Rated 4.7 out of 5Â by 85
Rated 5 out of 5Â by ToddB Dream chainsaw for a homeowner!
Note: I almost never give 5 stars in a review, never mind across the board.
I'm a homeowner with an acre lot. Over the years I've had to maintain a number of older trees, removing limbs. I've also had to cut down a number of trees. This is my third chainsaw, and I must say it's a fantastic saw.
Before I extol the virtues of it slicing through wood like butter, let's be clear about something. Almost any saw will cut like butter with a sharp chain. With a dull chain this saw will perform just as poorly as a $30 used saw with the same. I say this because it's easy to get impressed with a new saw with a new chain. I wanted to look beyond the initial excitement of how quickly and effortlessly my first cuts were.
This saw has many features that set it apart from a less expensive unit. Below are some highlights of the saw:
- 60 cc engine is a great price/performance point for a homeowner.
- Electronic ignition (see ignition notes).
- Decompression button. This releases compression in the cylinder for easy pull starting. Fantastic!
- Adjustable auto chain oiling. My first saw had a manual button I had to keep pressing during operation. My next saw had auto oiling, but it wasn't adjustable. You can max it out for hardcore usage to protect your chain and bar.
- Effective chain tension adjustment. Believe me, this is far superior to anything I'd have in the past.
- Easily accessed air filter a "pre-filter" (see filter notes).
- The translucent gas tank allows you see the level without opening it.
- Fantastic vibration control. It's a pleasure to use this saw.
- Great format, size and weight. When I take this saw out I smile inside, if not literally. It's a great looking saw that's comfortable to use and is so well constructed I thoroughly enjoy using it. Come on guys ... you know what it's like to worship a quality tool!
- Between the automatic chain brake and the tip guard this saw has much more emphasis placed on safety (see automatic chain brake notes).
- Made in Japan! When's the last time you bought a tool that wasn't made in China or Taiwan?
- FIVE YEAR WARRANTY! (see made in Japan, warranty notes)
- Excellent owner's manual with far more useful cutting and safety information than I've ever been exposed to. This may sound silly, but I learned an awful lot from the owner's manual. They even describe the various log cutting approaches and terminology.
I'm dying to make my own lumber and a chainsaw mill is the cheapest way to get into milling. Some research shows that 60 cc is the minimum displacement required for use with flat sawn milling. The next factor to consider is the bar length. A Granberg mill reduces the capacity because of how it attaches to the bar. Because of that I'd want the longest bar I could accommodate. I spent some time researching this saw in relation to Echo's line. The CS-600P, which is more of a professional saw is built on the same chassis, with the same engine. That saw can handle a 27" bar. It's got a fancier chain clutch and a replaceable bar tip, but otherwise, the same engine can drive a bigger bar. When asked if that bar would attach to the CS-590 Echo refused to answer my question. I believe it will, but they want to protect their product line, which is understandable. Another option that I'm seriously considering is going with the smaller Granberg (mini) for quarter sawn milling. This would take more effort, but yield better quality lumber. Also, because the milling is done vertically with the tip of the saw buried up to half way, significantly less power is required of the engine, as opposed to flat sawing through and through.
So far I "removed" two large stumps that I'd been mowing around for years now, cutting them as low to the ground as possible (see photo). Also, I have a large trunk from a tree that I had paid someone to cut down for me. My saw at the time couldn't handle it. The trunk's about 20" in diameter and I've been wanting to make lumber from it, so I kept it around. In one of the photos I attached you can see that sliced off a short disc from one end. The cut cut through this in less than a minute.
* Starting: I read a couple of reviews describing difficulty starting. I didn't experience this. The saw started exactly as the directions stated, which is a bit different than my older saws, as using the decompression button is part of the process. It starts MUCH easier than my other saws.
* Ignition: Echo advertises this saw as having "digital ignition". Looking at the parts list online, I think this is a bit of a marketing spin. I see an ignition module with no signal input. I believe there's a magnet or notch in the flywheel to trip the ignition coil as it passes. I don't when the last time points were used in a chainsaw, but I believe all modern saws have a similar setup to this one.
* Pre-filter: I couldn't find this documented anywhere, but I finally found it in a video on Echo's website. Engine fins cause a suction that pulls large debris out of the air cleaner housing, through a channel. This is to remove them before the jam the filter, sort of like how a cyclone separator works with a dust collector.
* Automatic chain brake: This saw has, in addition to the manual chain brake lever, an automatic chain brake that's supposed to kick in during a violent saw kickback. The owner's manual includes instructions on testing this with the saw off. I have NOT been able to get my brake to engage so far. While holding just one hand on the handle you're supposed to let the bar end free fall onto a block of wood. I've tried this (very reluctantly!) several times and it just doesn't seem to work. I haven't tried contacting them yet to see if I'm misunderstanding the instructions, if there's an adjustment that can be made, or what.
* Warranty: I read through the warranty and I think it's a pretty good deal. Adjustments (carb) are just 60 days so be sure to put the saw through the paces as soon as you can. There are a number of important parts that are warranted for life (parts only), which is amazing, but somehow I doubt they'd let you diagnose your failure and replace the parts yourself, so you'd still be on the hook for service from a repair center. The bottom line, though, is that it's a better warranty than I'm used to seeing.
The quality and fit of the components is excellent. The design is streamlined. It's plenty strong for most homeowners and the spring dampeners (springs) do a great job of eliminating vibration. You can spend a lot more on a chainsaw, but in my opinion this is a great price/performance point. I absolutely love this saw and after writing this review I just want to go home and cut stuff.
September 17, 2013
Rated 5 out of 5Â by Cutworm Beast Of A Saw
Assembly was quick and easy with well written instructions. I did tension the chain again after I ran the saw a couple of minutes.
The engine starts easily. Just don't forget to push the compression release button. Hard to pull if you don't.
As for cutting, the saw will almost cut by itself when you lay it across a timber. It makes effortless cuts and the saw is remarkably smooth due to isolation in the saw frame. I tested the saw on 10" oak and 6" maple. I am not exaggerating when I say the saw went through them like a knife through hot butter! Outstanding performance for the serious user.
July 30, 2013
Rated 5 out of 5Â by HWade Nice power and great running!
I own a craftsman that could not handle a lot of work without overheating. It got to the point where it was not worth trying to fix anymore and the saw was used about ten times. The Echo was an excellent investment. Starts easy, idles real nice and cuts with ease. I was thinking of going with a Stihl but could not justify the price. I could not be happier with my purchase. It is also real easy to access the air filter and plug... No tools required! The fuel and bar oil caps come off and go on nice and easy too. You will not be disappointed with this saw! I love it and I am looking forward to my next Echo purchase!
August 8, 2014