Stihl chainsaw pick? MS250, 251c-be, 251 wood boss

Discussion in 'Non-audio related DIY' started by Redikilowatt, Aug 30, 2017.

  1. Redikilowatt

    Redikilowatt Audio Understudy Subscriber

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    My Stihl MS 025 died this Spring and firewood season is coming up. I used it mostly for firewood cutting but have dropped a couple of trees that were 20" and under diameter.

    The MS250 ($349.95), MS251 C-BE ($369.95), and 251 Wood Boss ($329.95) are in my price range and their specs are similar to the MS 025 that served me well. Rumor has it that one of these models will go on sale in September.

    Help me pick one.

    Roger
     

     

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  2. Alan0354

    Alan0354 Super Member

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  3. fredgarvin

    fredgarvin Well-Known Member

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    I've been using an MS 310 for a few years. It's a good faller too.
     
  4. jupitersspot

    jupitersspot Member

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    Oregon - west coast USA
    I'm cheap, so instead of buying new I tend to fix old. When you say the MS 025 died, what broke? Can that part be replaced/fixed?

    That said we had a Farm Boss around the home when I was growing up, and it still sees use 40 years later.
     
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  5. Alan0354

    Alan0354 Super Member

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    Define die also? A lot of them have carburetor problem and it won't start. It's not hard to change the carb at all, you can even buy the carb overhaul kit and do it yourself. If other mechanical issue, sometimes, it's not worth fixing for a lower end model. Parts are not necessary cheap. Also, it depends on whether you are handy or not, if you have to send to a shop, labor is going to cost you big.

    As I said, go to lawnsite and talk to those people, describe your problem and they can give you advice, they have a chainsaw section specialize on this. I am quite familiar with lawn equipment EXCEPT chainsaw. So I really cannot help you other than if it is engine issue, I can talk more.

    Also, if you do decide to buy a new one, don't limit yourself to Stihl, from looking at a lot of handheld lawn equipment, Stihl tends to be very good in advertising and the name is bigger than the equipment. I personally decided not to buy any Stihl equipment because of their 4Mix engines. Look at Husqvarna, or even Echo chainsaw, these are professional equipment in every sense.
     
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2017
  6. Redikilowatt

    Redikilowatt Audio Understudy Subscriber

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    Thanks for the input folks.
    In this instance "die" means engine has lost compression. Too bad, as I had just replace the sprocket after the old one chewed up a new chain. Stuff happens :)
    I have a couple of local dealers who aren't cheap but they are honest. I have owned number of Stihl products over the last 25 years; trimmers, blowers, chainsaws, etc., and had good luck. But after 8-10 years of hard use they wear out. I'm not a "pro" user, just a guy with a large yard and a fireplace insert.

    I'm hoping someone familiar with the lineup has some pros and cons to aid my decision.

    Appreciatively,
    Roger
     

     

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  7. toxcrusadr

    toxcrusadr AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    I have an MS170 and an 036 Pro but I confess I don't know the difference in features between the three 250 models you're looking at. One would think Stihl would be able to explain that - are you talking with a Stihl dealer or only looking online?
     
  8. westend

    westend Audiopile

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    10,183
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    On the repair view: Stihl has a very well imbedded parts distribution chain. You can buy any Stihl engine part from a Stihl distributor.

    I have my favorite three: Husqvarna 272XP, a 4 hp pro saw, A Stihl MS290 Farm boss, and an Echo CS-3900. I have about 4 other saws, McCullough's, smaller Sthl, and a Poulan. The latter are used for climbing or trimming. When I worked tree crews, we used Jonsered's, Stihl's and various older, large framed saws, even a Maul with the blade handle for stumps.

    It used to be that the odd numbered saws for Stihl, like the 251 series, were pro saws. The even numbered were consumer grade. That may have changed as most I handle are built pretty much the same. I'd suggest, if looking for just one saw for firewood, to get a saw around 3 HP and with the largest bar possible.

    After you get your new saw, you can toddle over here and we'll test it out on those Ash logs I have laying in the yard. :biggrin:
     
  9. Alan0354

    Alan0354 Super Member

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    Husqvarna saw is quite famous. they just don't do marketing like Stihl.

    This has nothing to do with the saw, I was really turned off by their 4Mix engines, they have so much problem with that engine due to the design where old oil collected in somewhere and cause problems. Maybe they change it now, that was like 10 years ago. Stihl had to come out with their special synthetic oil for the engine. People had to use that or Amsoil, or else, you kill the engine sooner or later. Shindaiwa has the similar type 4 cycle engine using mixed fuel/oil, they don't have that problem at all.

    For that reason, I own Maruyama, Echo, Honda and Shindaiwa, never bought a Stihl. Another thing is Stihl only sell in dealer, they are more expensive. I bought most of my stuffs on line, cheaper......................And don't buy into dealer service. Don't trust warranty. Warranty doesn't cover and fuel and carburetor problem, good luck in arguing with the dealers. My Honda trimmer failed within 3 months, I brought it in thinking they would take care of it. NO!!! came back with a bill of $150. The carb failed, they said it was bad gas.......the usual reason they use to void your warranty. I told them it wasn't, we got into big arguement. Finally they wave the labor and charged me $75. I took the old carb back, I took it apart, there was metar fragment inside the carb stuck in the diaphragm. It was a defect.

    You talk to lawn site, there are enough dealers there keep saying you are always at fault.......................

    Bottom line, my advice, DO NOT LOOK AT DEALER WARRANTY, get the good professional ones as cheap as possible and take your chance. Even I have all the expensive stuffs, one service is going to be a big chunk of the cost of the piece. For defect like my Honda, you might have better luck buying from big place like Sears and you can go and argue and they might exchange for you. Not a chance in the small dealers as they will argue with you to death.
     
  10. KentTeffeteller

    KentTeffeteller Gimpus Stereophilus!

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    Curmugeonly Stepdad of mine had a Farm Boss for many years, I think we still have it. It was still running well when he died. Tough, well built old reliable workhorse of a chain saw. My first impression of Stihl. The Farm Boss was a great old chainsaw!
     
  11. stupidhead

    stupidhead aka Ratdogheads Subscriber

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    I happen to sell Stihl at work and the MS250 is on sale for $299. It is also approx. 2 lbs lighter than the 251. Kind of a no brainer.
     
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  12. Alobar

    Alobar Pulling out of the Last Chance Texaco.. Subscriber

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    I bought the MS 261 this spring and while expensive, is a good 50 cc saw that is in their professional lineup. I had just sold my old 395 husky which was a 95cc monster. Great for milling timbers which is what I bought it for, but at 19 lbs was just too heavy for firewood duty. I sold it for just enough money to buy the stihl and figured I wanted this saw to outlast me, hence the pro version .
     
  13. Redikilowatt

    Redikilowatt Audio Understudy Subscriber

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    Hmmm, so a stupidhead says it's a no brainer :D
    Sounds good to me!

    Checked one of the local retailers today and they echoed that thought. The MS250 also has the side access blade tensioner, holds more fuel, has slightly more bhp, and lacks the "easy start". Those are pluses IMHO.

    Thanks folks, I will purchase a MS250 with the next few weeks.

    Roger
     
  14. Alobar

    Alobar Pulling out of the Last Chance Texaco.. Subscriber

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    Keep in mind that you often do get what you pay for. I don't know specifics of the saw you are looking at but there are differences in the ruggedness as well as the ease of working on a pro grade versus a home use grade from what I have researched. I have heard some saws actually have plastic engine parts (Not saying Stihl saws have however). When I asked my saw dealer what was the difference between a comparable 50cc Stihl saw for home use and the pro grade, he said a lot of it came down to how easy they were to work on and rebuild. The cheaper lines he considered were often not worth the money to fix whereas the pro grade were easier to fix. That and the ruggedness seemed to be their claim to fame. I remember trying to decide just how much money to spend on a new saw this last spring (the pro line was considerably more expensive), and finally decided to get the pro model. Whether that was a good choice or money wasted I probably will never know!

    I just want the thing to start and run dependably and when it doesn't I want to dump it on the dealers counter and say fix it! I don't want to hear at that point that it ain't worth fixing..
     
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  15. toxcrusadr

    toxcrusadr AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Whether you need easy-to-repair vs. cheaper price may depend on how and how much you use it. I've had my two Stihl saws for close to 10 years, heat my house with wood, do a little recreational logging every year too, and they are almost like new. They are going to last a long time before they have to be rebuilt or repaired, I hope. If you were out every day or every week using them hard, you might want the pro version.
     
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  16. Alan0354

    Alan0354 Super Member

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    If it is for recreation use, Get the Truefuel https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_2?url=search-alias=aps&field-keywords=truefuel

    This can last 2years without going bad. I buy the best pro equipment but I use it once every other week, I use the big blower even less. I can afford to use this as I use very little. Fuel system is always the first to go for weekend warriors. If you use regular gas and mix yourself, make sure you add Stabil.My equipment lasted at least 7 to 10 years ( have it for that long and still working).

    I found pro equipment perform a lot better, it worth the extra money.
     

     

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  17. mkane

    mkane AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    We heat with wood exclusively. Have been since 1990'. Still have the same Stihl's. 024 & 026. Unless you're in the wood they all get heavy,
     
  18. peerson

    peerson Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    583
    Location:
    Kansas City area
    Buy the "Farm Boss". You won't regret it. And, get the "025" fixed. Always good to have a backup saw. I am looking for an older "029 Farm Boss", myself. Although (knock on wood) my 025 still runs strong.
     

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