Chainsaw kickbacks are the reason behind most of the chainsaw injuries. These accidents are caused by not following the proper techniques while cutting with a chainsaw. These kickbacks can occur within a blink of an eye. Once you read this article, you will know the causes and prevention tips of kickbacks in a chainsaw. You will learn more about how to protect yourself while using a chainsaw.
Recommended Anti-kickback Chainsaws :
Causes For Chainsaw Kickback
Usually, three situations can cause a kickback. They are:-
- Chainsaw hits a hard object in the Kickback Zone
- In the middle of the cut, the wood pinches the chain.
- Other factors
1. The Kickback Zone
The very tip of a chainsaw is its kickback zone. It is the most common part that can cause a kickback. This area should never be used to cut a log because it causes the most kickbacks. The moment it will touch the log, the kickback reaction will occur. Even the best chainsaws have this issue.
2. The Wood Pinches The Chain
If the wood tightly closes around the chainsaw chain while you are cutting, it can cause a kickback. You should always plan a cut before you start cutting to reduce the chances of a kickback. A new user might want to make one cut through a tree branch. This can be dangerous. Making one cut directly through the tree branch can pinch the chain of the chainsaw. So, you should make two cuts instead of one.
Safest Ways To Cut:
1. When The Log is Supported on Both Ends
Follow these steps when your log is supported on both sides, and the middle section is exact for you to cut:-
- Through the top of the log, cut but about halfway through. Then you should stop because if you cut it through, the wood would pinch the saw.
- To meet the first cut, make an upward cut from the bottom of the log. This way, the wood will fall away from the blade.
2. When The Log Is Supported On One End
When the log is supported on one end, you will want to follow the following order:-
- Cut down through the bottom of the log but about halfway through. Then you should stop because if you cut it through, the wood would pinch the saw.
- To meet the first cut, cut up through the top of the log. This way, the wood will fall away from the blade.
Making two cuts is much safer than making one cut altogether with any normal home chainsaw. So, because of the downward pressure of the load, cut through the top of the wood. If from the bottom of the wood you don’t provide a relief cut, then the branch or log will snap off before you even get done with the top cut.
3. Other Factors
The two factors mentioned above are the most common factors that can cause a kickback. There are others as well, which can lead to a chainsaw kickback. Those are:-
- You are using a light chain.
- The chain is too loose.
- You have not installed the chain part properly.
- The chain part has been broken or bent.
- The cutting angles are not blunt enough.
- A chainsaw sharpener can be used to eliminate this problem.
- Excessive settings of the chain depth gauge.
- The rivets can be loose.
- You have not taken proper care of the blade.
One or more factors all together can cause a chainsaw kickback. You should keep your chainsaw correctly maintained. Check it thoroughly before using it every time. The kickbacks increase with the increase in the size of the guide bar’s nose. Long blades should be dealt with an extreme amount of carefulness.
There are some chains designed in a way that they don’t get a lot of kickbacks. Such chains are called anti-kickback or low-kickback chains.
These unique chains are operated by setting a restriction on wood fiber usage. The wood fiber that can be hooked to the top half of the bar ( kickback zone) as the working corner rounds.
There are also some anti-kick back blade saws that you can buy for angle grinder:
This are some of the best anti-kickback chains that you can buy:
To overcome this restriction, add additional metal to the tie straps that are between the cutting teeth. They have drive links with built-in bumpers to reduce the chances of kickbacks. Also, depth gauges that are ramped are present to avoid kickbacks. They redirect the fiber to some degree as the chain passes through the kickback region.
Tips To Reduce Chainsaw Kickback
The preventive precautions you can use to reduce the kickbacks are:-
- Educate yourself on how to use your chainsaw by reading its manual instructions. Every chainsaw works differently.
- Avoid using this tool when you are feeling exhausted.
- Before you start cutting, double-check the chain break of your chainsaw.
- The tip of the chainsaw is responsible for most of the kickbacks. You should never try cutting a log with its tip.
- You should be very attentive while removing the tree branches. The nose bar’s striking something can cause kickbacks.
- Use the machine below your shoulder height. This provides you with more control over the machine.
- Make cuts using the bottom side of the bar. You should never cut the top of the bar.
- You must always know how the chainsaw bar’s nose is positioned.
- You can use a low-kickback chain as well.
- Always wear the following protective equipment while using a chainsaw:-
- Protective eyewear
- Chainsaw chaps or pants
- Chainsaw gloves
- A hard hat ( get the one with a face shield, and you won’t have to wear eyeglasses)
- Earmuffs or earplugs
- Heavy work boots
- Tightly wrap your fingers around the chainsaw handles. Having a half-grip won’t give you much control.
- Follow the maintenance instructions you get with your chainsaw.
- You should run the saw at its highest speed while cutting.
- You should have a firm footing before you turning your device on.
- Never stand directly behind the saw, stand on one side of it.
The chainsaw kickbacks can happen at any time. It is the most common type of injury that people encounter while using a chainsaw. So, you should play it safe and keep all the mentioned precautions in mind while using a chainsaw. You should follow all the proper cutting techniques to prevent a kickback. Also, wear all the protective equipment while performing even the smallest task with the saw. Happy sawing!!