Stihl MS 261 C-M Chainsaw Review

Stihl MS 261 C-M Chainsaw Review

Stihl MS 261 C-M Chainsaw Review for the Stihl MS 261 C-M chainsaw. The MS 261 C-M chainsaw is manufactured in the United States (although this could change at the time of press). It has the same fuel efficiency and low exhaust as the MS 261, but it also has the benefit of Stihl’s M-Tronic engine management system. This system employs a small computer to monitor and automatically adjust the fuel mixture in response to factors such as elevation, temperature, fuel quality, and (our personal favorite) dirty air filters.

The Stihl MS 261 C-M1 chainsaw is frequently recognized as a great all-around chainsaw and is a favorite of arborists and other heavy professional chainsaw users.

Stihl MS 261 C-M Chainsaw Review

Stihl MS 261 C-M Chainsaw Review-is it worth buying?

We tested the MS 261 C-M, and it maintains chain speed amazingly even when the air filter is nearly clogged. We don’t recommend running the saw like that on purpose, but it was a great testament to the system’s efficiency. This Stihl chainsaw is nothing more than a workhorse. You can use it for almost anything with guide bar options ranging from 16 to 20 inches.

The Stihl MS 261 C-M is a professional-level chainsaw, not a ‘farm and ranch’ or homeowner chainsaw.


This means it will cost a few hundred dollars more than a similarly powered model in those other series, but there are significant differences.

One of the best features of the MS 261 C-M is its excellent 1.6 power-to-weight ratio. That means that it’s very light for the power it provides.

The 261 weighs 10.8 pounds without fuel and oil and has a 4hp engine.

Here are some observations regarding the Stihl MS 261 C-M Chainsaw Review:

  • Excellent power-to-weight ratio
  • With a 4-horsepower engine, it weighs roughly 10.8 pounds.
  • It is useful for felling and limbing trees, as well as bucking wood.
  • On it, place a 16- to a 20-inch bar.
  • The case is constructed of magnesium (as opposed to a plastic or polymer case)
  • Has an M-Tronic system, which automatically adjusts your chainsaw to ideal levels.
  • You won’t lose them if you keep them captive.
  • A decompression valve is not required, although it is great to have.
  • It’s an excellent mid-range chainsaw – ‘grab and go’ for all tasks.

If you use it frequently, the weight-to-power ratio is important and makes a difference. It isn’t as crucial for infrequent and modest use.

Review Stihl MS 261 C-M Chainsaw

MS 261 C-M Pros

Design that is strong and long-lasting
Use it all year in all temperatures.
Powerful output.
Lightweight \Trustworthy.
Great characteristics.

MS 261 C-M Cons

Costs more than non-professional chainsaws.

Fuel and oil caps from Stihl can be problematic.


Stihl MS 261 C-M Chainsaw Specifications And Features

Review Stihl MS 261-C-M Chainsaw, Specifications and Features

The Stihl MS 261 C-M has a 50.2cc gas chainsaw with a 4hp engine.

Another crucial consideration when purchasing a chainsaw is bar size. It is most usually sold with a 20-inch bar, however, it can be found with a 14- to 20-inch bar. Other frequent bar sizes are 16′′ and 18′′.

It can be run with any of these bar lengths, though 18′′ appears to be the best length. Of course, you’ll hear of people running a 28-inch bar on it, but this isn’t generally encouraged.

What else does the chainsaw have to offer?


Engine technology with low emissions
Air pre-separation filter
System of anti-vibration
(What chainsaw doesn’t have a toolless fuel and oil cap?)
Chain tensioner with easy access

The MS 261 C-M also includes a decompression valve, which can aid in chainsaw starting but is not the most critical feature on the 50cc chainsaw engine.

is The Stihl MS 261 C-M chainsaw Worth The Price?

This Stihl MS 261 C-M chainsaw is available new for less than $600 in the United States (at the time of the Stihl MS 261 C-M Chainsaw Review), though prices vary by state due to taxes and other factors. Based on the performance and value it provides, we believe it is the best and most notable Stihl chainsaw (out of the Stihl gas/petrol range) for your money.

Stihl MS 261 C-M Chainsaw Review- From Owners

If you have used or own a Stihl MS 261 C-M chainsaw, please leave us a review in the comments area below. We’d love to hear your opinions.


I hope this has helped you decide whether or not this is the best chainsaw for you (or not). It can be used for most wood-cutting tasks and overall is an excellent all-arounder chainsaw.


  1. Bradley Timms

    I am currently in Canada. In 2020, I brought a new Stihl MS 261 C-M chainsaw.
    I owned and used it (about 4 to 7 hours per week) for three years, the following year, the engine was worn out. The Stihl dealer from whom I purchased it stated that it was because I did not always use the recommended Stihl two-stroke oil with it (rubbish excuse).
    I’ve been using chainsaws on and off for nearly 35 years, and in my opinion, Stihl chainsaws are no longer of high quality; you’re simply purchasing a brand name. Now Stihl are often made in China and not built to last!

  2. Thanks for your comment Bradley. Yes ,unfortunately most chainsaws are made in China (not just Stihl) or some have the parts made in China now and then assembled in other countries. Nothing wrong with manufactured country of origin, the main problem is quality, always durability and quality, times have changed since the good old days (whatever they were).

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