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on October 8, 2014
These reviews can be a bit confusing because there are several versions of several tools with all the reviews together. Most are for the older version of the saw (still sold) which was NiCad. Some are for the newer version which appears to be almost the same except the new Lithium batteries are physically incompatible with the old NiCads. (This is an issue if you have accumulated a number of spare NiCad batteries).

Older versions of the saw had a gravity bar oil feed, and invariably leaked unless you stored the saw upside down. More recently B&D has junked that and instead include a little plastic squeeze bottle which stores on the blade sheath and you just hand oil the chain directly now and then. This is quite an improvement and solved a big problem.

I've gone through 4 of the NiCad saws. I use them for firewood and work them hard. You can cut 14inch hardwood logs if you can access from both sides of the cut. The NiCad batteries run out pretty quickly so I have a slew of them; when I'm going out into the woods I carry a backpack full of charged batteries. If you sharpen the blade, like any chainsaw, this is quite a powerful tool, but with less torque and speed and noise than a gas or full length blade plug in electric saw, so rather safer and easier to carry and use. The low noise is very nice as I'm often cutting up wind falls on public land and don't really want to be driving the neighbors nuts.

These saws do have limited life - a couple years of heavy use. I had one replaced under warranty. One of the other three failures was probably burnout of a motor coil, as it still turns but just not fast enough to do much damage. The other two both ended up with broken wires, inside the saw, where they attach to the motor. One of these showed some evidence of heat damage, suggesting overheating from being used too much without a rest (not surprising, given what I cut and my pile of batteries). Both of these were out of warranty but I repaired them. A screwdriver with a somewhat thin blade can take the whole saw to bits, though it is useful to have a tiny screwdriver to pry off a gear retainer ring - you have to do this to get into the gearbox and the motor itself. I soldered the broken wires back on and those two saws are good to go.

The main issue with the one replaced under warranty was that the chain tensioning bolt somehow bent, so it wobbled as I turned it, meaning it could not get good stable tension in the chain.

At this point I have invested much more in my collection of 8 or so NiCads that the cost of a saw, so for now I am sticking to the NiCad model and will probably buy another one as a spare before they are taken out of the product line. I'm betting the Lithium battery is far superior and that's what I would go for if buying my first saw.
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on June 2, 2013
We lived in the mountains above Boulder CO for a number of years. While I was there, I owned a large Husqvarna 20" chain saw and used it extensively on my property. I loved my Husky, and it was a fine tool for managing my wooded acreage.

In 2002, we moved to a more suburban environment in TN, and my big Husky finally gave up the ghost last year. Also, my woodcutting needs here are far different. The big saw became a liability and not an asset. There are a lot of large, mature hardwoods on my property, but they are ornamental. I can't imagine cutting one down, and even if I did, I would hire a bonded, insured pro to make sure nothing expensive happened. These days, my big woodcutting chores are large fallen limbs and small trees.

Nevertheless, it was with some trepidation that I bought this little B&D saw. And I can tell you, after 6 mos of use, it is a gem. Even my spouse uses it, and she was afraid of the big Husky. I predict that if your cutting needs are generally 6" or less, you'll be delighted with this saw.

Five stars, easily.
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on December 9, 2013
First of all, I am a big fan of the B&D, 18 volt Firestorm series of power tools. We have 2 cordless drills, which I've had for several years and they have performed flawlessly. We have 2 cordless weed-whackers, also several years old. I have a circlular saw, a jig saw and reciprocating saw. I also have a tree trimming saw , which I bought a year ago and it works pretty well, too. All of these use the the interchangeable 18 volt battery pack, of which we have 6 batteries and 4 chargers. I figured this would be a great addition to our cordless tool collection and would work better than the tree-trimming saw for close proximity, branch-cutting duties. Well, I've given this saw two opportunities and yesterday it took forever to get through a 2" branch on a rubber tree. It just seems like the blades were not working at all and I had to really press down hard for the longest time and even then it only got 3/4 of the way through before I quit. I broke the rest of the branch by hand. Very disappointing considering how well the other tools work including the tree trimmer on the the telescoping pole. I may get a replacement chain and see if that is the problem, but this should not be the case with a brand new tool.

Update: I just ordered a replacement blade for 17.10 off eBay. We'll see if that fixes the problem.

Update2: On January 5th, 2014, I installed the new chain. I don't know if I had the chain that came with the unit on backwards or if it was dull. However, the new chain works like a hot knife going through butter. We have our neighbor's tree, which has a whole bunch of roots growing into our yard including a few that are getting too close to the house. The saw managed to go through 2" roots in about 10-15 seconds. A 3" root took about 20-25 seconds. Works well, but I did have to tighten the chain after every cutting. Upped it to 4 stars.
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on November 17, 2013
This is a great product. Starts easily. I always keep extra batteries charging. Had a huge limb come down in a storm, and this little beauty helped me clean it up in a day. The limb was 16" dia at base and at least 15' long with lots of smaller branches, a small tree by itself. Because I don't have to deal with the extra weight of the fuel and engine, I can do a lot more. Several of my trees were suffering from the drought and I needed to climb a little to clear some dead branches. I could do that because this saw is so light weight. By the way, I'm 65 yrs old, female and weight 105. This is a great product.
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on November 1, 2013
To be honest, I wanted a cordless chain saw in a light green color, with a lithium ion battery, but the exclusive distributor of green cordless chain saws is out of stock and too stupid to answer simple questions. The last time I bought a Black and Decker product was in the 80's, but this item got reasonably good reviews and so I took a chance because I needed to cut trees immediately. I now have trees farther away than an extension cord will reach.
My first effort to cut a 3 inch tree failed and I was dismayed, but I had two batteries and tried the other one (I had charged them both for 8 hours.) With a non-defective battery, this saw performs surprisingly well. I did not yet find out how much run time I get from a nondefective battery. It cut through a 3 inch trunk in 10 seconds or less.
Assembly was not as easy as it should have been. The diagram showing the location of the tensioning screw is not helpful. The screw head faces forward. And it is important to adjust tension after the first 10 minutes of use because the chain stretches immediately.
I knew already that the saw has no oiler. The mfctr provides a 5 cent plastic bottle with which you can oil the chain. Just buy a can of spray lube and do it each use.
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on June 30, 2014
After cutting many trees with one of these (after a hurricane), and burning it up, I just had to have another one. I have the whole line (almost) of tools for the 18V batteries and I just love all of them. I don't have to do a lot of trimming (except for the occasional hurricane/wind storm), so they really come in handy when needed. The little chain saw does a great job at doing more than was intended for the design! I absolutely love it. I did notice one change however. The old one had an "oiler" built in, but this one does not. So, make sure you keep the chain oiled! I haven't given the new one a good test yet, but the old one cut up quite a few black locust trees before it decided I had abused it enough. I have gone through 3 or 4 batteries at one time and the saw was getting quite warm, but I used it for several years before I overused it. Oh... another note... keep the chain snug and keep the batteries on the charger - all the time - no matter what the instructions say (This is from a company representative). I've had MUCH better life from the batteries by keeping them on the charger(s) all winter.
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on October 21, 2011
First I hated cheap Black and Decker products about 10-15 years back but buying a cordless trimmer and this chainsaw I must say that quality has improved! With this it's not gas, I say this from the reviews that you can't expect an electric saw do what a gas can- period! So for an electric it's just fine, strong and good battery life hard to estimate but I would say 7-12 minutes per battery, I have three and was worn out so was fine, it's a sharp blade and cuts through small to medium branches, in fact I cut through brush and palm trees better then gas, so bravo for not getting clogged up. I haven't tried a large tree trunk but I believe it will cut just will take time and the right cuts, for small to medium overall very good, again it's not a gas saw, but I was tired of the noise and must say the 18v saw is very good, one battery will not do it unless it's around the yard, I was out back in the thick of the woods, light weight and easy to handle, only suggestion is the safety switch is to good, its pain but guess it was designed such, this is the only area, the plastic cover plate for the blade is cheap but oh well. So if you don't have a gas saw expectation (unrealistic) this saw might surprise you with strength and ease of use. Fyi bought reconditioned, it was like new and never used!
Not high quality but decent
Light weight
Decent battery life
Sharp blade
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on October 11, 2010
I purchased this chain saw so I could cut downed timber in the National Forest while car camping, and I think it's going to work perfectly for that. Compared to gas chain saws, this model is smaller and easier to transport. It's also a lot quieter. I didn't want the hassle of bringing gas and oil for a gas-powered saw and then having to drain it, all for a half hour's cutting.

Instructions for installing the chain weren't the best I've seen, but after examining the chain carefully, I managed to get it installed going the right direction. The tool necessary to install the chain came provided, and stores clipped to the saw so you always have it with you, which is convenient.

I believe you have to remove the cover to adjust the tension on the bar, which is a bit of a pain. I have used other electric chain saws where this adjustment could be done without removing the cover at all.

As with all chain saws, this unit requires the use of bar chain oil. The reservoir for it has translucent walls which make it easy to gauge the level of oil in the reservoir. However, the unit is not self-lubricating. You have to remember to press the rubber thumb bulb occasionally to keep the bar oiled. I often forget. I wish this were automatic like on my electric pole saw.

This saw works on the standard Black and Decker 18 volt batteries. I already had another for my cordless drill, so now I have two batteries I can take camping with the saw.

The saw feels pretty solid.

This saw does cut, but significantly more slowly than my electric pole saw. If I'm working on something in my yard in reach of my extension cord, I'll probably use my corded pole saw. This cordless Black and Decker just doesn't have the power to really rip through stuff quickly. But especially if you are cutting lengths correctly with a fulcrum underneath so the tree doesn't bind, this saw will steadily cut through a log. The weight of the battery is toward the back, though, so you have to apply a bit more pressure with your hands.

Another reviewer said you could fell and cut an 8-inch tree on one battery with this saw, and I guess that's about right. You'll know when your battery's done because it'll just lose the power to cut through the wood and the chain will stop moving if there's any friction on it.

I still think this will work for camping purposes. I'm not felling trees, just cutting what's already fallen down. This'll beat cutting all that wood with my folding hand saw. I'll definitely bring both of the batteries I have for it, though.
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on January 31, 2016
This came new in the box. All parts included. We already had two 18v B&D appliances and three batteries. So was excited to get another tool plus a fourth battery. The saw works great. I would expect to be able to cut anything up to 5 inches easily. I believe it will cut up to 10 inches working for both sides and taking it easy on the blade. I may never use my gasoline trim saw again.
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on August 8, 2011
I am very pleased with this cordless chain saw, it does a really great job. The manual is awful, however, which is why I'm giving the product only 4 stars instead of 5. A greenhorn like me relies on directions, and when they are not user-friendly, the process becomes very time consuming and frustrating. You have to keep flipping pages to match the instructions with the pictures.


(1) Be sure the chain is tightened sufficiently. The first time I tried to use it, I couldn't cut anything. I didn't know what was wrong and was ready to send it back. I returned one more time to the accursed manual and went over every step again, but tightened the chain a bit more than previously. Magically, it then worked great!

(2) Oil the chain directly, instead of filling the oil chamber and making a mess when it leaks out. Thanks to this tip from other reviewers before me, I didn't have to learn this the hard way.
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