Folding saw versus manual survival chain saw

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Nah, I was just playing with the saws and making videos. Take whatever is useful info for you, extrapolate to other situations and ignore what is not useful.

I cut wood of different diameters too. Now I know what the saws are capable of. It is called learning.

I know some people have become know-it-alls without going through that process but I prefer to go through the process.
 
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I carry a pocket chainsaw at times , others a folding okapi pruning saw
been doing it for a little over 10 years as far as i can work out at the moment .
I still carry the pocket chainsaw ... it has its place , and for me cannot be tossed aside .. its too dam handy .
It DOES take getting used to , I will not argue that , since it has the most wood in contact with the blade at the start of the cut , it takes getting used to letting it do the work and taking it steady , where with a regular saw , there is only a tiny amount of wood in contact with the blade at the start , the chain can be bloody hard work if youre going to put the same pressure on it as you would a regular saw starting the cut ..

to make a choice to take one and leave the other .. very situational ... if the stuff you need it for is milled timber with squared edges , or small soft green wood , go the pruning saw , its good for that .. if youre doing general bush work , cutting a couple staffs or poles , moving a downed branch off a trail ettc, its as hard with a hain as a folding saw , in my experience , the decider would be space and weight restrictions .. usualy I take both tho .

having typed all that ... I rarely use a saw in the bush at all nowdays , I use my izula waaaayy more than any of the bigger blades or a saw .. I am just lazy and work around problems with minimum of effort nowdays rather than muscle thru like I used to .
 

jeepin

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I just ordered a Bahco Laplander folding saw from ebay.

It should be here in about 3 or 4 days. I am freaking excited:cool:
 
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I own both and as the previous posters said, I prefer the folding saw. In the event of having to prun a branch from a tree above ground level, you can always brace yourself with one hand/arm and use the saw with the other. And you can't do that with a pocket chainsaw because you need both hands. The prepared-for-the-worst crowd would say that if you happen to loose an arm/hand, you could alway use the folding saw... XD XD.

Mikel
 
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OK this thread niggled at me ..

The wire saw mentions in it anyway .

I bought a couple bulk lots over the last 10 years or so , I do that , buy a bulk lot of saws , emergency blankets , first aid kits ( a whole kit of quality the same as my pharmacist sells , but for $2 a kit instead of each item in it being $5 or more .. bargin ) put together a bunch of basic survival / emergency kits and either give them to friends or hock them for spending money online :) hey , I have a habbit to support , I dont buy knives and gear with money that should be going to feeding the kids or keeping the mrs happy , I make that myself doing fun stuff I enjoy :) ( note , work is not fun nor do I enjoy it , work is a 4 letter word that ends in "k" and should NEVER be used in polite company )

Anyway , I read a linked review where they trashed a wire saw that looked just like the ones I bought and handed out .. that worried me big time .. Id hate to have been handing out bad gear , I dont care if I pay cheap for it , its still got to be good .. now I remembered using a couple saws to test them out and see if they were any better than the twisted steel strip ones I had bad bad bad memories of as a kid .. I found it to be a serviceable little saw , and had no hesitation to hand them out .

I got one of the few remaining ones out today to have a play with again after reading the review linked ... and you know what ? I reckon I can duplicate their problems , really easy . Just takes muscle . seeing a problem and forcing the saw with more muscle rather than rectifying or working around the problem .

I am used to treating a wire saw like a wire saw .. sawing with it using a gentle pressure , not expecting it to perform as a rigid bladed saw would , or to take the force applied to it as a hand chainsaw would . I dont think the guys doing the review did that ...

I pruned up my apple tree with my little wire saw .. cutting branches about as thick as my wrist at most . No problem .. cutting stuff that was about the size Id actually expect to cut to make poles for a shelter , it was a breeze . the thicker branches , I did have to pull the wire out to clear the sawdust out of the cut or it would start to jam up the saw .

I guess the thing to remember is , its a wire saw , light duty tool , designed to be carried in an emergency / survival kit , and used when you have run out of other options .its not a heavy duty saw and its going to suck if you try to use it like one .. it does require a different action to use it than a regular saw , it does require different amount of pressure as well or itll jam , and its not as energy efficient as a pruning saw either ... it does take slightly more effort to use .

what it also does do that a pruning saw or a hand chain saw doesnt do .. is fit into a tiny space and can be carried in an altoids size tin , along with a mini knife , pencil , paper , pain killers and other essential items for any emergency you may be preparing to encounter . .. and when you have to use it , itll do what its designed to , and do it well , with the qualifier of course , that the guy using it has 1/2 a clue what they are doing ...

I guess that like with all gear .. if you have never used it when times are good and there is no stress because of < insert emergency situation here > you are in for one very steep learning curve if you have to use it when the poop has hit the fan ..

I personally found that using the provided keyrings only as handles , a light pressure on the actual saw and sawing it at about a less than 45 degree angle , I got really good results for little effort .. tho granted it DID take slightly longer than my regular pruning saw , and the sawing action I am not familiar with .. Ill probably be feeling a little stiff in muscles I dont usually use tomorrow , I wont be using it as my tool of preference but i WILL be getting more of them and will still be feeling happy handing them out and hocking them off with confidence .

I do think tho , that like with any piece of gear , its cool to carry it just in case , but its even better of you take the time to learn to use it , so you are aware of what your gear can , and cannot do ..

My wire saw will cut wood , my ferro rod will start fires , my psk knife I made can and has been used to skin clean and part out game , and I have learned as a result of a troubled youth how to sleep fairly comfortably on bare concrete ...
I carry my saw and ferro rod and what I have learned for when I need to fall back on them because I havent got other options any more . they give me a hell of a headstart compared to having nothing .

If I tried to compare my wire saw with a rigid bladed saw and or hand chainsaw .. itd be like comparing sleeping on bare ground to different bedding systems , starting a fire with a ferro rod to differnt brands of camping stove , comparing m psk knife to a regular knife or a machete etc .. not really applicable or fair , but each tool and skill definitely has its place , and probably should be practised with .. tho I pass when I can on sleeping rough nowdays :p

anyway .. after all that , wire saws are not *all* bad .. but they are not as good as regular saws either .. a large part of how well they perform depends on how they are used . .

Im curious tho , at what point in a emergency / survival situation does one decide " ok , this is serious sheet , we are stuck ,no help coming for a while if at all , .. its time to begin using our gear like we stole it " ? every time its looked like things were going to be getting difficult for us , Ive always treated my gear with that much more respect simply because I was now even more reliant on it that before ...
 
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A wire saw, manual chainsaw is difficult to or cannot be sharpened, depending on the model. Also, if it breaks either in the handle or at any part in the length of the wire/chain, you're screwed.

A folding saw can be sharpened (it will take a long time, but it can). If you break a folding saw either at the joint of the handle, the length of the saw blade, or the handle, you can still function with some length of saw.

Just my $0.02...
 
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Myal

Thanks for the advice. I did try lighter pressure in the past and changed the angle but I did not clear out the sawdust from the cut or from the saw.

I wrote the wiresaw off as useless for me but based on your post I will give it another try and test where the limits lie i.t.o thickness of wood etc. I really want it to work so I will figure out its applications and limits.

I actually did some more chopping and sawing today and for the first time ever the SaberCut saw also bound. I am not 100% certain but I do not think it is the thickest wood I had ever cut with it. I tried lighter pressure and a shallower angle but nothing made a difference. As soon as I put it back in the cut it bound immediately. I did not clear out any sawdust, thinking it would have dropped out of the vertical plane and also that this saw design is supposed to extract the sawdust.

But like the wire-saw, I will experiment with it to find out where its limits lie and try different technique etc. The webbing handles do fray though where it connects to the sharp metal bracket so a better solution is definitely required.


SaberCut Saw (Close-up)

[video=youtube_share;2JXLExr1uo8]http://youtu.be/2JXLExr1uo8[/video]



Kershaw Folding Saw (Close-up)

The top-down view did not show the depth of cut clearly so I sawed a notch just for illustrative purposes.

[video=youtube;5kF9_2Q4qZQ]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5kF9_2Q4qZQ[/video]


A folding saw can be sharpened (it will take a long time, but it can).

I know nothing about sharpening saws or about the method in the video below but I remembered seeing this before, so for your consideration:

[video=youtube;3o9ZjtlBOUM]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3o9ZjtlBOUM[/video]
 
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any well made folding saw with proper teeth and a decent tpi, I am happy.

Let the saw do the work, using the chains are fine but they will suck your calories fast...
 
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try rotating your cut too , it helps , as you get close to the middle of your branch , the work surface gets bigger , turn the wood a 1/4 turn or move around it a bit , and now the surface you are cutting is suddenly way smaller again and the going is easy again .

if you are stuck with using it , and need poles for shelter or for a fire tripod whatever .. green wood cuts waaay easier than seasoned dry wood .. a bit of pressure to open the cut up as you go ( if you have an offsider who can lean on your tree for example ) makes it easier still .

Itll always be what you reach for after you no longer have other options , but to me its kinda that much more important to know how to use it then ..or its wasted space having it along at all .

Im never going to argue that a wire saw will replace a folding saw , but where my kids pinch my folding saw out of my truck , they never bother with the wire saw in the glovebox .. sometimes a less than ideal tool beats no tool at all . It is the saw you go to when you have no other . Mainly it is that because it is able to pack down into a tiny space compared to other saws and if you have them , you poke them in places like survival kits , glove boxes , car tool kits etc and forget them .

thanks for posting your vids too :)
 
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Mainly it is that because it is able to pack down into a tiny space compared to other saws and if you have them , you poke them in places like survival kits , glove boxes , car tool kits etc and forget them.

see, thats the other main thing to be looking at. A folder and that hand chainsaw is a light combo, but still adequate for processing fire wood.

Dammit, now I need to go buy another one...:grumpy:
 
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I like folding saws. They allow for joinery--which comes in handy--when I get the desire to build stuff around camp. I've used a Gerber for years. Eventually I'll graduate up to a Silky.
 
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my cheap Fiskars saw weighs 3.5 oz (it's actually a sliding saw, but about the same size as most folders) and I've cut lots of rounds in the 6-ish" range, when building a long fire I like to use larger diameter stuff- @ freezing and below temps I'm still waking up about hourly and having to add log(s), smaller and it would be even more often

I can't imagine any wire/chain saw keeping up w/ a handsaw

cuttingrounds.jpg


bailwire.jpg
 
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Why on earth would you need to be cutting 'rounds' off of 6"+ diameter logs in either a camping trip or a survival situation?

Are you constructing a log cabin for your shelter? Are you building a replica of the Mayflower for your raft? Are you warming yourself with a 30 ft high bonfire?

If that be the case, then you should preferably be packing in a motorized chainsaw, or at the least the largest bow-saw you can find. A few collapsible saw horses wouldn't hurt either.

OK, 2 things Mr. Trooper. 1st, why the dick response? 2nd, I completely disagree with your critique of his using large logs.

I myself prefer folding saws. I own a Silky saw and it has performed amazing. Regardless of my personal preferences, I appreciate input from other users (l2lku2) who have tried other things and then share with the group. Also, there have been tons of times when I've used 6'' logs or larger. Growing up the Pacific Northwest it rains...A LOT. The inside wood is the most dry. Cutting the larger rounds with a saw (folding or chain) and then splitting the rounds via batonning with a large fixed blade gives you excellent firewood that burns much better than smaller diameter rounds branches. The sharp angles from the splitting help to wood to burn much stonger and help you establish a strong bed of coals more quickly. Just my 2 cents.
 
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My wife wanted to know why I was messing around with different types of saws so I told her about this thread .

She watched me a while then offered her insight

the " floppy" saws are not going to get any good reviews because they require 2 hands and an unfamilar action to use itll tire the muscles real fast because they are not used to that kind of work

the pruning saw tho ... in her opinion any guy who has at least reached teenage years will be VERY practiced in the motion required to use that , itll naturally be less tiring , those muscles are used to that kind of work .

I was looking at stuff like width of cut , amount of wood in contact with the saw etc .. I think her insight is kinda valid too tho .
 
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I finally got a chance to try the manual chainsaw, and while it DOES definitely work, as others have said even after you get used to the action, I find it to be MORE work than just using a quality folding saw like my Silky. These "survival chainsaws" seem like a good thing to have if you were in a situation where you might need to cut one or two very large diameter trees or branches where a folding saw would be limited. It'd take forever to get through them, and you'd expend a LOT of calories doing it, but if you want a small 5oz package for a survival kit that can (eventually) cut through a very large diameter piece of wood, I guess that what these manual chainsaws are good for.

For my ordinary backpacking and camping, and I think even for my go-bag, I'm going to stick with a folding saw. Easier to use, can be used one handed, more efficient cutting on the size of the pieces I'm typically cutting with it, easier to clean, easier to maintain and put away. Pretty much the ONLY reason to get the chainsaws as I see it, is if you wanted a very lightweight small package for a survival kit. But if you want good cutting performance, there are better options.
 
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hard for me to even buy the weight argument, my Fiskars weighs only 3.5 oz; compact- I can buy that if your truly limited on volume, personally I'd just make room :)
 
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My understanding is that there are pretty big differences in the quality of the pocket chain saws. The wire saws same deal, some are junk some are OK but never will cut like a good folding saw. I have heard good reports on the wire saws that veterinarians use, and the vet saws are pretty cheap. The chain saw or the wire saw I would only even consider for a small PSK.

For a good folder these Craftsman folding utility saws have served me very well. $20 and when it gets dull I take it back to Sears. It takes a long time to get dull though and cuts like a demon.
4344459730_cb68f911ec_z.jpg
 

nipsip

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Only one brand of folding saw to ever consider and that's a Silky. More expensive but worth every penny. I always bring along my Bigboy with XL teeth. Goes thru 4" wood like butter. The other day the top of a tree fell and I took the Silky out and made fast work of that tree. Pretty amazing how fast it works. I was cutting 6"+ and it was fairly easy.
http://www.bushcraftliving.com/reviews/40-cutting-tools/146-silky-bigboy-folding-saw
 
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