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I Want To Like My Stihl MS250 Again

jonshonda

jonshonda

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Bought the saw a few years ago based on the great reviews as being a homeowner saw and cost. It has been great runner/starter, but with the 18" bar and stock chain I feel like it is very underpowered (I have no other chainsaw experience, and am not comparing it to other models). I cut mostly red oak/maple, and have really been considering buying a bigger saw, but I don't honestly use it enough to justify spending a lot of money on something like a MS261 (although I really want to!!).

I have been reading up on some of the Stihl low profile or Picco setups, and wondering what would be the best overall combo for my use. I am ok with frequent sharpening, and from what I have read thinking a 16" bar with the right chain would wake this thing up. I am not apposed to modding, but have seen the newer mufflers can be a pain to work with?

Please provide part numbers of the chain, bar, and sprocket I would need so I can walk into my dealer and tell him what I would like to order.

Also, do chainsaws always leak bar oil? I had a pretty bad leak last year, and the dealer replaced the cap under warranty. But it still is leaking (from where I don't know), and am ok with it if I know that is what saws do.
 

tfp

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I love my MS250. On the underside of the saw with the handle removed there is a grommet / fitting and line coming out of the oil tank area. I pulled those out and wiped as much oil off as I could and put some automotive gasket sealant around it and put it back in. That was 4 years ago and it hasn’t leaked bar oil since. I have an 18 inch bar running .325 pitch chain and it cuts fine for a small saw. Keep it sharp, keep the gullets clean so it has the best chance to remove all the chips, and let the saw do the cutting. A smaller bar will of course mean less bogging down but you’ll still have to manage it. I have several saws and just change how I use each depending on the power to limit bogging down, it’s no big deal. I routinely cut dead hardwood the full bar size of the 250 and it doesn’t bog down, it’s just slow compared to my 460 which will drop through that log like a hot knife through butter.

The only thing I’ve done to the muffler is use a flat blade screwdriver to open up the “fins” a little more and it did help. Not a night and day comparison so don’t get too disappointed. Maximise what you’ve got and if you want a laser beam you’ll just have to get a bigger saw.
 
sundance

sundance

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While a 2" shorter bar with the same .325 chain may help a little I don't think it will transform the saw's performance.
You would need to change the bar to go from .063 to .050 chain. But you need a different bar for the 62 drive link chain anyhow.
 
jonshonda

jonshonda

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While a 2" shorter bar with the same .325 chain may help a little I don't think it will transform the saw's performance.
You would need to change the bar to go from .063 to .050 chain. But you need a different bar for the 62 drive link chain anyhow.
You had posted a sprocket kit before, does that not apply to my situation? And as for switching to .050, I don't see that they offer a 063" in the Picco 62 link.
 
sundance

sundance

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You had posted a sprocket kit before, does that not apply to my situation? And as for switching to .050, I don't see that they offer a 063" in the Picco 62 link.
My apology. I didn't look through all of Harley's posts. I thought you were looking at a shorter .325 chain but now see you're talking a 3/8" LP (aka picco) chain.

For that you'll need the sprocket kit I referenced in your other post, as well as an appropriate bar and the chain(s).
 
SteveSr

SteveSr

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I'm real close to that with my MS250.......but don't think there is any chance I'll be loving it again!
Switch it over to 16" 3/8" LP preferably with a rim conversion kit and it will likely outcut a MS260/261! This may be why Stihl put .325 on this saw.

Instead of modding the muffler you could find a used Pre-EPA 025 muffler and just replace your current one. The pre-EPA muffler can be identified by the 5/8" x 7/8" cutout underneath the spark screen cover. If you do this be sure to reset the limiter and retune the carb to keep from burning the saw up. This will obviously void your warranty if still in force.
 
Philbert

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It’s possible that your several year old MS250 has lost power due to wear. A compression test might show that (search for related threads: requires a tool, or a dealer can do that).

+1 on the sharp chain stuff.

Aside from going to the smaller pitch ‘Picco’ (3/8” low profile) chain, you can stay with .325 pitch , but go to narrow kerf chain. This would just require a compatible bar.

Oregon, Carlton, and Husqvarna have offered this for years. STIHL has just started. A narrower kerf requires less force to make, so your saw feels like it has more power.

Philbert


 
jonshonda

jonshonda

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It’s possible that your several year old MS250 has lost power due to wear. A compression test might show that (search for related threads: requires a tool, or a dealer can do that).

+1 on the sharp chain stuff.

Aside from going to the smaller pitch ‘Picco’ (3/8” low profile) chain, you can stay with .325 pitch , but go to narrow kerf chain. This would just require a compatible bar.

Oregon, Carlton, and Husqvarna have offered this for years. STIHL has just started. A narrower kerf requires less force to make, so your saw feels like it has more power.

Philbert

I have never felt like it had the power I wanted, and it is only a little over 2 years old with maybe 30tanks through it. I am a big guy at 6'2" and 260lbs, so I am thinking I might be exerting a bit too much force on the saw unintentionally. Thanks for the links, I will read up!
 
jonshonda

jonshonda

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Switch it over to 16" 3/8" LP preferably with a rim conversion kit and it will likely outcut a MS260/261! This may be why Stihl put .325 on this saw.

Instead of modding the muffler you could find a used Pre-EPA 025 muffler and just replace your current one. The pre-EPA muffler can be identified by the 5/8" x 7/8" cutout underneath the spark screen cover. If you do this be sure to reset the limiter and retune the carb to keep from burning the saw up. This will obviously void your warranty if still in force.
Any more info on the rim conversion kit and 16" 3/8" LP chain? I am looking for the Pre EPA muffler as you described. Would you say that muffler doesn't need to be modded?
 
irhunter

irhunter

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I have never felt like it had the power I wanted.
Hey,

It is a 45cc homeowner saw...nothing is going to change those two facts. Mess with the muffler, change the b/c...and, you may get a bit more out of it.

It sounds like the 250 should become your backup saw...and, you should just buy a second saw with some more yank.

Roy
 
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