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Old 11-15-2007, 05:50 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Stihl chainsaw historical specs (and recommendations)

I need a little info from some of the loggers/saw gurus on here about a few older Stihl saws that we have. I'm getting ready to purchase a few saws for my land reclamation business, and would like to get some that are similar to the ones I have been using in the past.

We have several Stihl saws that we have been using around the farm since the early 80's, and these are what I am using as a benchmark for which new saws I would like to purchase.

They consist of:
(early-mid 80's vintage)
-024AVS Wood Boss 16"
-041AVS 20"

(early-mid 90's vintage)
-039 20"

If anyone knows where I can find the historical specs on these saws (displacement, weight, bhp, recommended bar size, etc) I would greatly appreciate it. (yes, I know these specs are listed in the manuals, but I no longer have them). Or if anyone knows what their newer counterparts are that would be helpful too.

As for the new saws I am planning on getting, I need a 16" saw for limbing and light felling/thinning, a 20-25" saw for felling and bucking, and a 14" arborist saw for climbing.

The only one I know for sure about is the arborist saw, which I plan on getting a MS 192T.

As for the others, I'm open to suggestions. I don't have very deeps pockets, so I am going to try to stick with the mid range saws, although if I have to go to the pro series to handle a 25" bar so be it.

The ones I'm considering for the 16" are the 250, 270, and 260. For the 20-25" saw I'm looking at the 390 vs. 361. Price is a factor here, but I mostly am looking for longevity, and secondly performance.

Any help on these matters would be great, thanks.
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Old 11-15-2007, 06:27 PM   #2 (permalink)
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041 AVS
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Old 11-15-2007, 07:45 PM   #3 (permalink)
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For the 16 inch bar saw I would use a ms 260 and for a 20 t0 25 I would defiently get the ms 361 or the ne ms 441. The pro saws are worth the extra money once you run pro saws you wont want to go back.
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Old 11-15-2007, 07:47 PM   #4 (permalink)
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http://www.arboristsite.com/index.php

this is the pirate of chain saws
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Old 11-15-2007, 07:51 PM   #5 (permalink)
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If your going to be running a business with saws be ready to spend some money.
We do logging, land clearing, residential tree work.
Smallest saw I use on the ground is an ms460 with a 24" bar. I use it for cutting brush, briars. I don't really use the 460 much, in the tree occasionally, usually get it done with a ms200t 14" bar. Most of the time I use a 660 with a 28" bar on the ground, cutting trees. Skip the 192t and get a 200t, the 192t is a turd compared to a 200t. Throw the spark arrestor out and the 200 rips..

361 is alot better saw than a 390. Ive ran both. I think we got a 361, i have not used it in forever.
Ive never found a place for a 16"-20" bar on a ground saw, too much bending over and not enough reach.

If I were you I would skip a small saw, get a 200t and a 460, then go from there.

Last edited by Cork; 11-15-2007 at 07:52 PM.
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Old 11-16-2007, 06:46 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Thanks for all the replies. Let me give a little more background on my business. I mostly do pasture renovation, woodlot thinning, light clearing, fencing, etc. I'm not really running a tree service, although I wouldn't mind doing a little more tree work. I mostly need the saws for thinning and clearing trees that are too big to clear with my loader. Truth be known, I could probably do 75% of my work with a 16" saw, however I want the larger one for those jobs where I do have to take out bigger trees. I'll also be using them for my personal use as well, sawing firewood and trees for saw logs to cut on a bandsaw mill (wood for construction around the farm, woodworking etc).

With this in mind, I really can't justify spending $700-800+ on a large saw that will only get run about 25% of the time. Looking at what I have been using (041, 024) almost any new saw seems lightweight and very powerful.

For those that have owned both, what is the difference in durability and longevity between the mid range and pro saws? I know the pro saws generally have a much higher power to weight ratio, but I'm not running the saw all day. Mostly I want something that will get the job done and still be running 20 years from now (like our older Stihl saws).

Would the 270 and 390 fit this bill or am I wasting my money?
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Old 11-16-2007, 08:46 AM   #7 (permalink)
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If you're not running the bigger saw much the 390 would probably fill your need but if money is an issue I might check out the Shindaiwa 757 as your 'big' saw or just find a good used 361. Home Despot also sells their used Dolmar/Makita 640 saws cheap and they are excellent saws at a great price. For your little saws you can get about anything but if you like Stihls it's hard to go wrong with the MS260. I'm kind of a fan of the Solo 651 for a saw that size but that's just me. I would avoid the 270 at all costs as it would be cheaper to put an aftermarket cylinder on your 024 and you would end up with a better saw.
Good luck, John..

Last edited by roverjohn; 11-16-2007 at 08:47 AM.
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Old 11-16-2007, 03:00 PM   #8 (permalink)
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We do quite a few fence rows in the winter when things slow down a bit. Thats when I use the 460 mostly. If your dead set on a smaller saw I would go with the 361 over the 390. It will last you alot longer, like your 041 has... 361 will pull a 24" bar but will be a pig in big wood, probably wont be ballanced the best either.
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Old 11-16-2007, 03:29 PM   #9 (permalink)
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if you need a large saw only 25% of the time go to the local saw shops and look for a used saw. i got a husky 395(not a stihl) but it's a 100 cc faller saw, had a 36" bar on it. and i got it used for $200. only thing i have done to the saw was have the bar replaned $20 and a new chain $35 and this thing runs like a rapped ape. have had zero problems plowing thru the 4' oak chunks i have in my yard. i also decided that 36" was to large after i got the big stuff cut so i went to a 24" bar and it freaking just gets it.
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Old 11-17-2007, 05:44 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Thanks for the suggestions. I am pretty dead set on Stihl though, they have been great saws for me in the past. I went to the dealer yesterday, and after looking closely at all the saws I decided that the 361 was definately the way to go over the 390. I couldn't believe that they've gone to plastic crankcases on all of thier midrange and lower saws! I came to the same conclusion about the 260 vs 270. So I guess I'm going to save up and buy the ones that I really want.

My last question is about bar size for the 361. I know some have said its not big enough for a 25" bar, but will it handle it better than my old 041 would? The 041 is only 3.7bhp and is rated for up to a 28" bar, which leads me to believe that nowadays they are just getting stingy with their ratings to keep power hungry consumers happy. Is this true, or will the 361 really be a turd with a 25" bar?
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Old 11-17-2007, 08:05 AM   #11 (permalink)
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i know you are set on stihl thus look at your stihl dealer for used or craigslist



imho i think the saw makers are selecting smaller bars for "peak" performance of their saws. as long as your chain is deadly sharp i don't see you having any problems.
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Old 11-17-2007, 08:09 AM   #12 (permalink)
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on the stihl saws the older models like 029..and 024 would be in the same size category as the new 290 and 240....in most cases they moved the 0 to the end

if you have a few extra bucks get the T200 instead of the T192
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Old 11-17-2007, 08:10 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VerticalTRX View Post
Thanks for the suggestions. I am pretty dead set on Stihl though, they have been great saws for me in the past. I went to the dealer yesterday, and after looking closely at all the saws I decided that the 361 was definately the way to go over the 390. I couldn't believe that they've gone to plastic crankcases on all of thier midrange and lower saws! I came to the same conclusion about the 260 vs 270. So I guess I'm going to save up and buy the ones that I really want.

My last question is about bar size for the 361. I know some have said its not big enough for a 25" bar, but will it handle it better than my old 041 would? The 041 is only 3.7bhp and is rated for up to a 28" bar, which leads me to believe that nowadays they are just getting stingy with their ratings to keep power hungry consumers happy. Is this true, or will the 361 really be a turd with a 25" bar?

i run a 25" bar on my 460 and am happy, can't imagine a smaller saw, but then again i am impatient, i will run the same 25" bar on my 650 as long as i don't need a 36" bar
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Old 11-17-2007, 03:22 PM   #14 (permalink)
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The numbers on the old Stilhls generally relate to displacement in CI. In your case 2.4 CI, or 39CC, 4.1 CI or 67 CC. The exception is when you get to the Super or Magnum versions as the size got stretched. I had an 038 Magnum awhile back that actually displaced 4.4 CI.
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Old 11-17-2007, 08:52 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I think a 361 with a 20" bar is what I will settle on.

Looking for some recommendations on what chain would suite this saw well.

Clean wood, 50% oak and other hardwoods, 50% white pine. I want the fastest most aggressive chain this saw will pull. Full-skip? half-skip? Recommendations?
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Old 11-17-2007, 11:12 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Regular full comp chain on a bar that short. full chisel, square tooth.
Skip and semi skip is for bigger bars, 32" or more.
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Old 11-18-2007, 08:46 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cork View Post
Regular full comp chain on a bar that short. full chisel, square tooth.
Skip and semi skip is for bigger bars, 32" or more.
10-4

A standard full chisel chain is what I run on my 041 (the older Rapid Super IIRC). I just wasn't sure if a new higher rpm saw would benefit from something different.
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