R Scott wrote:Not a lot of experience, but I find an electric to be comparable to a big box gas saw the same size but not as fast as a high end gas saw. That said, I can run an electric a lot longer before my arms wear out, the vibes of a gas engine are hard on arthritis and carpal tunnel. I will be getting one for doing mushroom logs very soon
Mike Haasl wrote:I probably go 4-6 months without using my saw each year and it starts right up when needed. The thing I attribute that to is a combination of sheer negligence, dumb luck and also always putting Stabil in the gas for my small engines.
As for a backup when the power goes out, remember that a not uncommon issue is a storm knocking your power out and then dropping three trees across your driveway. Even with lots of firewood put up, you still need to cut that tree to get out.
Another fine option is a cross cut saw.
Kyle Neath wrote:I have three saws: Stihl MS461 (big saw, 32” bar), Stihl MS161 (small saw, 16”? bar), and a E-GO battery saw (14” bar). The MS161 and E-GO are comparable in weight and bar length, but it’s hard for me to say one is better than the other. I’ll give you three different comparisons:
1. Safety: Electric chainsaws are much more dangerous than gas saws. The biggest reason is that chaps do not protect against electric saws. They are designed to tangle up saws that work in pulses (like a 2-stroke engine) and an electric chainsaw will just chew right through them. The other reason is that the lack of engine noise makes people think it’s safe, even though you can tap the button and get that chain ripping in an instant. A growling gas saw is a warning in and of itself.
2. Power: There is no comparison at all. The MS161 is at least 10 times more powerful than the E-GO and it won’t shut down from the battery overheating under load (a scary thing when you’re taking down a tree). That being said, the E-GO can get the job done with enough patience.
3. Maintenance: Again, no question — the E-GO wins hands down here. Gas saws take some care, especially if you cannot acquire ethanol free fuel. You’ve got to understand how to start a cold saw, a warm saw, adjust for elevation, clear a flooded chamber, and keep extra spark plugs on hand, and manage the age of your gas cans. With the E-GO you just put bar oil in and you’re good to go.
If you are cutting wood for heat, I wouldn’t even question it — get a gas saw. If you just need to cut down some windfall now and then, a battery saw will probably do you fine.
Do you have a source to share for the lack of chaps protwction with electric saws?
My understanding was that material in the chaps was meant to jam the chain, and that ratings are based on stopping chain moving at a given speed.. irrespective of what was causing it to move. I can see how the massive torque of some of the electric saws could be a new issue though...
...material designed to reduce the risk or severity of injury to the body parts covered by the pads in the event of contact with the rotating saw chain of a gasoline-powered chainsaw.
Eric Hanson wrote:D Nickols,
I have owned the Kobalt model for about 2 years and the tool itself works well IMHO. You are correct that it does not have a speed control—it is either on or off. However I have never found this to be a problem. It is nice that saw this size had actual steel bucking spikes.
By far the biggest downside is that the batteries are not reliable. Some have a tendency to fail early. This is troubling. The silver lining is that if the battery lasts more than a couple of months then you are probably in the clear. Getting them exchanged is a real pain though as Lowe’s wants the whole tool back and not just the defective battery. I am considering taking my battery to a nearby dealer and getting it repacked.
But batteries aside, the Kobalt 40 volt saw is a good saw. It is a trimming saw and not the sort of saw one would use for felling mighty oaks, but then I don’t cut down mighty oaks. It comes with a 12 inch bar and in my experience does quite well for logs up to about 8”. Of course it will cut larger logs, but it will start to strain more, go through the battery faster and one might have to get creative with the cuts, but then that is where a much larger saw is more appropriate.
Anyhow, these are just my thoughts on this little saw. It has become my go-to saw for most every cutting project. I do have an 18” gas saw, but I hardly ever use it.