How to limb with a chainsaw

Once the tree is on the ground you can start limbing. This can be a dangerous job if not done properly. Here is our expert step-by-step guide to doing this.

To avoid kickback, you should constantly watch the position of the bar tip to avoid contacting a hidden branch with the kickback sector of the tip.

As always you should keep a grip round the front handle with your left thumb and apply full throttle before you start cutting. Once again, plan your work and always try to think one step ahead.

1. Correct working height and working position

When you limb a tree you should stand on the left side of the trunk. The starting position is with your feet apart, back straight and the saw resting on the trunk. If the tree is resting on the stump and branches, or on a log or rock, it will be at a good working height so you can work safely and comfortably.

Work from the root end towards the tip. Always keep the trunk as a barrier between you and the saw as you work your way along the tree.

2. How to limb broad-leaf trees

A. Branches on the side of the trunk can be cut downwards with the chain pulling. Let the body of the saw rest against the trunk and rotate the bar in a lever motion towards the branch.

B. You can cut branches that stand up vertically from the top of the trunk with the saw lying on its side, either with the chain pulling or pushing. Use your thumb to control the throttle.

C. If thicker branches are pressing against the ground you may need to cut them from below with the chain pushing, to prevent the bar and chain from being pinched. First make a shallow cut in the top to prevent the branch from splitting. Watch out in case it springs up when you cut through.

D. With really thick or uneven branches it is easier to cut them bit-by-bit into manageable lengths. First make a cut in the underside before you cut off a length from above. There is a considerable risk of kickback during limbing.

Limbing, US, 2min 43sec