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I am in need of a chainsaw to help cut down some dead branches of one of my trees (which is about 3 meter tall).

While browsing the gardening power tools I notice this kind of 2 in 1 (chainsaw + trimmer) on a pole, cordless gadget.

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I am going to use this tool occasionally.

My questions are:

  1. Is there anything I should be aware of before buying this kind of tool? e.g. some general shortcoming with this kind of hybrid design

  2. Is 20V powerful enough for the tasks they are designed for?

  • I bought a gas powered version of this and would not do so again. If the engine or battery cannot be fixed you now have two broken tools when you probably paid more for the one tool than you would buying two separately – kevinsky Dec 30 '19 at 15:37
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My experience is with a different chainsaw manufacturer with a battery somewhat larger at 6 Ah 36 volts and a much lighter string trimmer. The saw is a very good and convenient tool, but it has a high price point to get started. This buys convenience, lightness and reliability. It does a great job trimming up trees once down, cutting light firewood and removing the lower dead branches in forestry plantations.

Amp hours are more important than volts. Small power packs will turn the chain quite readily, but will bog down when pinched or plugged or otherwise under heavy load. This would be inconvenient when the cutting end is high up as on a pole pruner; with a light battery you need a greater attention to proper cuts since any mistake means climbing to sort the issue out. Worse, there will be a temptation to use the leverage of the long pruner to unstick a pinched bar.

The bar and chain are thinner than on a similar priced gas model, so it is easy for the bar to be pinched, twisted or bent by heavy wood cut without due attention to where the weight falls.

Cutting time is a lot shorter than with gas models. Even with a larger battery you might be limited to fractions of an hour of cutting before the battery is depleted.

You would like the reliability; just pick it up and press the trigger and it goes. My gas saws seem to require visits to the dealer at least once in two years. You would also like how little it costs to recharge the battery, but keep in mind that the number of cycles before the battery cannot contain a suitable charge is limited. You may save on gas but eventually a high priced replacement battery is called for. For this reason a proper charger with a battery management system integrated is a must have.

For some reason the thinner saw chain requires a lot more attention to chain tooth pitch and depth. The thinner chain means a much narrower kerf which is harder to keep clear of chips and shavings as the cut progresses. The type of chain will depend on the type of wood, and whether cutting across or with the grain.

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Having the saw on a pole is good; although more work to hold it keeps the dangerous saw part further away from the user. I haven't used the ones with batteries, just several with an electric cord which were fine.

I use a battery hedge trimmer (Stihl) and it was fine too

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