Scottoil vs. chainsaw oil

I do my very best to tell the correct things, but of course I can give you no warranty!

Read my experiences with Einhell chainsaw oil
Read my experiences with Stihl semisynthetic chainsaw oil

Ever since I am using a Scottoiler, I had the idea, if it was possible to use chainsaw oil instead of genuine Scottoil. The intention was clear:

However, I saw one main problem: From my 2-stroke days I knew, that bio-based oils may not be mixed with mineral oils due to certain soaping effects, plugging the small oil bores. Another problem I saw in different viscosities, even if Scottoiler's flood rate is adjustable.

Before putting chainsaw oil into Scottoiler, I decided to perform some test. The complete test suite consists of:

In each test any oil may gain a certain amount of points, from 1 to 5, where 1 is best rated and 5 is worst, in comparison to Scottoil, which I rated best (=1) in any test. More than 3 points in a test I considered failed, 1-3 I considered passed.

Up to now I tested just two chainsaw oil brands, and here are the results so far:

test | brandScottoilDolmar BiotopEinhell Art.Nr.xxxxxxx
visual testclear: 1 (passed)clear: 1 (passed)darker than SO, but clear: 2 (passed)
compatibility test slight emulsion effects: 2-3 (passed)severe soaping effects, sedimentation on test glass's wall: 5 (failed)
viscosity test at 14 deg CVery well formed drops (70/min), nearly no threads: 1 (passed)Nearly no drops, running out like honey: 5 (failed)well formed drops (68/min), barely threads: 2 (passed)
viscosity test at -4 deg CVery well formed drops (38/min), nearly no threads: 1 (passed)Not testedwell formed drops (32/min), barely threads: 2 (passed)
useabilityyes(of course ;-))nono (see below)

Conclusions so far:

  1. Chainsaw oils are of different qualities, and I can't give a general recommendation for using it. I just can test German brands, thus, if you, dear reader, should happen to live outside Germany, you have to begin from the beginning, meaning, testing, until you've found a suitable oil.
  2. An oil containing extra additives for best adhesive, is counterproductive for our demands: It simply won't flow out of the oiler, as f.e. the Dolmar brand. For that reason, this brand is not useable.
  3. Failed compatibilty test of Einhell does not necessarily mean, that it's not useable. When using it, Scottoiler and chain have to be cleaned before, best with paraffin (kerosene for our American friends ;-) ). I guess, the oiler could be cleaned while following first-filling-instructions: Fill the tank with 25ccm of paraffin, and then, with the bottle held upright, blow it through the pipe.

Experiences with Einhell chainsaw oil

Lately, I used, according to the tests I made before, Einhell chainsaw oil in my TA's Scottie. To make it short, the result was extremely bad.

Experiences with Stihl semisynthetic chainsaw oil

The lower mileage of the chain when using bio-based oil may be caused by the effect, that bio based oil may harm the O-rings, as Frank Wachsmann, developer of new CLS200µ stated. For his CLS200µ, he uses Stihl semisynthetic chainsaw oil. In May 2000, I installed CLS200µ on my BMW F650GS Dakar (on 22-MAY-2002, the chain stands now for 30,000 km, still going fine). As far as I can say up to now, the Stihl oil works very fine, at least regarding the soiling and the dripping item. As Frank told me, Stihl has a slightly higher viscosity than Scottoil, i.e., it's thinner. Thus, if using Stihl in a Scottoiler, you may be in need for finding new adjustments. Tested Stihl semisynthetic oil also in Scottoiler during last winter, and it works really fine. Adjustment is no problem: Adjust the Scottoiler so, that one drop appears every 20 seconds, that's fairly enough.


Any bio-based chainsaw oil is not useful for our purposes, since it affects the O-rings, and tends to create resins (condensation). This is very hard to remove from the rim.
Stihl semisynthetic however is very good. Soils on the rims are easy to remove. Also, it's cheap: EUR 2.00 / liter from the barrel, if you bring a bottle with you, a little bit more already bottled, compared to ScottOil roughly EUR 10.00 / 1/2 liter.

Find a Stihl dealer in your neighborhood. But be careful, not every Stihl dealer has the semisynthetic oil available, don't let him make you take the bio-based oil, this is not better than any other oil!

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