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Welcome to the STIHL USA Blog

Friday, September 18, 2015

STIHL electric chainsaws from 1926 to today

At just over 87 pounds, and requiring two men to operate, the very first STIHL chainsaw was not exactly easy to use.  But it represented a major advance in forestry technology and we haven’t looked back since.  
The 1926 two-man chainsaw
Chainsaw in a sidecar
The path to the modern STIHL electric chainsaw range has been a long and successful one. In 1926 Andreas Stihl invented the world’s first electric chainsaw.  It had a power output of 2.2 kilowatts and a weight of  over 87 pounds, and it took two people to operate. Marketing it was not easy either.  To accommodate the saw’s bar length of almost 3 feet, Andreas attached a modified sidecar to a motorcycle to call on prospective customers throughout southern Germany.   After they had a chance to run the saw, and see the marked improvement in productivity, several sawmills decided to buy it. It was during this time that this “portable” saw gave rise to the saying “Bringing the saw to the wood instead of the wood to the saw”. 
Improvements and advancements continued to be made over the following decades.  In 1952 STIHL launched an electric chainsaw that only needed one person to operate: the STIHL electric bow saw, model REB. Subsequent models were made lighter more comfortable and easier to use.   
1952 single-operator electric bow saw

In July 2014, we launched the most powerful STIHL electric chainsaw to date the STIHL MSE 250 C-Q. Weighing in at just over 12 pounds with bar and chain, and delivering a motor power output of 2.3 kilowatts, this saw has all the latest improvements including a more durable gearbox than previous models and a durable, professional grade motor life. The tool is also the first saw in this range to come with electronic speed control. This allows the operator to adjust for optimal cutting performance, and lowers feed pressure, making work less fatiguing. 

Who needs an electric chainsaw?
STIHL electric chainsaws are perfect for all sorts of situations, residential or professional.  With power outputs of up to 2.5 kilowatts, all these tools bear the STIHL Caring For Nature seal. This seal identifies STIHL powered products that are more environmentally conscious, producing zero or low exhaust emissions* .  So whether it is in the backyard, the farm, or the job site, if you’ve got access to a 20-amp power source nearby, you’re ready to work with STIHL electric chainsaws.

*STIHL Inc. defines “low exhaust emissions” as being cleaner than EPA and/or CARB exhaust emission standards.