The New Poulan Saws

Discussion in 'Shop Talk' started by Oxankle, Mar 25, 2006.

  1. Oxankle

    Oxankle Well-Known Member

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    Don't tell me that Poulans are no good; I know they are not top of the line, but my almost new $300 Husky was stolen and I am not about to serve them another. If they steal, they get Poulan!

    Anyway, what I have is a 40cc Poulan with an l8 inch bar, but the bar is one of those narrow ones not over 4 inches wide. It cuts like a dream, has enough power to suit the chain, but I cannot keep the chain on the bar.

    No matter how tightly I adjust the chain, the least pinch or twist and the chain jumps off the sprocket nose. It is a pain in the butt--I am cutting brush, anything from 2 inches on up to l5 or 20 inches, and can hardly work a quarter hour without the darn thing jumping off. Plenty of oil, and the oiler is working just fine, throwing oil like a champion.

    Anyone else have this experience?
    Ox
     
  2. Janon

    Janon 993cc Geo Metro

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    I'm no chainsaw expert - aside from damage to the saw (bent, warped, worn)... perhaps the bar is flexing enough to throw things out of alignment. Chain jumping and Poulan saws appears to be quite common, especially when cutting small diameter stuff.

    cheers,
     

  3. dennisjp

    dennisjp dennisjp

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    I have a poulan 2300 that is a little smaller than yours. I have the same problem with it to. It is getting on my nerves fast. Faster than I can cut wood with it. Seldom do I use a tank of gas before I have the wrench and screw driver out again, if I can find them. If I put them in my pocket they drop out and it's hard to find somewhere to lay them down when you are throwing sawdust everywhere. I made a little pouch and tied it to my gas and oil tank and haven't lost one yet. And the chain tighens up when you get it to tight trying to keep it on and then just stops turning. It is sure to be the last Polan I'll ever buy.
     
  4. BrahmaMama

    BrahmaMama Well-Known Member

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    DH "had" one, he hated that thing for the same reason. I saw DS chuck it across the yard once! :grump: ;)
     
  5. kmaproperties

    kmaproperties Well-Known Member

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    had 2 of them with same problem, thought the first was a fluke, wrong, brush and 1-2 inchers popped the chain. sold them and bought a stihl. twice the price but 5 years and no problems.
     
  6. idahodave

    idahodave Well-Known Member

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    I have one of the smaller ones (14" bar ) and never had any problems. Use it for jobs that might screw up my "good" saw. Cuts branches, willows, even reduce a slash pile from time to time. Might see if a 14" bar fits your saw.
     
  7. danb98577

    danb98577 Well-Known Member

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    Maybe this will help some-friend had a Poulan with that "skinny" bar and was having same problem. I rummaged around in spare stuff and came up with a wide Oregon roller tip that worked like a charm. The skinny bars seem to be subject to edge "rolling" where the chain rides in the groove which does not help matters any. Might try Cutter's Choice for a wider bar-good quality and generally a bit less money than Oregon. Hope this helps-Dan
     
  8. Oxankle

    Oxankle Well-Known Member

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    As I suspected!!!!!! It IS THE BAR!!!!!

    I called Poulan and raised hell about this, told the guy I was taking the saw back to Lowes and he agreed that was the thing to do.

    Had to call the credit card people to get sale data, but they gave me date of purchase, exact price and TRANSACTION NUMBER- very important.

    Went to Lowe's prepared to do battle but they took one look at my numbers, gave me a complete refund, which I proceeded to use to buy their next upgrade saw, another Poulan. If the chain jumps the bar on this one I will raise hell with Poulan again and get a refund.

    I am not surprised to hear that you all have this problem. I have had Poulans for brush saws for years, dirt eaters, but never had one jump the bar unless I had just stretched the chain too darn long. I bought this one new so that I did not present the thieves with another Husky.

    I am inclined to agree that this saw with a much shorter bar would probably not be so prone to chain jumping.

    Also, I much appreciate the tip on the sources for replacement bars. I have a replacement bar on my old poulan--which apparently gave up the ghost this morning in the process of downing a dozen or so big birches. I'll have to look at it.

    One problem with changing bars on this saw is that the chainguard does not have an adjusting screw in it. I have seen a friend adjust his chain just by pulling the bar out with his hands and then tightening, so I can do that if I must. First though, if I have too I will raise cain with Poulan and see if I can make them send me a better bar.

    Anyway, if any of you have a reasonably new saw giving this same problem, call Poulan and tell them you want the bar replaced. When enough of you call we will get a recall of these bad bars.
    Ox
     
  9. dodgetkboy78

    dodgetkboy78 Active Member

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    As said before, it is the skinny bar, from my experience. Nice thing about poulans, is they are cheap! And no one would steal one! LOL
    If you get near pawn shops, I have a 330 Homelite, with getting close to 100 acres of medium sized tree's on it, plus about 20 cords of wood a year, for the last five, and she runs liek a charm! They are cheap, and a darn good saw. (have a full sized chain too)
     
  10. Blu3duk

    Blu3duk Well-Known Member

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    if the bar is throwing the chain it can be from debris in the groove, or due to the rails being to shallow allowing the chain to ride up and get a little jill poke under it to throw it off.

    even in a large saw you can get the chain to throw if the rail groove gets dirt and grime built up, cleaning it is really very easy to do if done daily. if the bar needs regrooved then for the little saws it is easier to buy an new one.... although i havent had a bar trued up for quite some time it used to be a $20 bill... and doubled the life of the bar.

    Bailies Logging Supplies carries replacement bars for most saws.

    As far as poulan being good or bad, i had one of the little one handed saws or 12 hour heads as we used to call them last for a couple years with daily abuse... finally burned it up on a log house best $90 i ever spent, probably made close to $20K with that little green devil.


    William
     
  11. Oxankle

    Oxankle Well-Known Member

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    Well, fellows;

    After I got back from Lowes and read your posts I wrote to Electrolux (the parent company of both Poulan and Husqvarna) and told them they had a bad design, fix it. We shall see.

    I have no complaint regarding the Poulan engines, and until this latest model, the saws. I have had several; all but one were stolen from me--I popped the crankcase on the other by over-tightening the bar. I worked the hell out of all of them, everything from firewood to cutting off stumps at ground level--eating up bars and chains at a prodigious rate. I file my own chains and true up the rails when they need it. I have used both hard-nose and sprocket nosed bars. Never before have I had a tight chain jump the bar.

    When cutting brush and stumps, when chains stretch by the minute, I have had chains jump, but never before have I had a saw burr the drive links so that the chain could not be put back on the bar without filing down the links. I no longer use the soft Oregon chains, but even when I did they ran until the cutters were filed to the point that a wire in a tree or a hard knot would break one off. I may have had to take out a link, or replace a broken link, but they stayed on the bar.

    No new saw should behave as this one did. If you have a new Poulan and cannot keep the chain on the bar, take it back and demand a replacement.
    Ox
     
  12. caballoviejo

    caballoviejo Well-Known Member

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    I've got two 2075 Poulans with 2.0 c.u. Both have chain tightening screws in the chain guard. I've never had any problem with the chain jumping when I tightened it up and it usually needed sharpening before that. I leave a little slack in it so as not to wear out the bar. Both came with the skinny 16" bars. I think they'd be underpowered for an 18" bar.I bent one in a tree and replaced it with a wider Oregon bar. No difference for me in chain jumping.

    I do notice that if the chain has gotten fairly slack it will jump more if you're cutting sideways rather than up and down. Also, in brush, vines and small stuff can get between the chain and bar and throw the chain.

    I like them. They are cheap, $100 -$120 three years ago at Wal-Mart.
     
  13. Oxankle

    Oxankle Well-Known Member

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    Ol' Horse:

    I have used a buncha-buncha those old green saws with the screw in the chainguard. The have been replaced in the Pro line with a toothed insert in the bar. You stick a screwdriver in a slot in the bar, twist and it drives the insert back against the bar mount, pushing the bar outward just as the screw does on the old saws. I'm not sold on it, but it works.

    Whatever the cause, this is the first saw I ever had with this problem. It will do the company no good to protest that we are cutting brambles, brush or small stuff. That is what people with saws do--no sawyer is going back to the house for his loppers when two or a dozen briars block his cut at a tree. Certainly if I am clearing an area I am going to cut two inch saplings just as I do 30 inch trees, and I expect my saw to hold together while I do it.
    Ox
     
  14. dodgetkboy78

    dodgetkboy78 Active Member

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    I never would have thought there were that many people with those little green saws! Sounds like if I ever need a throw away, and the old Super XL12 is dead, I am going to buy one.
     
  15. Oxankle

    Oxankle Well-Known Member

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    Took the replacement out today and started cutting some right of way for a new fence. Cut briars, saplings, American Beauty bushes, some box elder up to about six inches. Saw is still starting like a new one, a bit stiff, but it cuts like a dream. Chain behaved, and the premium I paid to get the anti-vibration model seems to have been a good investment. I have a bit more to clean up that fenceline, so I will know in a few days whether the chain will stay on the bar.

    I suspect though that I cannot buy an aftermarket bar for this saw. I'll bet either Poulan or Husqvarna has a patent on the adjustment mechanism. To use a conventional bar you would have to buy a chainguard with the screw in it--this saw has none. I would hazard a guess that Poulan wants more for new bars than I would pay if I could use a conventional bar.
    Ox
     
  16. comfortablynumb

    comfortablynumb Well-Known Member

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    I dont consider poulans junk, they are fine if you dont beat them.
    I have 2 on the shelf that quit, because the carbs need rebuilt, and i cut tons of wood with those, wore out many chains and bars on them... they can be made run with rebuild kits. I have a really really old one that just this yr stalled out and quit for some reason.... its been running with no problems for about 20 yrs. Im usinf a 14 inch newer one I picked up on sale for 88 bucks.
    the only peve I have on them is the chain, its thin and it dulls to fast, BUT for 30 bucks you can bbuy a new bar/chain from sabre or oregon that works far better.

    keep it clean, use TWO saws... one runs out of gas use the other let the first one cool off. run the gas mix a little on the oily side. and use thin cheap motor oil instead of thick stiff bar oil, that flows better in the auto oiler.
    and lack of oil destroys the bar fast.

    the little green saws work great, just dont beat them like they are a 900 buck cast aluminum cased pro saw.

    other than the chains, I dont have any complaits at all.
    I would like to know where to get rebuild kits for the carbs!
     
  17. dodgetkboy78

    dodgetkboy78 Active Member

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    Poulan has a website, I saw it a few days ago, where you can get parts.

    Does this apply to all saws? or just poulan? Running more oil than reccomended in the gas can cause carbon build up on most 2 cycle engines. (Just curious)
     
  18. countrymech

    countrymech Well-Known Member

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    Just got done running my new Poulan Pro 18" saw. Its not the saw that I wanted, but its the one that I could justify. I noticed that the bar on it says Oregon straight out of the box. I found it interesting after having read this thread. Didn't have any problems with it, spent the morning putting it through its paces. Cutting sapplings, up to 10" limbs and lots of sagebrush. I had wanted a Husky but I also needed to get a wire feed welder, so I got the best I could with the budget I had. Thanx for all the great info and ideas posted, they've got me thinking of some things.
     
  19. michiganfarmer

    michiganfarmer Max Supporter

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    My dad has a super XL. He bought it in '73. Very tough saw
     
  20. dodgetkboy78

    dodgetkboy78 Active Member

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    Mine is a 1980 model, and it just wont die. It puts my hands to sleep, so I don't use it much. I never go through chainsaws though, I have been using the XL-12 since I was about 11, and then, I switched to the Homelite 330.
    The 330 has been running strong, and reliable, for seven years now, with nothing but maintenance, and a few bars. I put a 24" bar on it the last time, and love it. The 3.3 inch saw has no problems pulling it. Funny too, my buddy has a .038 Super Stihl (still wont start, still broke down...... :baby04: ) and we went to get a 40+ inch based cottonwood tree that fell in a friends yard. After a couple hours of cutting, my friend started calling us the tortoise and the hair. The homelite ran non stop, other than a few gas stops, and the .038 always needed chain adjustments, carburator adjustments, and burned twice the gas as the homelite. (and it only cut a little bit faster)
    OK, this is a poulan thread, and here I am bragging about my Homelite. I can say this, if you ever run across a 330 Homelite, at a garage sale, pawn shop, ect in good shape, it would be a good saw to grab, if you need one.