What is The Most Powerful Chainsaw on the Market?

There is unanimous agreement among forestry professionals that the STIHL MS 880 121.6cc Chainsaw is the most powerful model currently available on the market.

Although many models of chainsaws designed for heavy-duty cutting are immensely popular, time and again the STIHL MS 880 has proven to be the most accepted. Foresters from Canada, the United States, and New Zealand to Europe and Russia universally agree that this is the Cadillac of chainsaws, so to speak. According to various users, not only is the STIHL MS 880 the most powerful chainsaw you can buy to get even the toughest jobs done, it has so many of the great features you want in a chainsaw.

In this article, I will explore why this chainsaw is well-loved the world over.

Introducing the STIHL MS

Power and endurance are what this beast of a chainsaw is all about. The unit is designed for survival in extreme weather conditions, especially the cold winters of Canada and northern Europe. Forestry professionals swear that the STIHL MS is the best they’ve ever used for harvesting big timber.

Now, speaking of power, you’ll find lots to love here. For starters, the engine is 121.6cc while vibration levels left to right are 8.9/8.9. The weight of this saw is 22.3 pounds minus any cutting equipment you might have with you. As for noise levels, they are 116 dB(A).

It comes fully loaded

If you want to fell and buck the largest – diameter trees, you won’t find a better saw for getting the job done. According to various consumer reports, the STIHL MS 880 has engine power 25 percent higher than other models such as the MS 660. If you have any concerns regarding guide bars, this saw will accept guide bars up to 59 inches in length.

Now, since that is out of the way, I will talk about the features that make the STIHL MS 880 the king of chainsaws.

This chainsaw has an ElastoStart handle, which is an exclusive feature found only on STIHL models. This characteristic is designed to reduce the considerable effort that sometimes goes into pulling on the starter cord. There is a built-in shock absorber that enables this.

Another feature that makes starting this chainsaw a breeze is the decompression valve. This valve vents compression in the cylinder. It works by reducing compression in the combustion chamber during cranking. This, in turn, reduces the amount of effort you need to put into pulling the starter rope.

Another great thing about this model is that it has a feature known as the IntelliCarb Compensating Carburetor. This works automatically to adjust the saw’s air/fuel ratio whenever the air filter gets confined or clogged. Furthermore, this model also has a side-access chain tensioner. If anything, you will find this very convenient if you need to adjust the chain with a bar wrench.

Some more good news

The STIHL 880 has received countless rave reviews. According to users, this chainsaw is excellent for cutting, but you must know how to property sharpen it. It is preferable to purchase a brand-new saw, although used models also work great.

The STIHL 880 is well worth the money you will spend. In addition to foresters, millwrights have praised this chainsaw for its ability to cut slab that are over forty inches. Yes, the 880 is a renowned milling saw.

Some close contenders

While the STIHL 880 MS may be hailed as the most powerful chainsaw on the market at the present time, there are some saws that are almost as well-rounded as this unit. These include the Husqvarna 3120 and the MS660.

Remember, these saws are the best of the best. They’re designed for the most rigorous jobs that nearly all smaller saws simply can’t do. I will talk a bit about the Husqvarna 3120.

This is definitely one of the largest chainsaws in the world. And yes, it is extremely powerful. Users of the Husqvarna 3120 include extreme loggers who make their living in Scandinavia, northern Canada and Alaska as well as owners of portable saw mills.

You’ll also find this beast in the hands of professionals who specialize in cutting down massive tree stumps. Heck, this chainsaw also has one of the longest bars – up to six feet. Like the STIHL, this model has excellent power to weight ratio, so you’re not fatigued after cutting. It also has excellent ergonomic features that enable you to start it easily.

The STIHL MS660 is another beast that totally dominates in the forest. Like its counterparts, the MS660 is geared for lots of heavy duty use and can survive nicely on its own in the most extreme weather conditions.

Though not as powerful as its cousin, the 880, the 660 nonetheless has amazingly high engine power. It’s also light enough for easy carrying in dense woodland or for spending extended periods cutting up large stands of hardwood. This saw comes in guide bar lengths of 20 inches to 36 inches.

What’s more, the MS 660, like the 880, includes the ElastoStart shock absorber handle as well as an anti-vibration system so you won’t have to be as concerned about operator fatigue.


You can now see why the STIHL MS880 is the most powerful chainsaw on the market. This model has proven itself to be the best out of all others out there. For those of you who make your livelihood in the forest, the STIHL MS880 is like a dream come true. One would be hard-pressed to believe that a chainsaw so powerful could still be not only light enough to carry but easy to maintain and operate. This chainsaw is a true powerhouse that is great for loggers and millwrights alike.

Peter Toth

Hi! I'm Peter, the owner of BackyardGadget. Working around the house has always been a big part of my life. I've created this site to share my experience, and to help people choose the right tools for the job. Thank you for stopping by!

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