Stihl MS 261 C-M Review and Troubleshooting

If you’re looking for a high-quality chainsaw that’s powerful, reliable, and packed with advanced features, the Stihl MS 261 C-M might be the perfect tool for you. It boasts a powerful engine, effective chain brake, and easy-to-use controls. In this article, we’ll review the Stihl MS 261 C-M in detail and show you how to troubleshoot common issues you may encounter while using it.

Stihl MS 261 C-M

The Stihl MS 261 C-M chainsaw is an advanced, high-performance saw that offers great power and efficiency. In addition to being lightweight and compact, the saw is also designed with operator comfort and safety in mind, making it the ideal tool for both amateurs and professionals.


Engine Power and Efficiency

One of the biggest advantages of this chainsaw is its powerful and fuel-efficient engine. The saw is equipped with a 50.2 cc engine that can deliver up to 4.4 horsepower, making it one of the most powerful chainsaws in its class. This engine is fueled by an advanced fuel injection system that ensures fast and smooth starting, as well as optimal fuel consumption.

Light Weight and Compact Design

Another key feature is its lightweight and compact design. Weighing just 10.8 lbs. (without the cutting equipment), this saw is easy to handle and maneuver, even in tight spaces. The compact design also makes it easy to transport and store when not in use.

Operator Comfort and Safety

Stihl has designed the MS 261 C-M with operator comfort and safety in mind. The saw features advanced anti-vibration technology that reduces the strain on the operator’s hands and arms, making it more comfortable to use for extended periods. It also includes safety features such as a quick-stop chain brake and a chain catcher, which help prevent accidents and injuries.

Easy Maintenance and Serviceability

Finally, the 261 C-M chainsaw is easy to maintain and service, thanks to its simple yet effective design. The air filter system is easy to access and clean, while the spark plug and fuel filter are easy to replace. The saw also comes with a tool-less fuel and oil cap that makes it easy to refuel and check oil levels on the go.

Stihl MS 261  C-M

Review of Stihl MS 261 C-M

Pros and Cons 

One of the biggest pros of the Stihl MS261 C-M is its power and efficiency, which makes it ideal for all types of cutting projects. The lightweight, compact design also makes it easy to handle and maneuver. Additionally, the anti-vibration technology and safety features make this saw comfortable and safe to use.

However, some users may find the saw to be a bit too expensive compared to other models, and some may prefer a saw with a longer bar.

Comparison to Other Models

When compared to other chainsaw models in its class, the Stihl 261 C-M stands out for its powerful engine and advanced fuel injection system. It also offers more advanced safety features and greater operator comfort than many other saws. However, other models may offer longer bars or lower price points.

User Experience and Performance

Overall, users of this chainsaw generally report positive experiences with the saw. The powerful engine and fuel injection system make it easy to start and operate, and the lightweight design makes it comfortable to use for extended periods. Users also appreciate the advanced safety features and easy maintenance. Most users have found the saw to be reliable and efficient for all types of cutting tasks, from pruning to felling larger trees.

Troubleshooting and Maintenance

Common Issues and Solutions

The Stihl MS 261 C-M is a powerful chainsaw that is built for professional use. However, like any other power tool, it can develop issues. One of the common problems to look out for is the chainsaw’s chain not turning. The solution to this issue is to check the drive sprocket for wear or damage and replace it if necessary.

Another common problem is the chainsaw’s engine failing to start. The solution to this is to check if the spark plug is faulty and if the fuel filter and air filter are clogged. You may also need to check if the carburetor has been damaged.

Proper Cleaning and Lubrication

Keeping your 261 C-M chainsaw clean and properly lubricated is crucial for good performance and longevity. This chainsaw has many parts and components that need to be cleaned and lubricated regularly. The air filter, for instance, should be cleaned and oiled after every use. You also need to clean the chainsaw’s exterior to remove debris and oil that may have built up.

It comes with a bar and chain oil tank, which should be refilled regularly to ensure proper lubrication. Ensure to use high-quality oil, and follow the recommended ratio of oil to fuel for your chainsaw.

Tips for Long-Term Storage

If you plan to store your Stihl MS 261 C-M for an extended period, you need to take several precautions to keep it in good condition. First, drain any fuel left in the tank, and empty the carburetor. Clean the chainsaw, and then store it in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.

Additionally, ensure that the chainsaw’s chain is tensioned correctly to prevent sagging, which can cause damage to the guide bar or chain. Finally, if you are storing the chainsaw for longer than 30 days, you should remove the battery, if applicable, and store it separately.

Safety Precautions

Proper Protective Gear

The Stihl MS 261 C-M is a powerful chainsaw that can cause serious injury if not handled correctly. Proper protective gear is essential to ensure your safety when using this chainsaw. Always wear a hard hat, safety glasses, sturdy gloves, and hearing protection when using a chainsaw. Additionally, wear long-sleeved shirts and pants to protect against any debris or sawdust.

Safe Operating Procedures

To operate the Stihl MS 261 C-M safely, you need to follow several procedures. First, make sure the chainsaw is in good working condition, and all the necessary safety features are functioning. Secondly, always keep both hands on the chainsaw handles, and avoid overreaching. You also need to keep a firm footing and maintain good balance when using the chainsaw.

Emergency Preparedness

Despite taking all the necessary precautions when using the Stihl MS 261 C-M, accidents can still happen. Having an emergency kit handy can save you in a tight situation. Ensure that the kit contains items like a first aid kit, a whistle or signaling device, and a mobile phone or communication device. Additionally, learn basic first aid skills, and know how to respond to various injuries, such as cuts or burns.

Stihl MS 261  C-M


Overall, the Stihl MS 261 C-M is an excellent chainsaw that’s perfect for homeowners, farmers, and professional arborists alike. It’s a versatile, powerful, and reliable tool that can help you tackle even the toughest cutting tasks with ease. However, like any piece of equipment, it’s not immune to issues and problems, but with proper maintenance and troubleshooting, you can keep it running smoothly for years to come.