Husqvarna 285 CD Chainsaw Review: Specs, Features, Price, And Alternatives

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The Husqvarna 285 CD is an 85cc (some say 88cc) chainsaw that entered production in 1977.

It’s a powerful beast of a saw that is popular for firewood, felling trees, and that type of work. Some also use it in a mill.

The downsides are that it’s quite heavy, it lacks comfort and safety features like a chain brake, and parts are becoming harder and harder to find.

Here’s a quick rundown of the Husky 285 CD Chainsaw to help you know whether or not it’s going to be the right saw for you.

Husqvarna 285 CD Chainsaw

husqvarna 285 cd parts
Husqvarna 285 CD at Láncfűrész Múzeum

The CD part of 285 CD stands for Capacitor Discharge relating to the ignition system – more info about Husqvarna designations here.

The ignition system is one of the hardest parts to find with most having to settle for alternatives. You will first need to work out whether you need the SEM or Bosch ignition.

The best spots to look and ask:

Other parts, such as air filters, fuel lines, and clutch covers are easy enough to find through the links above, it’s just certain parts that are more difficult to come by.

The chainsaw itself is usually listed for sale anywhere from $20 to $200 and above depending on the condition and place of sale.

Back around 2010, the price was around $300 for a good model, but these days with a lack of parts and better options available it’s not commanding the same rates.

Husqvarna 285 CD Specs And Features

husqvarna 285 cd parts

The 285 CD is a grunty saw that’s great for cutting thick logs and hardwoods.

It can be used with anything from a 16″ – 36″ bar though it gets pretty heavy with the longer ones.

Husky 285 CD specs:

  • 85cc
  • 5.2 cu in displacement
  • 21.4 lbs weight
  • Nylon mesh air filter
  • Centrifugal clutch
  • 52mm bore
  • 40mm piston

The 285 CD has an automatic adjustable oiler and a mechanical chain brake.

Husqvarna 285 CD Review

The 285 CD is an excellent chainsaw that can be picked up very cheaply – for example, I just a post from one guy who got one in perfect working order for $25.

Parts are hard to come by – especially the ignition system – but can sometimes be substituted with parts from other models (such as the Husqvarna 2100 CD).

It’s a heavy chainsaw, weighing over 20 lbs, so compared to more modern chainsaws of the same power, it’s much harder to handle for long days cutting firewood.

For example, the brand new Husqvarna 585 weighs around 16 lbs compared to the 285s 21.5 lbs.

If you can get a working 285 CD for the right price, it’s well worth it, but a non-working model will probably cost more to get running than you’ll pay for it.


  • Powerful chainsaw
  • Easy to service
  • Hard-working and durable


  • Lacking safety and comfort features
  • Difficult to find some parts
  • A bit heavy

Husky 285 CD

husqvarna 285 cd chainsaw ignition

Overall, the 285 CD is worth having as part of a collection.

It’s powerful and grunty enough for tough jobs that your regular homeowner chainsaws aren’t so good at.

It’s not a model you’d want to be using all day due to its weight and lack of comfort features (anti-vibe, etc), so you’d be better off getting something like the Husky 562 XP, 262 XP, or the 372 XP.

It’s also probably not best for non-mechanical people who don’t want to be working on the chainsaw – get something that’s in really good condition instead.


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