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STIHL Chainsaw advise..

2435 Views 14 Replies 12 Participants Last post by  2full
Hey guys, I'm buying my ol' man a Chainsaw for Christmas. He wants a STIHL which I would agree with. Who's got experience with these. I want to get the best one that I can afford that will work the best for his use with it..

It will be used mostly around camp. Cutting trees, lobbing limbs and gathering firewood.

I'm looking for a 16-18 inch bar with the strongest motor I can get. (afford, as you know STIHL knows what they want for these saws)...

Whats the best all around?

I'll call the Reps but, I would like to hear from some of you guys if, any of you run a STIHL.

I'm thinking about the MS 251 C-BE
or the MS 271 Farm boss

Merry Christmas! and Happy Hunting!
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391 with a 20" bar.

A longer bar is better for a bad back. Less bending.

A 440 with a 24" would be better but to spendy for most.
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I've got a farm boss with a 20" bar. Its done a great job with ALL the trees in my yard. My wife thinks I have some kind of disorder that I have to cutting down trees. :shock: She might be right :mrgreen: my last two houses, I've cut down all the trees in the yard. At least this one, I've replanted 4 new ones. ;-)
Sorry I can't help you. My wife banned me from using chainsaws 25 years ago after I tried to cut my leg off with one. It really wasn't THAT bad, but I seem to have issues with certain types of power equipment that can make nasty gashes on legs and arms.
Personally I would go with the Farm Boss with the 20" bar. I have learned over the years that no matter what size of bar you get you will always want the longer one after cutting a few trees with the shorter one. You will also see that a longer bar will cut circles around a shorter one, even by just a couple of inches. Also the Farm Boss has the larger engine which will help a lot when cutting the larger stuff.
I have a Sthil 290 farm boss that I bought for the sole purpose of gathering fire wood for the wall tent. I think I went with the 18" bar. It's been a great saw for the intended use. If I were to use it for more than just camping, I would want a bigger saw.
My Brother in Law does tree trimming as a side job (main job is Lineman). He has one freaking big mutha Stihl. Commercial job, sounds like those old CR250's from the 1980s when he lights it up. Goes through trees like you wouldnt believe. Its amazing.

Get him an 880 and don't look back.
One thing to think about it starting it. As you get older to much compression in the bigger saws make starting hard. My favorite saw is a 660 with a 28in bar but that is for doing more than camp chores. Also get bigger "dogs" on it. That will let him use leverage to his advantage.
It would be nice to get one big enough to utilize a longer bar if the need arises, either for him or you.
The MS290 has been discontinued and replaced with the MS291 (updated for emissions purposes). The MS250 comes with an 18" bar and can't be beat for the size. It's small enough to be usable around the house and big enough that you can go out and cut firewood or whatever you need it for. It is being phased out in favor of the MS251 so get it while you can. It goes for $349.

There is something to be said for the bigger bars. You can always cut small with a bigger saw but you can't cut big with a small saw. From what you've said he plans to do with it, you can't go wrong with the MS250.

If it means anything to you I work in a shop that sells them and every single one of us owns that saw.
+1 on the farm boss. I have the 18" bar.
Have had it for years. Does everything I need to do.
Has cut many, many loads of wood.
Also have the little one, 170.
Use the heck out of it as well. Love it for trimming trees.
Probably actually use it more than the bigger one.
Thanks guys! just so i'm hearing you guys right I have a few more questions.. I'm looking at getting the MS 271 but, the dude at the stihl dealer said if i'm cutting wood in high elevation then the MS 271 would be a little on the light side and would be the smallest I would want to go so they suggested getting the 291. or are they just trying to get me to spend more money? would the MS271 be a good camp sight chainsaw? all around?
I would personally go with the 291.
Better to have a little extra than not enough.
My 290 has been great.
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I have 2 stihls. a 25 and a 29. both run well all the time and at all elevations. you lose power at high elevations... so what. it takes 35 seconds to cut thru instead of 30. you lose more than that with a dull chain. I also have 2 stihls at work, both 25s and 4 huskies... bars between 18 and 36 inches. would I love a husky with a 36... dang right - that thing screams. but cost is a factor. all of them get the job done in most cases. would recommend either and all.
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I have a MS170. I am old and not as strong as I used to be. It will handle stuff up to 12" fine and is a dream around the yard for trimming and general home use. There is no doubt those big saws "farm boss" etc are great saws if you are falling trees and cutting a lot of cord wood but remember they are heavy. Twinkielk15 recommends the MS250...great choice! Get the longest bar available.
I guess I an just weird. I have downsized bars a couple of times. Gives them more torque. Will maintain the rpm's better. Makes them cut better. If I want a big bar, I would go to the magnum motors.
Depends on what you want the saw to do.
I do love my 170. If you are not cutting big logs, it is the cat's meow. .
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