Which Chainsaw is (Really) the Best?
What you'll find in this article...
- Which Chainsaw is (Really) the Best?
- Husqvarna 450 18″ Gas Powered Chain Saw
- Makita UC4051A 16″ Electric Chain Saw
- Black & Decker LP1000 Alligator Lopper Electric Chain Saw
- Maintenance Tips
Chainsaws are a type of mechanical saw than run by a motor and are used mostly in logging or arboriculture (management of trees).
Chainsaws are used in felling trees and their parts (especially branches and leaves) for routine management of tree growing and also by professional arborists for suppressing wild land fires.
Chainsaws have also been used in chainsaw art since the 1950s. Recently, popular culture presentations like horror movies and musical recordings have made chainsaw a symbol of thrill and terror.
Having a good quality chainsaw is not simply a matter of getting the job done quickly and right, it is also a matter of your personal safety. Using a chainsaw that is likely to malfunction is the surest way to injuring yourself or others.
Don’t waste your money on a low quality chainsaw. Make an informed consumer decision and get the right chainsaw for your needs.
If you’re in the market for a new chainsaw, below are some of the best-reviewed chainsaws to help you do your research and choose the chainsaw that is just right for you.
Husqvarna 450 18″ Gas Powered Chain Saw
The Husqvarna brand is widely acknowledged for the overall quality of its tools and equipment, and the chainsaw department is no exception.
The Husqvarna 450 is a professional quality chainsaw with an X-Torq engine that reduces your overall emission levels and helps to lower your fuel consumption, which is good for both the environment and your wallet.
This is the saw you want if you’re starting a tree service business, or if you’re a hard core home DIY tree cutter. It’s a bit more expensive, but so worth it.
This is an extremely powerful saw, so be sure to take proper safety measures and read the instructions on proper usage.
The main complaint on the Husqvarna 450 is that it can be difficult to start, in spite of its Smart Start feature with a fuel pump intended to make starting it easier.
A last notable feature of the Husqvarna 450 is that it has a visible fuel level, which is convenient for knowing how close you are to refueling.
Makita UC4051A 16″ Electric Chain Saw
One noteworthy feature of the UC4030A is its built-in current limiter that helps to prevent the motor from burning out on difficult jobs like hardwoods.
It also boasts a viewable oil reservoir.
This handy electric saw also has an easy tool-free chain adjustment. The lightweight plastic frame includes a rubberized grip allowing for increased comfort in handling, with an electric brake that provides the maximum protection.
The main potential downside to this saw is the presence of a cord for power.
If you prefer not to mix gas and oil, then this saw is a good option for you.
For a compact and lightweight electric saw, many reviewers were quite impressed with its overall power and cutting ability. This is a great one for small jobs.
Reasons Why You Might Want To Consider An Electric Chainsaw…
In the first place, most electric chainsaws are cheaper than their gas powered counterparts. Of course there are plenty of other reasons for going electric.
- Easy to store – particularly if you have to store your saw for a really long time, these beat gas powered. Frequently they come equipped with their very own storage/carrying cases. Wipe it off, put it away – simple. With gas, for 30 days storage or more, you remove the spark plug and all the gas.
- Less noise – you can work in the yard and bother your neighbors a whole lot less with the lowered noise levels from an electric chainsaw.
- Start up – when is the last time you tried starting a gas powered chainsaw? How long did it take? How sore and tired did your arm get after yanking on that cord? Oh and God forbid you flood the darned thing. Maybe you didn’t mix the oil and gas in just the right proportion. Here are the steps to starting an electric chainsaw. Ready? Here we go: place your fingers on the ‘on’ switch and turn. That’s it.
- Fuel – what fuel? You need nothing more than electrical outlet.
- Ever heard of ‘kick back’ – sometimes gas operated saw will kick back due to the power behind the turning chain. An electric chainsaw has little to no kickback.
- User friendly – if you are a home owner with simple tasks at hand you really don’t need anything bigger than an 18 incher. Why spend a ton of cash on some massive, whompin’, stompin’ gas powered behemoth when a light weight electric can do the job nicely? That’s wasteful and unnecessary.
Small maybe… but a toy? No way!
Here’s a safety warning! Well, even something as seemingly harmless as an electric hedge trimmer can be deadly when safety is not first and foremost in the mind of the user.
An electric chainsaw, though smaller than a lumber jack’s version, is still a power tool! It is not a toy and should never be used by someone incapable of handling it.
It only takes one second of thoughtlessness, no matter how unintentional, and a limb can be severed or a life lost. And who needs that!
If you don’t like the sound of the above-mentioned, the sheer convenience of these smaller and lighter versions of a homeowner chain saw is one good reason enough.
One word of warning however once your neighbors see what you have there, they’ll constantly be knocking on your door wanting to ‘borrow it for just a minute’.
Remember that electric hedge trimmer you have ‘borrowed’ your neighbor? Actually you probably don’t – it’s been so long since you’ve seen it!
Black & Decker LP1000 Alligator Lopper Electric Chain Saw
Black & Decker is one of the most reputable power tools brands in the market today and this Black and Decker LP1000 Alligator Lopper model is no exception when it comes to exhibiting superior build quality and performance standards.
Here are some quick highlights about the Black and Decker Alligator Lopper LP1000:
Recommended uses for the Black & Decker Alligator Lopper LP1000
Pruning will be a breeze with this lopper and almost any tree that is less than 4 inches in diameter will be quick work for this tool.
It is also great for disposing off fallen trees or storm affected branches as this tool will come in very handy to cut up the branches of a tree into much more manageable sizes.
- It will be able to handle branches and small trees that most manual loppers will not be able to work on.
- It cuts with one easy grab and cut motion that is very easy on the user.
- The powerful 4.5 amp motor will ensure smooth and fast cutting that will reduce user fatigue quite significantly, especially if the user was using a manual lopper before.
- This electric lopper is powered by a 4.5 amps motor.
- It has a bar length of 6 inches
- It weight about 7 pounds
- The innovative clamping jaw mechanism cuts with a unique scissor like action that is extremely effective, especially when used on branches and trees that are about 2-3 inches in diameter.
We used to prune maple trees with a hand saw. The maple trees had to be cut up in smaller sizes with a manual lopper and it used to take about 2 hours.
We put the Black & Decker LP1000 Alligator Lopper to test and we were able to complete the same job in less than 30 minutes and we even managed to complete the bagging during that time.
The capacity is just brilliant and you cannot really go wrong with the less than $100 price tag.
The only caution we could mention about this product is that it will be safer for you to buy the corded version if you want to operate the tool at high power at all times.
Batteries are good as well although we personally would much rather prefer electric tools with which you can complete the job at one go, without having to recharge the batteries halfway through the job.
If you aren’t looking to cut down huge trees, this might be perfect for your needs.
A good chainsaw can cost anywhere from a $100 to all the way up to several hundred Dollars. Most the chainsaws these days are built with very durable parts that will ensure a long life. However, even these well engineered power tools will require a little bit of maintenance in order to keep them going great for a long time.
Maintenance of the blade and knowing when the blade needs sharpening
While most of the other parts in a chainsaw are built to last, the saw itself will experience a lot of wear and tear and will require periodic maintenance. A really sharp chain saw is one that will cut through wood without the user having to apply pressure on the chain saw, trying to force its way through timber.
The weight of the chain saw itself should be enough to do the cutting job. If you are beginning to use your body weight to press down on the saw to cut properly, you will be well advised to stop using your chain saw and sharpen it first.
Another good sign that your saw needs sharpening is when you start to see a lot of sawdust during cutting. A sharp blade will usually throw out debris that is larger and chunkier while the presence of sawdust will mean that your blades are struggling to do the job.
How to do maintenance work on the saw?
Many chainsaws these days are sold with a small maintenance kit that will consist of a rounded file, a file gauge, a flat file and a brush to clean debris. If such a kit was not included with your chain saw purchase, you can purchase one for as little as $20.
Your owner’s manual will usually give you very good instructions on how to file your chain saw. If you can’t find it there, search video sites such as Youtube for popular videos that will show you how to file and sharpen a chain.
While sharpening the blade, it is very important that you use the right file size that is recommended for your saw in the owner manual.
Maintenance of chainsaws with automatic oilers
Some of the higher priced chainsaws will come with an automatic oiler that will greatly lengthen the life of a saw but this feature will be useless if you do not remember to top up the oil container. A good way to get over this would be to purchase a chainsaw that will be designed with a view window to easily check the oil level.
Apart from the above chainsaw maintenance tips, proper techniques while using the chainsaw will also greatly increase the life of the blade.