The small chainsaw – sized right for many jobs
Bigger is better right, well sorta but what guy doesn’t have a Tim the Tool Man Taylor prejudice to some extent? After-all, we buy tools for CAPABILITY not cuteness.
Now when it comes to chainsaws you can get some pretty big and really nice saws. I’ve got a couple of bigger chainsaws, but a few years ago some friends were packing up and moving to the west coast to retire and were selling most of their kit. Among the stuff on offer was a 12″ Homelite chainsaw, an LX-30 Bandit – it was the smallest gas chainsaw the wife could find when her husband insisted on getting a saw after the Ice Storm. It was rather telling that she didn’t get the appropriate protective gear including a really good set of chaps since a 12″ saw is still plenty powerful to cut your leg off, nor did she get a saw with a chain brake. .In all fairness the chain brake probably isn’t all that necessary on a saw this light – especially since it is furnished with a low profile – low kickback chain.
It hadn’t been abused – or really even seen much use – and I was able to pick it up for a good price once I assured them that I wouldn’t become an accident statistic due to them selling me the saw. Part of the good price was because I didn’t particularly think I would use a saw that small while they didn’t want to give the saw to anyone that might then behave irresponsibly with it.
If I’d know then just how much I would end up using the small chainsaw I might have been willing to pay more.
This saw is at the front of the line of all of my chainsaws and is used maybe 90% of the time I reach for a saw partially because it is so easy to use such a light saw and partly because it sees so much use I am pretty sure it is gassed and oiled.
Now, granted if I am going to be dropping trees I am going to be reaching for a bigger saw. But that is more the exception than the rule. Most of the trees I have dropped recently have been at my brother’s place or at the cottage not at my home. I do end up bucking up a lot of wood that folks have tossed to the curb – everything from six to eight inch diameter trunk sections to loads of smaller branches and limbs. All of which are quickly cut to length for drying and then use in the wood fired pizza oven.
The saw also gets employed a fair amount as a cordless circular saw for rough carpentry work, for some things it is much more suited to the task – like cutting 6x6s but for others it is often simply more convenient to grab the saw and the chaps than it is to fetch the circular saw and then get the extension cords.
I wouldn’t want to have this as my only chainsaw – when the job calls for it there is really limited alternatives to power and bar length – but added to the set of tools available it stands our wonderfully. So if the opportunity comes along for you to add one to you tool collection consider picking one up, for most folks I imagine that it will become a valuable addition to your tool mix.