I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
User avatar
Fletch
Posts: 683
Joined: Thu Jun 04, 2009 1:25 pm
Location: USA

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by Fletch » Fri Sep 14, 2018 4:48 am

jebmke wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 1:52 pm
dm200 wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 1:42 pm
Hire someone who:

1. Has the right equipment
2. Knows what he/she is doing
This is what I do. I don't even like to watch the pros with chain saws and wood chippers.
To the OP, please follow the above advice. By the time you add up the cost of eye and ear protection, a hard hat, chainsaw chaps, heavy gloves etc. and likely the cost of a 911 call and an ER vist to stitch up your various body parts it just is not worth it. P L E A S E !
“Meaningless! Meaningless!” says the Teacher. Whoever loves money never has enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with their income. This too is meaningless.

t885
Posts: 38
Joined: Sun Dec 24, 2017 3:56 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by t885 » Fri Sep 14, 2018 6:10 am

OP- Head on over to you tube and watch a few videos on how to run a chain saw. It's not rocket science...Reading all the gloom and doom posts " You're going to cut off a limb" LOL.

If possible. Try to spring for a Sthil. They are a little more money but will last a lifetime.
There are two kinds of forecasters: those who don't know, and those who don't know they don't know

User avatar
jharkin
Posts: 1873
Joined: Mon Mar 28, 2016 7:14 am
Location: Boston suburbs

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by jharkin » Fri Sep 14, 2018 6:23 am

Jack FFR1846 wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 1:53 pm
Where are these branches and limbs? 1/2 acre is pretty tiny, so I have to think that there's not a need for anything beyond a good homeowner saw. That said, I'd stick with a brand that makes "real" chainsaws. Stihl would be my first choice. Although they're sort of the direct competitor of my favorite brand (Husqvarna), they have real saws and all sellers have to be servicing dealers. So you're not going to get stuck with the crap big box saws, some of which dealers won't even touch.

Ask the dealer what he recommends for blade size. 16" is pretty standard for gas saws and is all I use unless I'm cutting down something quite big....then I only go up to an 18". For a little electric, if there's a smaller standard blade, go with that. Branches aren't going to need much.

If everything you're trying to saw requires a ladder, consider a pole saw. I have an Echo (gas) and it's been stellar.
+1 to Jacks comments. For homeowner duty that will never go beyond cutting up limbs and down branches a 16" saw is enough. I have a 16" Husquavarna gas and I have used that up to bucking decent sized trunks for firewood. .. just takes more time cutting from both sides.

For just occasional cleanup I would follw the advice above, get a lithium Ion cordless from Husquavarna or Stihl. Those where not available when I bought my saw years ago, but are more than enough for causal use without all the maintenance of gas.

Read the safety guides and purchase and wear proper PPE - that means heavy gloves, safety glasses, ear protection, steel toe boots and kevlar chaps as a minimum. A helmet/face shield is not a bad idea also. NEVER use the saw wearing shorts and sneakers!

Oh and keep the chain sharp. Either learn how to file it or bring it in. Whenever the blade stops throwing big chips and you feel a need to apply pressure to cut the chain is dull and MUST be sharpened. Most common mistake I see from homewoners, besides a lack of PPE is cutting with a dull saw. Dull saws are dangerous.
Last edited by jharkin on Sat Sep 15, 2018 7:17 am, edited 1 time in total.

carolinaman
Posts: 3293
Joined: Wed Dec 28, 2011 9:56 am
Location: North Carolina

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by carolinaman » Fri Sep 14, 2018 8:37 am

I have 2+ acres that are heavily wooded. I have worn out 2 chainsaws over the years cutting down trees, limb trimming, etc. I consider myself very experienced with chainsaws and I was always very careful with them. I bought another chainsaw a few years ago to cut down lots of small trees and heavy brush. The chainsaw was defective and did not fully stop when I released the throttle. As a consequence, I sustained a deep cut just above my knee that required 22 stitches (double stitched due to depth). This happened even though saw was barely moving. I was wearing loose fitting jeans. The saw caught on the jeans and dug in. My takeaway: chainsaws are very efficient cutting machines but are indiscriminate as to what they cut. They are equally good with wood or flesh.

I retired from using a chainsaw that day. I now rely on my son or pros to do tree work for me. I do use heavy duty loppers that can cut branches 5/8" thick and a manual pole saw for trimming. I can do a lot with just those. Anything else I hire it out.

If you do get a saw, be very careful and observe all safety rules. You only have to be careless one time to sustain a serious injury.

User avatar
GoldStar
Posts: 601
Joined: Wed May 23, 2018 10:59 am

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by GoldStar » Fri Sep 14, 2018 8:56 am

Home-Depot and other websites now have all the owner manuals online so you can download and peruse user manuals before you buy.
If you read the owner manuals for many of the electric chainsaws (corded or cordless) you will find a statement someone in the owners manual that says "Never cut a branch while on a ladder with this product". I suppose its a CYA thing but I did find in interesting when I bought one a few years back.

I ended up buying an electric (corded) chainsaw but my needs were a bit different than yours. I have a smaller lot and mostly had a lot of downed branches from a storm I wanted to cut up (so didn't mind the cord). I have used it to cut some lower branches but for major tree work I do hire a professional (who has a cherry picker to thin out the tree tops, etc.). At the time I bought the corded chainsaws had a bit more power than cordless - not sure if still true. The one I bought is supposedly as powerful as many gas models (traveling otherwise I'd let you know what it is - not sure if relevant to you though if you really want to go cordless).

lazydavid
Posts: 1859
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 1:37 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by lazydavid » Fri Sep 14, 2018 9:02 am

t885 wrote:
Fri Sep 14, 2018 6:10 am
OP- Head on over to you tube and watch a few videos on how to run a chain saw. It's not rocket science...Reading all the gloom and doom posts " You're going to cut off a limb" LOL.
But even those who advocate that a chainsaw can be used safely (which I agree) also say that it should never be used overhead or while standing on a ladder. Unless the OP is pruning branches small enough to be clipped with garden shears, chances are most/all of the cutting will be done above chest height. So why so many vehement objections to using tools that are actually appropriate for the job at hand while also being less expensive, safer, and easier to use?

User avatar
lthenderson
Posts: 3518
Joined: Tue Feb 21, 2012 12:43 pm
Location: Iowa

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by lthenderson » Fri Sep 14, 2018 9:02 am

dundee wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 1:39 pm
I live in a suburban neighborhood on 1/2 acre. I need to buy a chainsaw to trim several branches and limbs in my yard.
One more thing I thought I would toss out there since I see people do this wrong about 95% of the time. When you are pruning healthy trees, never use your saw to cut directly from the top to bottom of the limb in one go, especially larger limbs. What happens is when you get through 80% of the branch diameter, the weight of the limb will cause it to start bending down and peel the bark underneath the cut back towards the trunk leaving a large open wound that can cause future problems with the tree health.

The correct way is with your handsaw, pole saw or chainsaw, cut a little bit into the branch from the bottom side. It doesn't have to be far. Then moving further away from the trunk a few inches beyond your initial cut, make the cut from top to bottom. That bottom cut will prevent the branch from peeling off the bark on the bottom side. Once the branch is off, you can go back and make another cut from top to bottom on the other side of the initial bottom cut closer to the trunk to make a nice flat cut. Since there is not much weight anymore, the danger of peeling is nil.

User avatar
Sasquatch
Posts: 239
Joined: Mon Apr 09, 2018 12:44 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by Sasquatch » Fri Sep 14, 2018 12:46 pm

Cheap and manditory IMHO. Will last a long time with proper care.

https://www.amazon.com/Oregon-563474-Ch ... 8211&psc=1

Do you have somebody that can teach you how to use a chainsaw? My dad and grandfather taught me and mentored me over the years. They did the falling but I was on the deck limbing and cutting the tree into woodstove size chunks.

User avatar
Artful Dodger
Posts: 483
Joined: Thu Oct 20, 2016 12:56 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by Artful Dodger » Fri Sep 14, 2018 12:56 pm

I'm with the "find the appropriate electric tool crowd" if you're looking for something for branches and limbs.

I can tell you, it is easier than you think to do serious damage to yourself. I've used a gas chain saw 25+ times, and almost caught my leg once. A friend's brother was using (totally inappropriate) at an overhead angle, and the saw kicked back and killed him.

jdb
Posts: 1485
Joined: Wed Dec 05, 2012 8:21 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by jdb » Fri Sep 14, 2018 1:51 pm

I go through a gas chainsaw every couple years in my hobby fruit tree orchard, currently using the 18” Echo CS-400. But favorite and most used chain saw is 14” battery powered Stihl MSA200C. A great machine for smaller jobs. Problem is the cost plus battery plus charger far exceeds your suggested budget. Once I had fixed cost of battery and charger I also bought Stihl battery leaf blower also a great tool, use every week. Anyway, I have had other battery powered and corded electric saws in past and this is only one I liked. By the way, also have a large Milwaukee reciprocating saw which I used for cutting branches. Not any more, it is of course designed to be held in both hands but I kind of abused my arm by holding the heavy saw only with right arm while using left arm to hold branch. So guess who now has rotary cuff injury to right shoulder, those heavy reciprocating saws with vibrations can be tough on older shoulders. Cuidado.
Last edited by jdb on Fri Sep 14, 2018 3:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

dundee
Posts: 41
Joined: Mon Mar 21, 2016 2:27 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by dundee » Fri Sep 14, 2018 2:29 pm

This is OP.

THank you all for your helpful responses. I think I have my plan. I will use my sawzall initally to trim the branches. Then upgrade to a chainsaw as needed.

Lynette
Posts: 1800
Joined: Sun Jul 27, 2014 9:47 am

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by Lynette » Fri Sep 14, 2018 3:40 pm

aristotelian wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 2:40 pm
I recently got this guy. Got the job done and did not feel unsafe at all. I would be a little worried about doing branches at weird angles though. I have generally had bad luck with cordless devices degrading the batteries so I opted for the corded.
https://www.walmart.com/ip/WORX-WG305-1 ... w/39593635
I had one of those and used it to cut branches off a tree. I did not get on a ladder. Then I got rid of it after the work was done and the chain was no longer sharp. This year I wanted to cut off some branches and a small tree so I got this one:

BLACK+DECKER PHS550B 3.4 Amp Powered Handsaw with Storage Bag

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ByvHbH16k8

It is not as powerful as the chain saw but got the work done.
Last edited by Lynette on Fri Sep 14, 2018 5:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

tesuzuki2002
Posts: 536
Joined: Fri Dec 11, 2015 12:40 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by tesuzuki2002 » Fri Sep 14, 2018 4:26 pm

The Wizard wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 7:50 pm
tesuzuki2002 wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 4:16 pm
jebmke wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 1:52 pm
dm200 wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 1:42 pm
Hire someone who:

1. Has the right equipment
2. Knows what he/she is doing
This is what I do. I don't even like to watch the pros with chain saws and wood chippers.
Saws and Wood chippers are awesome!!!
They are indeed.
What's even more awesome is a semi-trailer unit with integral conveyor belt and large diesel engine which grinds up four-foot wide maple trunks and the like, fed by a separate large backhoe unit with a gripper, not a bucket...
Like a chipMaXX ? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oe2d_6LXLyE or something else?

Big Dog
Posts: 884
Joined: Mon Sep 07, 2015 4:12 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by Big Dog » Fri Sep 14, 2018 4:42 pm

I think a battery powered reciprocating saw (e.g. Sawzall) to trim the branches...
I rented a reciprocating saw from HomeDepot to cut off/out a big root and cut off some branches. Worked great. You might try before your buy.

btw: HD rented a heavy battery-op Nakita. While lifting it was a workout, teh extra weight enabled it to easily slice thru the branches like butter.

roflwaffle
Posts: 439
Joined: Mon Mar 02, 2015 10:08 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by roflwaffle » Fri Sep 14, 2018 4:45 pm

I'd get a battery powered pole saw. I recently picked up a 10" chainsaw 8" pole saw, weed wacker, and hedge trimmer with 2 2AH batteries/chargers for $200 and I'm really like them. They don't last very long on the 2AH batteries, but I have two, and I end up working for shorter intervals which I should really do anyway.

I recommend against a reciprocating saw unless you're also on the ground because the blade can bind a lot easier than a chainsaw or pole saw blade would and may throw you off balance.

The Wizard
Posts: 12359
Joined: Tue Mar 23, 2010 1:45 pm
Location: Reading, MA

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by The Wizard » Fri Sep 14, 2018 4:46 pm

tesuzuki2002 wrote:
Fri Sep 14, 2018 4:26 pm
The Wizard wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 7:50 pm
tesuzuki2002 wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 4:16 pm
jebmke wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 1:52 pm
dm200 wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 1:42 pm
Hire someone who:

1. Has the right equipment
2. Knows what he/she is doing
This is what I do. I don't even like to watch the pros with chain saws and wood chippers.
Saws and Wood chippers are awesome!!!
They are indeed.
What's even more awesome is a semi-trailer unit with integral conveyor belt and large diesel engine which grinds up four-foot wide maple trunks and the like, fed by a separate large backhoe unit with a gripper, not a bucket...
Like a chipMaXX ? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oe2d_6LXLyE or something else?
Something like that but bigger.
A separate trailer unit loaded by a freestanding backhoe machine.
They use them to clean up after hurricanes bring down hundreds of trees.
In my town, they bring one in every couple months to grind up the trunks of trees that have been taken down...
Attempted new signature...

Grt2bOutdoors
Posts: 19335
Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2007 8:20 pm
Location: New York

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Fri Sep 14, 2018 4:46 pm

Wish I knew about this battery operated chainsaw last year, could have saved a bit of money taking down a small dogwood. A pole saw would have come in handy as well.
"One should invest based on their need, ability and willingness to take risk - Larry Swedroe" Asking Portfolio Questions

Grt2bOutdoors
Posts: 19335
Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2007 8:20 pm
Location: New York

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Fri Sep 14, 2018 4:48 pm

roflwaffle wrote:
Fri Sep 14, 2018 4:45 pm
I'd get a battery powered pole saw. I recently picked up a 10" chainsaw 8" pole saw, weed wacker, and hedge trimmer with 2 2AH batteries/chargers for $200 and I'm really like them. They don't last very long on the 2AH batteries, but I have two, and I end up working for shorter intervals which I should really do anyway.

I recommend against a reciprocating saw unless you're also on the ground because the blade can bind a lot easier than a chainsaw or pole saw blade would and may throw you off balance.
Where are you buying these for $200 total?
"One should invest based on their need, ability and willingness to take risk - Larry Swedroe" Asking Portfolio Questions

lazydavid
Posts: 1859
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 1:37 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by lazydavid » Fri Sep 14, 2018 4:50 pm

roflwaffle wrote:
Fri Sep 14, 2018 4:45 pm
I recommend against a reciprocating saw unless you're also on the ground because the blade can bind a lot easier than a chainsaw or pole saw blade would and may throw you off balance.
This is not an issue for the smaller pistol-grip models where the blade faces upwards:

Image

And even so, generally when the blade binds, it shakes the branch rather than kicking back to an appreciable degree. You get blurry vision, but it doesn't throw you off balance. :D

roflwaffle
Posts: 439
Joined: Mon Mar 02, 2015 10:08 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by roflwaffle » Fri Sep 14, 2018 5:02 pm

Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
Fri Sep 14, 2018 4:48 pm
roflwaffle wrote:
Fri Sep 14, 2018 4:45 pm
I'd get a battery powered pole saw. I recently picked up a 10" chainsaw 8" pole saw, weed wacker, and hedge trimmer with 2 2AH batteries/chargers for $200 and I'm really like them. They don't last very long on the 2AH batteries, but I have two, and I end up working for shorter intervals which I should really do anyway.

I recommend against a reciprocating saw unless you're also on the ground because the blade can bind a lot easier than a chainsaw or pole saw blade would and may throw you off balance.
Where are you buying these for $200 total?
From Amazing0n. Greenworks (I guess?) had a promo on their 24V tools back in June. The string/hedge trimmer (no batteries) were $30+ each and the chainsaw/pole saw (with batteries) were $70+ each. The total after tax was $221.

roflwaffle
Posts: 439
Joined: Mon Mar 02, 2015 10:08 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by roflwaffle » Fri Sep 14, 2018 5:03 pm

lazydavid wrote:
Fri Sep 14, 2018 4:50 pm
roflwaffle wrote:
Fri Sep 14, 2018 4:45 pm
I recommend against a reciprocating saw unless you're also on the ground because the blade can bind a lot easier than a chainsaw or pole saw blade would and may throw you off balance.
This is not an issue for the smaller pistol-grip models where the blade faces upwards:

Image

And even so, generally when the blade binds, it shakes the branch rather than kicking back to an appreciable degree. You get blurry vision, but it doesn't throw you off balance. :D
Nice! I've only had kickback from cutting larger limbs too. At the same time, I imagine even the smaller pole saws could handle whatever a pistol grip reciprocating saw can.

lazydavid
Posts: 1859
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 1:37 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by lazydavid » Fri Sep 14, 2018 5:08 pm

roflwaffle wrote:
Fri Sep 14, 2018 5:03 pm
Nice! I've only had kickback from cutting larger limbs too. At the same time, I imagine even the smaller pole saws could handle whatever a pistol grip reciprocating saw can.
Agreed. But I use mine for tons of stuff aside from pruning high branches. A pole saw doesn't work great for removing a brake caliper where a horribly-designed slide has an o-ring that's swelled and formed a permanent bond (WTF Toyota? Seriously!). Or for shortening lacrosse sticks. Or cutting pipe. :mrgreen:

roflwaffle
Posts: 439
Joined: Mon Mar 02, 2015 10:08 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by roflwaffle » Fri Sep 14, 2018 5:19 pm

lazydavid wrote:
Fri Sep 14, 2018 5:08 pm
Agreed. But I use mine for tons of stuff aside from pruning high branches. A pole saw doesn't work great for removing a brake caliper where a horribly-designed slide has an o-ring that's swelled and formed a permanent bond (WTF Toyota? Seriously!). Or for shortening lacrosse sticks. Or cutting pipe. :mrgreen:
I can't wait for the less costly HF version to come out. ;)

tim1999
Posts: 3507
Joined: Tue Dec 16, 2008 7:16 am

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by tim1999 » Fri Sep 14, 2018 6:40 pm

Home Depot will rent a decent 16" electric corded chain saw for 4 hours for around $35, maybe $50 for a full day including damage insurance. Might be a good option for very infrequent/once per year type usage, since they deal with the chain sharpening/oiling/maintenance, and if the chain jumps off the blade and you have trouble getting it back on (which I did) you can just bring it back in and they will put it back on for you.

Edit: With the rental they include a hardhat, ear/eye protection, and chaps.
Last edited by tim1999 on Fri Sep 14, 2018 8:43 pm, edited 2 times in total.

jadedfalcons
Posts: 198
Joined: Sat Feb 04, 2017 8:55 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by jadedfalcons » Fri Sep 14, 2018 8:36 pm

As someone who sells Stihl saws running from $170 to over $2,000, I suggest you check out their MSA120. $299.99 for saw, battery, and charger. Just sold one yesterday to a petite 70 year old woman. If she can handle it, you can too. I personally use the MSA200. The whole package for that model starts in the $500 range, but you can also get a pole pruner (I own the HTA85) that uses the same battery.

And don't let the worrywarts scare you off the idea of using one. Use common sense and you're fine. Right now, you can pick up a woodcutter kit for $99.99 that gets you chaps and a helmet, plus a couple other addons.

jadedfalcons
Posts: 198
Joined: Sat Feb 04, 2017 8:55 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by jadedfalcons » Fri Sep 14, 2018 8:45 pm

likegarden wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 5:44 pm
Electric chain saws do not have the power as a gas chain saw. Are good for up to 5 inches dia branches. Then when I tried to use my 2 cycle gas chain saw 2 years ago the carburetor was all gummed up (gas and oil mixture), and a new carburetor would have cost as much as a new chain saw. Whenever you buy a gas chain saw, buy one with a 4 cycle engine. I would never use any chain saw while standing on a ladder.

2 years ago I was not able to cut out the stump of a large juniper, electric chainsaw did not have the power, had to use an ax, and got my right knee permanently injured (small meniscus rip). I am also 78. Removal of that juniper would have cost me perhaps $200 by a business I have very good experience with, but I thought I would be able to do it. Good luck!
4 cycle engines saws are great....for selling more saws when the engine burns up because it's been held at an angle where oil wasn't getting sucked through the engine. There's a reason that the top brands are 2 cycle.

User avatar
c.coyle
Posts: 118
Joined: Thu Aug 03, 2017 5:10 pm
Location: Eastern Pa.

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by c.coyle » Sat Sep 15, 2018 6:53 am

If you don't know what you're doing, a chainsaw will sho 'nuff trim your limbs.
VTSAX - 40%, VTIAX - 10%, VBTLX - 50%

User avatar
jharkin
Posts: 1873
Joined: Mon Mar 28, 2016 7:14 am
Location: Boston suburbs

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by jharkin » Sat Sep 15, 2018 7:06 am

jadedfalcons wrote:
Fri Sep 14, 2018 8:45 pm
likegarden wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 5:44 pm
Electric chain saws do not have the power as a gas chain saw. Are good for up to 5 inches dia branches. Then when I tried to use my 2 cycle gas chain saw 2 years ago the carburetor was all gummed up (gas and oil mixture), and a new carburetor would have cost as much as a new chain saw. Whenever you buy a gas chain saw, buy one with a 4 cycle engine. I would never use any chain saw while standing on a ladder.

2 years ago I was not able to cut out the stump of a large juniper, electric chainsaw did not have the power, had to use an ax, and got my right knee permanently injured (small meniscus rip). I am also 78. Removal of that juniper would have cost me perhaps $200 by a business I have very good experience with, but I thought I would be able to do it. Good luck!
4 cycle engines saws are great....for selling more saws when the engine burns up because it's been held at an angle where oil wasn't getting sucked through the engine. There's a reason that the top brands are 2 cycle.
Not true. 4 cycle chainsaws and weed trimmers have designs that lubricate at any angle...It’s not rocket science and would be a very poor design if they used an engine that could only operate upright.

There are a couple approaches. The Honda GX keeps the oil whipped up into a mist that is pressure fed around the valves. The Stihl “4 mix” uses a 2 stroke gas/oil mix that is allowed to bypass the piston through the case and valves- an approach used on model airplane engines for nearly 40 years. Others use minaturized versions of dry sump pump systems as used on aircraft and race cars as far back as WW2.


Pro saws are still 2 cycle because you can pack more Horsepower in a smaller and lighter package, but over time that will change as it has for outboard engines and other lawn tools.

User avatar
jharkin
Posts: 1873
Joined: Mon Mar 28, 2016 7:14 am
Location: Boston suburbs

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by jharkin » Sat Sep 15, 2018 7:19 am

carolinaman wrote:
Fri Sep 14, 2018 8:37 am
I have 2+ acres that are heavily wooded. I have worn out 2 chainsaws over the years cutting down trees, limb trimming, etc. I consider myself very experienced with chainsaws and I was always very careful with them. I bought another chainsaw a few years ago to cut down lots of small trees and heavy brush. The chainsaw was defective and did not fully stop when I released the throttle. As a consequence, I sustained a deep cut just above my knee that required 22 stitches (double stitched due to depth). This happened even though saw was barely moving. I was wearing loose fitting jeans. The saw caught on the jeans and dug in. My takeaway: chainsaws are very efficient cutting machines but are indiscriminate as to what they cut. They are equally good with wood or flesh.

I retired from using a chainsaw that day. I now rely on my son or pros to do tree work for me. I do use heavy duty loppers that can cut branches 5/8" thick and a manual pole saw for trimming. I can do a lot with just those. Anything else I hire it out.

If you do get a saw, be very careful and observe all safety rules. You only have to be careless one time to sustain a serious injury.
Sorry for your injury.... However this is a perfect example of why people should be wearing Kevlar chainsaw chaps and heavy boots.

euroswiss
Posts: 212
Joined: Sun Oct 25, 2015 4:40 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by euroswiss » Sat Sep 15, 2018 7:49 am

I can’t comment on whether you should or should not buy a chainsaw. That’s YOUR call. If you get one though, I recommend a DeWalt 40V Model. I have found it every bit as powerful and more reliable than any gas powered chainsaw I have owned. Will exceed your budget though - you get what you pay for, generally.

https://www.amazon.com/DEWALT-DCCS690X1 ... c+chainsaw

ddurrett896
Posts: 874
Joined: Wed Nov 05, 2014 3:23 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by ddurrett896 » Sat Sep 15, 2018 8:13 am

dundee wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 1:39 pm
In order to buy a good product, I am willing to spend up to $200.
If you think you will never have to cut up large tree branches, use one of these.

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Milwaukee-M ... NwodQ78MQg

If you think you might need to cut up large tree branches, use one of these.

https://www.homedepot.com/p/ECHO-14-in- ... /100675457

The 14" bar does work! I've used it to cut everything from pruning small branches to massive pine tree trunks where I had to cut from each side to make a 26"ish cut. If you go with gas, never use ethanol fuel. I repeat...NEVER USE ETHANOL FUEL! Buy Trufuel which equated to about $25/gallon (but you will likely not use much) or find a gas station that sells non-ethanol fuel.

My only local non-ethanol dealer is a Sunoco that sells 110 for $8/gallon - still much cheaper than pre mixed fuel. Also, buy one of these that tells you how much oil you need.

https://www.amazon.com/Ratio-Rite-Measu ... B000I1YLGK

Vanguard Fan 1367
Posts: 758
Joined: Wed Feb 08, 2017 3:09 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by Vanguard Fan 1367 » Sat Sep 15, 2018 8:21 am

c.coyle wrote:
Sat Sep 15, 2018 6:53 am
If you don't know what you're doing, a chainsaw will sho 'nuff trim your limbs.
I have heard a "widowmaker" defined as a tree that falls against another tree when sawing rather than falling to the ground. My buddies and I had an accident trying to deal with a widowmaker. Thankfully the gash in one of our legs and my spurting artery in the elbow area healed without permanent damage.
I had to pay for the ER to close the gash and that was about 2 grand.

tibbitts
Posts: 8055
Joined: Tue Feb 27, 2007 6:50 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by tibbitts » Sat Sep 15, 2018 8:47 am

I have had 2 16in electric chain saws and now a little (8in?) electric pole saw. With the chainsaw I would draw the line at the ladder - just too much danger of slipping. I have used the pole saw a couple of steps up on a ladder but not the chainsaws. With the pole saw I sometimes do get hit by falling branches but they're not big enough to do any harm. You would think there would be time to get out of the way but sometimes the saw is kind of jammed in the tree and you don't want to just drop it.

I would only cut down a tree by cutting it off from the top in manageable pieces, so obviously I'd limit myself in the height of the tree.
Last edited by tibbitts on Sat Sep 15, 2018 8:49 am, edited 1 time in total.

The Wizard
Posts: 12359
Joined: Tue Mar 23, 2010 1:45 pm
Location: Reading, MA

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by The Wizard » Sat Sep 15, 2018 8:48 am

Vanguard Fan 1367 wrote:
Sat Sep 15, 2018 8:21 am
c.coyle wrote:
Sat Sep 15, 2018 6:53 am
If you don't know what you're doing, a chainsaw will sho 'nuff trim your limbs.
I have heard a "widowmaker" defined as a tree that falls against another tree when sawing rather than falling to the ground. My buddies and I had an accident trying to deal with a widowmaker. Thankfully the gash in one of our legs and my spurting artery in the elbow area healed without permanent damage.
I had to pay for the ER to close the gash and that was about 2 grand.
I know exactly what you are talking about when a larger tree fails to drop properly.
And I could explain how I deal with it using my pickup, a steel cable, and chains.
But I'm not, because this scenario is WAAAY beyond what the OP is asking about...
Attempted new signature...

jadedfalcons
Posts: 198
Joined: Sat Feb 04, 2017 8:55 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by jadedfalcons » Sat Sep 15, 2018 9:50 am

jharkin wrote:
Sat Sep 15, 2018 7:06 am
jadedfalcons wrote:
Fri Sep 14, 2018 8:45 pm
likegarden wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 5:44 pm
Electric chain saws do not have the power as a gas chain saw. Are good for up to 5 inches dia branches. Then when I tried to use my 2 cycle gas chain saw 2 years ago the carburetor was all gummed up (gas and oil mixture), and a new carburetor would have cost as much as a new chain saw. Whenever you buy a gas chain saw, buy one with a 4 cycle engine. I would never use any chain saw while standing on a ladder.

2 years ago I was not able to cut out the stump of a large juniper, electric chainsaw did not have the power, had to use an ax, and got my right knee permanently injured (small meniscus rip). I am also 78. Removal of that juniper would have cost me perhaps $200 by a business I have very good experience with, but I thought I would be able to do it. Good luck!
4 cycle engines saws are great....for selling more saws when the engine burns up because it's been held at an angle where oil wasn't getting sucked through the engine. There's a reason that the top brands are 2 cycle.
Not true. 4 cycle chainsaws and weed trimmers have designs that lubricate at any angle...It’s not rocket science and would be a very poor design if they used an engine that could only operate upright.

There are a couple approaches. The Honda GX keeps the oil whipped up into a mist that is pressure fed around the valves. The Stihl “4 mix” uses a 2 stroke gas/oil mix that is allowed to bypass the piston through the case and valves- an approach used on model airplane engines for nearly 40 years. Others use minaturized versions of dry sump pump systems as used on aircraft and race cars as far back as WW2.


Pro saws are still 2 cycle because you can pack more Horsepower in a smaller and lighter package, but over time that will change as it has for outboard engines and other lawn tools.
"would be a very poor design if they used an engine that could only operate upright"

As someone who has a six figure shop department in his store, we see plenty of equipment that suffered from just that. Even lawnmowers are subject to it if they don't have a separate oil pump, which is why if you read many manuals, you'll see that they warn you against spending too much time "at an angle" and to take it back to a flat surface for a few minutes after running at an angle. That's why we can still get $5-600 for a good ol' solid 2 stroke Lawn-Boy mower when we find one, even if it is 20 years old.

I am curious, tho, what chainsaws are you seeing that utilise the Honda GX engine?

mouses
Posts: 3824
Joined: Sat Oct 24, 2015 12:24 am

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by mouses » Sat Sep 15, 2018 4:19 pm

likegarden wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 5:44 pm
Electric chain saws do not have the power as a gas chain saw. Are good for up to 5 inches dia branches. Then when I tried to use my 2 cycle gas chain saw 2 years ago the carburetor was all gummed up (gas and oil mixture), and a new carburetor would have cost as much as a new chain saw. Whenever you buy a gas chain saw, buy one with a 4 cycle engine. I would never use any chain saw while standing on a ladder.

2 years ago I was not able to cut out the stump of a large juniper, electric chainsaw did not have the power, had to use an ax, and got my right knee permanently injured (small meniscus rip). I am also 78. Removal of that juniper would have cost me perhaps $200 by a business I have very good experience with, but I thought I would be able to do it. Good luck!
Around here you can get a stump ground out for under $100 and maybe ten minutes of the machine doing its thing. I don't think a lot of people know this, that's why you see stumps with pots of flowers on them in people's yards.

Lynette
Posts: 1800
Joined: Sun Jul 27, 2014 9:47 am

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by Lynette » Sat Sep 15, 2018 4:35 pm

mouses wrote:
Sat Sep 15, 2018 4:19 pm
likegarden wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 5:44 pm
Electric chain saws do not have the power as a gas chain saw. Are good for up to 5 inches dia branches. Then when I tried to use my 2 cycle gas chain saw 2 years ago the carburetor was all gummed up (gas and oil mixture), and a new carburetor would have cost as much as a new chain saw. Whenever you buy a gas chain saw, buy one with a 4 cycle engine. I would never use any chain saw while standing on a ladder.

2 years ago I was not able to cut out the stump of a large juniper, electric chainsaw did not have the power, had to use an ax, and got my right knee permanently injured (small meniscus rip). I am also 78. Removal of that juniper would have cost me perhaps $200 by a business I have very good experience with, but I thought I would be able to do it. Good luck!
Around here you can get a stump ground out for under $100 and maybe ten minutes of the machine doing its thing. I don't think a lot of people know this, that's why you see stumps with pots of flowers on them in people's yards.
I had a tree pro remove a dying tree for me. He recommended that we did not grind the stump or else the ground might sink. So we left the stump. I have had to have all kinds of drains installed and the ground sank. I'm still dealing with that.

lazydavid
Posts: 1859
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 1:37 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by lazydavid » Sat Sep 15, 2018 4:58 pm

Lynette wrote:
Sat Sep 15, 2018 4:35 pm
I had a tree pro remove a dying tree for me. He recommended that we did not grind the stump or else the ground might sink. So we left the stump. I have had to have all kinds of drains installed and the ground sank. I'm still dealing with that.
If the tree was large enough, the ground will sink somewhat where the roots were, no matter what you do. What stump grinding prevents is the giant sinkhole that slowly forms in your yard where the stump once was.

tesuzuki2002
Posts: 536
Joined: Fri Dec 11, 2015 12:40 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by tesuzuki2002 » Sat Sep 15, 2018 7:51 pm

:sharebeer :sharebeer
The Wizard wrote:
Fri Sep 14, 2018 4:46 pm
tesuzuki2002 wrote:
Fri Sep 14, 2018 4:26 pm
The Wizard wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 7:50 pm
tesuzuki2002 wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 4:16 pm
jebmke wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 1:52 pm


This is what I do. I don't even like to watch the pros with chain saws and wood chippers.
Saws and Wood chippers are awesome!!!
They are indeed.
What's even more awesome is a semi-trailer unit with integral conveyor belt and large diesel engine which grinds up four-foot wide maple trunks and the like, fed by a separate large backhoe unit with a gripper, not a bucket...
Like a chipMaXX ? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oe2d_6LXLyE or something else?
Something like that but bigger.
A separate trailer unit loaded by a freestanding backhoe machine.
They use them to clean up after hurricanes bring down hundreds of trees.
In my town, they bring one in every couple months to grind up the trunks of trees that have been taken down...
Pretty sweet!!!!

five2one
Posts: 83
Joined: Thu Jul 05, 2018 6:05 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by five2one » Sun Sep 16, 2018 9:08 am

I bought a gas chainsaw when I determined that cutting down my trees paid for the saw.
If just light pruning, get an electric.

texasdiver
Posts: 2719
Joined: Thu Jun 25, 2009 12:50 am
Location: Vancouver WA

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by texasdiver » Sun Sep 16, 2018 12:43 pm

Ego 14" cordless: https://www.homedepot.com/p/EGO-14-in-5 ... /205439214

The Ego stuff is good quality. Half the price of the tool is the battery and charger so if you have or intend to buy other Ego tools you can special order the bare tool without the battery. I have the Ego mower, string trimer, and blower as well and the batteries swap easily between them. I'm tempted to get the pole saw next but I've been making do with a hand-held manual pole saw and lopper so far.

For infrequent trimming and brush clearing use do NOT get a gas saw. I also have an old Husqvarna commercial grade chainsaw that was a hand-me-down from my dad. Hassling with using and storing 2-stroke mixed gasoline and maintaining the fuel system on an old 2-stroke engine you rarely use is a pain. But if you need to fall large trees or chop large logs into firewood then you absolutely need gas.

Here's a very thorough review of the current cordless options under $400

https://www.protoolreviews.com/tools/ou ... out/29018/

Luke Duke
Posts: 781
Joined: Tue Jun 18, 2013 11:44 am
Location: Texas

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by Luke Duke » Thu Sep 20, 2018 9:15 am

I have a manual pole saw and an Echo chain saw. The pole saw sees a lot more use.

User avatar
munemaker
Posts: 3527
Joined: Sat Jan 18, 2014 6:14 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by munemaker » Thu Sep 20, 2018 9:29 am

I live on a half acre lot with about 20 mature trees, most between 3 and 4 stories tall. I understand why you want a chain saw. On a few occasions, neighbors' trees have fallen on my property, and I have cut a couple of my own down. I have a small Huskvarna and use it a couple times each year. Mine is gasoline powered but if I were buying it today, I would probably go electric. The gasoline motors are a little finicky and require more maintenance.

Here's some advice:
- Avoid using a chainsaw on a ladder. I have done this a few times, but it is really dangerous. Watch some YouTube videos and you will see why.
- Read (or watch a video) and understand chain saw safety features and precautions before you start using it.
- Perform the recommended inspections and maintenance.
- Have someone in the area when using the chainsaw. Never had a problem, but the potential is there for serious injury.
- For gasoline saws, I agree...run the engine out of gasoline before storing it.

jdb
Posts: 1485
Joined: Wed Dec 05, 2012 8:21 pm

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Post by jdb » Thu Sep 20, 2018 3:10 pm

After reading these posts I only have one comment: my favorite tree pruning tool for my fruit tree orchard by far is a Stihl manual extension pruner. Now on my third one, others got mangled over the years by my bad tree management in not avoiding falling limbs on the pruner. But a great tool. Good luck.

Post Reply