MS 261 C-M - $569.95 DSRP


Reserve with STIHL Express for In-Store Pick Up

The same great MS 261, but with advanced STIHL M-Tronic™ technology for optimized performance in various conditions.

The MS 261 C-M features low emissions, high fuel efficiency and the advanced STIHL M-Tronic™ engine management system. STIHL M-Tronic™ helps deliver maximum performance across a wide range of cutting conditions. The system digitally monitors changes in elevation and temperature and automatically adjusts for fuel quality, varying octane levels and dirty air filters. The MS 261 C-M also features red...Read More
Print Spec Sheets
MS 261 C-M Specifications
DISPLACEMENT 50.2 cc (3.06 cu. in.)
ENGINE POWER 3.0 kW (4.0 bhp)
POWERHEAD WEIGHT 4.9 kg (10.8 Ibs.)
FUEL CAPACITY 500 cc (16.9 oz)
CHAIN OIL CAPACITY 270 cc (9.13 oz)
GUIDE BAR LENGTHS (Recommended ranges) 40 to 50 cm (16" to 20")
STIHL recommends #3634 (26 RM3 67) OILOMATIC® Saw chain and 16" 3003 008 6813 Ematic™ guide bar combination. The actual listed guide bar length can vary from the effective cutting length based on which powerhead it is installed on.
Model Features
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    Anti-Vibration System
    STIHL has developed a system for minimizing the vibration levels of handheld outdoor power equipment. The STIHL anti-vibration system helps reduce operator fatigue and provides a more comfortable working experience.
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    Pre-Separation Air Filtration System
    This time-saving technology boosts the efficiency of the engine’s filter system, doubling the time between air filter cleanings. Air drawn into the engine is first separated via centrifugal force, ejecting the heavier dirt particles before being routed to the air filter. This pre-separation means less dirt to be captured by the air filter, resulting in less frequent cleaning and maintenance.

    More Information

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    Side-Access Chain Tensioner
    The side-access chain tensioner makes it much more convenient for the user to adjust the saw chain with a bar wrench as opposed to the typical location of the guide bar adjustment screw.
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    Decompression Valve
    The decompression valve, also referred to as 'deco' or 'deco valve', vents compression in the cylinder for easier starting. The decompression valve temporarily reduces the compression in the combustion chamber during cranking and helps reduce the effort needed to pull the starter rope. It is opened manually and closes automatically as soon as the engine fires.
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    Built in the USA
    Indicates products that are built in the United States from domestic and foreign parts and components.

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    Toolless fuel and oil caps with retainers
    Simply lift the lever and twist the caps to remove or tighten. There‘s no need to use a tool to tighten or loosen.
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    Reduced-Emission Engine Technology - Caring for Nature
    The STIHL Inc. “Caring for Nature” seal identifies its powered products that are more environmentally conscious, producing zero or low exhaust emissions. STIHL Inc. defines “low exhaust emissions” as being cleaner than EPA and/or CARB exhaust emission standards.

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    STIHL M-Tronic™ 
    This product features M-Tronic™ (M) - a new generation of Intelligent Engine Management that eliminates the low and high speed carburetor adjustment screws, compensates for dirty air filter and changes in elevation and fuel quality for optimum engine power at all times.

    See it in action!

    More Information

Standard Features
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    Common Features for Chainsaws
    View the features common to many STIHL chainsaws.

Important Information
WARNING! The occurrence called “kickback” can cause serious or fatal injury. Always read the instruction manual carefully before using your saw. STIHL uses a green and yellow color-coding system to help you select a powerhead, bar and chain combination that complies with the kickback requirements of ANSI Standard B175.1 (gasoline-powered saws) and §30 of UL 1662/ ANSI Standard B175.1 (electric chainsaws). Ask your STIHL dealer about safe operating procedures and the advantages of the STIHL Quickstop® chain brake, STIHL Quickstop® Plus (Q) additional chain braking feature, STIHL reduced kickback bars and STIHL low-kickback saw chains.

STIHL recommends the use of green reduced kickback bars and green low kickback chains on all STIHL chainsaws.
* The actual listed guide bar length can vary from the effective cutting length based on which powerhead it is installed on.
WARNING! Improper use of any power tool may cause serious or fatal injury. Read, understand and follow carefully the operating and safety instructions in your instruction manual before using such products.

STIHL products sold through U.S. STIHL Dealers are for distribution in the United States only.
Click to view the STIHL Limited Warranty Time Periods
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    •2.6 oz. bottle makes 1 gallon mix

    •5.2 oz. bottle makes 2 gallon mix

    •6.4 oz. bottle makes 2 1/2 gallon mix

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    STIHL recommends a mix of 50:1 high-quality 89 octane or higher unleaded gasoline to STIHL engine oil. This same mix ratio should be used during break-in.

  • Bar and Chain Oil Zoom
    Bar and Chain Oil
    STIHL Bar and Chain oil is formulated to adhere to the bar and chain, and to reduce wear. Special agents in the oil formulation help keep sap and pitch from clinging to the bar and chain.

    Available in quart and gallon bottles, 5 gallon pails and 55 gallon drums, in both summer and winter weights.

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    Woodsman Chainsaw Carrying Case
    Woodsman carrying case. Unique, removable bar scabbard has built-in tool holders to carry tools to the cutting site. Fits MS 170 to MS 460 M with 20" bar.

    Replacement latches and scabbard are available.

  • Complete Filing Kits Zoom
    Complete Filing Kits
    Kits available for the following chain types: STIHL PICCO Mini; 1/4" pitch chain; .325" pitch chain; 3/8" pitch chain; .404" pitch chain.
    Includes file guide, depth gauge, round file, flat file and two file handles in tool pouch.
    Chain Pitch File Diameter File Guide
    Part Number
    Sharpening Kit
    Part Number
    in. mm in. mm Part Number
    3/8 PMN 9.32 5/32 4.0 0811 411 8073

    5605 750 4327

    5605 007 1026

    3/8 PM
    5/32 4.0 0811 411 8091

    5605 750 4327

    5605 007 1027

    0.325 8.25 3/16 4.8 0811 412 8088

    5605 750 4328

    5605 007 1028

    3/8 9.32 13/64 5.2 0814 243 3384 5605 750 4329

    5605 007 1029

    0.404 10.26 7/32 5.5 0811 412 8108 5605 750 4330

    5605 007 1030

For Your Safety
  • Pro Mark™ Forestry Helmet System Zoom
    Pro Mark™ Forestry Helmet System
    The STIHL Pro Mark™ Forestry Helmet System is a premium quality product, designed with NRR 25 hearing protection and adjustable ratchet-style six-point suspension.
  • Pro Mark™ Chainsaw Boots Zoom
    Pro Mark™ Chainsaw Boots
    Before you head out of the door for your next chainsaw job, lace up the stylish STIHL Pro Mark™ Chainsaw Boots. This boot will help keep your feet protected from the elements with its inner GORE-TEX® fabric, delivering water-resistant technology and optimal breathability. Plus, its deep lacing hooks will help keep your feet securely fastened while you’re hard at work. Complete with a padded steel toe and a comfort sole made of rubber, this high-quality black suede work boot is designed with safety in mind. The hardworking STIHL Pro Mark™ Chainsaw Boot meets OSHA requirements for protective footwear in chainsaw use, as well as EN 17249 (Class 2) and EN 20345 S2 requirements for chainsaw protective boots. Swing by our store and try them on for yourself!

Are You Ready for a STIHL?

MS 261 C-M is rated 4.7 out of 5 by 177.
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Third Stihl - should have gone Professional sooner Power to weight is great. Contrary to popular logic, the shorter the bar the more power and less weight. With the 16" bar it is easier and safer to handle. It keeps it out of dirt and away from toes. My other two saws were not professional model and should have been. Live on a ranch at 9500' and heat with wood. Bottom line: Takes half the time to cut wood.
Date published: 2018-03-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Underestimated my satisfaction Kind of not fair to compare this to my previous consumer saw, but Stihl definitely engineered this saw for reliability and longevity. With the clutch bell reversed (open end inside the side case), keeping this saw clean and free of built-up saw dust is a breeze. The engine size is comparable to my previous saw, but the power and weight are no match. This saw is a joy to run all day, doesn't tire me out. It's well balanced, and so easy to start with the M-Tronic system. 3-4 pulls when it's 40 degrees or cooler outside and it rips to life.I've been clearing about 2 acres of woods, mostly black cherry and maple, with a few ash and locust. I have not had any issues with any species I put the bar to. This should be the last saw I ever need to buy.
Date published: 2018-03-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from What a difference! Since 1982 I have been running an old (albeit brand new in 1982) 028 which has performed flawlessly the entire time (stamped, made in West Germany) . The first time it was in the shop was in 2012, since the dealer was backlogged with repairs, i purchased a used 028AV Super, which rapidly became my go to saw. I heat almost exclusively with wood in WI, with a fair sized house and go thru 5 to 7 cords of good hard wood per season. I decided a few weeks ago that I wanted a new, BRAND NEW SAW. I decided on the MS 261 C-M. About the same size with more power and less weight (since I am NOT getting any younger) The first day, first tank i caught myself wondering if I had made the right decision. After the first tank, I was much more secure with the decision. By the third tank, I was absolutely sure that I had made the right choice. For now, I still have the stock anti kickback chain on it and it absolutely rips through red oak like it was poplar! I have 2 brand new "aggressive" chains waiting. I am thrilled with the vibration damping and new air filter system. The fact that the nuts that hold the bar on are impossible to lose and chain tension adjustments are a breeze. I chose from the pro line because the way I see it a logger make 4 or 5 cuts on a tree, firewood require 30 or 40. I am thrilled with my decision and would recommend this saw in a heartbeat. The dealership I bought it from is great, knowledgeable and fun to work with.
Date published: 2018-03-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Weight, Power & Features As of 2/26/18, I have burned four tanks of fuel through my MS 261 C-M Stihl. I’ve cut cherry, maple, oak and some shag bark hickory. To date I’m very happy with this chainsaw. The MS 261 C-M is much more saw than I need or will ever use. It starts easy and cuts wells. I purchased this saw because 1) Weight 2) Power & 3) Features. I don’t know how many times I’ve dropped a nut in the leafs, mud or snow. The captive nuts are great. I can't comment on the dependability or reliability of this unit as I have only for less than a month.As for the "Value": A don't know, as I stated above this saw is more that I really need, I over purchased, I sold myself on the weight & Features ----> I do think this is the best chain saw made for the size.The only Con I have is the when resetting the Chain Brake I have to move my left hand from the top bar to the side bar then reset the brake with my right hand. I have less control of the saw and the movement is awkward.
Date published: 2018-02-27
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Not worth the money. Chainsaw never ran right. It would not start hot no matter what was done. Was “fixed” under warranty and continued to have the same hot start issue. Talked to multiple dealers who told me the m-tropic saws were having issues. It was replaced with a standard carbureted version. I have my grandfathers Stijl from 1978 and my fathers. It’s sad that Stijl has let their quality go to the way side.
Date published: 2018-02-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Just a great saw (Mini Power House) I bought this saw to complimnet my MS 362-C-M and it does well. Tons of power for how little it weighs. I can cut all day and not be nearly as fatigued as I am using a larger was. This saw does all the work down to the trunk and then the my MS 362 C-M takes over from there. This is simply a great saw that can do more than it should be able to based on the size and weight. It's the meaner dog in the fight for sure!!
Date published: 2018-02-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Perfect for bucking! Bought this as a firewood saw and have been impressed!
Date published: 2018-02-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great anti vibration on this saw essay on the hands!mtronic is pretty impressive to Cut around 70 cords of wood a year felling and bucking.liked my farmbosss but wanted a pro saw so I decided on 261 after research lots of totally impressed good power torque. Cuts everything I put in front of it! Starts easylike everything about it ! If you need a midrange pro saw there's none better!my opinion.
Date published: 2018-02-14
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