These rare chainsaws are worth big bucks to collectors

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Collecting chainsaws has been popular for decades, but interest is only growing. Thanks in part to online communities of chainsaw enthusiasts, more people are becoming aware of the value and historical significance of these interesting tools.

Valuable chainsaws fall into a range of categories. Some are sought-after because there are not many of them. Others are collectible because of their place in history. And some will fetch top dollar because the chainsaw performs exceptionally well but is no longer in production.

Let’s look at some of the world’s most valuable and collectible chainsaws. Who knows, perhaps you have one hiding in your shed?

The Comet Model B

comet b diesel chainsaw
Comet model B chainsaw

The Comet B is a very rare chainsaw.

Between 1950 and 1953, it is estimated that only 1,000 were made, and far fewer are still with us today. It’s also important to history because it is diesel-powered, which is unusual for chainsaws.

To give you an idea of value, this Comet B was listed for $4,800 on eBay in March 2024. And although it isn’t much to look at, many collectors consider it a bucket list chainsaw.

Another vintage chainsaw that is also worth a mint is the STIHL BLK (aka the STIHL Blitz), which is not only old and rare but also has a place in history and a story to tell.


stihl ms 200 t price
STIHL MS 200T built from new parts

The STIHL MS 200T is a different kind of valuable chainsaw.

It’s a small top-handle model made from 2002 to 2012. It’s widely considered the best arborist chainsaw ever made. The newer model that replaced it is not considered as good, making the 200T more desirable.

Unused 200T chainsaws sell for over $1500, while used or unworking examples can be worth well over $500.

Saws like the 200T are worth so much that some folk even build “new” chainsaws from scratch out of parts. They aren’t assembled in a Stihl factory but rather by small engine mechanics in their workshop.

Military or army versions

rare husqvarna collectible chainsaw
Husqvarna 281 XP army version

Almost any army or military chainsaw version is collectible.

STIHL and Husqvarna usually command the highest price, with models now out of production worth more. The value increases if sold with original storage boxes and documentation.

For example, the army green Husqvarna 281 XP came with instructions on how to quickly destroy it to prevent it from falling into enemy hands. These additional details improve a saw’s story and increase its value to collectors.

Limited edition chainsaws

rare stihl 500i chainsaw valuable
STIHL MS 500i Launch Edition

Another type of chainsaw worth more money than you’d expect is limited edition chainsaws.

These saws can be relatively modern compared to some of the previous examples, but because so few were released and because of the special tags, they become collector editions.

One such example is the STIHL MS 500i Launch Edition. This chainsaw model was only released in 2019, but Stihl released 500 Launch Edition saws as a promotion.

The only difference is the tag or label. There’s nothing at all different about the machine, but it’s that minor difference that makes it special.

Powerful chainsaws

stihl contra 1964 version
An early STIHL Contra

Powerful chainsaws are always worth money, whether they’re rare or not. If they are also rare, they’re generally worth a lot of money.

One of the most powerful chainsaws ever made was the STIHL Contra Lightening. One version was 106 cc, while another, the Contra S, was a mighty 137 cc.

These chainsaw versions are extremely powerful, historically significant, and hard to find. A combination that results in high prices for those ready to sell.

Some collectors wait years for these saws to come on the market in an area near them, and often, people pay huge amounts to have them shipped around the world.

New old stock

NOS NIB 640/660

Brand-new old chainsaw models fetch top dollar, especially if they’re still in an unopened box. People find such chainsaws more often than you might think. They’re hidden in garages, sheds, and basements around the world.

Regarding this type of collectible chainsaw, the older, the better. New-in-box chainsaws from the 80s or 90s, like the STIHL MS 640 or 660, are highly sought after.

If they are also powerful and respected chainsaws, like the STIHL 044, you have a priceless unicorn on your hands.

Experimental chainsaws

rare stihl carbon chainsaw
The STIHL Carbon Concept Chainsaw

All chainsaws undergo a design process, sometimes resulting in interesting chainsaws like the STIHL Carbon Concept Chainsaw.

This saw was created as STIHL experimented with the fuel injection system, which was eventually rolled out on the MS 500i.

Many other saws through chainsaw history have had these early edition saws that are slightly different from the standard release model, making the earlier version rare and valuable.

The STIHL 040 is another example of a saw with a very short production run before evolving into the 041. The 040 tested new features and broke new ground in that it was the lightest one man saw of its time, and then it was improved upon again.

Custom chainsaws

rare stihl excalibur chainsaw
The STIHL Excalibur

Custom chainsaws, especially those that become significant for other reasons, are also rare and valuable.

One good example is the STIHL Excalibur Chainsaws. Three STIHL 034s were customized for the Texas Chainsaw Massacre III film. The saw pictured above sold for $13,000 at auction in 2012, and the whereabouts of the other two are unknown.

Another example is the STIHL Jetsaw. This is an unauthorized custom saw built by a STIHL engineer. It’s a chainsaw with a jet engine!

Other custom chainsaws that are worth money to the right people:

Collectible chainsaws

This is the tip of the iceberg regarding collectible chainsaws.

There are other types of collectibles in this niche and sought-after chainsaws from other companies that we haven’t mentioned.

Some people love collecting old chainsaw posters, signs, or merchandise. Others collect unique chainsaw bars and chains. While Stihl products are probably the most valuable, old Poulan, McCulloch, and Dolmar chainsaws are examples of other brands collectors want. Take a look in your dad or grandad’s shed and research if his saw is worth anything today!

This article originally appeared on Food Drink Life.


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