Four basic chainsaw tips for the would be chainsaw operator:
Many people who want to pursue a greater degree of self sufficiency and a simpler lifestyle eventually find themselves considering the purchase of a chainsaw. Chainsaws can be extremely handy, saving loads of time on various chores, even making some tasks possible, which might otherwise be next to impossible.
A Chainsaw can be extremely useful.
However, chainsaws can be extremely dangerous. They can also be downright cantankerous. Over the years, some of my most frustrating moments have had to do with chainsaws. Yet, one slip up, one moment of carelessness while using a chainsaw could cost you your life or the use of a limb.
This blog post obviously can’t be a “complete guide to chainsaws,” but let’s take a few minutes to cover a few tips.
Have a knowledgeable person teach you how to use a chainsaw.
Handling a chainsaw, like keeping bees or handling a firearm, is something that cannot be learned in books or on the Internet alone. You need a coach and teacher. You really do! There are too many little things that can go wrong, which could cause you great physical or economic harm to be learning by trial and error. I’ll give just one example: an improperly adjusted chain can jump off the bar (blade) with little warning and cut your hand really badly.
If you only need a chainsaw for a few hours a year, hire someone to do it.
To safely, efficiently use a chainsaw requires much knowledge and practice. If you so much as make one wrong cut, it’s possible not only to hurt someone, but also to cause great (costly) damage to the saw. If you’re not going to use one a lot, just hire someone to do the job. You’ll probably save money and much frustration.
If you do purchase a chainsaw, get a good one.
Box stores sell fairly inexpensive chainsaws. They’re not worth it. A quality saw will do the job better and save you much time. If you aren’t confident in recognizing a quality saw versus a cheapo, drop in at a local small engine repair shop that works on and sells chainsaws. Chances are very good they will steer you right. Such a shop might even be able to arrange proper instruction before setting you loose with a chainsaw. Listen to them. If they fix’em, they’ll probably tell you the straight scoop on any given model of chainsaw.
So, what does my toothbrush have in common with my chainsaw?
I should loan each of them about as readily. Unless the person wanting to borrow your chainsaw assuredly knows as much or more than do you, don’t do it! I’ve been persuaded to loan a saw, a couple of times over the years. Each time that venture has cost me big money in parts, repairs, or replacement of a chainsaw. So, don’t loan your chainsaw unless you know that person knows a whole lot about chainsaws.