How to Choose an Electric Saw For Wood
Today on sale you can see a large selection of chain saws, but not every model can satisfy all your needs. At the same time, chain saws can be not only electric, but also gasoline. But, in this article we will consider the choice of a light electric saw for a summer residence.
The purpose of the article is a story about how to choose the right chain saw, taking into account its main technical parameters. Tips for choosing this tool are given with the expectation that the selected saw on the tree will serve you for a long time and be just for your needs.
Device and principle of operation
A chain saw consists of an engine, a housing, a guide rail for installing a chain, a chain with cutting edges, an oil pump and an oil storage tank. Besides, located on the body: power button, lock button, safety shield and handle. In more modern models, a handle can be located on the body to control the chain tension.
After turning on, the motor through the sprocket and gear creates a rotation of the chain, which cuts the tree. The width of the chain with cutting edges is slightly larger than the width of the stationary tire, therefore, during sawing, the tire does not jam in the wood.
Using a small drive, the oil pump pumps oil from the tank towards the cutting edge of the chain. Along the guide, the oil is metered into the chain, lubricating it evenly during operation.
Naturally, the quality of the tool will significantly depend on the choice of the manufacturer. To date, the most popular brands are:
These companies keep the brand without compromising the quality of their products. Together with them, many other brands appeared, the products of which also meets international standards. At the same time, the price of equipment can be significantly less. These are manufacturers such as Interskol, Zenit, Efco, Forte, etc. Therefore, there is plenty to choose from.
But choosing, you need to pay attention that, as a rule, these inexpensive tools with these same characteristics have a number of small, but still disadvantages:
- Unpleasant to the touch or slippery plastic;
- Large mass;
- Service maintenance;
- General ergonomics.
Therefore, when you have plans to use the power saw often and for a long time, then make a choice in favor of well-known companies.
Power must be selected taking into account the future task. For example, when many hours of constant sawing of a thick beam are assumed, then power needed higher, than, for example, when filing ordinary trees in the country.
In this case, pay your attention to electric saws with a power of 3-4.5 kW.
Professional electric saws, which are used for industrial purposes, have the greatest power.
For periodic operation in the country, the usual model may well suit you with a capacity of approximately 1.2-2.5 kW.
In our electric networks, especially at the dachas, voltage often drops. The engine tries to compensate for this drop by increasing the current strength. And this significantly affects the resource of his “life”. Therefore, we advise you to select power not end-to-end, but with a certain margin or use a voltage stabilizer.
The electric saw motor may be structurally longitudinal or transverse to the housing.
The transverse location is more suitable for conventional vertical cutting. For example, for cutting logs or boards at right angles from bottom to top. Some versions of these saws have poor balance, so working with them in other positions is rather inconvenient, for example, sawing branches at an angle above your head.
Devices with a longitudinal arrangement of the motor have a higher cost, but the ease of use makes them very popular. These saws are perfectly balanced due to the features of their design, which allows you to comfortably saw at various angles in any planes.
Therefore, when the main task of an electric saw is sawing up building materials or firewood, then why pay more for the longitudinal arrangement of the motor?
The size of the working tire where the chain is mounted is different, it depends on the purpose. The tire size indicates which bar diameter can be sawed in a passage. If the task is to cut rather thick logs, then you need to choose a longer tire size. If only seasonal work is planned in the country. Sawing firewood and trimming trees, then a smaller size is enough. The optimal choice for gardening and cottages is a tire with a length of 35-45 cm.
During the contact of the working part of the electric saw, especially its “sock” with a hard surface or in some other cases, a back strike may occur, in which there is a sharp drop of the chain towards the head. To protect against kickback install chain brake for electric saw.
Such a lever, in the form of a protective shield, is located in front of the handle. In the event of a reverse impact, the operator involuntarily strikes such a shield with his left hand, and this leads to a stop of the chain rotation. As a rule, this value is 0.1 sec.
Engine Overheat Protection
This protection is completely not on all chain saws. Pay attention to this when choosing, since protecting the motor from overheating will be a rather useful addition. This is a thermal relay that monitors an increase in motor temperature. When the maximum temperature is reached, the relay turns off the power. In some situations, a thermal relay can literally save the saw from failure. For example, an oil tank has run out of oil. The engine runs for wear, as the chain is not lubricated, heats up and burns out.
Power On Lock Button
She is your guarantee of safety during the work with the electric saw. If it is absent, the operator, picking up the equipment in his hands, can involuntarily press the lever for turning on the saw. It is not worth explaining what serious consequences this could lead to.
If during the selection you liked some model, but without the lock function, then it is advisable to abandon it. It’s just that products of all popular manufacturers certainly have such a lock. Accordingly, you are faced with a fake or low-quality model.
Brake and soft start motor
The moment of turning on the electric saw is the most dangerous, because at the moment the highest inrush current passes through the motor winding. This effect significantly reduces the life of the motor. On some models, to protect them from abrupt inclusion, there is a system that provides a smooth increase in the starting current. Thus, the engine is gradually gaining speed. Smooth start-up also provides high operator safety.
Inertia brake necessary for almost instantly stopping chain rotation after turning off the electrical power.
Powerful electric saws, of course, have a large mass. Here is a direct relationship. We need a powerful device. Put up with its large mass. The weight of a 1.2–1.9 kW power saw is approximately 3.4–4.8 kg.
It is found in any electric saw, used to lubricate the chain during operation. As a rule, the volume of this tank in domestic saws is 0.11-0.3 l, which quite enough for a few hours not very active work. Quite convenient if there is a visual oil level scale. It is necessary to monitor the oil level so that the chain does not work dry.
Another important point is the chain tensioner. When working, it is often necessary to tighten a sagging chain. For different models, this function is implemented in different ways, in more modern models there is a special lamb handle for this. In cheap tension saws you will need to use a special wrench or screwdriver, which is not always convenient.
During operation, periodically check the chain tension. If you installed a new chain, then after a few minutes of operation, check its tension. During the pulling with your fingers from above the chain in the center, it should not be extended more than 5 mm from the tire and when released it must return and fit tightly into the groove. If the chain sags below, then it must be tightened.
Working with a chain saw
An electric saw, unlike gasoline models, cannot constantly work. For example, when cutting wood, it sometimes needs rest to keep the engine cool.
Follow these rules: 15-25 minutes cut, 25 minutes rest engine. In order not to stand idle, while you can devote time to cleaning or chopping sawn logs.
Any equipment must be kept clean. After work, clean the surface of the electric saw from oil drips and sawdust. Remember, that check the amount of oil before work in the tank. Store the saw in a dry place with the protective cover on.
When working with an electric saw, you must:
- Check the condition of the bus and chain from time to time.
- Use light clothing (so as not to wind the jacket), protective gloves and glasses.
- Hold the power saw with both hands only.
- Do not use an electric tool when it rains, or while in a puddle.
What oil to use?
During operation, the circuit is automatically lubricated with oil. Oil consumption during continuous operation can be quite large. Up to 1.5 liters per hour.
Professionals advise applying mineral special chain oil power saw. In practice, many people use any inexpensive motor mineral oil for automotive engines.
During operation, especially active, the saw teeth are stupid all the time. A dull chain must be compensated for by a longer cut, which, of course, leads to an increase in the load on the electric network, and, of course, to overheating of the engine. Work will eventually become ineffective and slower.
Since the sharp chain is more important than a powerful electric motor. Determining pungency is very simple. You will notice that sawing will be slower and harder. Sawdust will also tell a lot. The sharp chain has square homogeneous filings of approximately the same size. Dull throws out small sawdust of elongated and irregular shape, and also creates a lot of dust from the tree.
Remember to periodically sharpen the chain. You can do this by hand, using a file or file, or you can use the service. Here you will be ground on a special machine in a few minutes and for a small amount. Alternatively, it is advisable to have several sharpened chains in reserve.
That is, the choice of a chain saw depends on many factors. The main thing is to determine exactly what exactly you need an electric saw for. This will enable you to avoid unnecessary costs. Why, for example, do you need professional equipment at the dacha, which you will work only occasionally?
A lot of attention when choosing should also be given to safety features. Well, of course, you need to pick up the equipment, evaluate the weight, determine its balance, ergonomics and ease of use. Since you are choosing a chain saw for yourself, it will be up to you to work with this device.