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Poulan vs Stihl

Kansaswoodpile

Kansaswoodpile

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I have been burning wood for forty years. In 1980 I bought a Craftsman Model 358.356070 chainsaw, a re-branded Poulan 3000, 49 cc chainsaw. It is still my best chainsaw with an eighteen inch bar. Twenty years ago I bought a Wildthing for $99.00 and I bought another one about ten years ago. Four years ago I bought a PoulanPro 5020 ($230.00) and all of these saws still run great. Two weeks ago I bought a Craftsman (Poulan) 36 cc chainsaw at auction for $7.00 and it runs like new. The clutch was hardly worn. I know people like Stihl chainsaws. I do too as I used them when I worked for the city, but for the money, and considering they will last just about forever if you take care of them, (and I know how to work on them), I am sold on Poulan chainsaws. Any thoughts?
 
JeffHK454

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I have been burning wood for forty years. In 1980 I bought a Craftsman Model 358.356070 chainsaw, a re-branded Poulan 3000, 49 cc chainsaw. It is still my best chainsaw with an eighteen inch bar. Twenty years ago I bought a Wildthing for $99.00 and I bought another one about ten years ago. Four years ago I bought a PoulanPro 5020 ($230.00) and all of these saws still run great. Two weeks ago I bought a Craftsman (Poulan) 36 cc chainsaw at auction for $7.00 and it runs like new. The clutch was hardly worn. I know people like Stihl chainsaws. I do too as I used them when I worked for the city, but for the money, and considering they will last just about forever if you take care of them, (and I know how to work on them), I am sold on Poulan chainsaws. Any thoughts?
Yep you’re right, Stihl’s reputation as the king of the hill is completely unfounded.
 
rarefish383

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Do I like Poulans, yeah, especially like this one, Super 68, 82CC's 31" bar with half inch chain. We used Poulan 25's back in the late 70's and 80's as our climbing saws. I went through a pile of Wild Things. They didn't seem to like commercial work. Maybe I was pushing the parameters of their use. Back in the day I could take a Homelite or Mac with a 16" bar and cut 16" wood all day with out a second thought. I can take my homeowner grade Farm Boss and cut wood as long as the bar all day, no problem. The Wild Things I had just wouldn't hold up to that use. I think one thing, it I remember correctly, they had the muffler on the front. I never wore gloves and I had to wear one on my left hand because it would get so hot cutting small logs it would burn my hand. Maybe cutting small logs the size of the bar was too much for it. I think that front muffler might have cooked them. This big Super 68 has a front muffler, but the way it's built it doesn't ride right on the log. I've done the same thing with my little $159 MS170 with no problems. I think they are good saws for home owners, maybe landscapers and lawn guys. I'll never buy another new one. I'll buy every old one I can get my hands on.
 

svk

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The old Poulans are awesome.
AE05E909-2812-4943-B30C-B7B852B82045.jpeg

The new ones can be made to run quite strong for what they are.

D4001E30-3146-459F-B90A-A8C120E59081.jpeg

Stihl makes some damn good saws and some not so good ones. Not saying I won’t buy another new Stihl at some point but what turns me away from them is their refusal to negotiate on price, their refusal to offer reasonably priced replacement parts, and their refusal to allow online sales.

I bought a Husky 562 and a Stihl 241 in the same year. The 562 was two classes higher in size but cost me $18 more than the 241. With price mismatches like that I cannot see how anyone would continue to buy Stihls unless they really really wanted a certain model (like I did).

Another gripe. Stihl lauds their “dealer network” as being the best however if you try to buy parts from a JD dealership that sells Stihl you may as well look up the parts numbers yourself as those guys don’t seem to know or care about Stihl.
 
Mad Professor

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The old Poulans are awesome.
View attachment 794478

The new ones can be made to run quite strong for what they are.

View attachment 794479

Stihl makes some damn good saws and some not so good ones. Not saying I won’t buy another new Stihl at some point but what turns me away from them is their refusal to negotiate on price, their refusal to offer reasonably priced replacement parts, and their refusal to allow online sales.

I bought a Husky 562 and a Stihl 241 in the same year. The 562 was two classes higher in size but cost me $18 more than the 241. With price mismatches like that I cannot see how anyone would continue to buy Stihls unless they really really wanted a certain model (like I did).

Another gripe. Stihl lauds their “dealer network” as being the best however if you try to buy parts from a JD dealership that sells Stihl you may as well look up the parts numbers yourself as those guys don’t seem to know or care about Stihl.
I only have brought one new Sthil, package deal with a Logosol sawmill, 066. ~2300$ for both

All the rest have been free/dead or so cheap I couldn't say no. Favorite is the the 036
 
venture

venture

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The old Poulans are awesome.
View attachment 794478

The new ones can be made to run quite strong for what they are.

View attachment 794479

Stihl makes some damn good saws and some not so good ones. Not saying I won’t buy another new Stihl at some point but what turns me away from them is their refusal to negotiate on price, their refusal to offer reasonably priced replacement parts, and their refusal to allow online sales.

I bought a Husky 562 and a Stihl 241 in the same year. The 562 was two classes higher in size but cost me $18 more than the 241. With price mismatches like that I cannot see how anyone would continue to buy Stihls unless they really really wanted a certain model (like I did).

Another gripe. Stihl lauds their “dealer network” as being the best however if you try to buy parts from a JD dealership that sells Stihl you may as well look up the parts numbers yourself as those guys don’t seem to know or care about Stihl.
Yep they don’t care about selling saws and don’t known much about what they sell
 
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jimdeere

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I bought a new Stihl 029 Farm Boss in 1997, it’s still running strong after years of cutting black locust. I could sell it for the $299 I paid for it.
Many 028’s still running strong around here. However, I think Stihl stepped on their pee pee with the electronic carburetor.
I’ve had some smaller Poulans that were good for what they were but I bought a new Poulan 3800 that was a piece of crap.
 
Jethro 2t sniffer

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Depends on the poulan depends on the stihl. My 4000 "homeowner grade" 1984 64cc eats my mates ms311 "also homeowner grade" .

yeah ok in little wood the stihl is quicker sure fair enough. Bury the 20 inch bar and the poulan easily leaves it in the chips.

I dear say find a stihl of similar CC and era to an 85cc counter vibe and my money is on the poulan. Never ran any such stihl but many say this to be the case. I would like to run some old stihls

Poulan was dead from the 90s on and cannot be compared imho and really died when ELUX bought them in 83

I've had a few tanks through a 441 and didn't really like it peeky kicky funny thing no low end like I'm used to with older stuff.

Old mag saws all they way for me

Actually my 3400 walks my mates 029 too his is running 3/8 though and I think it's too much
 
hseII

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The old Poulans are awesome.
View attachment 794478

The new ones can be made to run quite strong for what they are.

View attachment 794479

Stihl makes some damn good saws and some not so good ones. Not saying I won’t buy another new Stihl at some point but what turns me away from them is their refusal to negotiate on price, their refusal to offer reasonably priced replacement parts, and their refusal to allow online sales.

I bought a Husky 562 and a Stihl 241 in the same year. The 562 was two classes higher in size but cost me $18 more than the 241. With price mismatches like that I cannot see how anyone would continue to buy Stihls unless they really really wanted a certain model (like I did).

Another gripe. Stihl lauds their “dealer network” as being the best however if you try to buy parts from a JD dealership that sells Stihl you may as well look up the parts numbers yourself as those guys don’t seem to know or care about Stihl.
There are Dealerships that carry Stihl & then there are Stihl Saw Shops.

We have 2 Dealerships that Carry Stihl & 1 Stihl Saw Shop in my area.

3 Echo Dealers.
1 Red Max dealer that was the Saw Shop carrying both Stihl & Husqvarna till about 15 years ago when they decided they didn’t want to carry Stihl anymore. 3 years ago they decided they didn’t want to keep enough inventory to carry Husqvarna anymore.

Meanwhile,
The 1 Stihl Saw Shop is Thriving.

As far as Stihl vs. Poulan,

Show me a new any brand that will hang with this Ol’ “Overpriced Stihl” & I’ll consider it.


Saws wear out, & yes they can be rebuilt but eventually it cost more to rebuild that just replace.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
 
hseII

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Depends on the poulan depends on the stihl. My 4000 "homeowner grade" 1984 64cc eats my mates ms311 "also homeowner grade" .

yeah ok in little wood the stihl is quicker sure fair enough. Bury the 20 inch bar and the poulan easily leaves it in the chips.

I dear say find a stihl of similar CC and era to an 85cc counter vibe and my money is on the poulan. Never ran any such stihl but many say this to be the case. I would like to run some old stihls

Poulan was dead from the 90s on and cannot be compared imho and really died when ELUX bought them in 83

I've had a few tanks through a 441 and didn't really like it peeky kicky funny thing no low end like I'm used to with older stuff.

Old mag saws all they way for me

Actually my 3400 walks my mates 029 too his is running 3/8 though and I think it's too much
I consider a 4000 & the countervibes to be Pro Saws. It’s a shame they were killed by Mother ELUX.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
 
Mustang71

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The poulans are good saws. Specifically the older ones. The crafstman and wood shark that I have just keep going. That little green poulan takes a beating but with a sharp chain does a great job on all these smaller diamater ash trees. The newer poulan pro was lame. I had it running good and now my dad has cut maybe 20 small ash trees with it and it runs like junk. I always get the stihl saws out when I'm ready to do some real cutting. The 028 is a similar size as that 42cc poulan pro but would cut circles around it. My ms290 with the 390 jug handles the 20 inch bar like a champ. The 056 is an awesome old school saw the weight and torque of it make cutting big rounds easy. You just hang on lol.
 
Jethro 2t sniffer

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I consider a 4000 & the countervibes to be Pro Saws. It’s a shame they were killed by Mother ELUX.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
A real shame all right I feel the govt of the day could have stopped that from happening. That and a bunch of other things killed manufacturing in the states to look at it now is a hell of a loss. Throw mac in that too.

Yeah I agree they are professional quality saws for sure mag case great AV and wonderful to work on too. Mother Elux wanted a rival gone plain and simple.

The mac story is a bit different ofcourse as it was an American company that drove it into the ground had they had the future of the company at the top of the agenda instead of lining there pockets things would be different. Instead they never sank RnD money into a pro saw to replace the 10 and that was that. I'm sure in 1980 or so if mac had a wonderful nice flash new saw that rivaled the imports for similar money it could be still here today.

Instead you got a 10 from the 60s or a mccinder block..
 
rarefish383

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When it's all said in done, no matter how fun it is, the comparison is apples and oranges. A homeowner that knows how to take care of equipment and maintains that equipment, may keep it for a very long time, maybe his life time. I have Homelites my Dad bought 45 years ago and still have the original bars on them, and they worked 40 hour weeks for 20+ years before I took them over and put 20 years of milling and firewood duty on them. If Craftsman made saws that could do that on a daily basis back then, they would still "Sell Everything", not just junky stuff one step up from Walmart. Sears/Craftsman of old bought quality equipment and rebadged it. They owned David Bradley, used Homelites, and Poulans, when Poulans were real saws. But I guess somewhere along the line they figured they could make more money selling a lot of cheaper saws to homeowners, than they could trying to sell pro saws to homeowners. Poulans are fine homeowner saws, they are not pro saws. They are not made to hold up to 40 hour work weeks for years, and they will not hold up to 40 hour weeks for years. It's plain and simple, if they would hold up to 40 hour work weeks, of pro work, at the price they sell for, every tree business in the world would be using them, and there would be no overpriced Stihls. There is a reason they don't.

I did buy a Poulan 5020 , brand new in the box, for $70 at an auction. Gave it to my tax man for his birthday.
 
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