Clearing Saw Stihl FS460

Stihl GB: 01276 20202  |  Tech Support: 01276 417 640  | Catalogue
custservices@stihl.co.uk |  FS460 manual
Radmore and Tucker |  01392 254270
Usage Diary | Update on Strimmer Head: Comment 3

On Monday the 6th July I called around making enquiries about a brush-cutter. I knew Bennett's in Tavistock, a Husqvarna dealer, as I bought a chainsaw there last year, but they didn't have a model close to the ones I had viewed on-line. I fancied Husqvarna as that was the only powered landscaping tool I've used. However I wasn't that happy with Bennett's and not finding a suitable number to to call Husqvarna directly, some 0843 number, I called Stihl's head office. Bennett's did recommend a Makita or something but that just put me off them more.

I had hoped to buy a battery powered brushcutter, but even with a battery pack costing some £800 the best of them didn't seem powerful enough and Stihl hadn't released the model in the UK yet.

Locally there's 'Cornwall Farmers' re-branded 'Patch and Acre' in Tavistock. I spoke to Alex there and he said the most powerful model they stocked is the Stihl FS100, 31cc and weighing 5.8Kg. I was thinking of a 45cc engine size as I'm familiar with that sort of power on the chain saw.

I had spoken to Bennett, Stihl and others to ask about a backpack version, in the 55cc range and weighing some 12kg. However most said such are difficult to handle and only recommend where other versions couldn't be used, as in narrow ditches etc. Alex gave my number to Ian Dennis, a mobile distributor for machines that Stihl insist should be introduced to new users for safety reasons. Contrary to Stihl's promise that someone would bring a demo back pack to Tavistock for me to try, Ian said he would only bring the model I actually order.

Ian talked of a range which had special anti vibration mountings and suggested the FS360 at 37cc and weighing 8.5Kg. He also said that the FS410 was a better buy, with a 41cc engine and only £40 more.

So feeling let down about what I could view and weight wise, get a feel of, I looked on-line and noticed that the FS 360, 410 and 460 all weighed the same. As the power to weight ratio was the best in the FS 460 (45.6cc at 8.5Kg) I settled on that. It was, after all, the engine size I felt comfortable with and there were only two more powerful with increased weights of (9.1Kg and 10.2Kg)

I then called around to see where I could see one before I order, and although there was a Penzance store that was easier to get to I ended up negotiating with Jan Rayner at the Helston store. This meant a two and a half hour journey by train and another hour bus ride with waiting times just to get there. Jan has been an amazing help. I was also speaking to another Stihl dealer in Ivybridge, which is much closer and the same machine was £110 cheaper.

However it was clear that Jan was far more knowledgeable and helpful than anyone at Ivybridge and she did manage to reduce the price by £50.

By now I was checking out the optional accessories. The first thing that struck me as odd was that this powerful tool came with a strimmer line cutter. Stihl grade their machines of this nature as 'Lightweight Strimmers and Brushcutters', 'Petrol Powerful Brushcutters' and' Clearing saws'; the FS460 being in the later group. I still can't quite get over the fact that only the FS460 with a shorter shaft and the largest model FS560 come with bladed cutter.

  • Problems with circular saw fitting. Pages: part 7, all 8 and part 9
    See also Page 13 for errors in supplied Paper Manual
  • Issues around fuel usage and storage. Page 10
  • Thrust Washer and Collar Nut. Page 11
  • More on fitting the shredder blade. Page 12
  • Problems with balancing. Page 14
  • Problems with handle attaching after thread wear. Comment 4
  • Wear and tear Comment 5

Now Page 2, where the fun begins in earnest:

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