Using a hand saw for cutting tree trunks can prove to be quite a daunting job. Yes, a chainsaw will help you to do the job easily, but there are reasons why you need a hand saw.
A hand saw is useful to cut down small or medium-sized tree. It’s also lightweight and handy compared to chainsaw. Furthermore chainsaws are noisy and you could startle your neighbors in the process.
A tree trunk is the stem of a tree, where branches grow from it. To cut it with a hand saw, first make sure the saw blade is sharp so that you don’t have to put much pressure when sawing.
Before starting to cut down the trunk, you need to cut down the branches first to make way for easy maneuver around it. You can also use electric saw to cut tree branches.
Then it’s time to cut the tree trunk itself. First cut a triangular wedge on the side the tree is leaning to, about 40% of the diameter. Then cut horizontally on the other side, just a few inches above the other cut. Then down goes the tree.
Best Hand Saw for Cutting Tree Trunks 2020
What is a Hand Saw and How to Use It?
A hand saw is a saw normally worked with only one hand, and it is not assisted by electrical power. To start using the saw, first make a mark on the wood where you want to cut it. Then put the close edge of the saw on the mark and pull it towards you to create a notch. Afterwards, just continue until you finish the cutting.
What is Bow Saw and Why Use It
A bow saw is a hand saw with the frame looks like a bow. Normally the frame is made of tubular steel for better control during cutting. Due to its bow design, with narrow blade, it is perfect for cutting tree trunks. Also the best tool for cutting tree branches.
Hand Saw vs Bow Saw
|Not using electric power||Bow saw has a bow–like frame|
|Very sharp blade||Bow saw has tubular steel frame|
|Inexpensive||Bow saw has narrow blade|
|Lightweight||Hand saw has no frame|
|Handy and easy to use||Hand saw has handle and wide blade|
We will produce a buying guide to pick out the best hand saw for cutting tree trunks. But first, have a look at the top 5 hand saws that we carefully selected based on design, functionality, quality, safety and value for money.
Top 5 Hand Saw for Cutting Tree Trunks Reviews
You can just pick up a hand saw from a hardware store or search in various e-commerce sites. You’d be spoilt for choice for sure. There are hundreds or even thousands to choose from!
Search no further, here are the top 5 hand saw for cutting tree trunks, meticulously hand-picked by experts.
1. Bahco Ergo Bow Saw
Our first product is a huge hand saw and it is tough as well – perfect for use at the backyards as well as at camping sites. This is one of the best bow saw for cutting trees.
The design is such that it has a pointed nose for great access to narrow spots such as the roof.
Despite its big size, this bow saw is surprisingly light. It is made from durable high-quality and lightweight steel.
Orange enamel paint covers the whole frame to prevent it from rusting.
The manufacturers design ergonomic handle so that you can saw easily and securely. There’s a knuckle protector for better safety as well.
Users don’t have to worry about the blade’s durability because it can handle very high tensioning force through an innovative mechanism.
- This is a multi-purpose hand saw, great for cutting all types of trees
- Very durable because the blade is made of tempered steel
- The blade cover is easy to take off or put back into position
- Various blade options like pegged tooth for dry wood or raker tooth for green wood
- The tensioning screw might give way after a very long usage
2. Bahco All-purpose Bow Saw
This is another variation of Bahco bow saw. It has sturdy steel frame which holds very sharp steel blades.
Design-wise, you can’t really make the difference from our first product above, only that it is bigger. That’s why it is considered one of the best hand saw for cutting logs.
Despite its big size, this bow saw is not that heavy.
Orange enamel paint covers the whole frame to prevent it from rusting.
The manufacturers design ergonomic handle so that you can cut down trees easily and securely. There’s a knuckle protector for better safety as well.
The blade is as sharp and strong as a Swiss Army knife and need no re-sharpening throughout its entire life.
- As the name suggests, it is an all-purpose great for backyard usage as well as at camp sites
- Very long blade to cut bigger trees
- Simple but strong design
- Great value for money
- Some might need time to get used to man oeuvre it due to its size
3. Irwin Combi-Saw with Wood Cutting/Hacksaw Blades
This bow saw has rigid and compact frame, therefore offers stable and quick sawing. You can either cut wood or metal with 2 choices of blade – wood cutting or hacksaw.
Compact design makes it easy to handle and store.
Although quite small in size, this bow saw is capable of regular cutting – perfect for all-round gardening as well as for camping.
It is equipped with safety features like a knuckle guard and anti-slip handle.
Both wood cutting and hacksaw blades are attached at the same position.
- Value for money since it costs just a little more than a regular blade
- Dual-function blade attached to the frame at the same time
- Tight and stiff blade that doesn’t flex or twist while sawing
- Quick and easy to replace blade
4. Truper Handy Bow Saw
Perfect hand saw for a DIYer – you don’t have to be like MacGyver, but to do work at the back yard, this bow saw is handy.
Suitable for medium-sized tree trunks and branches.
When you saw, the blade stays rigid and tight with the cam lever tension system.
Made of durable material and if it is cleaned and oiled after every use, it can last for many years.
Equipped with finger guard and non-slip handle as a safety feature.
The blade is so sharp that it can easily and quickly cut wood like a hot knife through butter.
- Very handy to use for many purposes
- Cuts down tree trunks with ease
- Cam lever system for blade rigidity
- Safe blade replacement with locking system
- Wing nut can fall off while sawing
- Take longer time to cut bigger trees due to its short blade
5. Fiskars Budget Bow Saw
This bow saw is our cheapest pick, but it does not lack features that a regular hand saw should have.
It’s not designed to cut big tree trunks, but it’s handy for cutting branches and clearing bushes.
The blade is made of very hard steel and maintain its sharpness after many hard use. Furthermore, it is coated with rust-resisting material.
The blade is also equipped with tension lever to control the cutting process.
The frame consists of tubular steel, making it lightweight and therefore easy to grip and carry around.
- Lightweight and easy to use.
- Safety tension lever for better sawing control
- Blade is coated with rust inhibitor
- It carries a lifetime warranty
- It looks flimsy
- The rivets are not strong enough
Buying Guide: Why You Need a Hand Saw and What Factors to Look For
After looking at all these carefully selected top hand saws, you still have to make that choice! What is your purpose of having the hand saw and what factors you need to look for before you buy? Here is a comprehensive guide to select a perfect hand saw.
Why You Need a Hand Saw
Most tools today come with power for easy, fast and efficient work. However, sometimes you have to go back to basics – the old school way of doing things. In this case you don’t need a chainsaw but a hand saw because of the following reasons.
You don’t need bulky power chainsaw to cut trees at limited space around your house. Even when you go camping, a handy saw would be sufficient to clear some bushes or tree branches.
Obviously hand saw is a lot cheaper than power chainsaw. Moreover, the cost to operate power chainsaw is significantly higher since you need fuel or electricity.
Furthermore, it costs money to maintain power tools, compared to almost maintenance-free hand saw.
Electricity supply is limited to areas around the house or other static power points. Off course there are batteries, but they won’t last that long.
With hand saw you don’t have to worry about that at all. You can manage to do work anywhere and anytime you wish. Furthermore, you save money on electricity bill!
Safer to Operate
No need to worry too much about chainsaw mishaps or accidental power on. With hand saw, the most you can get is saw slips. After all, almost all hand saw has knuckle protector and anti-slip handle built in.
Easy to Store
Easy to carry around and store because it is compact. It will hang nicely on your store wall, barely taking a space. Also easy to carry around at a camping site or chuck it in your car trunk.
Factors to Look For in a Hand Saw
Take a thorough look at the following factors and features that best suit each individual’s requirement and satisfaction.
This is one of the most important factors to look at. Good design not only what appears to the eyes, but more importantly on the ergonomics.
A hand saw with excellent ergonomic design means that it is comfortable to use. It will not strain your hand muscles. The handle should feel nice and firm, covered with non-slip material. In this way you can work longer than expected.
Saw Blade/Tooth Quality
Blade quality is utmost important because it is the blade that actually do most of the work. The quality of a saw almost entirely depends on the blade, whilst other factors are secondary.
A sharp and firm blade cuts through wood easily and make the job done fast. If the blade is flimsy and too light, you will tire quickly. However, a super heavy blade will cause you to get tired quickly as well due to the whole weight of the hand saw.
A perfect blade is made of hardened steel, so that it is lightweight but sharp and sturdy. In many cases you don’t have to sharpen it after regular use.
It depends on what purpose you want to use the hand saw for. If you want to cut tree trunks or large branches, then you need a longer blade from one edge to another like a 30 inches blade or more. A shorter blade would be fine for pruning trees and other maintenance work.
Teeth Per Inch
Bigger teeth are meant to cut softer wood and smaller teeth for harder wood or materials. Bigger teeth will cut faster but it also remove more wood when it cuts through.
So if you want finer cut, then smaller teeth will do the trick.
Adjustable Blade Tension
Some hand saw come with tension adjuster. Depending on what kind of wood you want to cut, you can always adjust the tension screw.
Some people believe that blade has to be set at the highest tension to do the best job. However, that is not the case since certain sawing requires less pressure on the blade.
Having said that, it doesn’t mean that a hand saw without tension adjuster is not good. It can be made with optimized blade tension for maximum effectiveness. You can always replace the blade when it is no longer working like it used to.
Great Safety Features
No doubt sawing is a dangerous work. We are dealing with super sharp tool with a powerful force. Using hand saw has its own weakness and danger.
You’re using pure muscle strength to power the saw. You can easily slip the saw due to tiredness and stiffness on the hand and get injured.
Look for hand saw with excellent grip and feel on the handle. The ones with non-slip feature is better.
It must also come with knuckle guard to protect your knuckles and hand in case you slip the saw.
Another important safety feature is that the saw must have protective blade cover. This makes it safe to carry around. Also whilst on storage, the protective cover will ensure no one gets unexpected minor cuts whilst searching for tools, especially in the dark.
Easy to Change Blade
No matter how strong or hard a blade can be, after so many usage most will wear out eventually. When it’s time to change the blade you will need it to be easy and trouble-free. No one wants the process to involve any complex operation or some technical stuff. It should be a simple detach and reattach procedure so that you can get back to work with the saw quickly.
You may not need to consider all of above factors. If you think the ergonomic design is good enough to cut tree trunks, then just go for it.
Let the millennials put their face in the phone, and swipe the screens. The real life is in and around the house, where you can eat, sleep and play. The lawn and backyards are the best place to play, but you also need to maintain them. Apart from basic tools like a screw driver, plier, hammer, spade and the hoe, a hand saw would be handy to cut down tree trunks and branches. Otherwise, if you’re too weak or lazy you might want to look for best electric saw for cutting trees, less the fun!
Best Brands of Hand Saw for Cutting Tree Trunks
Here are some best brand of hand saw for cutting tree trunks. If you know these brands, you can make your decision easily that which one is perfect for you.
Bahco started its origin in Sweden back in the nineteenth century. It produces all sorts of hand tools totalling more than 7000 different tools, including hand saws. Along the way the company came up with one innovation after another.
After a few mergers and acquisitions, the company is now under the wing of a parent company SNA Europe. However Bahco retain its name and produce the group’s premium brands with a strong 2,500 workforce.
Truper started off as a small local workshop producing basic hardware such as sledge hammer, axes and clamps. It has been 50 years since and Truper now is a major player in the hardware industry.
It has more than 5000 items in the product list ranging from all kinds of tools in every division of the hardware sector. The tools are made from quality steel and other materials to make them durable and suitable for hard use. The build quality is not compromised through continuous work with concentration on R&D development.
Irwin is a famous American tool manufacturer. It was founded more than 100 years ago and now is a major producer of wide range of construction tools. It was recently acquired by Stanley Black & Decker.
The company’s signature product is Vise-Grip locking pliers, but it also produces high quality hand saws. By moving production to China, it makes its hand saw so much competitive in price, without compromising the quality.
Hand Saw for Cutting Tree Trunks FAQs
If you still have any question regarding the hand saw, feel free to check these common questions with answers. Hope you will get solution of your query.
Q1: Can I cut all kind of wood using any kind of hand saw?
A: Not really. There are hand saws purposely designed to cut different types of wood or even steel, although multi-purpose saws are able to do most jobs.
Q2: Why do blades come in different length?
A: To make it able to cut wood and tree trunks of different sizes. Obviously bigger trees require longer blades.
Q3: Two hand saws can look exactly the same, but how come the price can be so far apart?
A: If you want to buy a Toyota, you pay for the Toyota price. But if you want to buy a Mercedes, then you pay for the Mercedes price!
Similarly, in general, a higher quality saw is pricier.
Q4: Should I cut off dead branches from the trees?
A: Yes. This is called pruning the trees, and it should be done regularly. By pruning, you are able to restrict the tree growth if necessary, and it makes the tree looks tidier.
Q5: What’s the best saw to cut tree branches?
A: There is a dedicated pruning blade to perfectly do the job. However, any reciprocating blade will be as great.
Q6: How much does it cost to cut down a tree?
A: On average it costs from $150 to $1,500 depending on a few factors such as the size and location. If you want to remove or grind the stump, it will bear additional costs, again depending on specific factors.
Q7: Is winter the cheapest time to cut down trees?
A: Not necessarily, because the cost of cutting down trees depends on so many different factors. It much affected by the size of trees, the location as well as the specific purpose, among others.
Q8: Do you require a permit to cut down any tree?
A: Yes, a permit is required to be obtained from city council or counties, even though the tree is in your own backyard. Normally you must pay a small fee to get such permission.
Q9: Do you need to trim trees, and if yes, how often?
A: Yes, it’s necessary to trim trees as you can control the growth to suit your needs. Depending on the size and type of trees, you must trim trees once a year or at longer intervals. Some trees need to be trimmed once in 6 or 7 years.
Q10: How do you cut tree trunk?
A: Keep in mind that when cutting down a tree, it will go down without proper warning due to gravity. So, be prepared for the direction of the tree falling down.
With all the factors and considerations discussed above, if there is a single hand saw to be picked up it would be the Bahco Ergo Bow Saw.
This is the best hand saw because of its multi-purpose function, ergonomic design, big size, sharp and firm blade, and it has a look with a purpose.
However, you can have all the time to do your own homework and choose the perfect hand saw to cut tree trunks of your own.
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