I recently reviewed the Husqvarna 455 Rancher, one of the most powerful home and farm owner saws on the market. During my research, one question that cropped up on a number of occasions was what is the difference between the Husqvarna 455 and 460 Rancher models?
It’s true that they share many similarities but in this article I’m going to look at what makes them different and whether one particular model is superior to the other.
The table below summarizes some of the main the features:
|Rancher 455||Rancher 460|
|Power Output (hp)||3.49||3.62|
|Maximum Power Speed (RPM)||9,000||9,000|
|Idling Speed (RPM)||2,700||2,700|
|Maximum Torque (Nm)||3.2||3.4|
|Fuel Consumption g/kWh||470||437|
|Fuel Tank Volume (US Pint)||0.9||0.9|
|Maximum Bar Length (Inches)||20||24|
|Minimum Bar Length (Inches)||13||13|
|Chain speed at max power (m/s)||20||20|
|Weight (Excl. Cutting equipment) in lbs.||12.79||12.79|
|Oil Tank Volume (US Pint)||0.7||0.7|
|Oil Pump max capacity (ml per min)||17||17|
|Oil Pump min capacity (ml per min)||6||6|
|Sound pressure dB(A)||104||104|
|Front handle vibration m/s²||3.4||3.5|
|Rear handle vibration m/s²||4.5||4.5|
What’s the same?
As you can see from the table above, these two saws are similar in most respects. This is not surprising given they both incorporate Husqvarna’s latest features and technology. This was covered in detail in my review of the 455 which you can SEE HERE, but just to summarize, this includes:
- LowVib’ anti-vibration system to improve operator comfort and reduce fatigue. This is an effective system, as demonstrated by the low vibration numbers detailed above.
- Automatic adjustable oil pump, which means that you can control the rate of oil flow depending on the weather conditions and type of cutting you are carrying out.
- Side mounted chain tensioning system for easy access.
- Quick release air filter so that this can easily be removed for cleaning or replacement.
- A centrifugal air cleaning system which means that dust and large particles are dispelled before they reach the air filter. This improves engine life and the number of times the filter needs to be replaced.
- X-Torq® engine system to provide better fuel consumption and cleaner emissions to help meet strict environmental standards.
- Combined choke/stop control and air purge for easier starting.
- Durable design and construction, including a forged three-piece crankshaft able to handle the toughest applications.
- A range of safety features, including an inertia activated chain brake to help reduce the likelihood of injury as a consequence of kickback.
- Distinct felling marks for better cutting precision.
What are the main differences?
The main differences between the two chainsaws relate to the size of their engines and the power they are able to generate. The larger 460 has a larger power output and is able to generate slightly more torque. The difference isn’t particularly great but it does enable you to use a 24 inch bar and chain, whereas the maximum recommended bar on the 455 is 20 inches.
Interestingly, although it has a larger engine, the 460 is slightly more fuel efficient than the 455. You will note from my article on the 455 that you will use around half a gallon of fuel per hour of cutting time and you will therefore get slightly longer with the larger model.
Apart from this, these two saws will be very similar to operate and handle. They both weigh the same without cutting equipment, however if you put a 24 inch bar on the 460 it will weigh more. The noise and vibration levels produced are identical, as are other specifications such as fuel and oil tank sizes.
Consumer Reviews and Ratings
Given the similarities, it’s worthwhile taking a closer look at customer reviews and ratings to see how they compare.
Number of Reviews: 1037
Consumer positives: Power, handling and maneuverability, Ease of Use, Range of Features and Quality
Consumer Negatives: Some found heavy, Maintenance required, Starting and running issues.
NOTE: During my research a number of people reported having problems with engine failure attributed to the fuel. If you use fuel with high levels of ethanol, there is a possibility that the ethanol will separate and destroy the saw (this is not an issue affecting just Husqvarna but all major manufacturers). The only solution is to ensure you use premium low-ethanol/ethanol free or pre-mixed fuel/oils. This is more expensive but cheaper than having to replace the saw. Some of the negative reviews may have been as a consequence of the fuel being used.
Number of Reviews: 671
Consumer positives: Excellent power, handling and maneuverability, value for the money, robust build with excellent features.
Customer negatives: Some starting difficulties (could be use of incorrect fuel)
As you can see from the above, there are hundreds of reviews on line for these two popular products. Both scored well, with the 460 coming out slightly on top.
At the time of writing, the Husqvarna 455 is available at just under $450. The newer 460 model costs just over $500 and as it stands there is a $70 price difference.
These two popular chainsaws are similar in many respects. They are both suitable for medium/heavy cutting tasks around the home or farm. The Husqvarna 460 Rancher has slightly more humph and is able to support a larger bar which means it may be more suitable for bucking larger logs and felling bigger trees. It also has slightly higher customer ratings, although there are fewer reviews and the difference isn’t large enough to definitively say that it is a better product.
The 455 Rancher has all the power necessary to carry out most home and farm owner tasks such as felling, limbing, clearing storm damage and cutting firewood. In addition, it is also $70 cheaper than its big brother.
Both are well built products which if properly maintained will last for a long time.