How to cut wood properly with a chainsaw

How to use a chainsaw. How to cut trees correctly.

When developing a chain saw, Husqvarna experts always take into account the opinions of professionals who use the tool daily at logging sites. Our goal. to transfer their experience into new models and thus make the tool even better from the consumer’s point of view

You have bought a chainsaw, and you’re ready to rush out to cut firewood and fell trees? You’d better not be in a hurry, because only from outside working with a chainsaw seems easy, but to start you at least know how to start it. Exactly how to start the chainsaw correctly, you can read below.

Of course, all the necessary requirements before starting can be read in the manual to the purchased chainsaw, but we will mention them in this material. First make sure that the chain saw has a certain amount of gasoline, diluted in the right proportions with two-stroke oil and that the chain tension is set correctly. Only after you have made sure that all the preparations for starting the saw have been made can you start the fire.

wood, properly, chainsaw

Then set the clutch lever to the “cold start” position, this is usually the lowest position. In this lever position make two or three attempts to start, do not be surprised. the saw should not start. Then move the lever to the “warmed up start position” and in this position perform the start-up. This ensures a correct and easy start.

Once the saw has started, it is necessary to slightly press the throttle lever, which should ensure the automatic transition of the combination lever to the working position, and the motor will go into idle mode. Afterwards the saw is ready to work.

How to start a chainsaw

Now we have to find out how to start the chain saw correctly. The instruction manual for the tool describes this process, but practice shows that few people refer to the documentation. It is a very dangerous machine that does not tolerate the slightest fault, so it is important to follow safety rules when working with a chainsaw. Starting the tool is done as follows:

  • Check the chain tension, which is done by lifting the links from the top in the middle of the bar. The chain has to be tightened very lightly and if it is loose, it needs to be tightened
  • When the tensioning is done, it is necessary to try to move the chain on the bar. If the chain is tensioned correctly, it will scroll freely, and if you find the opposite effect, you need to make a loosening
  • The handbrake is engaged by moving the lever forward. The hand brake is a kind of safety device that prevents the chain from turning, thus preventing injury. Before starting, you must engage the brake to avoid injury and to avoid the chain rubbing against the ground when starting the motor
  • Setting up the chainsaw on a straight base and assuming a correct posture. To do so, the machine operator holds the upper handle with one hand and places his foot on the side handle. This pose refers to the heavy versions of chainsaws
  • Turn the ignition switch on and close the throttle. After that you need to pull the starter rope 2-3 times. As soon as the engine gives out the first “pop”, the choke can be opened and the engine started immediately
  • You should yank on the rope with jerky movements and return it to its original position. It is forbidden to hold the rope in the stretched position after starting the engine
  • The start of the motor is usually performed with 3-4 times, but it all depends on the tool and the skill to perform the start. After starting the engine, run it for at least one minute with the gas pedal button depressed. After the engine has warmed up, you can take the chain off the brake and get to work
  • Make sure there is oil on the chain by putting a clean piece of paper on top of the bar and checking for traces of oil on it

The tool is now ready for use and you can cut wood. If you plan to move the machine to the place of work, you should turn off the motor or turn on the handbrake.

How to fell trees with a chainsaw. details

Felling safely is an important part of felling a tree. If you have never handled a tool before, you should first practice on branches and boughs.

There are big and small tree trunks with quite a bit of difference. The technology for felling large trees larger than 50 cm in diameter is as follows:

  • Once the slanting cut is made to ¾ or ½ of the trunk, a horizontal notch is made. An angle or wedge is made and pulled out. The resulting side cut is the direction of the fall of the wood
  • On the opposite side a horizontal undercut is made with a slight slope. This notch is made a little higher (3-5 cm) than the bottom notch on the side of the blade notch
  • The notch is made approximately to the middle of the trunk. The tree must remain horizontal
  • In the resulting notch is inserted a mallet or a wedge, which will prevent the slope in the opposite direction
  • From the side, a light incision is carefully made (in the area of the location of the cut triangle), and you need to push the trunk by hand to bury it directly in the intended area
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To make the specified cuts on the trunk should be at the level of the waist. Professionals start making root cuts right away, but this is very difficult and not safe. It is better to cut the rest of the stump later, rather than have the tool get stuck inside the wood.

Work rules and safety precautions

A chain saw is an injury-prone tool. This fact should not cause fear. It is intended to encourage the owner to be constantly aware of his/her actions while working.

So, what safety precautions are required when working with a chainsaw?

First, do not spare money to buy a set of protective clothing (gloves, protective helmet, suit and special shoes). It becomes a reliable protection against damage.

In particular, gloves for these saws are good at protecting the fingers from injury. Their fabric wraps around the chain when in contact with it and blocks it, saving your fingers from the sharp teeth. A protective helmet prevents splinters from damaging your eyes and protects your head from falling branches.

The logger’s shoes are equipped with steel plates. If the saw jumps unexpectedly they take the cutting blow.

This Technique Could Save Your Chainsaw

Second, do not hold the saw straight ahead of you. Hold it so that your feet are to the side of the cutting line.

Third, hold the saw firmly by wrapping all your fingers around the handle. Keep your right hand on the rear handle and your left hand on the front handle.

These three basic rules should be supplemented by other equally important points:

  • Insert the saw carefully into the cut you just made.
  • Beware of cutting with the tip of the guide bar (there is a high risk of kickback).
  • Remove any objects in the work area that could cause you to trip or fall.
  • When cutting, do not lean very low so as not to lose your balance.
  • Do not work with the chainsaw above your shoulders.
  • Do not hold the tool too far from you so that you will not tire or strain your arms and back for extended periods of work.
  • Always keep your back straight and your feet spread wide apart.
  • Sawing can be done with both sides of the tire. Keep in mind that when cutting with the lower edge, the chain pulls the saw forward, and when working with the upper edge, it pulls the saw backward.
  • Stop the engine or put the chain on the brake (idle) before moving the saw to the new location.

A good rule is not to work alone, but with a partner who can provide first aid.

Before felling a tree look around. Determine its length and direction of growth, the position of nearby structures (buildings, power lines) to prevent damage if it falls. It is a good idea to consider the wind direction and strength.

Before felling a tree, stand on its right side and make the felling not more than ¼ of the trunk diameter at a 45 degree angle. Felling notch is made from the falling side of the tree (the direction of the natural inclination of the trunk). After that a horizontal undercut is made on the other side. the main felling cut. Do not bring it within a few centimeters of the felling notch so that the tree does not fall over early (Figures 1 and 2).

To prevent the guide bar from clamping in the main kerf, a wooden wedge is inserted into the kerf.

While working, watch where the saw is going. This rule can help prevent serious injury if the tree falls in a direction you did not intend.

When the tree begins to fall, you must quickly remove the saw from the cut, turn off its engine, and leave the work area.

Once you have fallen a tree, do not relax, because the main number of injuries statistics fix exactly at the stage of pruning branches.

For safe execution of this work, follow these rules:

wood, properly, chainsaw
  • Use pads to secure the trunk so it doesn’t move or roll;
  • Stand to the left of the fallen tree, and start cutting with the lower branches;
  • Thick branches should be sawn off at the end of the branch and gradually toward the trunk.

If a chain saw jams when sawing a fallen tree, don’t yank it to try to pull it out. First, shut off the motor and use thick twig levers to try to raise or tilt the trunk to widen the cut.

How to work safely with a chainsaw?

Not everyone knows how to operate a chainsaw, so this question is of interest to everyone who has purchased this high-tech device. Some people think they know all too well and don’t even look at the manual. But to do so could cause serious injury or damage to your chain saw later on. So before you start, don’t be lazy and study the manual.

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Getting ready to work

First of all, make sure the tension of the chain is correct by pulling the upper links, which should cause the shank to come out of the guide bar groove by a few millimeters. Also, you have to make sure that the lower links don’t sag. Then try pulling the chain with your hand. it should pull easily. If the chain is too tight, you have to loosen it. Then it is necessary to check in what position inertia brake is in. its handle and the main handle must not touch, because when you switch on a chainsaw with a displaced inertia brake, it can damage the clutch.

After checking the tension of the chain, you can start filling the tool. To do this, the chainsaw must be placed on a horizontal surface and the chain oil and fuel mixture must be filled in. The best option is considered to be a fuel mixture of oil intended for two-stroke engines and gasoline of А-92 or А-95 brand. The ratio of petrol to oil should be 1:40 or 1:50 (approx. 20-25 grams of oil to 1 liter of petrol).

For the motor and chain, you should choose a special lubricant designed for chainsaws, because such a lubricant contains components that can prolong the life of the cutting element and engine parts. After the check is complete and you have followed all the above procedures, you can start the saw.

Remember that before you start the engine you must move the saw away from the place where you started it so that there is no risk of ignition. Set it up on a stable, solid base.

First run

After checking that the chain is not in contact with any surface, engage the chain brake by moving the brake handle away from you so that the chain does not start turning prematurely. Since the engine is initially cold, it is necessary to fully pull the lever, which is used to control the air damper. Then you need to put the tip of your foot into the rear handle, hold the front handle with your hand and pull the handle a few times until the engine “sneezes”. Then turn the choke shutter to the operating position and engage the saw by briefly pulling the choke and letting the saw idle. After that you need to put the brake handle in the forward position and your chainsaw is ready to work.

  • before starting work, be sure to test the chainsaw‘s brakes by setting it on some flat surface and pulling the throttle. Then you have to activate the brake by pushing on the crank. The brake is considered to be working if the chain stops.
  • among other things, the lubrication mechanism should be checked before starting work. To do this, find any light surface, start the tool and, while holding it over this surface, increase the chain speed by simply pressing the throttle. If a small streak of oil appears on the surface, then there is nothing wrong with the lubrication mechanism.

Design, Types

Before describing how to properly saw with a chainsaw, it is necessary to take a little look at the construction of the unit. Any petrol saw consists of a two-stroke internal combustion engine, to which the controls are attached, as well as the cutting tool (guide arm and chain). The latter is driven by a sprocket, connected with the crankshaft of the motor through an expander clutch.

Since the engine gets very hot during operation, it is covered with protective shields to avoid burns. The design also includes an emergency brake, which, when activated, stops the chain.

The market of such equipment offers chainsaws, which are conditionally divided into three categories:

  • Amateur, they are also loppers. These saws are suitable for home use: to cut firewood, to fell one or more trees, to buck wood. They are characterized by compact size and low weight, which provides the convenience of work, but their power is not particularly high;
  • semi-professional. Quite powerful machines that are suitable for both delimbing and felling. They are called semi-professional because it is allowed their uninterrupted work during the shift (8-10 hours);
  • professional. Suitable for industrial felling. These are powerful saws, capable of uninterrupted work for 10-12 hours.

For home use, the amateur version is quite suitable, but despite the fact that it is designed for domestic use, it is important to know how to properly saw with a chainsaw belonging to this category.

How to cut Firewood with A chainsaw Like Ah BOSS

The following tasks are quite possible with this machine

But no matter what type of work is envisioned, a preparatory step must be taken before sawing with a chainsaw.

The next preparatory step

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wood, properly, chainsaw

How to cut a tree with a chainsaw

When felling trees with a chainsaw it’s important to choose the right saw blade for the thickness and type of wood. For example, if you need to fell thin trees, it makes no sense to use heavy and powerful machines. They use a lot of fuel and oil, and are much heavier to handle. It is recommended to adhere to the following rules:

  • For trunks with a diameter of 600 mm or more, a heavy blade (650 mm) should be used;
  • For trunks with an average diameter of 300-600 mm. a medium-sized blade of 350-650 mm;
  • thin trunks (up to 300 mm) can be cut with a blade up to 350 mm.
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If you have to work with hardwood (oak, beech, cherry, apple, pear, etc.), you should pull the rope with your finger.д.), it is better to use medium-sized blades for thin trunks and heavy blades for trunks with a diameter of 300-600 mm or more.

Preparation Step

Felling trees with a chainsaw can be difficult and sometimes dangerous without preparation.

  • Make sure there are no people, animals, buildings or other trees in the area where the tree is expected to fall.
  • It is required to prepare very carefully for felling trees near water bodies. If a sawn object falls into the water, it will take a lot of effort, including the use of technology, to get it and saw it.
  • If you need to lay the tree to be cut in a specific place, you can tie a rope to the top or middle of the trunk and use a winch or other mechanism to forcibly tilt it in the right direction.
  • Before you cut a tree, take care of escape routes in case of an emergency (if possible, remove all obstacles that may prevent you from leaving the danger zone).
  • Make sure you have access to the felled and stripped tree for loading and hauling.
  • If you plan to fell a big tree, first make sure it doesn’t fall down as you fell. Rent a hoist or use the services of industrial climbers to cut problematic branches.

Rules for felling a tree

Amateur practice is allowed to fell trees using a single felling notch only if small plants with a trunk diameter of no more than 150 mm are to be felled. But sawing thick trees requires following standard technology.

  • The very first, top kerf should be made on the side of the plant in which it should eventually fall. It is made at a 45° angle, with a recess of ¼ of the trunk diameter. The second, lower notch is made horizontally until the jointing of the undercuts is complete.
  • The third cut is called the felling cut and is the most responsible. This is made on the opposite side of the previously made wedge-shaped notch, parallel to the second notch (see felling notch). (see illustration below), but go 5 cm higher than that. Also according to felling technology the felling notch must not be sawn all the way to the end, that is to say to the wedge-shaped notch. It is necessary to stop before about 1/10 of the trunk thickness is sawed off, so that the remaining whole part serves as a kind of hinge.
  • To prevent the saw from getting jammed in the kerf, wooden wedges must be used. Do not use metal wedges. they can damage the chain if the saw blows back.
  • When making the felling notch keep a close eye on the vertical of the fell. A sudden blast of wind may interfere, and the tree won’t cut as you planned.
  • After the felling cut, before the plant begins to fall, quickly remove the guide bar from the chain saw without fuss and move to a safe distance. It’s not safe to be near the tree at this point, because the lower part of the tree can jump about 1.5 meters if it falls.

If the rule of undercutting is ignored and the guide and felling cut is not correctly positioned, then it will be impossible to predict the direction of the tree’s fall.

After the plant has been piled in the right direction, all the branches on its trunk should be cut off. For convenience you should put under the trunk a flat wooden scrap of 100-150 mm high. If you do not, there is a good chance you will hit the ground with the chainsaw. If you hit the tool in the ground, where there is always sand, the latter gets on the bar, namely, in the groove on which the chain slides. As a result of exposure to abrasive particles, not only the shanks of the chain, but also the entire bar begins to wear quickly. Therefore, the question that builders often ask. whether it is possible to saw foam blocks with a chainsaw. is irrelevant.


A chain saw always comes in handy. This is a multifunctional device, which will help when you need to cut the trunk for firewood or boards, as well as when sawing gas and foam block. I even go fishing with it in winter, because it easily cuts ice up to 50 cm. thickness.

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