View Full Version : Stihl 170 or 180

01-05-2009, 12:32 PM
I've decided to buy a new saw in the next day or two and can't decide between the 170 or 180. Is there any advantage to the 180 for my use? I'll be using it for some TSI on mostly small stuff. I really like the less weight of the 170, simply because of my injuries...where every ounce counts. I really like the 180 C-BE with easy start.
I've decided on a Stihl because we have a really good shop here. For dropping bigger trees, I have a PoulanPro (if it starts :rolleyes: )The 170 is $20 cheaper than the 180 and $60 cheaper than the 180 Easy start. So which would you buy?

01-05-2009, 12:37 PM
Personally I don't think the easy start is worth the money. Get a 180, they are built just a fuzz better and you will like the extra power. Honestly though, I've got a 170 that I've ran the crap out of, busted up a time or two, and it still keeps on kicking. Had carb problems early on with it, but seems like its been ironed out. Overall, the 170 has treated me well, so I don't want to give you a horrible impression about it.

Not sure if they make the 180 with the easy chain tensioner, but that is well worth the money.

Edit: Just looked at the website. I personally would go with a 180 C-B. (Forgot what the C-B stood for in C-BE). I just don't think the easy start makes it that much easier, but if you have shoulder problems or something, maybe...I guess. I'd go to the shop and get a demo to see if you think it is worth it.

And one other note: Buy and extra chain and bar. If you get the saw pinched, you can just take of the motor and put on the other bar and chain. If you pinch that one....then you just did something stupid twice. LOL. Basically it will get you out of a jam.

And buy a file unless you plan on taking the chains in to be sharpened. You can sharpen a chain in a few minutes with a vice holding the chainsaw on the bar and file.

If I were to do it over again, and I will sometime in the next year or so, I will buy the 180 C-B if I don't go with one of the top of the line profession ones.

Never hurts to have some good ear protection, safety glasses and some chaps while you are at it. I just love spending other folks money for them.

Hope my 2 cents helps.

01-05-2009, 12:53 PM
I think either will do well.

Personally I have a MS 250 with Easy Start. I have to admit - I do like the Easy Start as it makes starting the saw much easier. My previous saw was a Poulan and it was a PITA to start.....:mad:

Just my 2 cents but either saw will serve you well:)

01-05-2009, 01:25 PM
I have never had a Stihl anything that was "easy start" (leaf blower, weedeater, chainsaw). They do make good equip. but in my experience you are about worn out by the time it starts. I still have a Stihl leaf blower that takes alot of cussing - I think it has the easy start system come to think of it. My new little Hucquvarna on the other hand, if you have to pull it more than three times then something is wrong (out of gas). I don't know if it will last as long, but so far I like it. They are cheaper too.

01-05-2009, 01:37 PM
I've decided on a Stihl because we have a really good shop here.

I appreciate your comments E-308, but for a Husky it's either Lowes or T&C......not much maintenance support from either.

01-05-2009, 01:55 PM
I have the Stihl 180 and love it. It is not the easy start model, but mine usually starts on the second or third pull every time. I have never used a 170 model but have nothing but good things to say about the 180. It is a great saw for small to mid sized trees.:)

01-05-2009, 03:41 PM
I have a 025 that I love except when it needs tuned, then it is a bear to start. But that is my problem, not the saws.

Last fall I broke the bar on my 025 (long story, don't ask) and used my father-in-law's new 017 with the easy start to finish up the afternoon with. That easy-start is sweet! I had some pulled tendons in my right elbow from a fall during a wind storm last August and that saw was a God-send at the time. I have been planning on getting my Dad a saw for an early birthday present this year and it will definitely have that on it. He has a history of shoulder injuries.


01-05-2009, 10:42 PM
I bought a 180 this past spring and I love it. Mine is not the easy start, but it does have the easy chain tensioner on it.
We are in the middle of a hinge cutting project, and it is perfect for medium sized trees and smaller. I also have a 029 Super, and I do not use it if I can use the 180, because of the weight.

01-05-2009, 11:11 PM
I've decided on the 180 for sure. I'm leaning towards the easy start. Thanks for the help.

01-05-2009, 11:26 PM
Good deal. The 170 has plastic bucking teeth. I think you will appreciate how well metal ones grab. Like I said, pay the extra cash for the easy chain tensioner. You will love it.

Let us know how you like it once you get it in the woods.

01-06-2009, 01:23 AM
Just bought the 180 over the weekend and used it today.. I love ittttttttttttttttttt

01-06-2009, 10:07 PM
I have used the MS 170 for a while now and it has cut SEVERAL trees and still going strong. Been through a few chains already and a blade, but it starts just like the first day that I had it.

For TSI work there is not hardly any tree it cannot tackle. I have cut down some hickories that were easily 20+ inches across with relative ease for a saw that size.

01-08-2009, 11:14 AM
I have 2 180s and I run them hard all winter long. I own 2 so that I always have a saw ready to go. Often I fill both of them and just take tham for a walk to a place
I want to work. I also have an 026 but I don't use it much anymore. The 180s do 98% of the cutting I want to do and I have friends who have bigger saws for the other 2%. Why carry the weight of a big saw for minimal times I need it is what I figure. I can work longer with the light saws before getting tired. That reduces risk of an injury.

S2 Kid
01-08-2009, 02:17 PM
I have the Easy Start feature on mine. It seem that the older I get the more I like it.