Electric Chainsaw Recommendtions?

I'd be interested in any experience with various brands of electric chainsaws. Probably going to buy one to use for light to med cutting jobs around the house.
I have a 40 year old Stihl 031AV and it's giving me headaches. Plus with the electric, for small jobs no need to screw around getting the gas thing started. Looking for something to supplement it, maybe $100 or so?
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On Sat, 17 Nov 2012 10:44:10 -0800 (PST), " snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net"

Remington 12"- on a pole, but it comes off easy.
Here's a 10" for $100-- I think I got my 12" from Harbor Freight for a little less than that. (Amazon.com product link shortened) />/
Advantage of a 10" on that pole is weight-- That thing is unwieldy-- but damn handy.
If I wasn't interested in the pole, I'd get a 16- more for the extra amps than the length of the bar.
I've had 2 Remington in the past decade & both are good tools, in my opinion. I don't cut firewood but have cleaned up a lot of trees, branches and brush with them.
Jim
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On 11/17/2012 3:33 PM, Jim Elbrecht wrote:

(Amazon.com product link shortened)/
I have to 2nd that about the unit on the pole. It works very well for trimming those branches you just can't reach ... plus the saw comes off for semi-portable (with cord) use.
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On 11/17/2012 01:44 PM, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

Ethanol in today's gas destroys small engines. Maybe try some TruFuel?
http://www.trufuel50.com/default.aspx
http://news.consumerreports.org/cars/2012/05/automaker-tests-show-damage-to-older-engines-from-running-on-e15-ethanol.html
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If you've never had the displeasure to actually use an electric chainsaw, I would caution you that they are not the same as a gasoline saw at all. I have a 14" Remington I bought years ago. I've always hated the balance of it, and it's tiring to use because of the slow chain speed. It doesn't cut smoothly like a gas model. It feels like each cutting tooth is slamming into the wood, and makes it tedious to use (yes, even with a new, sharp chain). Recently when I used it the chain stopped rotating, and I found upon inspection, that the pinion gear is metal and drives the final gear which is only nylon. The nylon gear teeth were all worn off - piece of junk.
I went down and bought a new Stihl MS 170 for $180. I'd heard all the scare stories about the cheap Stihls being made in China (not true - Virginia Beach, VA), and hard to start, and won't idle. But it turned out to be a sweet little chain saw, very light - about 9 pounds with bar & chain; starts easy, idles just fine. Perfect for occasional use.
As for the old Stihl 031AV, those are great saws with parts still available. If you don't want to fool with it, list it on eBay and someone will snap it up. I have a Stihl 028 WB from about 1981 that I just bought a carb kit for on eBay for $5. Still runs good...
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I have a 14" Remington and love it. Mine is not slow as long as I keep the chain sharp, and the balance is not a problem. I wont tackle a 3 foot diamater tree with it, but it works just fine for trimming, and last summer I had to cut up a tree with a 12 inch trunk that fell on my house. It worked perfectly, except I did not cut off the trunk near the ground and risk damaging the chain. I left about 5 feet of trunk so I can hopefully rip the stump out with a tractor next year.
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electric chainsaws never have fuel troubles, never have starting problems and nearly always work....
and there cheap enough bought used to have several, chain gets worn, pull out the backup saw
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wrote:

Exactly, A chainsaw is not something I use all that often. When a gas one sits around, it tends to get gummed up, even if the gas is dumped out. I used to get so angry when a tree or limb would fall from a storm, and I'd go get the gas chainsaw, only to find the damn thing would not start. That was after running to the gas station for gas, then hunting around for the oil mix, and mixing it. Then I spend two hours pulling the string on the damn saw, get pissed, cus a lot, toss the damn saw against the fallen tree, breaking it, and finally go get the old hand operated bow saw, and begin the tedious job of cutting it by hand.
By the time I went thru this whole ordeal with the cahinsaw, I could have cut a good portion of the tree with that bow saw, saved my temper and anger, and I'm still stuck with a gallon of mixed gas which is now useless, unless I take the saw into the repair shop, hand over a minimum of $100, and by that time I sawed up the tree with my bow saw, and the newly repaired gas chainsaw will sit on the shelf for another 6 months or a year and gum up, while the mixed gas in the can goes bad.
The last time I went thru that ordeal, after spending several hundred dollars on repairs within the last few years on that damn gas saw, I grabbed the saw and smashed it against the concrete sidewalk. I picked up the pieces and threw them in the garbage. Then I went a bought my electric chainsaw, knowing I'll never own another gas chainsaw. I did the same thing with the gas weedwhacker, and now own an electric one of them too.
If I ever find that my electric chainsaw is not large or powerful enough for a huge tree, I'll rent a gas one from the local rental shop for about $25 per day. If that one dont start, let THEM fix it. And I have found that because those rental saws are used often, they generally do start and run. However, since I bought my electric saw, I have not yet found any tree it could not handle, and it also doubles as a tool I use for doing rough construction and demolition of buildings. It works like a charm to trim off wooden posts which are too thick for a circular saw, and it's easy to use for hacking off rafters that protrude beyond the edge of a roof.
I honestly think small 2-cycle engines were made to drive men to rage. Maybe they are a curse of the devil, but more likely just like most things these days, they are made to make a fast buck for the seller, and made to use once and toss in the trash in our disposible society.
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You can have mine. I wasted more time trying to keep the chain adjusted.
Greg
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I bought over time 3 identical poulan electrics at flea markets for around 12 bucks each. to me its get the job done, when one saw quits, hit nail or other wierd problem occurs swap saws and keep going. one saw got stuck when the wind picked up, jammed saw so i plugged another swa in and kept on cutting
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wrote:

If you're cutting 4" or less, you might want to look at one of the "jawsaws." Amazon has reviews on a number of them. Likewise if you have a Sawzall you can get pruning blades. I just bought some but won't use one until the spring, so I can't say how well they work. According to Amazon reviews they do. My electric broke it's gearing, probably plastic. Think it was about $50, maybe Sears. 14" Got just a little use out of it.
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-snip-

they cut-- they cut well. But they are *no* replacement for even the puniest chain saw. They get pinched easily on larger branches, and just shake the hell out of the smaller ones.
Whether it is for tree/brush cleanup or demolition work, I'd grab my electric chainsaw first.
If I was on the second floor and had the sawsall & kit already, I would probably try it first.

I see a lot of folks complaining about their electrics-- I've been happy with both my Remingtons.
Though I will say there probably isn't 100 hours on the pair over the last 10 years. But that is what they are best at. Sit on a shelf for years, fill the chain with oil and fire up with no prep for 5 minutes- and then put them back on the shelf.
If I was going to use a chainsaw for 8 hours at a rip- or more than 3-4 times a year, I'd get another gas saw-- For my use, an electric is ideal.
Jim
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That's my usage model too. I've used electric chainsaws before and agree they are not a replacement for regular larger cutting jobs. But around here, I typically use a chainsaw once or twice a year for a few minutes and that is cutting larger branches or a small tree.
I figure having the electric will allow me to do some of the post Sandy work that needs to be done before I can get the Stihl working again. Right now the township is still hauling away trees we put in the street,.
And for $75, I think the electric is a good investment, even having a gas saw. That way, for the small stuff couple times a year, I don't have to fire up the gas one, then deal with the carb getting screwed from ethanol gas, etc. The gas one will probably be less trouble that way and available on the few occasions when I really need it.
So far, looking at reviews, it looks like there is a Craftsman for $85 that I'd have to drive 30 miles roundtrip to get, but could have it today. Or very similar Poulan for $75, shipping included. Poulan is somewhat higher rated on user reviews, looks nicer, has oil fill on top instead of side. Still deciding. Only thing against Poulan at this point is I'd rather have it now. And Sears does take stuff back locally if it blows up.....
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wrote:

Exactly, it comes down to use. Cutting an occasional 2" branch if fine, but if you are felling a few 150' oak trees and cutting it to firewood, you need the right tool. In either case, the chains has to be sharp.
For really light work, a battery powered reciprocating saw is even better, no cords to drag out to the tree.
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If the work is *that* light, I'll have my folding pruning saw on my belt and take those branches off in about 3 strokes. [or I'll use my loppers]
Jim
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wrote:

Well, I bought an electric chainsaw for stuff I let get too big to lop. Even my good quality heavy duty 3' loppers aren't designed for much more than 1-1 1/2". Depending on wood type. I let a bunch of "weed trees" go too far in the electric company right-of-way next to the garage, saw the electric, and had money in my pocket. It worked well enough, but was really overkill. Already had a couple good Fiskars pruning saws, and those would have done it in 5 times the work and time. 5 times "not much work" still made buying the chainsaw a questionable value. The trees are back to 4" diameter and almost touching the power lines. This time I'll try the Sawzall. As already said, a lot depends on what you have to cut. I've climbed about 10' with a pruning saw to cut branches up to about 5", but called in the tree guys to remove a big maple. And I don't cut firewood. Don't recall what the OP would use the saw for. And there might be more lumberjacks in here than I know about.
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wrote:

That's the kind of decision I base more on store return policy. I'm pretty sure I can get $100 of value out of any $100 saw I don't break in a month. -----
- gpsman
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On Sat, 17 Nov 2012 10:44:10 -0800 (PST), " snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net"

I have a Remington pole saw that detaches and is used like a regular chain saw. It is OK but no replacement for a real chain saw.
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Pole mounted electric saws work best when used vertically. Once you get it extended out and start working at an angle the weight becomes an issue.
I've borrowed a pole based saw to trim some branches from a second story window. The branches extended over my roof and I wanted to clear them away. Trust me, that saw gets awfully heavy when hanging out of the window cutting branches at an angle. I would rest the saw on the branch, let the weight do the cutting and then try and hang on tight while the weight tried to send the saw to the ground. The flexibility of the fiberglass pole didn't help as the pole flexed as the weight pulled it down.
It was an adventure but I got it done.
As others have mentioned, the electric saw is no match for gas saw. When I need to do some pruning on branches that are easily accessible, I use my reciprocating saw.
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wrote:

I have a Bosch. It's much lighter and safer, the chain stops instantly when you release the trigger. The chain tension adjuster is better than the standard chain saw as it needs no tools. The power is good.
One annoying thing is when you let go the trigger the chain stops instantly but the motor runs on. (Must be some sort of clutch). However if you press the trigger before the motor stops running,there is a really nasty clunking/crunching noise as it re-engages. I feel sure this must cause damage. So you have to keep pausing to let the motor stop before you can start again when sawing thin pieces.
The chain is narrower than the petrol chain saw and needs sharpening more frequently.
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