Cutting edge: 2019 GIE+EXPO brings new chain saws to market

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At this year’s GIE+EXPO, multiple green industry brands showcased the newest additions to their lines of chain saws, both battery and gas-powered. Take a look at what you need to know about these new saws.

Stihl

The MS 500i is the first Stihl chain saw with fuel-injection technology. Stihl’s first usage of fuel-injection technology was launched on the TS 500i Cutquik cut-off machine.

Thanks to the fuel injection system, the MS 500i has a power-to-weight ratio of 2.07 pounds per break horsepower (bhp). The machine has instant acceleration and is hard to bog down.

There is also an optional handle wrap version of the MS 500i. The MSRP for the MS 500i with the 25-inch bar and chain is $1,249.95. The MS 500i R with the 25-inch bar and chain is $1,289.95. This new chain saw will be available in 2020.

MS 500i Photo: Jill Odom/Total Landscape CareMS 500i
Photo: Jill Odom/Total Landscape Care

The MS 194 T is a top-handle chain saw that is lightweight, only weighing 7.28 pounds, but provides 1.88 bhp. Its lower emissions allow for better fuel economy. Its MSRP is $339.95 with the 14-inch guide bar.

The MS 194 C-E is the rear-handle version of the MS 194 T. It weighs 7.6 pounds and has 1.88 bhp as well. It features the Easy2Start system, which makes starting easier, no longer needing a strong pull of the starting cord. The MSRP is $389.95 with the 14-inch guide bar.

Another new addition is the MS 151 T C-E, which replaces the MS 150 model. This top-handle chain saw is built to be lightweight and compact for in-tree work. It weighs 5.73 pounds and has a 1.41 bhp. With the 12-inch guide bar, it has an MSRP of $499.95.

Moving into the battery-powered chain saws, Stihl introduced its first lithium-ion top-handle chain saw, the MSA 161 T, which is designed for professional arborists.

Part of the AP Series of Stihl battery products, the MSA 161 T comes with a ¼-inch PICCO saw chain for clean, smooth cuts for pruning and in-tree maintenance.

MS 194 T Photo: StihlMS 194 T
Photo: Stihl

This chain saw has a run time of up to 50 minutes on the Stihl AP 300 battery.

The company says the new chain saw is ergonomic and balanced properly, and there is a built-in retractable carry ring and a side-access chain tensioner, allowing the user to tighten the chain on the guide bar with ease.

It also features a captured guide bar nut on the sprocket cover to prevent users from losing the nut while servicing the saw. It has a toolless and translucent bar and chain oil tank so arborists can easily see when the bar oil needs to be refilled.

Since it is a battery-powered model, it is silent when it is not running and works well in areas where workers are trying to reduce their noise levels. The MSRP for the MSA 161 T is $379.95.

Stihl also introduced another battery-powered chain saw at the trade show. The MSA 220 C-B is Stihl’s most powerful battery power chain saw currently. This model has a 15 percent greater cutting performance compared to the MSA 200 C-B. It comes standard with a 14-inch or 16-inch guide bar and exclusive 3/8-inch PICCO saw chain.

There is a toolless oil filter cap and a toolless chain tensioner for simplified maintenance. With the AP 300 S 36-volt battery, the chain saw has a run time up to 48 minutes. The MSRP for the MSA 220 C-B is $399.95 with the 16-inch guide bar.

Ego

Photo: EgoPhoto: Ego

New to Ego’s commercial line of outdoor power equipment is its 18” 56-volt lithium-ion electric chain saw.

This chain saw is comparable to a 40cc gas chain saw and can cut through large branches, stumps and trees with its 18” Oregon bar and chain. Operators can easily tighten the chain with the twist of the dial with the new tensioning system.

The chain saw has 11,000 RPM for efficient cuts and can cut 250 pieces of four by four wood in a single charge. The 56-volt charger can get the battery back to 100 percent in 100 minutes.

LED headlights are incorporated into the machine to provide light for cutting at dusk or in emergencies at night. The MSRP for the chain saw is $239.99.

Greenworks Commercial

Greenworks Commercial presented two new chain saws during the 2019 GIE+EXPO.

Photo: Greenworks CommercialPhoto: Greenworks Commercial

The GS 181 chain saw was one of the new products presented at the show. This is Greenworks’ most powerful chain saw to date. The company says the 18” Oregon bar and chain is up to the task of felling heavy trees or cutting firewood.

The GS 181 is comparable to a 55cc gas performance. It is powered by Greenworks 82-volt lithium-ion battery. It has 50 percent less noise and five times less vibration than gas equivalent products.

This product will be available in January 2020 with an MSRP of $349. It has a two-year warranty.

Greenworks also introduced a new top handle saw, the 48TH12 48-volt 12” chain saw. This model is 30 percent lighter than gas models and is built for arborist operations. It is the first product to feature the 21700 lithium-ion battery cells, which provide more power and lighter weight to users. These have a longer life and improve run time.

This model will also be available in January 2020. It has a two-year warranty and an MSRP of $499.

Husqvarna

The K 535i is a battery-powered power cutter with a 35cc equivalent. It has low vibrations and a lightweight, making it easy to maneuver and lift during operation. Husqvarna says this saw is ideal for lighter hardscaping jobs and can cut material like concrete garden plates, granite and floor tiles. It is adaptable for wet and dry cutting and uses BLi200/300 batteries. It has an MSRP of $649.99

WORX

WORX also released its 40V, 14-inch Power Share cordless chain saw.

WORX says the chain saw features a brushless motor with electronically controlled power distribution, which increases battery run time over standard brushed motors, and because carbon brushes are eliminated, the motor is maintenance-free. Additionally, WORX says the motor’s precise internal software (smart chip) improves motor efficiency and durability by reducing heat, friction and wear.

Photo: WORXPhoto: WORX

The chain saw’s brushless motor is powered by two, 20V, MAX Lithium 2.0 Ah batteries, and it includes the patented WORX auto-tension system. WORX adds that the chain saw’s automatic oiler system includes a reservoir with an oil level indicator, showing when a refill is needed, and constant lubrication is provided to both the bar and chain during operation.

The company says a quick-stop chain brake helps prevent accidental cutting and allows the operator to stop the chain immediately before setting down the saw or moving to another location. WORX notes that the brake handle is designed for easy activation, whether the saw is held vertically or horizontally.

The 40V chain saw weighs only 10.38 lbs. and WORX says overmolds on the front and rear handles improve the operator’s grip and help reduce fatigue. The 14-inch bar has a reduced-kickback chain with a 3/8 in. pitch and cutting speed of 26 ft./sec.

WORX adds that the eco-friendly cordless chain saw is emission-free and has low operating and maintenance costs, compared to gas-powered models.

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