Using a chainsaw the easiest way you can fell a tree and do other complex lumber work. But not all chainsaws are made the same. Some are worth your money and others should be avoided like the plague.
Husqvarna 460 Rancher is by far the most popular chainsaw by Husqvarna. At least online. Though it’s not for everyone. If you’re more than a casual user, can handle a 13-pound saw and want a high-quality, versatile and dependable, the 460 Rancher might be just the thing for you.
Pros & Cons
- Devours hardwood
- A bit heavy
You can get the 460 Rancher with a 20” (50 cm) or 24” (60 cm) bar. Though you can swap that and use whatever you like. Recommended size ranges from 13” (33 cm) to 24”.
When choosing the bar length you want to consider your experience level, strength and what types of wood you’re going to be working with. Longer bars require more strength on your part and might even be unnecessary if you’re not cutting huge logs.
The low kickback chain has a 0.05” gauge, 0.325” pitch and 72 drive links. Thanks to narrow kerf technology it requires less power to make the same cut. There’s plenty of cutting speed with the chain speed being around 17 m/s. Be sure to keep the chain sharp at all times for maximum performance and safety.
Along with the 445 and 450 its 0.95 US pint (0.45 liter) is biggest in this range. It’s also transparent so you see how much gas you’ve got left or don’t overspill when filling up.
Ergonomic rear handle
Rancher models have better ergonomic rear handles that reduce fatigue when cutting a lot of trees in one go. The classic 450 and 450E don’t have this.
Again, standard with all Huskys. Felling marks on the body are for lining up the bar to the cut. You line up the mark where you want the tree to fall with the felling marks and you do the top cut first.
Husqvarna chainsaws generally have long lives. Many people report still rocking 15 or 20-year old Husky. Talk about getting your money’s worth.
Anecdotally, my uncle has a 450 and as far as I know, he does little to no maintenance and it’s working like new. If you’ll take it more seriously than him and take proper care of your saw, I don’t see it breaking down on you any time soon.
The centrifugal air cleaning system prevents larger dust and debris particles from reaching the air filter. In return you get improved engine life and less maintenance cleaning the air filter. All Husqvarnas have this.
This design with roller bearing provides greater reliability and reduced internal wear.
Adjustable oil pump
Modern saws often feature this, so you don’t have to manually oil the chainsaws yourself. Auto oiler adjusts itself to whatever you’re doing.
Combined choke/stop control
It’s supposed to reduce the risk of flooding.
Ease of use
Flip-up tank cover
Makes it easier to refuel the chainsaw, as you have better grip when opening the filler even with a vacuum in the tank. The cap is designed to allow air in and replace the vacuum after turning it through ¼ turn and break the suction power.
Snap-lock cylinder cover
When you need to do maintenance on the air filter, you can remove the hard plastic cover easily by popping the snap-locks on each side. You don’t need any tools for that.
Removes air from the system to help with start-up.
This is available on the 450, 450 Rancher and 450E. It reduces resistance by the coil by around 40%, which makes starting up the chainsaw a lot easier and with fewer cord pulls.
To start a cold engine, you prime the air purge bulb (also called the fuel pump) until you can see fuel in it. Next you activate the choke and engage the chain brake by pushing the handle forward. Before you pull the handle of the cord to start the engine, you press the decompression valve.
Auto return stop switch
When you use the stop switch to kill the engine, it resets on the ON position, which enables the engine to start again. This is convenient, because you won’t forget to set it to “run” mode before you start the engine.
Chain catcher at the bottom of the saw provides protection should the chain slip off the bar.
Inertia activated chain brake
In case of kickback the inertia mechanism will stop the chain from running. This significantly reduces the risk of injury.
The vibration dampening system called LowVib is present in all Husky chainsaws. Metal springs in the engine suspension reduce vibrations felt by the operator. This allows you to work longer without your hands getting exhausted and it also prevents developing medical conditions.
The front handle and hand guard are offset by 7° to provide more natural holding position.
Intended for landowners and ranches to use it for everything from heavy brush clearing to firewood and woodlot management.
The 2-stroke 60.3 cc engine pumps 3.62 horsepower using a 3.68 cubic inch displacement. That’s plenty of power to go through big wood.
Standard with 2-stroke engines, a fuel mix ratio of 50:1 (gas:oil) applies.
Probably the best thing about newer Husqvarna saws. It reduces emissions by up to 60% and fuel consumption by up to 30%. You spend less on gas and breathe less fumes. It also makes the saw CARB compliant.
For personal use you get a 2-year warranty. If you purchase 3 x 32 oz cans of the Husqvarna premix fuel with your chainsaw, you can extend the warranty to 4 years at no extra cost. You have to register your saw online to get the extra years of warranty and you’ll have to provide proof (receipt) of buying the premix.
There’s also the option to buy 2 or 3-year protection on Amazon.
It’s the most popular Husqvarna chainsaw for a good reason. Both softwood and hardwood stand no chance. In the medium range, the Husqvarna 460 Rancher offers unparalleled performance. However, with this power comes increased weight. So make sure you can handle it.
What’s in the box?
- Guide bar
- Scrench (screwdriver and wrench)
- User manual
Most retailers, including amazon ship the chainsaw fully assembled. You only need to put fuel and oil in it, tension the chain and you’re good to go.
Husqvarna 460 Rancher Specs
|Cylinder displacement||60.3 cm³|
|Power output||3.62 hp|
|Weight||13.2 pounds (5.99 kg)|
|Maximum power speed||9 000 RPM|
|Fuel tank volume||0.9 US pint (0.43 liter)|
|Fuel consumption||437 g/kWh|
|Idling speed||2700 RPM|
|Spark plug||NGK BPMR7A, Champion RCJ7Y|
|Torque (max)||3.4 Nm|
|Recommended bar length (min)||13” (33 cm)|
|Recommended bar length (max)||24” (60 cm)|
|Chain speed at max power||56.76 ft/s (17 m/s)|
|Oil tank volume||0.7 US pint (0.33 liter)|
|Oil pump type||Automatic|
|Oil pump capacity||17 ml/min|
|Sound||(LWA) 114 dB(A)|
|Equivalent vibration level (ahv, eq) front handle||3.8 m/s²|
|Equivalent vibration level (ahv, eq) rear handle||6.9 m/s²|
- Air Injection
- Smart Start
- Inertia activated chain brake
- Three-piece crankshaft
- Front handle ergonomics
- Felling marks
- Adjustable oil pump
- Quick-release air filter
- Side-mounted chain tensioner
- Combined choke/stop control
- Air Purge
There are many chainsaw manufacturers to choose from. None have the amount of history as Husqvarna, which has been around since 1689.
There’s a reason why they’re still around. They make quality products. They started out making muskets – a thing you don’t want to malfunction on you.
You don’t want your chainsaw to malfunction on you either. Especially the ones that are used in remote areas.
Wanting to expand beyond firearms, Husqvarna later turned their engineering expertise to other useful items like bicycles, motorcycles, sewing machines, stoves, kitchen appliances, and other outdoor products. They started making chainsaws in 1959.
Swedish engineering and manufacturing produce the safest card (Volvo). Husqvarna fits right into that level of quality. Owned for a time by Electrolux, Husqvarna became an independent company again in 2006, and is currently traded on the NASDAQ.
Once you’ve had a Husqvarna it’s hard to be satisfied with anything else, and fans are intensely loyal to the brand.
The company is also environmentally aware and takes pains to reduce the environmental impact of its operations. In their environmental policies, they state that they believe that “high environmental performance doesn’t need to conflict with product quality, performance or safety.”
These policies also stipulate that the company will strive to use transportation with a minimum environmental impact and, in addition to reusing and recycling, shall “continuously optimize the use of and limit exploitation of natural resources and select energy providers with due consideration to their environmental impact.” In 2014 Husqvarna was listed as one of the world’s most sustainable companies.
Other Husqvarna all-round saws
- Husqvarna 439
- Husqvarna 445
- Husqvarna 450 Rancher
- Husqvarna 455 Rancher
- Husqvarna 450
- Husqvarna 445
- Husqvarna 440
- Husqvarna 435