Before, I start to explain how to cut a large log with a small chainsaw, there’s one thing that I think should go without saying. And that is that you shouldn’t unless you have to. If the width of the log is wider than length of the guide bar, then it’s almost certain that you’re better off using a chainsaw with a longer bar. This will make the log easier to cut, and also safer for you to work with. Don’t have a bigger chainsaw?
If not, before you get out your little chainsaw, it might be worth considering methods other than a chainsaw. The benefit of these methods is that because they are manual, they’ll be much safer to use than a chainsaw. The risk of hurting yourself is much lower when you use methods that don’t involve motor engines. However, the one downside of manual tools is that they can be rather time consuming, so not great if you have a tight deadline for cutting that log.
So when is it okay to use a small chainsaw to cut a large log? Well, first of all ask yourself if you have a larger chainsaw! If the answer is yes, use it! If the answer is no, ask yourself if you have the time to cut this log using manual tools such as an axe or a bow saw? If the answer is yes, do it!
However, only when the answer to both questions is no, should you use a small chainsaw to cut a large log.
Here’s how to do it!
1. Before you get started, remember to keep safe! This is a dangerous job, and many things could go wrong. You could cut through the log, and hit your leg, you could get sawdust in your eyes, or the saw could bounce back up at you. In order to keep safe, first of all wear a helmet. Most body parts can be fixed, not your brain! Also wear eye protection, you don’t want saw dust in your peepers. And finally, stand in a position where the saw stands no chance of hitting you if it comes out of the log.
2. Again, before getting started with the cutting, make sure your chainsaw is working properly. If it’s not, and it gets stuck in the log. It might be very difficult to get out. But the most important part of the chainsaw check is making sure it’s sharp enough. A chainsaw which is too blunt will stand a higher chance of bouncing back at you. Whether you want to sharpen it by hand or with a machine is up to you.
3. The first thing you’re going to want to do is cut an incision that goes all the way around the log (excluding the part which is touching the floor). In order to cut this, you will need to put the guide bar in as far as it will go, and then cut downwards. Once you have completed one side, you should move to the other side of the log to complete it on the other side.
4. The next thing to do is to wedge open the cut. Make sure that the wedges you’re using are made either of wood or plastic. This will make it easier for the chainsaw to cut through them. Anything too soft, and the incision will not open very much, or even at all! But too hard, and it could damage your chainsaw! You will almost certainly need to use more than one wedge for this.
Just put it into the incision, and use a hammer to get it in as deep as you possibly can. If you don’t have a hammer, a baseball bat should do the trick!
The larger the wedges, the better this will work!
5. Once the wedges are in there, use your chainsaw to continue cutting the log, following a similar procedure that you did when you cut the incisions. Put the guide bar in as far as it will go, and cut towards yourself. When that’s complete, move to the other side to complete the procedure. At this point, the log should split in half. If it doesn’t keep on reading!
6. You have probably completed at least half of the procedure already. The only thing left to do now is to do the same thing from the other side. If at all possible, roll the log over so that the side which was on the ground is now facing the sky. The best way to do this is almost certainly to roll the log over.
7. Now you will need to, again, put the guide bar into the log as far as it will go, and cut it just as you did in step 5. This is when you need to be incredibly careful as there is a high chance of the chainsaw leaving the log, and that means, a high chance of it hitting you. Be prepared for this. Stand at an angle with your legs apart. And cut it slowly.
Also, in order to make sure your cut is as smooth as possible, try to make sure your new cuts line up up with the cuts you made before you rolled the log over.
8. At this point, if the log still hasn’t come apart, there’s likely to be literally a matter of inches in the centre which is still holding it together. Just keep on cutting until the log comes apart. You may even want to switch to a manual tool (saw or bow saw) for this bit!
And there we have it, your guide to cutting up a log when the log is bigger than your chainsaw!
As said earlier, it’s best to use either a chainsaw that’s bigger or a tool that doesn’t use a motor, but if none of these options are possible, a small chainsaw will have to do. Just make sure you’re careful, and you take safety very seriously!