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MS 181 C-BE

A chainsaw with reduced-emission engine technology, STIHL Easy2Start™ and Quick Chain Adjuster.

MS 181 C-BE
Rated 3.9 out of 5 by 25reviewers.
Rated 5 out of 5 by Always ready when I need it Don't get to use it often only bought it cause I'm a home owner in hurricane alley, and to chop up refuse.Only used it once so far.But I start it if I need to pull my weed eater out or my edger.Always starts glad it has a primer bulb September 12, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Outstanding value for the money I originally bought an MS 170 at the recommendation of the dealer. The MS 170 was under powered when used to cut 4-6 inch thick branches in my trees. I took it back to the dealer and they gave me full credit back and I bought the MS 181. Wow, what a difference. I trimmed 2 pine trees today and it has plenty of power to cut through 4-6 inch thick branches.The MS 170 was a little difficult to start. I highly recommend the Stihl MS 181 C-BE for the added power, quick chain adjustment, and especially the easy start.By the way, I was so impressed with the quality of the Stihl chainsaw and how the dealership stood behind the product when I told them the MS 170 was underpowered that I bought a Stihl FS 56 straight shaft trimmer and a BG 56 blower.If you worry about the price, shop around the big box stores for the high end equipment. Stihl is priced competitive with the upper end brands. Lastly, bite the bullet and buy the 6-pack of Stihl 2-stroke oil. It's a cheap way to double your warranty. August 31, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Great Chainsaw...took down 4 Ash trees with no problem Took down 2 Ash trees one weekend and 2 more the next weekend. The saw did a great job and the chain adjuster helped make it easy. I did have an issue with the chain and the dealer replaced it. Getting the live training from the dealer and having someone to go to with questions was worth the extra couple bucks than buying a cheaper brand from the big box stores. Wish I had bought Stihl when I was younger. August 23, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Excellent saw Lightly pull the starter chord and the saw has a built in mechanism that uses that small amount of force to start the chainsaw. Nice saw, not heavy, cuts through wood like butter. Ace Hardware staff were excellent. A pleasure to use this saw. August 23, 2014
Rated 2 out of 5 by Required repair after two months. Used it to limb trees since I cut a lot of fire wood and have a larger chain say to do the heavy cutting. After two only two moths of use I have to take it in for repair. Also found out that apparently Stihl's warrantee doesn't cover much of anything. July 4, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Replacement and couldn't be happier A friend had this model saw as we were doing some clean-up. I struggled with my "cheap" saw and finally gave up and tried to keep up hauling off what he was cutting. My saw had been used twice and been in the shop after each use. What was cheap was far from it. I gave it away and got a Stihl and have been very pleased. June 27, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by This saw is a dream machine! I bought this Stihl to replace a saw I bought from a home improvement store about 2 years ago. That saw nearly wore me out trying to get it to start. (Hint...it's yellow.) I tried everything, yet that saw is just a bugger. Oh, and it leaks bar oil like crazy.At this point let me state: I'm a homeowner, I do not own a woodlot, and don't use a chainsaw that often. But when I want it to work, I want it to work!Enter the Stihl. Went into my local hardware store and the owner waited on me. At no point did he try to sell me a saw, all he did was try to determine which saw best fit my needs. When he started to show me all the features of the MS-181 C-BE, I was sold...after he assembled my saw we took it outside and he taught me how to start it. And it amazed me! Gone is the tired arm, the high blood pressure, the frustration of trying to get a piece of equipment to operate. This Stihl, fresh out of the box, started for us on it's FIRST PULL. That's right, straight from carton to running in one easy tug. I thought I was dreaming!And it has continued to do that every time I have operated it. Six pumps with the primer bulb, (fear not, grasshopper, you cannot flood the carb, my dealer told me, by 'over pumping' this bulb.) move the on/off/choke lever to "full choke" and give the starter rope one easy tug. Bingo! No frustration, no swearing, no temples pounding, it simply does what it's supposed to do.As for power, well...I'm not well-enough versed on that many saws, but this one has more than enough to do what I asked it to do. It has yet to piddle out the first drop of bar oil into the carry case, meaning it doesn't leak...and the 'Easy-Start' system brings a smile to my face each time I start the saw. I absolutely love it! June 14, 2014
Rated 1 out of 5 by Underpowered with a terrible chain. I bought this unit from my local dealer, and used it for the first time yesterday. I got it to replace a 10+ year old Craftsman electric chain saw with a burst chain oil tank. I was not at all happy with the performance of the 181.First, I followed the starting instructions in the manual, and it would not start at all. I finally figured out that I had to unlock the chain brake, and start it in the run position to get it to go.Once I had it running, I tried to cut up three dead birch trees in my yard. The thickest for these trees was maybe 6" in diameter. This saw cuts like a dull butter knife through wood. I found it very frustrating and ineffective.I returned the saw to my dealer today. They were really great, and explained to me why I was having so much trouble. I guess the power problems are related to emission restrictions, and the safety chain on this unit makes it so safe that it will not cut anything.The Easy-Start system and the tool free chain adjuster on the 181 CB-E just seemed like mostly unhelpful gimmicks to me, so I traded up to a MS 251. I'm hoping that with a bigger motor, and a more effective chain, I have a better experience. June 9, 2014
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