Question about dropping dead/dying and leaning ash and bar/saw size.

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soloz2

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I went through this last August when I fried my Husqvarna 359. Learned about Echo and chose the CS620PW 27". It's got a lot more muscle for hundreds less than comparable Stihl or Husqvarna models for hundreds less. The 5 year homeowner warranty doesn't require bogus priced fuel purchases like Husqvarna. It's 4.5 HP engine has plenty of torque to pull full chisel buried in 40" knotty pine trunks. Found it online. They're available from Forest Suppliers.
How long did it take for your saw to break in? I ran just about one take through mine, but it's rather underwhelming and I'm fighting buyers remorse and wishing I had spent the extra on a Stihl.
 

fields_mj

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FWIW, when you're dealing with trees that size and in that condition, getting them on the ground safely doesn't really depend on whether you are running an 18" or a 24" bar, or have a 50cc or a 60cc saw. Bigger saw with a bigger bar will make it a little more convenient, but has almost no impact on safety.

As far as bars and chains go, 20" is the longest .325 bar you can get. If you want to go longer, you have to move up to a 3/8" bar and chain which is VERY easy to do. Bar + chain + $6 for a 3/8 rim and you are ready to go. Having said that, I would NOT put a 24" bar on a MS261 saw. Not sure the oiler will keep up and even if it does, its gong to be a dog.

You've already picked up another saw, but if you were wanting a step up from your MS261, I would have probably recommended going to a 70cc saw. It would be a true power house with a 24" bar, but also very capable with 28" or even a 32" bar which will handle a really big tree. a 28" bar is also handy for noodleing large firewood rounds in half so they are light enough to be picked up and put onto a splitter. I've done that with 18" bars and 50-60cc saws, but it kinda sucks. 28" and a 90cc is a piece of cake, but 70cc and the same bar would still be easy. I run a Stihl 026 and 036 quite a bit and the 62c 036 saws are my go to work horses. A lot of guys run 24" bars on them, and they run fine that way, but I run them with 18" .325 bars. 18" will make 90% of my cuts in one pass, and I'm not wasting torque and HP trying to pull an extra 6" of chain that I'm not actually using. I've also swapped my drive bearing and sprocket out so that I can rum a 9 pin rim which lets me convert my extra torque into more chain speed. For felling, and bucking firewood, I really like this setup. If I'm working on something that's 24" or more, I'll bump up to my big saw, and that does happen with some frequency so I'm glad that I have the option. Anything much under 24" gets dropped and bucked with an 18" bar though.

As far as your Echo goes, I'm not familiar with them. Your carb may be tuned a little rich which is probably a good thing for the first several tanks of fuel. After its broken in, you might look to see if there's a dual port muffler available for it. Cheap upgrade that will help the saw breath better and help you get the most out of it without actually putting any extra wear and tear on the machine.
 

ValleyForge

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FWIW, when you're dealing with trees that size and in that condition, getting them on the ground safely doesn't really depend on whether you are running an 18" or a 24" bar, or have a 50cc or a 60cc saw. Bigger saw with a bigger bar will make it a little more convenient, but has almost no impact on safety.

As far as bars and chains go, 20" is the longest .325 bar you can get. If you want to go longer, you have to move up to a 3/8" bar and chain which is VERY easy to do. Bar + chain + $6 for a 3/8 rim and you are ready to go. Having said that, I would NOT put a 24" bar on a MS261 saw. Not sure the oiler will keep up and even if it does, its gong to be a dog.

You've already picked up another saw, but if you were wanting a step up from your MS261, I would have probably recommended going to a 70cc saw. It would be a true power house with a 24" bar, but also very capable with 28" or even a 32" bar which will handle a really big tree. a 28" bar is also handy for noodleing large firewood rounds in half so they are light enough to be picked up and put onto a splitter. I've done that with 18" bars and 50-60cc saws, but it kinda sucks. 28" and a 90cc is a piece of cake, but 70cc and the same bar would still be easy. I run a Stihl 026 and 036 quite a bit and the 62c 036 saws are my go to work horses. A lot of guys run 24" bars on them, and they run fine that way, but I run them with 18" .325 bars. 18" will make 90% of my cuts in one pass, and I'm not wasting torque and HP trying to pull an extra 6" of chain that I'm not actually using. I've also swapped my drive bearing and sprocket out so that I can rum a 9 pin rim which lets me convert my extra torque into more chain speed. For felling, and bucking firewood, I really like this setup. If I'm working on something that's 24" or more, I'll bump up to my big saw, and that does happen with some frequency so I'm glad that I have the option. Anything much under 24" gets dropped and bucked with an 18" bar though.

As far as your Echo goes, I'm not familiar with them. Your carb may be tuned a little rich which is probably a good thing for the first several tanks of fuel. After its broken in, you might look to see if there's a dual port muffler available for it. Cheap upgrade that will help the saw breath better and help you get the most out of it without actually putting any extra wear and tear on the machine.
just to clarify, that’s an unsafe opinion….

I could agree on the bar, but having an underpowered saw in a trouble tree is a recipie for death….
 

fields_mj

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just to clarify, that’s an unsafe opinion….

I could agree on the bar, but having an underpowered saw in a trouble tree is a recipie for death….
Yes, I was referring to the MS261 vs a 60cc saw running 18 and 20" bars in ash, but you are absolutely correct. Trying to run too small of a saw on too big of a tree is a good recipe for disaster. I should have phrased my response better. Realistically, putting the 20" bar on the 261 and using it to fell trees is a bad idea for this very reason where as a 60cc saw would run the 20" bar just fine. If I were limited to the 261, I'd probably opt to use a 16" bar for felling. The thing I was thinking of in regards to felling was the bar getting pinched. My experience is that running a bigger saw doesn't help with this specific issue. A bigger saw DOES get you through the holding wood faster which certainly helps minimize the opportunity for things to go wrong. The main point I wanted to make was that if the tree is dangerous to begin with, having a bigger bar and saw to fell it with isn't doing very much with regards to making it safer than it would be felling it with the 261 and the 18" bar. Again, I should have chosen my words better.
 

ValleyForge

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Yes, I was referring to the MS261 vs a 60cc saw running 18 and 20" bars in ash, but you are absolutely correct. Trying to run too small of a saw on too big of a tree is a good recipe for disaster. I should have phrased my response better. Realistically, putting the 20" bar on the 261 and using it to fell trees is a bad idea for this very reason where as a 60cc saw would run the 20" bar just fine. If I were limited to the 261, I'd probably opt to use a 16" bar for felling. The thing I was thinking of in regards to felling was the bar getting pinched. My experience is that running a bigger saw doesn't help with this specific issue. A bigger saw DOES get you through the holding wood faster which certainly helps minimize the opportunity for things to go wrong. The main point I wanted to make was that if the tree is dangerous to begin with, having a bigger bar and saw to fell it with isn't doing very much with regards to making it safer than it would be felling it with the 261 and the 18" bar. Again, I should have chosen my words better.
It’s hard to put mind to words sometimes, I know I’ve failed often and members clarified my thoughts…
 

soloz2

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I think a 70cc would have been the better choice, but what's done is done now since Echo doesn't have the same 7 day exchange window Stihl has. I do wish I had gone for the bigger saw as I had initially wanted.
For now, I hope a few tanks through the saw and it will begin to awaken... It better as right now it doesn't feel any more powerful than my 261c, but it's heavier and vibrates more.
I did notice once warmed up the saw was making a strange noise almost like it was sucking up air or something every few seconds. It sounded kinds metallic. None of my other 2cyl engines do that and I'm no mechanic so idk.

But to the comments about getting the trees down. I agree. I definitely think the size of the bar and saw is secondary to proper procedure and safety equipment. I do have appropriate safety gear and do my best to practice safe and proper technique. That said, I am a homeowner and the trees I'm taking down are done in spare time as I can and what I've learned has been through YouTube, watching a couple pros, and sites like here. Wanting to be able to cut from one side is a comfort thing for me as that is what I feel I can do more safely and quickly. That is what prompted the new saw.
 

soloz2

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The elephant in the room is the importance of keeping that chain shaaarp...
Absolutely! I hand file to keep my chains sharp and a couple weeks ago I picked up the HF grinder to clean up a couple chains that got pretty dull during storm cleanup a few weeks ago. Had trees on fences, houses, trailers etc.
I don't fell a tree without first sharpening the chain.
 

Lionsfan

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I think a 70cc would have been the better choice, but what's done is done now since Echo doesn't have the same 7 day exchange window Stihl has. I do wish I had gone for the bigger saw as I had initially wanted.
For now, I hope a few tanks through the saw and it will begin to awaken... It better as right now it doesn't feel any more powerful than my 261c, but it's heavier and vibrates more.
I did notice once warmed up the saw was making a strange noise almost like it was sucking up air or something every few seconds. It sounded kinds metallic. None of my other 2cyl engines do that and I'm no mechanic so idk.

But to the comments about getting the trees down. I agree. I definitely think the size of the bar and saw is secondary to proper procedure and safety equipment. I do have appropriate safety gear and do my best to practice safe and proper technique. That said, I am a homeowner and the trees I'm taking down are done in spare time as I can and what I've learned has been through YouTube, watching a couple pros, and sites like here. Wanting to be able to cut from one side is a comfort thing for me as that is what I feel I can do more safely and quickly. That is what prompted the new saw.
Good plan, run it, adjust your carb, burn a dozen tanks through it and see what you think then. Ask in the chainsaw forum how to adjust your carb if you don't know, guys on here love to help. I don't have any experience with Echo's product line (I'm a HVA guy), but there's guys on this forum that cut **** piles of wood with 620P's and 590 Timberwolf's that will vouch for their capability and reliability.
 

soloz2

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Well, I’ve now dropped a total of 13 trees with the 620p and have run about 4 tanks of fuel through it. Still have about 8 trees on the ground that need to be limbed and bucked. I did take my 261 out for a little bit today 😎. The 620 does seem to have a bit more power than it did and it’s definitely idling better than it was. Full throttle in wood it seems like it surges a bit, and likes to die when letting off the gas for some reason. I’ll have to ask the dealer on Monday. I’ve got to check on my 24” bar anyway.

I had planned to just drop, limb, and buck a couple trees this morning, but after walking through and realizing many more were cracked from the storm we had a few weeks back so they had to come down before the next windstorm. I’ll be back out tomorrow morning to keep plugging away. At this rate, maybe I’ll get all the ash down in less time than I thought.
 

soloz2

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Was out running saws again today. Ran another tank of fuel through the 620p and decided it was hot and after several days I was tired so I switched to my 261c. Same power and way lighter. I was cleaning my saws to put them away tonight and realized the front captive nut on the clutch cover was stuck at an angle and was starting to strip the bar mount stud. That needs to be replaced and the saw needs tuned. Huge disappointment and exercise in frustration purchasing this 620p. Captive nuts on my Stihl saws are perfect. One is 2 years old and the other 4 years old, no issues.
 

Maintenance supervisor

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I think a good option is for yoi to locate a reputable saw builder in your section of the country and get their number and have a serious talk about what you need . A used 372xp or ms440 would have been price comparable and served you better then a warranty saw. That warranty doesn't make up for disappointment.
I used a ProMac 700 to drop 24" trees for 2-3 years and it never complained, it didn't have the comfort features that newer saws do but it sure eats hardwood! It sat in a barn for 15years before I got it for fixing the farmers truck.
 

soloz2

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Well, update time. I had a gap between sessions yesterday so I ran to the echo dealer with my 620p in tow. They said it could be repaired under warranty, but offered to take it back as I calmly and respectfully said I was frustrated with the lack of power, and the fact the captive nut had already broken. It did cost me a 10% restocking fee, but I was just happy to be out of the saw as I was disappointed in the power output for the weight from the moment I fired it up. I stopped on the say home at one of the big corporate Stihl dealers (John Deere) as I knew they had a larger inventory than most in the area and ordered a 400c with a 20" and 25" bar. It should be in today or tomorrow. In the meantime when I have time I've got lots more work to do. I picked up the rounds that were still on my neighbors property from the weekend this morning.
An older used saw probably would be a good investment, but I just don't feel confident in my ability to inspect and diagnose a saw on my own and man, the prices used saws go for is insane! This should get me setup to just get the rest of the trees down. I did do a walkthrough to count progress and despite still having a mess in my yard, we passed the halfway mark. 47 trees down, 34 more standing and needing to come down, 5 treated for EAB, 3 of which are making amazing recoveries!
 

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soloz2

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Still waiting for a saw. Was supposed to be in on Tuesday afternoon with the transfer truck. I called and was told it arrived so I rushed out between client sessions to pick it up and no saw. They re-ordered it and said it would be in today. Checked again, and no saw. Not sure why, but now they are requesting transfer from one of their other stores and it's supposed to be in tomorrow. We shall see.

In the meantime I've still been clean up from the trees I've felled. Split a bunch of firewood with more to go. Just having to work around heat, work, and the much needed rain. It's been 90's and humid which makes it quite unpleasant working conditions.
 

Bubster

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What I am about to say won't win me any fans,but if I had a 261 I was happy with,and only needed a bigger saw on rare occasions,I would find a good used 65-70cc saw.Or I would buy a new Farmertec clone saw.A 372xp clone is around $300 brand new.I was against them at first,but hey,when you can buy 3 maybe 4 for the price of the real thing,it really makes sense.Check out the many youtube videos.I like the looks of the G372 and G288 saws.
 

soloz2

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I thought about a clone saw, but if I do that I want to build it and I absolutely don't have time to figure out how to build a saw then learn to tune a carb. 😂

400c finally came in. Dealer gave me a few $ off for the delays. Thermometer at home read 100 degrees in the sun so I decided to skip trying it out and will fire it up tomorrow morning.

Edit: I forgot to mention earlier I did have them swap the 20" chain from green to yellow, but dealer didn't want to swap the 25" chain for yellow so that one is the low kickback version. I figure I'll probably want a yellow version for plunge cuts. Should I stick with Stihl, or get something else?
I've got Oregon on my 6" Milwaukee saw, and Carlton on my 180. Everything else I've just stick with Stihl and they are nice chains.

I'll also want to grab the outside spike/dog. Anyone have the PN? Do I need the roller chain catch as well?
 

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soloz2

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Realized I didn't post an update. I ran almost 2 tanks through the 400c Saturday and got all 4 trees cleaned up I had dropped the weekend before, then mowed the yard as it was in dire need of a mow since we have finally gotten some rain. I gotta say, this saw is great so far! I would normally use my 261 or 180 for limbing, but I decided to use the 400 to get a better feel for it. I really like it! Revs up like my 261 and has plenty of power. I actually wished I had some bigger wood down to try it in, but that can wait.

After the storm we had last month with 100MPH+ winds, every time I walk through my trees I see more that have started to crack. I think at this point, it's just go-time to try and get the rest down safely before they start falling on their own. Only 30 left int he back, and 4 in the side yard left to come down. 5 have been treated. This is out of 86 to start so I'm well past halfway.
 

Stihl a grasshopper

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It never hurts to ask the local shops if they ever get any larger used saws brought in on trade. I was looking for something larger than my MS361 and scored a barely used 084AV with new carb, 48" and 36" bars and 4 chains for $1000! A guy was settling his dad's estate and wasn't interested in keeping it, so he just sold it to the shop I use. Ironically the saw belonged to the brother of a man that sits on the pew behind me at church!
 

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