Imagine if the task of cutting down a tree fell on you, and you have to do it the old-fashioned way using an ax. Even the mere thought of chopping down a tree this way is enough to leave you dreading the idea. That’s because it is quite a demanding task. It is taxing to the body, and it is also bound to take a while, primarily depending on how big the tree is, how sharp your ax is, and how strong and determined you are. It’s a tough job, but someone’s got to do it, right?
But what if you’re given the option of using a much efficient and effective tool in accomplishing the taskLike a chainsawDoesn’t it make things much more bearable?
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What is a Chainsaw?
Whether you are involved in activities such as tree felling, limbing, pruning, or firewood harvesting, a chainsaw is definitely one tool you can’t live without. This portable tool is a mechanical saw with a guide bar, a rotating chain and a set of teeth that cuts into tree or wood. In special situations, you will also find chainsaws that are used in cutting ice and even concrete.
A Canadian named James Shand is credited for developing the first portable chainsaw in 1918. However, it wasn’t until 1927 that the company Dolmar developed the first chainsaw powered by gasoline, and started its mass production.
What is a Gas Chainsaw?
A gas chainsaw is simply a mechanical chainsaw powered by gasoline or petrol. It is merely one of four major types of chainsaws and is arguably the most popular among chainsaw users. Usually, it is equipped with an engine. Therefore, it requires gasoline and oil for it to run.
The mixture of gasoline and oil is very important since they each play an important role in the workings of the chainsaw. The gasoline is responsible for the combustion process in the engine to produce power. The oil, on the other hand, works in lubricating the various moving parts, thereby protecting it from damage and too much wear.
The other three types of chainsaws are manual chainsaws, battery-powered chainsaws, and electric chainsaws. Let us take a look at each of them.
Just as the name implies, a manual chainsaw is operated without the need for fuel or electricity. You will find most users of manual chainsaws actually make it by using a chainsaw’s saw chain to cut wood. In most cases, a manual chainsaw is improvised, since the user can make use of various materials to make it work more effectively.
Instead of being powered by gasoline, electricity or a battery, a manual chainsaw is powered by the user’s arms. That makes this type the most portable type, usually the lightest and easiest to take around. It is certainly cost-effective since you will only need to spend money on the saw chain and the other smaller materials, most of which you may already have in your toolbox. However, it can be exhausting, since you are substituting a motorized action with your arms. Users of this type should expect to exert a lot more effort in the sawing process.
A battery-powered chainsaw makes use of rechargeable batteries for its motor to run. These cordless units are usually used in minor tasks such as pruning and trimming, and also cutting smaller trees. The number of batteries varies with the model or brand, and there is a need to ensure that the batteries are always charged.
Surprisingly, these cordless chainsaws are the most expensive type to buy and operate, and this may be partly attributed to the fact that they batteries need frequent recharging in order for the chainsaw to be used continuously.
Compared to the cordless battery-powered chainsaw, the electric chainsaw is corded and requires direct electricity for it to run. Since they are corded, they must be plugged into a power outlet during use, which somehow limits their portability.
This chainsaw is considerably more powerful than a battery chainsaw when it comes to more demanding cutting and sawing tasks. However, it is more beginner-friendly, so even inexperienced users can easily handle it for lighter tasks. It is generally considered to be more environment-friendly since it does not emit any fumes or make too much noise while in operation.
Why Should You Choose a Gas Chainsaw?
We’ve come to the question: out of the four types, why should you go for a gas chainsaw?
Gas-powered chainsaws are the most powerful and fastest chainsaws among the four types. While some people may be turned off by the fact that this chainsaw is heavy, its power, speed, and effectiveness when cutting more than makes up for it. These types of chainsaws are equipped with 2-cycle engines, and that’s where the power that drives the chain comes from. With that power, these chainsaws can handle heavy tasks, even easily felling trees with thick trunks.
The weight of this type of chainsaw also gives is a bit of stability. This is particularly appreciated by many users, considering that it tends to produce more vibration during operation.
Compared to electric chainsaws, gas chainsaws offer more mobility since they don’t have to be plugged into any power source while in use. So they can be used in remote areas that don’t have power outlets nearby. They also have no cords to deal with. Hence they are easier to wield.
The Top 5 Gas Chainsaws of 2018
In your search for the best gas chainsaw, you have probably come across several brands and models that claim to be the best in the market. There are certain brands that are considered to be pioneers in the chainsaw manufacturing industry, but with so many options, you won’t be blamed for feeling confused and even overwhelmed.
To simplify things, let us take a look at the top 5 gas chainsaws of 2018.
5 Husqvarna 240 2 HP Chainsaw 952802154
The powerful X-torque engine of this chainsaw from Husqvarna is, for many, more than enough reason to pick it up. This engine delivers superior power while ensuring that fuel consumption and exhaust emission are kept very low. It is very easy to start, thanks to its integrated combined choke/stop control and Air Purge, a feature that ejects air from the carburetor.
You won’t have to clean the air filter as much since it has a cleaning system that uses centrifugal air to remove dust particles and debris even before they reach the air filter. It also makes use of a low-vibration system that addresses the common complaint of users against gas chainsaws vibrating too much, therefore causing fatigue to the hands and arms.
4 Remington RM4620 Outlaw 46cc 20-inch Gas Chainsaw
No matter how big and demanding the job may be, you can count on the Remington RM4620 Outlaw to handle it with ease and efficiency. Its 46cc engine is powerful enough, yet also proves easy to operate.
It has an ergonomic design which ensures that you can maneuver it easily, even in cramped spaces. Since the handle is wrapped with cushion, it makes handling that much more comfortable and providing less strain to the arms. If you are worried that it may give you difficulties when starting, don’t be. Remington designed it with Quickstart technology to ensure that you won’t have to stress over faulty startups.
3 Poulan Pro 967061501 50cc 2 Stroke Gas Powered Chain Saw
This chainsaw from Poulan boasts a powerful OxyPower engine technology that makes it effective for heavier jobs. Despite that, it promises that you will consume 20% less fuel and cut down emissions by 70%. It is also equipped with EPS, or Effortless Pull-Start system, for easier and more reliable starts.
Usually, too much pull force and too frequent pulling to start a chainsaw can put a toll on it, even damaging the unit. Since you won’t have to pull too often, this damage is kept at a minimum. The risk of engine flooding is also lessened with this model’s Combined Choke/Stop control.
2 Husqvarna 440E 16″ 40.9cc 967650902 Gas-Powered Chain Saw
As expected from Husqvarna, this gas chainsaw also comes with an X-Torque engine, so you get powerful performance with lower emissions and minimal fuel consumption. Refueling is a breeze, thanks to the flip-up tank cap, which you can easily flip to open when refilling the fuel tank.
However, you don’t have to worry about it causing oil or gas leaks. Cleaning and replacing the air filter is made easy by the Quick Release function, and the Air Injection function also helps protect the air filter by removing dust and other small debris that can potentially cause damage.
1 Remington RM4216 Rebel 42cc 16-inch Gas Chainsaw
Once it starts running, you will realize that there is nothing rebellious about this Remington RM4216 unit. Its 42cc 2-cycle engine is powerful and reliable, and it works seamlessly with its low-kickback bar and chain. Quickstart technology will save you from the headaches usually brought about by gas chainsaws that fail to start in the first, second, or even third attempt.
Just like most Remington gas chainsaws, the handle of this ergonomically-designed chainsaw is wrapped with a cushion, helping greatly in lowering vibrations, absorbing impact, and decreasing fatigue of the operator or user.
A Buyer’s Guide to Choosing a Gas Chainsaw
When shopping for a gas chainsaw, making comparisons among the various models and brands is certainly the best way to go about it. But here are some additional buying tips to make it easier for you to find the gas chainsaw most suitable for your needs.
You already know that gas-powered chainsaws are the most powerful in the world of chainsaws. However, between models and brands, some are more powerful than others. That is what you have to focus on when making comparisons.
You want a gas chainsaw that actually cuts when you want it, where you want it. The first thing to look at, therefore, is the length of the guide bar, since it indicates the cutting area as well as the largest size that the chainsaw can cut into. If you expect to cut a tree with a 14-inch diameter at once, look for a chainsaw with a guide bar that is at least 2 inches longer. In this case, a 16-inch guide bar is ideal, or you can get an even bigger one.
Usually, the best indicator of cutting speed is the engine power. The general rule of thumb states that the higher the measure in cubic centimeters (cc), the more powerful it is. However, you have to be aware of the tradeoff between power and weight. More powerful engines usually mean they are heavier. Decide whether you are fine with the tradeoff or you’d have to look for a better compromise.
Handling Ease and Convenience
Portability is paramount for many users, so they look for a chainsaw that is small enough, but still provides powerful performance for the job at hand. It should be easy to maneuver, even if you have to deal with its vibrations while it is running.
Speaking of vibration, you can try looking for a unit that does not vibrate as much. Some models, in particular, have anti-vibration rubber bushings or metal springs specially designed for this purpose. If not, look for one with a handle designed to absorb at least some of that vibration. There are cushion-wrapped handles that make your grip more comfortable while wielding the machine. Your wrists will thank you later for making the right choice.
Of course, your personal strength and fitness will also come into play. You have to make sure you will be able to wield the machine, considering its weight and the vibration that comes with its operation.
You don’t have to watch the Saw movies to know the potential danger that a chainsaw poses, especially when mishandled. The most common injuries suffered by users are to the chest, when the saw chain snags and the kickback reaches up to the chest and, in some cases, even to the head. Fortunately, many chainsaws are now designed with safety features, and we’re talking about having more than just a safety throttle.
Prime examples of safeguards you should look for include a reduced-kickback chain and automatic chain brake. The reduced-kickback chain will help reduce the risks of a kickback while in use; automatic chain brakes, on the other hand, stop the saw chain when it kicks back, or when the handguard in front is pushed forward. In some models, kickback is reduced by having a guide bar with a narrow tip, since it effectively limits the area that causes the most kickback.
There is also a risk of the chain becoming loose and flying toward the operator of the chainsaw. Most gas chainsaws are now equipped with a chain catcher, which works by catching the chain and keeping it from flying to and hitting, the user.
Finally, there is the carrying case of the chainsaw, which also serves as its sheath. Go for a model that comes with a full case, covering both the bar and chain. Not only will this protect you from getting nicked and cut accidentally by the saw, but it will also protect the chainsaw from damage from the elements when it is not in use and stored. In the case of oil leaks from the chain, the case will also keep them in check.
No matter how durable or heavy-duty a gas chainsaw might be, at the end of the day, its longevity will depend on its upkeep and maintenance. Caring for your chainsaw should not be too difficult if you find a chainsaw with self-cleaning features. There are models that remove impurities, debris and small particles before they reach and potentially damage the air filter. Some also have a function that purges air from the carburetor so you won’t have to do it every single time manually.
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Last update on 2021-02-24 / Most affiliate links and/or Images from Amazon Product Advertising API