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How to Cut a Tree with a Chainsaw?

Updated on May 6, 2021 by Jessica Parker
Cut a Tree with a Chainsaw

If you want to know how to cut a tree with a chainsaw, then this is the place to be. Chainsaws are the handiest tools when it comes to chopping trees, or branches efficiently. Gone are those days when one would take out the axe or a manual saw to cut down trees. With every passing model, chainsaws are getting better, offering a whole new world of features to make our life easy.

A chainsaw is an outdoor tool that contains a mechanical chain along the length of the guide bar with teeth to chop heavy logs of wood or trees easily. If you are on the lookout for a suitable chainsaw and unable to decide, we suggest you can take a look at the chainsaw buying guide that tells you everything that you should know about chainsaws. If you don’t want to invest in a brand new chainsaw, provided you rarely use it, you can also go for a used chainsaw. This blog focuses on the process of cutting trees by a chainsaw and how to go about it.

Before we delve further, let’s take a look at the basics first:

How to Start a Chainsaw?

Place the chainsaw in a stable ground and remove all hindrances like objects, people, pets, etc. Grab the chain brake and engage it. Remove the safety switch and pull the trigger. You should engage the trigger for continued operation until the motor starts completely. However, the ignition process is different when it comes to battery-powered and gas-powered chainsaws. To know more, read our blog on gas Vs. battery chainsaws where we have explained each concept in detail.

How to Cut a Tree with a Chainsaw

The entire cutting process happens in 3 main steps- cutting, limbing, and bucking. But before we even start to cut, there are certain things you should look at, if you don’t want to create havoc in the area surrounding the tree.

  • Check Permits

Check the area where you want to cut the tree. Certain areas require permits before felling a tree.

  • Prepare

Navigate the area before cutting a tree. If it is a large tree and other lesser tall trees are surrounding it, there is a good chance that even they might come down the tree. Similarly, check for power lines or houses in the vicinity. Based on the location and the tree, identify the direction where you want the tree to fall. You should have a proper truck to carry the logs back when the task is done.

  • Check the Condition of the Chainsaw

Ensure the condition of the chainsaw before taking up a task. If the blade seems dull use a chainsaw sharpener and get the blade ready for some heavy log cutting.

  • Get Your Safety Gear

Make sure you are ready for the task. Equip yourself with safety gear like a helmet, safety boots, eye shield, earmuffs, cut resistant gloves, etc.

In Action: Cutting the Tree

We recommend using a gas chainsaw like “20-inch 62CC Powerful Gas Chainsaw” while cutting a big treeto cut through thick barks easily. Usually, the process of cutting involves making face cuts on the trunk. There are three types of face cuts that you can choose from.

  • Open-Faced Notch that varies between 70 Degrees and 90 Degrees
  • Conventional Notch is a cut made at a 45 Degree angle. The bottom of the cut is flat, and the top is angled
  • Humbolt Notch is a cut that is made at a 45 Degrees angle but, the top of the cut is flat while the bottom is angled
  • If you have made the face cut, back cut the tree as it will disconnect it from the stump. This cut should be 10% of the diameter. If you are going for an open-faced notch, the back cut should be at the same height as the front cut. In the case of a conventional cut, you should cut 1-inch above the bottom cut. While for a Humbolt notch, it should be 1-inch above the top cut

Remember to use the chainsaw blade to cut in the direction where you want your tree to fall.

Limbing the Tree

Limbing is when you remove the branches from a fallen tree. While cutting the lower branches, use the bottom of the chainsaw, where the chain will pull the saw out from you. While cutting the upper branches use the top of the chainsaw blade-like "Husqvarna 24-inch 460 Rancher Gas Chainsaw” where the chain will push the saw towards you. You can cut lower limbs can from the underside too. For the limbs under tension, cutting them can be tricky. Start cutting the tree after all the tension from it has been relieved.

Bucking a Tree

Bucking a tree means cutting a tree into smaller halves. It works the best when cut near the compression of the trunk. When the two segments of the trunk fall together, compression is formed. Cut halfway through such sections and then cut from the opposite side. For logs on the ground, cut halfway through each side and make sure the saw doesn’t come in contact with the ground. Else you might lose control. Trying to cut equal sizes as it will help during loading and storing.

Key Take Away

Cutting trees with a chainsaw may seem easy at first but only when you which size chainsaw to go for. We recommend that you try on smaller trees and thick growth before going for a bigger tree. If you frequently need to cut big trees, go with the one that has less vibration like “Husqvarna 20-inch 460 Rancher Gas Chainsaw”, otherwise you might get exhausted easily.

Finally, although you have everything that you need to cut through any trees, don’t forget to call for professional help if needed. in the meanwhile, you can take a look at some of the best chainsaws that we have listed for 2021.  

Moreover, don't forget to check out Bestviewsreviews for the best-rated chainsaws available online. They review & recommend some of the best products based on their quality, performance, and durability to simplify your buying process. So don't forget to take a look, before you get hooked. Happy shopping to you!"


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