A good and high-performance chainsaw is among the most valuable tools a handy homeowner should have. Chainsaws drastically cut down the time, money, and energy you would have otherwise used on outdoor projects.
Chainsaws are available in different models, pricing, features, types, power output, and shapes. Investing your cash in the right chainsaw is highly important.
What to Look Out When Buying a Chainsaw
Kickback Reduction Features
Safety is a key concern when using a chainsaw. Various models offer different features such as:
- Chain Brake – This feature stops the chain immediately when the front hand guard moves forward, the chainsaw kicks back, or whenever it experiences sudden impact or movement.
- Bar-tip Guard – This guard protects the nose/tip of the saw’s bar
- Kickback Reduction Bar – To prevent a lot of kickback, this bar’ narrow tip limits the overall cutting area
- Kickback Reduction Chain – A good chain has a less aggressive cutting profile and extra guard links; this stops the chain from picking large chunks
Cutting Bar Size
To handle different jobs, cutting bars are available in many sizes. Depending on the project at hand, you might need several different-sized bars; they range from 8” to 42”. For general carpentry, simple pruning, and other medium-duty tasks, 14” and shorter will do. If your work involves heavy-duty woodworking, consider investing in 16” to 18” cutting bars.
Tip: The larger the bars, the heavier, less maneuverable, potentially dangerous, and less predictable they will be.
Gas-Powered Chainsaws – As the more popular choice, these saws offer you a faster and smoother cut. The chain speed is higher due to the added power and more torque. They are highly mobile, powerful, and dependable.
Electric Chainsaws – Suitable for light-duty, small tasks, these saws can be used for small cutting, pruning, and trimming jobs. Apart from being lighter and smaller than gas-powered chainsaws, they are quieter and easy-maintenance.
Choosing Between Husqvarna vs Stihl Chainsaws
While both Stihl and Husqvarna manufacture excellent products, they differ in several ways including:
Husqvarna saws have been around for decades, providing consistently high-quality service. This, however, doesn’t belittle Stihl chainsaws. Husqvarna just happens to have been around for longer, creating a powerful brand name that woodworkers can recognize globally. Stihl is on the fast track to becoming a globally famous brand.
Featuring the latest automation technology, Stihl products are easier to maintain and require minimal operational input. With the basic knowledge of the machines or motors, novice users can work with these models smoothly. Once you purchase, you won’t have to worry about frequent maintenance costs.
Husqvarna models are more demanding in maintenance, requiring you to perform oil and part changes more often.
Husqvarna and Stihl chainsaws match closely in cutting quality. While both tools are unique in design, they have powerheads for maximizing their cutting efficiency. Being lighter in weight, Husqvarna chainsaws are easy to use over long periods.
FYI: Professionals prefer working with Stihl more due to its ability to endure long hours of rigorous use.
Both chainsaw manufacturers have a wide range of chainsaw and bar sizes. If you are a homeowner or farmer needing a saw for minor use, Husqvarna chainsaws are the best to work with; the power-to-weight ratio is ideal for these tasks.
For professional timber cutter, Stihl chainsaws provide more power, efficiency, and quick results. Being heavier and often large, their cutting power is considerably higher and so is their output. You will need to be more physically fit to handle these high-performance saws with ease.
Being generally smaller in size, Husqvarna chainsaws have smaller fuel tanks, requiring a refill every once in a while. However, since they are mostly used for minor, odd tasks, you won’t be straining to keep them fueled.
Stihl chainsaws are mainly industrial-grade, complete with large fuel tanks to power them for a long while. Work proceeds uninterrupted, enabling the user to accomplish tasks faster. However, this adds to the weight of the saw, making it more demanding to carry and use.
Stihl saws, though heavier and more suited for industrial tasks, are considerably cheaper than Husqvarna models, as a more prominent brand, the latter attracts higher demand and consequently higher retail prices.
While there are many other brands offering even lower prices than Stihl, they can barely match in performance and fuel efficiency.
My Choices of the best Husqvarna Chainsaws
Reliable chainsaws can handle medium to heavy-duty jobs with relative ease. When it comes to precision cutting, here are two superior Husqvarna machines worth checking out:
Husqvarna 455 Rancher Gas-Powered Chainsaw
- Larger blade for handling larger jobs
- Works well in all scenarios
- Incredible construction quality
- High RPM and impeccable power delivery
- Large guide bar and hefty in weight
For homeowners, Husqvarna 455 qualifies as a higher-end chainsaw. With it, it was easy to prune trees, cut wood, and clear domestic spaces. In large properties, this saw can be used to cut hard and thick wood without slowing down.
Besides being small and lightweight, this saw easily satisfies most industrial needs. Professionals find it extremely easy to use.
Easy to Carry
When not in use, this chainsaw weighs 12.8 lbs; once fully fueled and assembled, the weight slightly surpasses 20 lb. at home, you can easily move the chainsaw around without straining. If you are going through larger spaces by foot, the weight may become an issue.
This saw’s weight is considerably harder because it has been built for extreme durability and sturdiness; under these circumstances, the extra weight can be forgiven.
As long as you provide sufficient lubrication and fuel, this quality chainsaw can run all day long. Far in excess of the requirement of most homeowners, the saw can easily handle 6 to 8 hours of continuous use. Whenever you require it to, this saw will run without a fuss.
FYI: The operator’s skill and machine maintenance determine how long it remains operational.
New users are advised to carefully go through the manual and adhere to all usage and safety procedures. If it is a bit too powerful for you, try out lesser-powered chainsaws.
New HUSQVARNA 460 Gas Powered Chain Saw
- Easy starting
- Greatly powered light chainsaw
- Low emissions
- Long blade guide length
- Vibration dampening system
- Can be used where needed
- More maintenance than an electric saw
- Not the best choice for absolute beginners
Giving the user an incredible torque amount to work with, this high RPM operation machine can be used in large properties as well as domestic settings. Though high-powered, this chainsaw weighs only 12.79 lb. I experienced very little fatigue while testing it.
This gas-powered saw is best suited for application such as clearing fallen trees, breaking down wood, and pruning. If you’ve tried an electric equivalent, you will appreciate the extra power and heavier tasks you can handle with this model.
When operating at its peak, the machine’s 60 cc engine attaints 3.62 HP, enough to power through the most wood. The 2-engine cycle mixes the engine lubricant with the fuel, further increasing the power output. For the best results, use Husqvarna engine oils.
Cutting Speed and Performance
The chainsaw’s commendable 3.4 Nm torque gave me an easy time with heavy-duty and hardwoods. The 24” bar length makes for even greater performance. With this high torque, cutting speed is kept consistently high, powering the 84 individual links through any wood.
Good cutting speed and power combined with impeccable balance makes this saw extremely easy to handle when cutting through thick wood. The machine’s vibration dampening system completely eliminates violent impacts.