    Is that a standard for a mid range saw? .325 X .063
    Did they offer it with a 3/8 X .050 chain?
  8. SmokeyCity

    SmokeyCity Feeling the Heat

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    OK this is the second reply that mentions that you should not baby it while it's in the cut. My buddy who was helping me today told me that I should only use the minimal amt of throttle in the cut needed to get through it. Just let the weight of the saw do the cutting (no pushing) and never give more than minimal needed throttle for whatever it's biting into.

    I was actually doing what you both were saying until he stopped me. I was getting a good bite into the log then WOT but keeping it into the log and not letting it spin free -but always keeping a good load on the engine while in WOT.

    My buddy was very impressed with how it ate through some big rounds. It is light and has good balance. The .325 full chiz helped a lot.

    So I will inform my friend that we do not have to baby it but simply must avoid WOT in the air which will generate higher RPMs before it's broken in.

    Did I get this right ?

  9. HittinSteel

    HittinSteel Minister of Fire

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    Yes, you are right and your buddy is wrong.
    TreePointer likes this.
  10. Researcher1

    Researcher1 Member

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    Run it full throttle when cutting and enjoy what the saw has to offer. As long as I am not cutting something too big this is my go to saw. Even with the bar buried it still pulls through strong. I was cutting some cherry the other day and ran into about 8 feet of trunk that I had to cut from both sides to get through it and I only brought the 261 because I didn't know that big piece was there. No problems.
  11. MofoG23

    MofoG23 Feeling the Heat

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    Another "congrats" from the 'burgh! :cool:
  12. WellSeasoned

    WellSeasoned Guest

    Nice sawl! Your gonna have fun with that thing!
  13. xman23

    xman23 Minister of Fire

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    You will like the full case. I keeps the dripping chain oil and smell in the box not on the floor. I love the decomp button, sure you will to. I can't comment on the break in. But I always have a spare new chain, plug and air filter.
  14. TreePointer

    TreePointer Minister of Fire

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    Another reason for cutting at WOT (wide open throttle aka "full throttle") is that you are actually increasing the probability for KICKBACK when you cut at less than WOT.

    The general rule for many of today's small engines when you run at less than full throttle is that you unnecessarily add stress to the engine, and you deprive the engine the level of cooling that the engineers designed it to have.
  15. SmokeyCity

    SmokeyCity Feeling the Heat

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    Dave: I just told him I want .325 full chiz. I know they offer a 3/8 but not sure if they offer the 3/8 in .-050

    Is the .325 full chiz the way to go for my application ?

    Or are you suggesting the 3/8 .050 would be better for my work / this saw?

  16. SmokeyCity

    SmokeyCity Feeling the Heat

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    That's what I forgot -spare plug and filter!

    another excuse to go back to the Stihl store :)


  17. bogydave

    bogydave Minister of Fire

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    3/8 X .050 just the most common size & get many types, just about any where.

    Nothing at all wrong with your chain size. It will work just fine (as you've found out ) ;)
    Be nice if it matches the Husq-55, never any mix up then.
  18. SmokeyCity

    SmokeyCity Feeling the Heat

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    Yeah that filter works great. My buddy and I were taking turns and he set it down in a big pile of sawdust idling. I thought it might clog it up but did not hinder airflow at all. I really like the oiler too. Had the dealer show me the screw and set it at MAX. Will just leave it there. You can't have to much oil on the chain.

    After killing myself with crummy Craftsmans and old Huskies I really appreciate a true pro saw.

  19. bogydave

    bogydave Minister of Fire

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    Yea, you'll like the upgrade in quality.
    Setting the oiler to " max", just make sure you don't run out of oil before you run out of gas. ;)
  20. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    Run that thing like you stole it. ::-) You will not hurt it, unless you hold it at WOT, no load, for several minutes on end. I have an address you can ship that thing to in order to guarantee "proper" break-in. No guarantee when/if it gets shipped back however. ==c<>

    Yup, but with the lighter MS261 in the stable, I'd set my sights on a MS441 for the next hit on the CAD bong.
    You have the right chain on that machine. Some like to run 3/8 .050 on everything so that bars/chains will interchange amongst their fleet but you're prolly not going to run a bigger bar on that saw, and also not going to run a smaller bar. No need then to have a menegerie of bars/chains to choose from for it. ;)
  21. SmokeyCity

    SmokeyCity Feeling the Heat

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    Master - I saw you have a 34 in your stable.

    I can grab one on CL right now for 250 looks clean. Woujd it be a good back up for the 261 or should I just start looking for that used MS441 ?
  22. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    034 would be a most excellent "back-up" (heh heh ;) ) to your new MS261 but I'd still go for that MS441.
  23. xman23

    xman23 Minister of Fire

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    When I got my 260 pro I used Stilh bar oil, and still do. It seamed thick. Used very little for a tank of gas. I to opened up the oil feed screw to max. Its been that way for 11 years. Although I top off the bar oil tank with evey gas fill, I think it might go two gas refills. The saw screams thru wood with a sharp chain. I use the green saftey chain, and have no issues. It stays sharp a long time for me. And when it's done I replace it with a new one,
  24. Boog

    Boog Minister of Fire

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    No, you did far better than OK today, you did great! I also concer with your next acquisition being a 441/440 saw. After that, you can start worrying about backups and speciality roles to fill with more saws!
  25. fabsroman

    fabsroman Minister of Fire

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    Yep, bought the MS-261 and MS-660 last summer and have cut 10 cords of wood mostly with the 261. Like you, I have an 18" bar on the 261. Went with a 25" bar on the 660 but contemplating a 36" for it now. Before this, mostly used my dad's McCullochs (sp.) and his currect piece of junk Craftsman. I really like my 261. Was cutting last summer with somebody that had a 290 Wood Boss and his saw was so much heavier than the 261. Now, the 660 is a monster and I would hate to have to run that all day long UNLESS conditions called for it. Much nicer to cut through 20+ inch logs with the big saw versus the small one.

    Had no idea there was a specific way to break in the saw, but I used it like I normally would. Full throttle as I get into the log and lay off the throttle once I come out. Don't think I have ever cut through a log other than at full throttle.

    Oh yeah, now my dad is looking at Stihl saws every time we stop at the Stihl dealer. He is getting the wood heating bug too ever since I got my furnace.

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