Hi folks, how many of you here own working chainsaws?
Probably, your garage or shed stores not just one useful tool, including a drill, a mini circular saw, a number of screwdrivers, a reciprocating saw, a hammer (for sure), what not. For most of us, a chainsaw is just another power tool in the shed. In truth, we just keep it around for some light, occasional yard work such as trimming some branches and tough hedges. But if your occupation requires a lot of hard or frequent chainsaw work, then there’s just no substitute for a professional chainsaw.
These high-quality chainsaws are specially manufactured to handle gruesome, intensive, and regular cutting tasks.They boast of more power, capacity, capability, and durability than your average chainsaw and possibly a longer bar length too. They are best to use with wood of all types. If you, however, intend to deal with ceramics as well, think of getting a tile saw that is designed specifically for such tasks.
We know you’re really eager to get to work, so we’ll dive right into the best professional chainsaw review and buyers guide to help you get the best match.
These models are all so good it’s actually hard to find a bad one.
Incredibly well built, unrivaled in quality, a leader in the design and frankly one of the top professional chainsaws, the Echo CS-600P Gas Chainsaw is quite a marvel to behold. In addition to having one of the toughest engines with a broader than average torque curve, this unit is extremely intuitive to use.
Looking at the 455 Rancher, it’s clear that this is Husqvarna’s more petite version of a top-tier professional chainsaw. Being smaller and lighter, this saw is ideal for both part-timers and regular users as well.
This Poulan Pro packs a 50cc 2 stroke engine with Oxypower engine technology that saves on 20 percent less gasoline while releasing 70% fewer emissions.
With this 965146701 Gas Powered Chainsaw, Husqvarna proves that you don’t need to spend a fortune to get the best tools for your profession. This model is engineered to deliver the power and performance of a larger model without having to bear the extra weight.
Here’s another beast whose performance and weight closely resembles the Husqvarna 24 incher. The CS-590 Timber Wolf Chainsaw from Echo boasts of a highly efficient 2 stroke 59.8cc engine. At a weight of 17 pounds, this particular saw has the ideal weight to performance ratio required for your professional tasks.
Driven by a 46cc, two-cycle engine, the Remington RM4620 Outlaw Gas Chainsaw is a manageable yet powerful option for the demanding professional. Being die-cast with a professional grade crankcase and some high-quality sprockets, you can tell that the chassis is rock hard and durable.
How to Buy the Best Professional Chainsaw
Didn’t we tell you guys it was going to be awesome?
Heck yeah. But like we said above, all these professional chainsaws are so good that it’s hard to find a bad one. So the problem isn’t getting the best chainsaw. Nope, the real conundrum comes in trying to match the right machine with the right task.
Even with chainsaws, there’s no one size fits all. But not to worry, we’ve chalked up this guide to help you buy the perfect chainsaw for you. Below are some of the key considerations you need to make.
- Power Source
With professional and commercial grade chainsaws, mobility and endurance are always major factors. Due to this, most professionals tend to favor gas and battery-powered machines over electric chainsaws. However, each of these power sources has their pros and cons as you’ll see shortly.
- Gas Chainsaws
These are by far the most powerful and portable of all engine types. Gas engines run longer than all other types and are measured according to the cc or cubic centimeters.
But can I let you in on a secret?
It’s a well-known fact that these types of chainsaws are the heaviest, loudest, and most polluting of all. Gas-powered saws are ideal for heavy-duty cutting jobs such as forest felling since you’ll be away from any other power source.
- Electric Chainsaws
First off, electric saws have to be plugged directly into a power outlet to work. This means that they are the least portable type of chainsaws. However, they make up for that by being incredibly light and very affordable.
What’s more, electric saws don’t need any fuel mixing and are far easier to maintain than gas motors. Still, there is a trade-off for power. This type is suitable for yard work around the home such as light pruning, limb and firewood cutting.
- Battery Chainsaws
These resemble their electric counterparts quite closely; the only significant difference being that they have their own rechargeable batteries. This makes them far more portable than electric models.
However, you need to monitor the charge levels closely so it doesn’t run out of battery in the middle of a project. There’s also the downtime incurred while you wait for it to charge. Here LiPo charger may help.
- Engine Power
If you’re selecting a professional saw, then power is the key.
Not only does more power allow you to cut through larger and tougher pieces of wood, but it lets you do it faster than lower powered chainsaws saving you time and effort. As working men say – time is money. Depending on what engine you choose, the power is measured in cc or kW.
For smaller tasks such as branch trimming, around 40cc engine power will be fine. But for those heavy duty jobs felling trees and cutting logs thicker than 20 inches, you’ll need a 55cc to 70cc engine. So when you’re buying a professional grade saw, always prioritize the engine power over bar length.
After, all, you can always change the bar length when needed, right?
- Bar Length
That’s right; you can always modify the bar length when needed. However, you’ll need to buy a new chain and bar set. Likewise, you’ll also need to make sure the engine can manage. Engines with less power can’t handle longer bar lengths and trying to force it on them only turns them dangerous.
So, what exactly determines the right bar length for you?
Well, the diameter and type of wood you’re cutting is one factor. While longer bars take fewer passes to cut, they actually take longer to cut than shorter bar lengths. So if you’re working against time, you may want to stick with shorter bar lengths.
- Cutting Capacity
So, at what rate do you want your chainsaw to cut?
Let me rephrase that; just how arduous and time consuming is the task at hand?
If you’re just looking for a chainsaw that will help with the occasional yard cutting and small trimming jobs, then a lower rpm rated machine will work well.
However, real professionals with hours of hard and heavy duty cutting will need something faster and more powerful such as chainsaws with a much higher rpm rating or cutting capacity. The higher the rpm, the faster the chainsaw cuts. And the faster it cuts, the quicker you can get your job done; it’s that simple.
- Anti-Vibration Technology
For professional applications, anti-vibration technology is a must. The last thing you want is to have your arms bearing the brunt of the engine for hours on end. Not only does this vibration feel uncomfortable, but it significantly contributes to faster arm fatigue and increases the chances of an accident.
A chainsaw with advanced anti-vibe technology will cut down the severity and intensity of the vibrations and protect your arms at all times.
How to Use a Professional Chainsaw
Before we even touch on the nitty-gritty of chainsaws, let’s take a gander at the young and humble beginnings of this wood slaying monster. The first ever patent for chainsaws was given to Samuel J. Bens in 1905 San Francisco.
However, this was a massive machine that could barely leave the ground. In 1921, Bens filled another patent for a more portable saw.
Thanks to Samuel, we can now harvest wood, prune trees, chop down logs like with a log splitter and make marvelous structures faster and more conveniently. And since the first chainsaw, there have been lots of improvements which are always continuing. Let’s take a gander at how to use today’s modern professional chainsaws.
- Step 1: Personal Protective Equipment
We’ll start with the basics. Safety should always be your first concern and priority when operating any kind of power tool on your property whether it’s a saw or a backpack leaf blower. When operating a chainsaw, you’ll need to wear eye protection, ear protection, sturdy boots, long-sleeved shirt, long pants, gloves, chainsaw chaps and a hard hat.
Sure, it might seem like overkill if you’re just cutting a few limbs around the yard, and the neighbors might laugh at you a bit, but better safe in full PPE than sorry.
- Step 2: Create a Safe Environment
It’s always a good idea to check for environmental hazards before you begin any cutting. Look up, down, around and over to check for where branches will fall.
Is there a clear escape route for when the tree falls? What if it goes in an unintended direction, will it cause any damage? Are there any strong winds, power lines nearby?
This will really help avoid any unforeseen accidents while cutting.
- Step 3: Starting the Chainsaw
Before you start your chainsaw, make sure that it is well charged, well fueled, and well oiled while still on the ground. Here’s how to safely start different types of professional chainsaws.
- Electric chainsaws start with the quick pull of a trigger, so this won’t be much trouble
- For cold engines, you’ll need to start by placing the saw on the ground. Grip the handlebar with one hand and place the right toe in the handle where the throttle trigger is.
- Pull the start/ choke control to the on position and pull the starting handle until the engine fires up.
- Squeeze the throttle quickly when the saw starts to disengage high idle and get ready to start cutting
- Step 4: Handling the Chainsaw
Standard rules apply here; maintain good footing, watch out for tripping hazards, keep good balance, don’t overreach and keep your hands firmly in place to control kickbacks. Similarly, make your cuts away from the bar tip since using the upper portion could cause kickback and engage the chain brake.
Avoid cutting too close to the ground to prevent hitting unseen obstacles. Once you’re all done, use the turn off ignition switch to power down.
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To make sure that your chainsaw operates safely and remains in tip-top shape for longer, you’ll need to carry out routine maintenance practices. More often than not, manufacturers usually include all the maintenance items and practices in the manual.
To carry out maintenance on your saw, you’ll need a few things;
- All in one tool or wrenches and screwdrivers
- Cleaning cloths
- Round file and file gauge
- Flat file and depth gauge
With these tools, you can now perform a few basic maintenance practices on several types of professional saws. Remember to turn off your saw while performing any checks, maintenance or adjustments.
- Checking the chain tension and adjusting as necessary before using your chainsaw
- Regular inspection and cleaning of the bar
- Checking, cleaning and replacing the air filter as indicated by user’s manual
- Inspecting operation of chain brake, throttle lockout, oiler and chain catcher
- Sharpening the chains cutting teeth and replacing worn chains.
Today’s range of professional chainsaws come with some of the most extended, all-inclusive warranties you’ll ever see. For most brands, they have their warranty set at two years.
However, higher end brands will usually add another few to make a 5-7 year warranty. Most warranties cover manufacturer defects, parts and labor. However, items such as improper maintenance, stale fuel, bars, chains, sprockets, starter ropes and other accessories are not included.
Generally, a longer warranty shows just how confident the manufacturer is in their product. So if you see a 2-year warranty and above, then chances are that you’re getting a great machine. As long as your warranty is active, you can go ahead and work with colder climates and tougher materials without worrying about incurring damage costs.
However, newbies and first-timers are advised to purchase professional chainsaws with guarantees. This way, you can always return the chainsaw if it doesn’t meet your needs and requirements.
Keeping the chain as sharp as possible will not only ensure that you work faster, but that you also use far less fuel to get the same job done. To sharpen your chainsaw, start by wearing protective gloves.
Next, secure the bar in a vice and activate the chain brake lock. Place a gauge with arrows towards the bar nose and use a round file to file every single tooth at right angles. Once you make a full circle round the chain, turn the saw around and file the other teeth. After that, file the gauges with a flat file. Your chainsaw should be much sharper and efficient now.
While it’s not bad to leave some fuel in the tank for a few days or weeks, fuel should never be stored in the gas tank for long periods. This could cause the formation of gum deposits in the fuel system.
If the machine is to be stored for more than 30 days, users are advised to drain the fuel tank completely and then start the unit and let it run to make sure all the fuel is used. Stale fuel could really cause damage to a perfectly healthy engine.
As with all other machines, there are several reasons that could cause an engine not to start. With professional chainsaws, you’ll need to make sure that the switch is in the on position.
Next, ensure that you are using less than 90-day old fuel mixed at a ratio of 40:1. Old, stale fuel could cause your engine to malfunction. Similarly, you should check if the air filter is either dirty or if the spark plug has been incorrectly gapped.
Another culprit could be the fuel filter or hot vapors locked in the carburetor. If all these checks fail, then it might be time to have a professional repairman take a closer look.
There you have it my fellow woodworkers; all you need to know about chainsaws and how to get the perfect one. Now that we’ve come to the end of our professional chainsaw review and buyer’s guide, it’s time to wind up by selecting a winner.
To be honest, all the above chainsaws are incredibly reliable and would make any professional proud to own them. However, we have to go with the option that displayed unrivaled stamina, brute strength, the most advanced technologies and effortless, intuitive operation.
You guessed it; our champion of the day has got to be the Echo CS-600P Gas Chainsaw. This gas powered beast among monsters is incredibly well built, unrivaled in quality, a leader in design and frankly one of the best professional chainsaws on the planet.
The Echo CS-600P is quite a marvel to behold, even the price tag agrees with us. In addition to having one of the toughest engines with a broader than average torque curve, this unit is extremely intuitive to use. If you’re looking for the best chainsaw among the best, the CS-600P shines at those tough and almost impossible cuts. This bad boy can run all day and put in several shifts without any signs of wear and tear.
Now that’s what I call a dedicated, hard worker willing to put in the work.