The Stihl battery powered chainsaw is an awesome tool.
It has so many uses and should be a serious contender for a place in your workshop, regardless whether you are a seasoned professional or a casual hobbyist.
Chainsaws are serious tools, and you should always take basic safety precautions when using one.
In the decades of work that I have done with a chainsaw there is one universal truth I have learned and stuck to.
A sharp saw is the safest one there is, and a dull saw is always a danger to its user.
That coupled with the right safety equipment and some basic training can help keep you safe.
Safety is extra important to keep in mind with battery powered electric chainsaws.
Without all the racket and exhaust of the traditional gas powered saws, Stihl battery powered chainsaws can give the false impression that they are not serious tools.
Many users have found them to be far more useful than gasoline powered saws because of their versatility and quiet operation, even allowing you to take activities indoors in ways never before possible without endangering your health.
Battery powered saws are an excellent addition to any woodworkers shop.
Not every job requires the precision of a cabinet saw, or bandsaw.
For roughing out, carving, or preparing small logs and branches for firewood, a Stihl battery powered chainsaw is perfect.
You can keep it in your shop and it will be ready on a moment's notice.
The MSA 120 C-B is a small light weight saw that can reportedly make over 100 cuts through 4” or smaller logs on a single charge.
At just over 8 pounds it is a featherweight compared to the old 650 that I have spent years lugging around the woods when I have to do large cutting.
I’m not trying to compare the MSA 120 C-B with my old 650 other than to point out that this complete saw including its ¼ proprietary narrow kerf chain weighs less than half of what the power head of my 650 weighs without a bar, chain or gas.
For a saw like this you can easily find space on a shop shelf, or in the backseat of your vehicle without ever worrying about fumes or spilled fuel.
Stihl battery powered chainsaws are not just for little jobs though.
They have a whole range that makes me wish many of these options would have been available to me when I spent most of my days working in the woods.
One that really stands out to me is the MSA 220 C-B.
It comes with a 16” bar and is intended to be more than just a cleanup saw.
Its larger more aggressive dogs will help stabilize it in the cut when it takes on felling work.
Now imagine that same saw can now be brought inside.
This creates endless opportunities that just never existed in the past allowing for new production methods and uses than was ever possible before.
The saw that excites me the most though is one that most consumers would not give a second look, the MSA 161 T Stihl battery powered chainsaw.
When I was young I had a tree service that I started with one of my best friends.
For years we took on all jobs big and small, and that business was successful, so much so that it still exists to this day years after I moved on to other things.
We had a specialty, we would safely take down any tree, especially those that had proximity issues: trees that were over buildings or service lines.
Many of those jobs required climbing the tree and cutting it out piece by piece, all the while lowering everything off in a controlled manner with the groundman.
It involved a lot of rigging to safety lower branches and larger pieces of trunk off so damage could be avoided.
There was always the possibility of the worst case scenario where the tree was already on the house or building and it had to be cut and rigged for safe removal.
It was exhausting work and there were few things that had us feeling more deflated than a saw that would not start when we were in the tree.
The climber would then have to lower their saw to the ground to let the groundman try to get it started.
Anything that adds difficulty to an already difficult task makes things more dangerous, and there are few things that come to mind that are more dangerous than tree work and logging.
The MSA 161 T would have saved numerous days of work that were ended because of irregularities with our saws.
It would have saved time and energy by always being ready and being easy to service off the ground.
There are more than a few injuries that I can think of that this saw might have prevented just by doing a dangerous job more reliably.
As we continue to move into the modern electric age, I’m sure that there are tree workers everywhere who will be thankful for the increased reliability and safety that comes from having access to great high quality tools like Stihl battery powered chainsaws.
The little kid in me is excited to still have new things to experience and shiny new tools that still draw my interest.
I never thought I would see the day when my back country home surrounded by woodsmen and mills might not still ring with the sound of chainsaws.
As Stihl continues to refine and develop their line of battery powered chainsaws that day may be coming soon.
While I have internalized the sound of chainsaws to be a bit more poetic than they really are, the average person seems to see it as what it is, noise pollution.
Noise pollution doesn’t just bother us, it bothers wild and domestic animals as well.
There are so many different aspects of human activity that can be altered to be less harmful to the things we care about, and the Stihl battery powered chainsaw seems like a step in the right direction.