This is a very good chainsaw that just needs some tweaking and an informed user to operate properly, There are 2 problems I noticed on mine that I think compose a good deal of the complaints I've read online about this saw and its twin the Poulan 5020AV. The first is the carb needed minor adjustment and the second is the short length of the starter pull cord. The carb issue makes the saw bog down once warmed up and then eventually stall. Restarting is only possible after saw is cooled down, but the problem reoccurs once warm again (this happens even in low altitude). To remedy this on mine, I ran the engine until the bogging began then turned the LOW SPEED screw counterclockwise while revving the engine up and down until the motor responded without hesitation. Note that the low (& high) speed screws are tamper-resistant but can be turned with the proper tool, or you can make something homemade as I did (a female solderless connector jammed on the end of a small screwdriver worked). Since I made this adjustment, I have run my saw probably over 10 hours now and have had no engine issues whatsoever. The second problem, the short starter cord, makes it VERY EASY to "overpull" the cord beyond its travel length. Pulling too far is probably the biggest reason starter mechanisms like this fail. Be mindful of that when starting this thing and keep your pulls to the bare minimum. At the same time (as with any small engine) do not put much pulling force into the cord until you feel the starter pawl engage the flywheel. So far, I have been very happy with this saw even when using cheapo 87 octane. I've used both Husqvarnas and Stihls and can say this one is pretty close in quality/performance to those brands. I decided to "downgrade" from the big boys was because I got tired of paying an arm and a leg for parts and/or being forced to buy them only from a high markup dealer (are you listening, Stihl?). One thing I do miss on this saw that the other guys have is a replaceable rim sprocket design. The Craftsman combines the sprocket and clutch in one piece, which not only makes it more difficult to replace, but also makes you replace more than is necessary. There are several small gripes I have with the saw worth mentioning, The first is that the base of the air filter where it mates to the carb intake does not make an air tight seal, even when it's locked in place with its retaining clip. Over time, I could see fine sawdust working its way possibly mucking up engine. The problem is easily patched, however, just by adding a small loop of weather-stripping into the underside of the filter. The other complaint is that I found one of the screws on the exterior only threaded halfway in. I tightened it and went over the other exterior ones, but it made me wonder how well the fasteners deeper down were secured. The bumper spike is a most welcome addition. I?ve had ZERO issues with my saw throwing a chain, even when I've left slack in it.
Bought this chainsaw and it worked fine for about the first two hours then the chain stopped turning. Took it back and had to wait for three weeks to get it back and the repair man said the chain was on backwards. Took it home and it still did not work. In my opinion the repair man didn't even touch it. Took it back again and had to wait another three weeks and the repair man once again told me the chain was on backwards again. That time I took it outside and cranked it up in front of the staff and it still did not work so the staff was nice enough to give me a new one. Took that one home and used it for about two hours and once again it worked fine in the beginning and now the chain turns really slow and it keeps stalling out. Yes, I used the right fuel blend and yes it had plenty of chain oil. It's just a very poor chain saw and I cant believe sears allows the name craftsman on this junk. Not even taking it back this time will just throw it out and buy a better brand.
I was given this from a dedicated craftsman customer. I had it less than a week and wanted to cut a tree in back yard down. Managed to get it cut down then had to have saw WARRANTY WORK DONE. Got home put away. 3 years later was about to remove another tree. LMAO Warranty my ARZE. Could not get it to run without stalling. Where is the rest of the carburetor?????? Spring assembly and part of the choke is missing and a spring fell out. I WILL NOT RECOMMEND THIS OR ANY MORE PRODUCTS.
I bought this to use in the Spring-Summer for the cutting of Many Down trees. Wanted the 20in for the larger trees that have dropped with the strong winds in upper New York. Time will tell if this model lives up to it’s name.