With the recent ice storm taking out many trees, I had the opportunity to test the all new Echo CS-490 chainsaw. Echo indicates on their website this saw is “A new standard for mid range saws with ergonomic features at a great price point. 16″, 18″ and 20″ bar lengths.” The following are some features this saw includes:
- 50.2 cc professional grade 2-cycle engine
- Chrome plated cylinder for extended engine life
- Reduced effort starter
- Heavy duty easy access air filter
- G-Force engine air Pre-Cleaner™
- Dual post chain brake for increased durability.
- Magnesium crankcase for reduced weight and added durability
- 5 year consumer, 2 year commercial and 90 day rental warranty.
Prior to putting this unit into service, I took a look and found some things I really liked. This saw includes a rim sprocket that can be changed instead of the spur style that requires replacement of the whole clutch drum when wear occurs. This can result in savings of 50% or more when this common wear item needs replacing.
Another great feature that is found on most premium grade saws today is the ability to adjust the chain tension from the side. This feature is a huge benefit to the operator by making this routine task much easier to perform compared to adjusters located just in front and to the left of the bar. You will also find the on/off switch and choke control convenient and easy to use. Checking the air filter and accessing the spark plug was a quick and easy process that only required turning a black knob by hand until the cover was released.
I put this chainsaw into action trimming limbs and bucking the large pines into manageable pieces. The power head is driving a .325 pitch, .050 gauge full chisel chain. This unit was equipped with a 18″ bar and provided no shortage of power. This saw was REALLY smooth to cut with. The engine produced a great powerband and I had minimal vibration affecting our hands.
Echo lists the weight of the power head at 10.6 pounds with the bar and chain. Having worked with many of the bigger saws, this weight range was really nice for the type of work we were doing. While a larger saw with a bigger bar and more cc’s has it’s place, this new CS-490 is absolutely perfect for the many of the types of cutting the majority of our customers will encounter. With a price point of $349.99, this saw has many features you would only find in much higher priced saws in the past. Click here to see the CS-490 pricing and details on our website.
Fuel efficiency was another area we were impressed. The fuel tank is rated at 16.9 ounces. I cut up 3 very large pines into 20″ logs and removed all the branches on a single tank of VP Small Engine 50:1 fuel. We use this fuel exclusively when setting up 2-cycle equipment and for our personal use because of its performance benefits, pre-mixed convenience and 2 year shelf life. This fuel has eliminated the damaging issues so many of our customers are experiencing when they use pump fuel which has been designed for automobiles.
Any time your are going to use a chainsaw or other outdoor power equipment, make sure and wear proper protective equipment. I used wore chaps and a safety helmet system with integrated face shield and hearing protection. I also tested Echo’s new combination bar scabbard and tool carrier. This is a great addition to easily carry an extra chain, bar wrench, spark plug and more while protecting your self and the bar and chain on your saw.
Thank you for taking time to check out our overview of the CS-490 from Echo. We look forward to having you stop by our store and see this saw along with our huge selection of other Echo and Stihl saws. With saws starting at under $200 from both Stihl & Echo, we can help you select a saw that best fits your budget and type of cutting you will be doing. When combined with parts, service and many other products to help you maintain your outdoor world, we believe we have what no other store in the area has to offer.