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Stihl 260 / Dolmar 5100s

Post in 'The Gear' started by Outdoorsman, Jul 11, 2008.

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  1. Outdoorsman

    Outdoorsman New Member

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    I ran my new Dolmar 5100 today for the first time along with my MS 260 Stihl & here's my first impressions of the Dolmar vs Stihl.

    I put new Stihl full chisel chains on both saws so as to have as fair a comparison as possible.

    The Dolmar has a 18" bar while the 260 wears a 16".

    I swapped back and forth with both saws try'n to best judge the strengths and weaknesses of both saws.

    Both are very good saws.

    The two saws in maple and red cedar today, not really as tough a test as I'd like, but good enough for first time out for the Dolmar.

    For cut'n limbs of under 8" they are both good, but I'd take the 260 as it's .6lbs lighter in the motor + the shorter bar adds to this. Even if the 260 had the 18" bar I don't doubt I'd feel the same.

    In larger cuts however the added power of the Dolmar begins to show it's self. For wood of over 8" I'll use the Dolmar. And in the 20" cedar (largest thing I cut today) the Dolmar had a noticeable edge.

    If I were someone buying one saw to do everything I had to do, and based on just todays relatively soft woods cut, I'd buy the Dolmar of these two saws. (A 361 Stihl, 357XP Husky or 656 Solo might all be better yet, though of these 3 I've only run the 361.)

    I look forward to try'n the Dolmar further when I've a chance to cut some oak & white ash, that will be a even better test.

    PS

    On another note, I also ran the Dolmar with the Clinton chain that came on it to me.

    I"m sorry to say I think Clinton chain sucks it up vs Stihl chain. While I hand filed this chain vs the fact I was running new Stihl chain, I do a pretty good job sharpening. The Clinton chain was just not as good, dull in less than a tank and a half of gas, while the Stihl chain felt much better after two tanks than the Clinton did in 1 1/2 tanks. Softer metal perhaps?

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  2. WOODBUTCHER

    WOODBUTCHER Minister of Fire

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    I feel inhuman with it compared to my grumpy old Craftsman. Nice comparison and thanks for the info.

    WoodButcher
  3. Adios Pantalones

    Adios Pantalones Minister of Fire

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    I have for the past 6 or so years had a 260Pro- which is, power and weight-wise- just a 260. I love this saw and won't give it up, but do find it slow going in those 20"+ red oaks (18" bar). I'm not sure that the Dolmar 5100 is enough of a step up for the power I want. I mean- if I'm going to spend the coin for bucking larger rounds- I want a noticible increase in oomph or I won't bother. Does Dolmar have a reasonably priced next step up from 5100?
  4. WOODBUTCHER

    WOODBUTCHER Minister of Fire

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    This is whats available in my area for Dolmar

    13.6 LB Powerhead
    PS-6400 4.8 HP $499.00
    PS-7900 6.3 HP $639.00
  5. Outdoorsman

    Outdoorsman New Member

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    I do understand what you're saying in regards to the 260 in 20" wood, even in cedar it begins to slow enough to notice & in Oak, Ash or Hickory..... And you're also right that the 5100s is not a good option to pair with a 260 as a "big" saw, I bought mine for a great price or I'd not have bought it. The 5100 is not what you want for 20"+ oak.

    Dolmar makes a 6400 with 4.8 hp., a 7300 @ 5.7 hp. and the 7900 @ 6.3 hp. All 3 weigh 13.6 lbs as listed at Amick's web site.

    If price is part of your consideration I'd suggest the 7300 would be a good choice for you of the 3 as Amick's has this saw priced @ $580.00 which is $10.00 less than the Stihl 361 & $210.00 less than the MS 460 I use for a big saw.

    OR if you can, the 7900 is still $110.00 less than my MS460 and offers a better weight/power ratio as well as better price. In fact the 7900 offers the best power/weight/price ratio of any saw, made by anyone, that I know of.

    If I'd known of the weight/power/price ratio of Dolmar saws when I was buying my 260/460 pair I'd have a 7900 in my sig to go with that 5100s.

    For someone cutting oaks of 20"-?? I'm not sure the 6400 Dolmar would offer enough of a increase to satisfy, even though it costs less than the 7300.
  6. Outdoorsman

    Outdoorsman New Member

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    Pro saws are a refreshing change are they not?
  7. FLASHMAN

    FLASHMAN New Member

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    You could always do what I did, and like a jackass go out and get yourself a Stihl MS660 :) Like you said in the splitter thread, "if it's worth doing, it's worth overdoing." In all seriousness though, woodbutcher's Dolmar is a really nice saw. I went to the dealer with him and saw the models he mentioned, and they're both really nice.

    It's all about making your budget and your needs match.
  8. Adios Pantalones

    Adios Pantalones Minister of Fire

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    If I got the 660- I'd just need to get a friend to pick it up for me- LOL. Ya, I'm not cutting enough to justify the big Stihl. Even a bigger Dolmar would be a luxury. Maybe if I strike it rich.

    This reminds me of the wife and I walking around in Portsmouth NH- nice touristy coastal town- shops, restaurants- you get the idea. My wife says "Wouldn't it be great to have a little apartment above these shops here"
    Me: " Where would I split firewood?"
    Her: "You wouldn't have to if we lived here"
    Me: "What do you mean by 'wouldn't have to'?"
  9. Shipper50

    Shipper50 Minister of Fire

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    I have not been on the site in months due to a knee surgery that went bad and have not run a saw in about 6 months, but I did buy a new 5100 and 7900 before my surgery due to a friend having Dolmars and felt the difference in them over Stihls I had.

    I sold my 460 after only running it about 4 times and had a Stihl 034 I sold and got the 5100 which I have run enough to feel the difference in overall quality.

    I guess you can say I am a Dolmar man now.....

    Shipper
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