Best chainsaw for camping

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Best chainsaw for camping

Post by chacka » 29 Mar 2016, 2:32 pm

G'day all,

Looking for advice on chainsaws.

Intended for camping only; cutting up a bit of firewood, clearing a track of a fallen tree, that kind of thing...

Will be used somewhere in the order of once a month, not a work tool that needs to go all day every day.

Smaller would be better than larger.

Stihl and Husqy seem like the leaders?

Recommendations?
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Re: Best chainsaw for camping

Post by Noisydad » 29 Mar 2016, 3:00 pm

If you come across a Shindaiwa (particularly if fitted with the tall air cleaner) don't ever pass it up! Dad and I have one each and have been using these for years for cutting firewood for 4 households. They're easy starting, powerful and reliable.
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Re: Best chainsaw for camping

Post by Chronos » 29 Mar 2016, 3:12 pm

IMHO stay away from the cheap stihls, go for a Husky 236. light and easy to start or shindawa if you find one

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Re: Best chainsaw for camping

Post by on_one_wheel » 29 Mar 2016, 4:11 pm

Agreed on the Husqvarna saws, they are the most reliable saws I have ever owned and they always start easily, the stihl stuff has gone cheep and nasty and are pricks to start and never stay in tune.

If you want to go cheep n nasty, go propper cheep. I bought a arborist saw just like the one in the link below, its great for camping because its very compact and actually runs quite well.

http://pages.ebay.com/link/?nav=item.vi ... 31&alt=web
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Re: Best chainsaw for camping

Post by pete1 » 29 Mar 2016, 7:44 pm

If you get a Stihl or Husqvarna you will be pretty safe, there are other brands I've never tried, but I would recommend staying clear of those really cheap chinese ones they are unreliable and some dangerous, chain fly's off after 10 minutes of cutting and vibrate like hell.
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Re: Best chainsaw for camping

Post by chacka » 30 Mar 2016, 9:29 am

Noisydad wrote:If you come across a Shindaiwa (particularly if fitted with the tall air cleaner) don't ever pass it up!


I really need to just go get one, have nothing at the moment so can't really wait for it unfortunately.

Chronos wrote:IMHO stay away from the cheap stihls, go for a Husky 236. light and easy to start or shindawa if you find one


236 eh, I'll check it out :thumbsup:

on_one_wheel wrote:If you want to go cheep n nasty


Nope, want something good that will last.

pete1 wrote:chain fly's off after 10 minutes of cutting and vibrate like hell.


I like to avoid flying metal where I can :lol:

bentaz wrote:Sthil or tanarka saws have never let me down, i don't belive that husky is what it used to be, thats from using their blowers n snippers, but i won't buy any of their gear again.


Hopefully it's just the blowers and not the saws then. I will check them out.
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Re: Best chainsaw for camping

Post by Gwion » 30 Mar 2016, 12:34 pm

Cheap stihls are cheap, I would not pay for a stihl not made in Germany. My old man loaned me one for a while and it was absolute rubbish, I went out and bought a small husky for $6-700. It has been pretty good and had a hard life, currently in for a service. 345e, I believe the model is. Bought a nice stihl for around $1500 for the heavier work I require now, commercial grade entry level model, made in Germany, all steel casing.... A joy to use.
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Re: Best chainsaw for camping

Post by Chronos » 30 Mar 2016, 1:57 pm

Gwion wrote:Cheap stihls are cheap, I would not pay for a stihl not made in Germany. My old man loaned me one for a while and it was absolute rubbish, I went out and bought a small husky for $6-700. It has been pretty good and had a hard life, currently in for a service. 345e, I believe the model is. Bought a nice stihl for around $1500 for the heavier work I require now, commercial grade entry level model, made in Germany, all steel casing.... A joy to use.



Yeah a big difference between the "city" saws and the "rural" range

Anything under $500 seems to be non tunable and plastic crank case. The advantage is they are very compact and light which is good if you want to stash it away in the back of the 4wd just in case.

My mate has a 16" bar Makita and it's an awesome saw but a bit big to carry every where. We were glad we had it last trip when we drove 10km plus into a forest to find a massive gum tree fallen over cross a narrow track. We had to cut it into 1.5m long sections and roll them off the track. Would have been over half a meter diameter.

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Re: Best chainsaw for camping

Post by keg » 04 Apr 2016, 1:34 am

Just bought the Stihl MS 261 CM. It's Stihl's 50 cc pro line saw and it cuts 3k rpm faster than their Farm Boss saw. It will run up to a 20" bar but I run it with a 16. It has crazy power and after the first gallon of fuel it almost hits a second gear. It will buck up logs that are 16" in diameter and not even bog down. I've owned several big box store saws like Poulan and McCulloch and will never go back. I've learned that if you buy the top quality commercial saw in the size you need and you will be way happier. My rule if a professional logger will use it then it's a good saw. I seen a whitetail habitat guy using a MS261 to build deer habitat. He cuts 600 trees a day so he has to have a saw that performs.
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Re: Best chainsaw for camping

Post by bigfellascott » 04 Apr 2016, 4:49 pm

Maybe try buying a decent second hand older stihl or Husky - I bought a Stihl 029 super (Commercial Grade saw) a while back with post hole drill attachment for $400 at an auction and sold the drill attachment for $150 - it's a great little saw - it's been coping a workout in the last few weeks in prep for winter and will be seeing plenty of action over winter too.

Keep your chains sharp (I use a Stihl 2in1 sharpener) they cost a bit but do a great job and would be lost without em. Also make sure when you do sharpen your saws that the rakers are set at the correct height, if they aren't the chain won't cut despite the chain being sharpened (look on youtube if you want more info on how to sharpen chains) a saw is only as good as the chain so don't neglect it.

Get a good wood vice if you can, they come in handy out bush to make sharpening easier (give em a sharpen each tank or more often if needed).

I run my saws at around 33-1 ratio (a little bit rich) I use a baby bottle to measure it out and fits in the kit nicely - don't buy cheap 2 stroke oil use something half decent and don't use 98 octane, use 91 or 93 if you can get it or one of the other low octane fuels (no bio fuel either) (that's from my Chainsaw Guy) he reckons he sees a lot of damage done by the high octane fuel. Also don't leave the fuel in your tank, empty it out when you have finished (this new unleaded stuff destroys fuel lines etc).

And my chainsaw guy also reckons Stihl are s**t these days (he was a massive fan of them until they started producing cheap crap) he recommends Huskys now or the old Stihl stuff.

I think Bunnings sell a Makita or McCullock which is just a rebranded Husky - might be worth checking out (don't know how good they are) but worth a look if you're after a cheapy I guess

My brother bought a cheap chinese saw and it was a pile of s**t in no time flat, things broke on it within a few uses, not my cup of tea, he ended up buying a 2nd Stihl of his mate and no dramas now.

Another saw I own (I've got 3) is an Oleomac (Italian made) its a little rippa, it's cut down massive gum trees and turned em into firewood in no time too, very impressive little saw that only cost me around $360 from memory (about 12-13yrs ago now.

Picked this one up last year from a Garage sale for $25! :lol: goes like the clappers too (farking heavy bastard) all cast body and only thing wrong with these like all cast body saws is when they get hot they are bastards to stop so you don't switch em off until you are finished cos ya won't get em started again in a hurry :D this one's nearly 30yrs old and still smashing through the hard stuff well (hard to get service parts for - air filters) so I make do by making my own.

Before tidy up.
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After a bit of a tidy up!
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Re: Best chainsaw for camping

Post by Gwion » 04 Apr 2016, 8:16 pm

No chain brake??? :wtf: :shock:

Agree, hi octane fuel will stuff a 2 stroke in no time. I also run my saws to the end of the tank so they aren't sitting with fuel in them.
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Re: Best chainsaw for camping

Post by on_one_wheel » 04 Apr 2016, 8:38 pm

A mate of mine just got given a old saw with no chain brake, totally deadly.

There graet to look at, but I'd never use one.
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Re: Best chainsaw for camping

Post by Gwion » 04 Apr 2016, 8:45 pm

Me either. Not wielding it around out bush by my self!

In a controlled environment like a demo at a rural show with historic saws..... maybe. Not likely, though!
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Re: Best chainsaw for camping

Post by bigfellascott » 04 Apr 2016, 9:14 pm

You blokes are soft, I like livin on the edge, I even cut wood in thongs and shorts :lol:
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Re: Best chainsaw for camping

Post by Gwion » 04 Apr 2016, 9:38 pm

Was in hospital for an overnighter when I was about 15. Kid in the same ward was chainsaw accident. Kept me awake all night with his moans and stifled screams of pain.... Decided then and there that chainsaws were to be regarded as a vicious dog to be kept on a very short leash. Or: do not take chances with chain saws!!!
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Re: Best chainsaw for camping

Post by bigfellascott » 04 Apr 2016, 9:40 pm

Gwion wrote:Was in hospital for an overnighter when I was about 15. Kid in the same ward was chainsaw accident. Kept me awake all night with his moans and stifled screams of pain.... Decided then and their that chainsaws were to be regarded as a vicious dog to be kept on a very short leash.


Kid ya say? might be the problem right there I would say - not something kids should really be using I wouldn't think, with or without a brake :thumbsup:

Nick Harvey nearly died a year or so back using a chainsaw, lucky man, drove himself to Bathurst I believe with his eye hanging out. :shock:

Also know a bloke who wore a tree after cutting it down (it spiralled and he ran the wrong way and got pinned by his arm, lucky to be alive, I think he spent a night or day pinned under it! :shock:
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Re: Best chainsaw for camping

Post by Gwion » 04 Apr 2016, 10:07 pm

Must have been 16-17. Plenty of kids that age learn to use a saw. Still wouldn't use a saw with no brake!
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Re: Best chainsaw for camping

Post by Chronos » 04 Apr 2016, 10:51 pm

No doubt chainsaws can be dangerous...but not as dangerous as a bloke with a saw who doesn't know how to use it or a bloke who's been using one for long enough to get clumsy.

I'm in the first category. I've got one, I've used it a dozen times to lop branches from trees here, fell a 4m tree or two and cut some firewood in the bush but I'm always super careful about where the bar is and where it could go.

My old man grew up on a dairy farm and one of his mates was cutting timber 3-4 times a week until he was 60. Used to go out and collect firewood for the oldies in his area. One day he was lopping a branch while standing on a log. Yo can guess the rest, log rolled, he falls flat on his back, saw lands on his chest and the chain kisses him not so gently on the cheek. Old bloke lost an eye, some teeth and they say about 4l of blood by the time he out the saw in the ute and drove himself 30k's to the nearest help, a servo where he collapsed. He survived it just. Face shield would have changed the result, so would have a better footing. The bloke must have spent tens of thousands of hours on a saw but I guess accidents are called that for a reason

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