Echo vs Stihl

Peter Tayoun

New Member
Right off the bat let me say that I am currently running all Stihl saws. And I have no complaints with them. However I was wondering if someone has objective information on the quality differences between Stihl and Echo. I don't want to hear that Echo is junk because you don't like them, or because you had one once that didn't run right on three year old gas! I'm more interested in quality of materials used in construction, ability to hold up in a professional use environment. And in a comparison of the general build quality, longevity, and performance of the engine. As well as the overall fit and finish of the saw.
We only use Stihl products at Scranton Tree Service. Prior to working there, I did experiment with different types and had used echos in the past but I've always gotten the best results with Stihl. It just feels better in my hands.
 

mofish75

Member
I'm NO pro.however,ms390 went down&as I waited 4 coil 2b shipped,HAD2have a saw.so, $200 cs310 H.D.
Did muff mod,adj carb&that lil guy thinks he's a ninja!w lil 14"bar,I have by far gotten that $200 worth of an investment out of lil "shihlecho"....not2mention,starts EVERY time,2pulls.looking2get top handle very soon.

Sent from my SM-G900P using Tapatalk
 

TimBr

Official Well Known Greeter
We only use Stihl products at Scranton Tree Service. Prior to working there, I did experiment with different types and had used echos in the past but I've always gotten the best results with Stihl. It just feels better in my hands.
Hey, Peter! Welcome to the TreeBuzz forum! Congratulations on making your first post! I think you are going to like it here!

Tim
 

DTS

Well-Known Member
After using both the 355t and 200t for last couple of weeks I can say I do favor the 200t more each day I was helping another tree service with my bucket yesterday And his climber asked about 355t and I said it could be yours lol. So by end of job me and the echo parted ways he offered me exactly what I paid so I wasn't out any money and got to try a different brand. So it's Stihl again in the trees for me.
 

JeffGu

Well-Known Member
So it's Stihl again in the trees for me.
Well, you got to try it out. Yesterday, I went up a tree at the shop with the Echo 271T (I was using it to cut up brush on the ground earlier) because I wanted to try out some new Gecko climbers I got. I really liked it in the tree, but for one thing... the Stihl tophandle saws have a slimmer profile that I find more comfortable when you have it on your saddle or are in a thick tangle of branches. Especially the little 150T, that thing is really tiny. The Echo is wider and bumps into stuff more. None of this really matters on the ground, though, and the little Echo has become the first thing I grab to whittle the branches down to firewood/kindling size, and everything smaller than 1-1/2" for the chipper. You can use it all day long for this and it doesn't overheat or start running funny.
 

DTS

Well-Known Member
They all do the job some better then others and each user has his or her own likes or dislikes with all brands. I liked the power and feel of the echo it felt heavier then it really is for some reason. I absolutely hated the oil and gas caps and the hand brake which kicked on always in tight Spaces. Wasn't to fond of lanyard ring either but it does it job. It's a good arborist saw that can can be better with some minor changes.
 

JeffGu

Well-Known Member
Snellerized MS-150T in Siberian Elm. Need to tweak the carb tuning a little, but you get the idea...


Love this little saw.
 

Dan Cornman

New Member
Right off the bat let me say that I am currently running all Stihl saws. And I have no complaints with them. However I was wondering if someone has objective information on the quality differences between Stihl and Echo. I don't want to hear that Echo is junk because you don't like them, or because you had one once that didn't run right on three year old gas! I'm more interested in quality of materials used in construction, ability to hold up in a professional use environment. And in a comparison of the general build quality, longevity, and performance of the engine. As well as the overall fit and finish of the saw.
 

TimBr

Official Well Known Greeter
@Dan Cornman, Welcome to the TreeBuzz forum, Dan! I think you're going to like it here. Remember to use the forum's "search" function to find a lot of cool older threads that are still stored in the vault.

Did you have a question or comment regarding @Gareth's Tree's post, or were you just trying to reiterate his question, because it might not have been answered yet?

Gareth's question sounds like one for the saw mechanics on this forum, of which there only seems to be a few.

My name is Tim. I hope you enjoy your time here, and feel free to jump right in.
 

hseII

Well-Known Member
Price is the big one... but they have a few saws that I thought were just stronger and easier to start than the Stihl equivalent model. I have the MS-150TC and the CS-271T which are equivalent models, and the Echo has noticeably more power, uses 3/8 Picco chain instead of the little 1/4 Picco one. As the wood gets bigger, the Echo digs in and gets through it quicker. The Stihl, however, is more nimble, thinner kerf and really flies through the little stuff with speed and finesse. I like them both, but on removals I prefer the Echo, and think the Stihl will definitely be my preferred saw on prunes. They're both pretty new, so time will tell. I've been hammering them both pretty hard these last few days.

I have an MS-261C-MQ and a CS-590 and prefer the Stihl in the tree, but like the Echo better on the ground... something about the balance and feel of them. I'd have to admit though, with those ones... the Echo is just very good for the price. If they were the same price, I'd buy the Stihl every time, because it's slim profile gives me less trouble if I have to haul it up into the tree.

I was renting an HT-131 pole pruner and decided to buy one. My dealer carries both Stihl and Echo, and let me play with them both. I came away with the Echo PPT-280 because it starts easier, real good power and is two feet longer. About the same price. I got a 4' extension for it, too. Again, it just feels better, to me.

Sometimes this stuff is just subtle. Sometimes, it comes down to the money... you buy an Echo for a backup, and end up liking it a lot more than you thought you would. Like you, I have a preference for the Stihl saws, but I'm willing to try anything. There's a lot of good saws out there.
There is no Comparison between a HT131 & a PPT280 & I'm a Self Admitted Stihl Head.




I did reroute the wiring.


ECHO 1201 certainly kicks a MS880's Ass.

 
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hseII

Well-Known Member
X2!


The "chain saw on a stick" was invented and developed by Power Pruner Inc., who was purchased by Echo. Echo still labels them as Echo Power Pruners. They really refined them and everyone else still seems to be playing catch up. Every tree company I've ever worked for, whether they were Sthil Men, Husky Men or a mix of both, used Echo Power Pruners. I figure that says a lot right there.

We just purchased a new Echo PPT-280 last week and I finally got to use it today. Wow, very nice!!(y)(y)
The Comparable Husky is no Comparison: the shaft is a cable that has plastic connections that break.

I've bought 1 Hushee Cable, & won't buy another.
 

JeffGu

Well-Known Member
Had the PPT-280 out, today, with the extra extension on it. Several trees along the edge of a cornfield, low branches bashing the combines and tractors... instead of taking them out, I just whacked the low limbs off on the cornfield side with the Echo. Never had to leave the ground, as I can get everything up to about 20' with the pole saw. It didn't look too bad, better than taking them all out. Can only really notice the pruning from the field side, from the road they looked fine.
 

hseII

Well-Known Member
Had the PPT-280 out, today, with the extra extension on it. Several trees along the edge of a cornfield, low branches bashing the combines and tractors... instead of taking them out, I just whacked the low limbs off on the cornfield side with the Echo. Never had to leave the ground, as I can get everything up to about 20' with the pole saw. It didn't look too bad, better than taking them all out. Can only really notice the pruning from the field side, from the road they looked fine.
I'm interested in the extension: please share info as this is the first I've heard of such.
 

cerviarborist

Very stable member
It's a 5' long extension. It requires removing the chainsaw head from the inner/front tube of the PPT, fitting over the front tube, aligning the extension to that star shaped drive piece at the end of the drive rod, clamping it down, and then reattaching the saw head to the end of the extension.

Pro tip: Start the engine and let it idle to make sure the chain is rotating way out at the end of that extension before you snug everything back down. Pros: You can reach and cut limbs about 20' directly overhead. Drawback: It's pretty heavy even straight up. If you need to use it at an angle and don't have a lower limb to rest it on, you'll get tired and start thinking "Why didn't I just climb to get that *^$#@ limb?" pretty quickly. It's also kind of a pain to remove and reinstall the extension, but if you leave it on, you've got a power pruner that's about 12' long at a minimum.

If you really want to build upper body strength, get the hedge trimmer attachment for it!
 

JeffGu

Well-Known Member
What he said... :)

Dead on. It's one heavy beast with the extension on it. But, you can also get some stuff done that would be a real pain to do in the tree. Great tool.
 

Gareth's Tree

Active Member
So, to revive an old thread that I started quite some time ago... I recently got an Echo 501p to see if it was a possible replacement for my Stihl 261. I've only put 3 or so tanks of gas through it so far but have been very pleased with it especially for the price point. It is mainly a limbing saw on the ground so slight weight differences don't matter as much. I like the overall feel of the saw and it seems to have good torque. once the saw breaks in Foley and we get a good Seasons worth of us on it I will be interested to see how it is holding up. I'm not opposed to saving several hundred dollars each time I buy a saw if we are not going to really be losing performance going with Echo over Stihl.

Also, my brother got the Echo 620p to compare alongside his Stihl 362 as a firewood cutting saw. He cuts 75 plus cords a year. He is super happy with the Echo's performance and really his only gripe is the selection of quality bars available for it. He had a friend machine him a spacer so he can run stihl bars on it. Also, I heard Echo is going to be changing their bar mount designed to a more popular one so they will be a wider selection of bars available.
 
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