Wednesday, August 5, 2009

How To Properly Prep A Log For The Fireplace

By Evan Mitz

The chainsaw is designed for heavy-duty cutting and one of its main roles is to provide the household with firewood. Some people may still go old school and go for the mighty axe. But if you do not have the strength to bring down a timber (or really just don't know how), then the chainsaw may be your best alternative.

It may sound easy, as all you have to do is cut the log around the base and watch as the tree goes down. But using chainsaw to cut a log for firewood may be a tricky job. Quite tricky, so to speak, that you need some basic cutting details before you head to the nearest woodland and bring down an oak or a maple tree.

The first thing you need to do is create a notch on the tree's side. It should be located at the side where you want the tree to fell towards. It should be a V-shaped notch. After you have the notch, drive your saw horizontally from the opposite side. This ensures that the tree won't fall on you and leave you exposed to serious injuries.

Once you fell down the timber, your next task is to clear it of limbs and branches. Start with those nearest the base of the log. After you cut off the limbs, make sure you clear off the underway with any debris before moving to the next one. Remember to drive your chainsaw in a down ward motion so as not to bind the ,limbs with the chainsaw bar.

If you are finished clearing the timber of the limbs, the next thing you have to do is cut the log to into firewood-sized lengths, 12 to 16 inches. You might need some sort of support if you are cutting a big log. If you cant, just cut halfway and roll the log over and finish it from the opposite side.

After cutting the log in firewood lengths, splitting them into firewood rounds should be the next in the list. In this task, the chainsaw is no longer necessary or recommended. You'll be needing an axe or a splitting maul on this one coupled with brute strength. Just place the chopped log in the cutting block and swat away with abandon.

If you are still new to this kind of work, it might take some time before you can master the art of cleaving firewood. Cutting a piece of log is not an easy task. But with time and experience, you might just enjoy the whole activity. Just remember to carefully pick your wood.

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