How to cut small trees

How to Cut Down a Small Tree • Ugly Duckling House

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This quick lesson is about cutting down a small tree. Learn safety tips and the easiest technique to clear your yard in no time!

I’ve done a lot of yard cleanup over the years, from filling in a backyard sinkhole to clearing overgrown vines to tree trimming. But this time, I wanted to tackle something on the smaller side and learn how to do things myself.

Have you ever put a new tool in your hands and felt like Wonder Woman? Or, I suppose more generally, a superhero? I often feel that way. Power tools, especially ones I am using on a project for the first time, always give me a little bit of a rush.

Perhaps it’s because power tools are more often associated with dudeliness, so I feel a little rebellious against stereotype. Perhaps it’s because I get to learn more and pass that info along to you guys. Perhaps it’s because by the end of whatever it is I’m doing, something awesome is going to be there that wasn’t there before.

(It’s a little bit of all of that.)

Whenever I get a new tool, either by purchasing myself or from a new sponsor (the best kind of enablers ?), I actively look for a way to start using it. So, when K mentioned that he wanted to take a weekend to visit his parents’ new tiny house in Tennessee, brought along my new STIHL battery-powered chainsaw. They sent me one a few months ago as part of this year’s partnership, along with a few other outdoor tools, and I was itching to use it.

His parents had purchased some of their family’s farmland to build on, and I was going to see it for the first time. They have a ton of old trees around the home and regularly cut them down (they did the same at their old home when I visited last fall — if you recall, that’s where Charlie saw her first cow EVER). I packed the chainsaw* because I knew the opportunity might come up where I could learn a thing or two from K’s dad and compare it to the gas-powered chainsaws I knew he had.

*I know, just casually bringing up the subject of chainsaws is a weird thing to do with your boyfriend’s parents, but it’s just kind of part of how I’ve gotten to know his family. His dad was thrilled to show me what he knows and it was a lot of fun, and not at all creepy the way it sounds as I’m retelling this story. ?

As luck would have it, there were a few trees ready for a good chop! Since several around their new property were dead and/or infested with termites, cutting them down was the best way to protect the newly built tiny house. K’s dad gave me a few pointers, which I’ve shared below. You can also see a few scars on the bark of some of these trees where old vines had been strangling them.

Safety Gear / PPE

I should also mention that, despite having enough forethought to bring my new chainsaw with me, I managed to forget my safety chaps – d’oh! I did find a pair of my STIHL earbuds in the car (I often leave them around my neck by accident when I do a store run, so finding a pair in my car or purse is pretty common!). I then borrowed some protective eyewear from K’s dad, but I’m recommending before we get started here that safety chaps protect your legs from the chainsaw if it takes a weird bounce. You should also wear gloves and remove any loose-fitting clothing as well as wear protective footwear and headgear. I will eventually use the chainsaw again at home, so you’ll see me correctly geared up like I was a the STIHL summit when that happens. I’ve included links below to several pieces that are good for small folks like me (I covered in this post how PPE that is too large/loose is also a safety concern).

(I should have looked more like this.)

STIHL MSA 120 battery-powered chainsaw review

Even though I was lucky enough to have my pick of chainsaws from the STIHL Lightning Battery System line, I opted for their smallest. On the surface, that sounds kinda nuts, since why wouldn’t I go for more power if I can? To put it simply, I wanted this to be a true test of what STIHL says this chainsaw can do:

Part of the AK Series, the MSA 120 C-BQ is a great battery-powered chainsaw for suburban homeowners, handling storm cleanup to limb removal. The MSA 120 C-BQ bundle comes standard with the AK 20 battery and AL 101 battery charger. It features low vibration, quick chain adjustment and STIHL Quickstop® Plus chain braking feature. Make 100 cuts through a 4″ log on a single charge, which gives you enough power to tackle a stack of firewood.

In terms of yard cleanup, taking out small trees, cutting firewood, and so forth, this seemed most in line with how I’d wind up using a chainsaw in general. It would be very rare for me to need to cut down a large tree (in fact, I hired out to the pros when I needed to take out the pine trees in my yard — not only because of their size but I needed the expertise and the satisfaction that someone had the right permits and approvals to do such a large job in a suburban area like mine). To get something bigger and then talk about how impressive it is to take care of these smaller tasks didn’t seem like as much of a good test.

Overall impression:

Pretty good performance for its size. I was able to cut down a couple of small trees and slice that into firewood in a single charge. It’s also really lightweight, which means that just about anyone can use it (I even got K’s mom to try it).

In other words: it will last about as long as your own energy to do the task. When it stops was pretty much when all of us were ready to be done for the afternoon.

Despite the years of cutting down trees, Mrs. Carter had actually never tried to use a chainsaw before. The fact that the chainsaw is on the smaller side and lightweight made it more appealing to her, though. (P.S. I feel the need to mention again to scroll back up and check out that picture of the chaps/gloves/helmet attire or down for that list of PPE … K’s dad, on the other hand, is your classic will-wear-gloves-but-can’t-be-talked-into-wearing-more-gear kind of dad).

She would like me to tell you, from her own endorsement, that it’s light enough for seniors to handle. Since K and I both consider her stamp of approval to be a Pretty Big Deal, I wouldn’t be surprised if STIHL sent out a press release on that quote. It’s like the Good Housekeeping seal, only much more exclusive. ?

How to fell a small tree with a chainsaw

The phrase “fell a tree” always hits my ear weird, but that’s the other way of saying “cut down a tree” — which do you use?

At any rate, below is a recap of what I learned from Mr. Carter as he gave me pointers. Just in case it’s asked, I’ll clarify that he’s not a professional arborist, but he is a guy who has cut down scores (possibly hundreds?) of trees in his lifetime. Get your elders to teach you things, friends — they will, and it’s awesome!

Materials & Tools
  • safety glasses
  • chaps and helmet
  • gloves
  • STIHL MSA 120 C-BQ chainsaw

1. Plan ahead

… like not forgetting your gear 🤣

I had K’s dad pick the spots to cut as well as the path that the tree would fall (both in terms of him being the more experienced one and so he could be responsible for it not hitting his house!). But ultimately, you need to clearly identify where the tree will land. It appeared that his goal each time was for the tree to come down and not only clear the house, but to hit the ground without falling down on other trees (doing so could possible entangle the fallen tree with the healthy one, kill a healthy one in the process, or cause the other to fall in a weird direction and hit something unexpectedly).

He also took some time to clear away debris around the base. Fallen branches and other obstacles are dangerous objects you won’t want to trip on if you have to suddenly move out of the way.

It should also go without saying that people, dogs, and other precious things should not be in the area either.

2. Make your cuts at a comfortable height

Don’t feel the need to squat down and cut close to the ground right away. You can make your initial cuts, let the tree fall, and then cut down the remaining bit to a stump. Use a stance that is comfortable for you to hold throughout the entire cut. It’s safer to have a good handle on the chainsaw and prioritize on cutting in the right spot so that the tree falls where you want.

3. Cut a wedge on the same side as the tree will fall

Our first cut was horizontal, about halfway through the tree (sometimes 2/3 if it’s small). Allow the chainsaw to work the cut; do not work it in a sawing motion. The next cut is at a downward angle above the first cut, about 60 degrees or so, at a depth so the two cuts meet. This should result in a wedge-like shape cut out of the tree.

4. Make a third cut on the opposite side

Position yourself so you are neither directly under the felling area nor on the exact opposite side (it seems logical at first to be exactly opposite, but if the tree falls backwards, you don’t want to be under it).

A few inches above the first horizontal cut and on the opposite side of the tree, make another slice with the chainsaw but don’t cut all the way to the other cut lines. This is when the cut will separate the base of the tree, sort of like a hinge, and the tree will start to fall from its own weight. I was a little nervous when this part happened because K and his dad have ZERO FEAR getting up in the action and pushed on the tree (which I’m not sure you’re supposed to do, but I let it go).

5. Cut the stump

As the tree falls, move away from the tree. Once it’s down, cut the rest of the remaining trunk down to a stump.

6. Cut firewood logs

Cut off the smaller branches first until you have a clean section for making into logs. Elevate it off the ground slightly. Get most of the way through and slow as you get to the end of the cut (otherwise, the cut will give way and send the tip of your chainsaw into the dirt).

Family Time

Of course, that’s not the only thing we did on our visit. There was a good bit of relaxing, spending more time with one of K’s brothers and his wife (he has a total of 3 brothers), and getting some ideas on our future vintage travel trailer renovation (more on that later). Charlie and Stella had an absolute blast and were  ready for bed LONG before it was time.

Stella playing inside a hollowed stump – she thinks there’s an animal in there!

We also took an afternoon to walk down to another family property and visit Mrs. Carter’s uncle, who lives in the coolest old farmhouse (he’s in his 80s and still works out in the garden and built the second story!). I didn’t want to be too imposing and take photos inside, but if I ever can, I’ll happily share them here. I took few pictures of the other parts of the property from our walk, though.

Bonus Video

I didn’t take much video while I was up there, but I did get a couple of quick clips on my phone and put them together below. It’s mostly of the pups enjoying their trip (ha). Small bit at the end of my first time using the chainsaw (I promise, I improved from there!).

Hope you have a good one! I was hoping to share a few more things this week, including a post with lots of Charlie and Stella pics. Something on my A/C unit has busted and soaked through the ceiling in the living room, so it’s been a distraction-heavy week. With any luck, I can get back on schedule as soon as tomorrow!


A simple guide to felling trees up to 20cm diameter

Felling non-native species to retain the character of a woodland can involve anything from pruning and removing saplings to full-scale felling of a mature tree. The trunks are snedded before being logged up to provide usable timber.

Hands-on techniques for felling trees

Basic Felling Techniques

Note: on this page, ‘front’ and ‘back’ are arbitrary terms, the front being the side towards which the tree is intended to fall.

Study the tree and its surroundings closely to determine which way to fell it. Assess the distribution of the weight on the crown and the space available to drop it into. Plan to avoid obstacles – particularly overhead cables, fences, old stumps and other trees.

Note also the wind, strength and direction. If the tree crown is swaying heavily don’t fell.

Before starting to cut, make sure that the escape route is clear, check there is no one in the danger zones. If two people are involved, decide who will keep hold of the saw. Warning notices should be put up on any path crossing the area, hazard tape should be used to cordon areas off and people should be employed to warn passers by.

Clear the area around the base of the tree before starting to fell.

When the tree starts to fall, step back down the escape route, watching the tree. If it falls towards you, don’t run, but stay reasonably close to the trunk and step sideways to evade it. Watch out for kickback and splitting timber.

On slopes, fell uphill if possible.

After felling tidy up and cut leaving a low stump.

Felling Larger Trees

The procedure described below is suitable for trunks up to about 200mm (8”) diameter at the base. Anything larger than this should only be felled by a trained and competent person.

Cut away any buttress at the base of the tree.

It is often easiest to cut the felling sink (birds beak) by sawing the horizontal cut, then axing away the wood. It is easier this way to make the two cuts meet exactly.

The felling cut should be parallel to and a few centimetres above the back of the sink. The height difference makes a step which reduces the likelihood of the butt bouncing back.

Give an adequate hinge of 3cm minimum to control the speed and direction of fall. A hinge that is thicker at one end will cause the tree to twist towards that end as it falls.

Felling Small Trees

Trees up to 8cm diameter can be cut straight through.

Trees up to 15cm diameter should be undercut on the front about a third of the way through, before the felling cut is made from the back.


Trees heavily weighted in one direction

Do not try to remove one or more limbs to balance the tree, this is for professionals. You can usually assume the tree will fall the way it is leaning, no matter what precautions you take.

A tree weighted away from the intended direction of fall must be pulled back with force sufficient to overcome its entire weight. Winching will exert more force more constantly than volunteers pulling on a rope, as well as being a lot safer. Make sure that the winch anchor point will take the weight.

Fix the rope or winch cable two thirds of the way up the main trunk before starting to fell. The rope should be long enough for the volunteers to be outside the danger zone.

Dead trees

Dead trees are liable to give way unexpectedly or to shed limbs, therefore they are best left standing and handled by a qualified expert. Check for dead biomass on healthy trees. If the tree isn’t heavily rotten, watch for signs of rot such as pulpy or black sawdust, or liquid. Carry on, but leave a larger hinge and work slowly.

Hung-up trees

If a tree gets hung up, deal with it immediately. Never leave a site with a hung up tree.

To untangle a small tree pull the butt away from the stump. If it is still attached, cut it clear or use a felling lever.

To shift medium sized trees, get one or two stout poles. Lever up the butt and slide it a few cms. Repeat this until the tree falls clear.

Larger trees need winching. Make sure the anchor point is strong enough. It is often easier to winch the trunk sideways from the stump.

Never try cutting sections off the trunk.


Snedding is best done with a billhook or loppers, particularly for small branches. Bowsaws are useful for larger branches.

Cut from the butt of the tree towards the tip.

Stand to one side of the tree whilst cutting branches off the other.

This leaves the tree trunk between the billhook and the person snedding.

Large branches growing up from the trunk should be felled in the same way as trees.

Sned as close to the trunk as possible to produce clean logs which are easier to transport and handle.

Look for branches taking some of the weight of the tree. The tree may move as the branch breaks. Roll the tree to take the weight off the branch before snedding it.

Logging Up

Once a tree has been snedded, cross cut into logs of whatever size is required.

It is usually easiest to start at the tip where the tree is lightest. Support the tree so the cuts will open as you saw.

When cutting logs, balance them on another trunk. This gives straight logs for stacking or making cords.

Stacks must be stable and no more than 2m high.


Never leave a stub when pruning. It will die back and allow rot into the heart of the tree.

Small branches 5cm can be cut straight through. Cut with one hand, taking the weight of the branch with the other.

Larger branches should be cut in three stages. The undercut should be about one third of the way through, extended to cut the bark around half of the branches diameter. This stops the branches splitting or the bark tearing.


It may be necessary to uses fires to burn branches and trimmings. Situate it so that the smoke does not blow across the work area but close enough to minimise the amount of dragging.

Leave wood to decay where practical or chop it up for mulch. If there is simply too much small, controlled fires are OK, providing the client knows. Also let the local fire brigade know beforehand.

After work, make sure fires are out before leaving the site.

Using Chainsaws

Sometimes a chainsaw operator may be needed in coppice work. Only those individuals holding a TCV chainsaw card may use one on any site where TCV staff, volunteers or local groups covered by TCV insurance are working. To get a card you must have a National Proficiency Test Council (or equivalent) certificate and be able to provide evidence of continuing competence. Operators must wear protective safety clothing and equipment.


September to March, i.e. outside the breeding season.

Preparation and working with groups

Site visit

Visit the work site in advance to gain a clear idea of what you will be doing on the day.

Assess the suitability of the project for the group you will be leading and the time available.

Check for obstacles to felling – particularly overhead cables (don’t fell within 15m of electricity cables) and fences. Discuss any obstacles with the client in case the work plan needs to be altered. Decide what is to be done with the cut wood. Undertake a risk assessment for both project and site.

If there is public access to the site, plan exclusion zones and lookout points.

Tools and equipment

Depending on the size of the team adjust the quantity of equipment taken to the site.

Check the tools are in good condition before using them.

  • First aid kit
  • Appropriate protective gloves
  • Goggles
  • Hard hats
  • Axes
  • Bowsaws (small and large)
  • Billhooks
  • Loppers
  • Slashers
  • Mattocks
  • Felling levers
  • Polesaws
  • Sharpening stone
  • Wedges and sledgehammer
  • Winch and rope
  • Matches and firelighting equipment
  • Hazard tape
  • Ensure all team members are wearing appropriate footwear and clothing and issue the specified safety equipment.


Introduce the site, the work and the reasons for doing it.

Walk around the site explaining what work will be undertaken. Identify potential hazards and explain how people can work safely around them.

Demonstrate tool use

Demonstrate and explain the safe use, carrying and on-site care of the tools before starting work.

Refer to the TCV Hand Tools booklet [coming soon].

Demonstrate work techniques

Demonstrate all new work techniques as you come to them. This will save mistakes and avoid accidents.

Plan the location of log piles to minimise the distance wood is dragged.

Demonstrate correct lifting technique (bending the knee and keeping the back straight so that the leg muscles are used and the back is not strained).

Organisation of team

Divide the team into small groups or pairs and ensure everyone has a turn at each job, although each person should sned and log up the trees they fell.

See that no one part of the job holds up the others. If necessary move people around to ensure this.

Beware of boredom and fatigue. Let people change jobs at breaks. Make sure everyone is part of the team.

Check that people work at safe distances from each other. People felling trees should be at least three tree lengths apart, but within earshot of each other. At all times everyone should be kept informed of the location of felling zones. The leader should check, assist and encourage people and ensure work standards are maintained.

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How to cut down a tree with a chainsaw. How to saw and fell a tree with a chainsaw, rules, technique

Owners of plots often need to cut a tree with a chainsaw, but how to properly fell a tree with this tool. Let's figure it out together! Following the safety standards in working with the tool allows you to nullify the risk of damage and make it much more efficient to fell the plant.

How to cut a tree with a chainsaw ? If you are faced with this issue, Clean Forest specialists will help you with a solution. You can consult with an experienced arborist for self-treatment of the site or order the service of a specialist visit who will perform the work as quickly and efficiently as possible.

Contents of the article:

  • How to fell trees - safety rules
  • Preparatory stage
  • Proper cutting of a tree and technique
  • How to saw a tree correctly
  • Chisty Les services

How to fell trees with a chainsaw - safety rules

Proper felling of large trees with a chainsaw in a forest or on a plot is not only a laborious, but traumatic process. The smallest mistake can cause big problems. It is not enough to have a tool. Proper felling of trees requires compliance with safety regulations, which must not be ignored:

  • The sober state of the worker - any form of intoxication is prohibited (alcohol or drugs). Otherwise, the risk of injury increases several times.
  • Before sawing and felling a tree correctly, it is necessary to check the technical condition of the equipment: the quality of sharpening, chain tension, serviceability of the tire and other elements.
  • It is strictly forbidden to touch the cutting elements with your hands while the engine is running. If you need to somehow interact with the tool, first turn off the engine.
  • In the process of work, we use special eye protection or a handkerchief.
  • The chainsaw makes a lot of noise. Before felling, we use earplugs or special headphones.
  • Be sure to put on a helmet on your head - large branches may fall during felling.
  • Shoes are selected according to the rules - they must consist of durable materials (rough leather) with special protectors on the soles that prevent slipping. The toe of the boots is decorated with metal inserts that provide protection against injury in the event of a chain breakage and its contact with the leg.
  • Clothing made of strong, dense materials that fit well on the body - significantly reduces the risk of the tool getting caught on the item or winding it up.
  • IMPORTANT! While felling trees, hold the chainsaw with both hands.
  • Sawing is carried out by several people.
  • Do not refuel the chainsaw with fuel mixture indoors or while the engine is running.
  • The chainsaw is transported assembled and in a special case.

Do not know how to cut down a tree with a chainsaw as efficiently as possible and without injury? We follow safety rules and use the services of professionals.

How to Fell Trees with a Chainsaw Properly - Preparatory Step

Proper felling of large and small trees with a chainsaw involves preliminary preparation. The process begins with the assimilation and compliance with safety requirements. Then you need to calculate different options for the fall of the barrel, which will pass without damage to the environment. In this case, take into account:

  • Bar length.
  • Equipment engine traction parameters.
  • Barrel dimensions.
  • Presence of wind - speed and direction.

The next stage of preparation provides for certain features:

  • Felling trees in coastal areas deserves special attention. A barrel that has fallen into the water can create a lot of problems and require additional expenses to complete the work.
  • It is necessary to determine the escape routes if the situation during felling gets out of hand and the tree does not fall where it was planned. The dumped thick trunk must be sawn and removed in the future, which requires free space for the entrance of equipment.
  • Eliminate the risk of falling when felling branches - the problem is solved individually by calling in specialized equipment (rental of a cranked lifting device, etc. ).
  • Site preparation for safe movement of equipment and people. The area is cleared of branches, leaves and other debris.

How to fell a tree - felling rules and sequence of actions

The scheme for felling large and small trees is slightly different. Vegetation of small sizes is removed from the very beginning:

  1. Search for stem inclination. Even a light pull to one side makes a difference. Ideally straight trees are recommended to cut in the most comfortable direction. The size of one notch may be the radius of the trunk.
  2. A similar incision is made on the opposite side. You should wait until the plant begins to gradually tilt in the chosen direction. First you need to properly fell the tree with a chainsaw when cutting at the shoulder level of a tall person, and then separately - significantly reducing the risk of injury.
  3. Cutting trees with a chainsaw into elements that are easy to transport. The procedure begins by removing the branches that are furthest away. Small ones saw in one go, and thick saws in two or more steps. The chainsaw chain must not touch the ground. Otherwise, it will dull faster.

A tree is classified as large if its trunk diameter is more than 50 centimeters. Sawing large-sized is carried out only after choosing the direction of the fall of the plant. How to fell large trees correctly? Standard technique for felling trees with a chainsaw:

  • An incision is made from top to bottom with a slope of 60 degrees. It should be performed exclusively from the direction of the tree's thrust to the ground. Proper felling of trees with a chainsaw requires you to accurately maintain the angle and hold the tool as evenly as possible.
  • A line is drawn horizontally and abuts at the point of the first cut from the inside. In this way, you can cut and remove the corner, which allows you to correctly perform this stage of felling.
  • On the opposite side of the two cuts, a horizontal cut is made with the tool - always a little higher. You should cut as deeply as possible, but not completely, otherwise the tree will remain in an upright position, and it will be more difficult to dump it.
  • The second cut is supported by a special wedge or spatula. The remaining volume is removed with additional tools or sawing from the inside.
  • At the last stage, the equipment is placed in the opposite direction with a slight slope to the left and gradually reaches the middle of the trunk. A wedge is placed. The tree is completely finished from the opposite side.

How to cut trees with a chainsaw: removing branches and stems

After the plant has been deboned, the removal of branches begins. It is performed exclusively from a horizontally located, already dropped trunk. The worker alternately cuts the rows, gradually reaching the central part for a complete cleaning of the wood.

Each element is removed individually with a chainsaw. Experienced arborists advise in the process to immediately transport the treated areas to a separate place for further export.

Sawing of the prepared trunk is carried out in stages:

  1. A cut is made on top of the plant - approximately 50% of the tree is affected.
  2. Tool stays in place and switches off. The prepared hole is filled with a wedge. It is additionally rammed for better contact. This is necessary in order for the tool to comfortably pass between the two parts of the barrel.
  3. Finishing the tree to the end and then transporting it to a place intended for disposal.

The best service in Moscow»

If there is no opportunity or skills to cut a tree on your own, Chisty Les arborists will take care of all the tasks. We have the best equipment and experienced employees who are ready to cope with the task of any complexity or volume. You can leave a request right now on the website or by calling. We guarantee efficiency and low prices.

8 ways to cut down a tree. 🌳 Correct cut technology. ✅ Blog SpilKursk.PRO

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8 ways to cut professional arborists

Author: Korovin Maxim Comments: 0 Reading time: 7 minutes

There are situations in life when the head of an organization, the owner of a site, a tenant or just a tenant of an apartment building needs to understand how to cut down a tree correctly. There can be many situations of need. It is important to remove the tree in accordance with the law and regulations so that people and the site where it is located do not suffer.

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Professional arborists from the SpilKursk.PRO company will help you safely cut down a tree!


Sawing with hand tools
  1. Chainsaw operation
  2. Cutting the trunk and branches
  3. Stump removal
Professional tree removal
  1. Free felling saw cut
  2. Use of natural stem slope
  3. Guided cutting with guy
  4. Free throw swath
  5. Cut in parts with curtain
  6. Complete removal
  7. Sawing when the tree is fully hung
  8. Use of vehicles

Sawing with hand tools

The technology of manual removal of trees seems to be the simplest and cheapest, especially on your site. Let's see, is that right?

Working with a two-handed saw or an ax today is the "last century", which can only be used without health risks on shrubs or thin trees. Therefore, such "technologies" are not discussed.

You can not work with a traumatic angle grinder or a hacksaw for metal, designed for other things.

Chainsaw operation

Almost any owner of equipment is sure that he knows how to cut down a tree with a chainsaw. In fact, this work is dangerous and requires a clear alignment of actions.


Tool : the chainsaw must be fully prepared before operation - sufficient level of gasoline, oil, chain integrity and tension checked (when the chain is pulled from the top of the bar - it is necessary that the guide teeth do not come out of the groove), switching on and off without jamming.

Tree : determine the fall area of ​​the felled tree, clear the space in that direction, cut all knots up to shoulder height. The fall zone of the object is planned by 2 times more than of it crowns.

If you are going to fell a tree for the first time and it is not possible to determine the fall zone by eye, you can hold a carpenter's ax or any object 60-70 centimeters long (the standard length of a carpenter's ax handle) at arm's length, move towards the tree until the ax and tree become "of the same height". In the place where you stopped and there will be a point of contact with the top of the earth tree.

Three-stage felling:

  1. Oblique cut of wood from the side of fall from top to bottom at an angle of 60 o , to the base. Sawed to a depth of up to a quarter of the diameter of the trunk.
  2. Notching horizontal or at an angle of 30 o - made from the bottom on the same side, until it connects to the top, until a wedge is obtained. The cut angle should be 45 o . Full sawn wood prohibited!
  3. felling cut. Clearly on the opposite side of the future fall trajectory. It is carried out parallel to the second cut, but with a distance of 5-10 cm above it and leaving 10% of the diameter uncut. Not finished between the main cut and the saw cut is the guide chip. It is left at the corner of the broken tree. If left incorrectly, part of the barrel bounces back violently and can pierce a person's chest.

Saw in 3 stages - the basic basis of any tree sawing.

Possible options for cutting from the side of the fall: the first is a horizontal notch, then the second goes to the connection to the first from above at an angle of 45 degrees. All the time it is important to work smoothly, without jerks, but at maximum engine speed. When the final cut is nearing completion, a wooden wedge is inserted and hammered into it so as not to jam the chain guide. You can use a pole, pre-installed cables, and even a jack to guide the barrel.

At the final stages, it is especially important to follow the direction of movement of the trunk in order to cut the tree with a chainsaw in the right direction, if necessary, correct or run back. As soon as there is a crack trunk, you need to urgently remove the saw, turn it off and move as far as possible. It is important to calculate in advance so that a fallen tree does not get stuck in the branches of neighboring trees or power lines. There should be enough space left on the ground so that you can come up for sawing branches and cutting the trunk.

Peculiarities of sawing sloping trees

A tree whose inclination from the vertical does not exceed 10 o is considered upright and is sawn in the usual way. If felling is to be carried out on the opposite side of the slope, it is important to consider the following:

  1. After the main cut, it is important to level the tree in the right direction, while coping with the resistance of the guide chip. You can align with cables or make one edge of this chip wider.
  2. To block the reverse movement, you can use a winch or chain hoist.
  3. If the slope of the trunk is more than 10 o , it is better to choose a different way of sawing, without the need for leveling.

For old, rotten trees, it is better to leave the guide chips thicker so that they do not burst at the most unexpected moment. If this happens, the trajectory of the tree's fall cannot be predicted. If possible choice in space, it is better that the cut tree falls on the side where it has more branches and branches.

Safety and retreat areas for fellers are located on the sides of the fall path at approximately 45 o . It is impossible to remain in the place opposite to the fall. If a person makes a mistake in the thickness wood chips - the trunk will sharply go back and cripple.

If you need to cut a small tree, there will be no particular problems. But if the tree is of a decent age or rotten, big troubles can arise. A person may not accurately calculate the direction of the fall, make a mistake with the depth of the undercut or even jam the saw in the cut. At the most unexpected moment, the appearance of wind or a change in its direction is possible. All this is fraught at best with a broken tool, a branch flying over the head or shavings in the eye, and at worst - a broken roof of a structure that has turned up under the trunk and even broken ribs or a neck.

Cutting the trunk and branches

The branches are cut down starting from the bottom of the lying tree. Each branch, first from the bottom, then finished it from above. In large branches, a large part is first cut off, then the remainder is finished.

If you don't have enough experience, then it's better not to start dismantling large trees alone. It is very difficult to calculate the forces, and you will get tired very quickly, which will increase the risk of error.

Korovin Maxim Arborist. Head of the company SpilKursk.PRO

The cutting of the trunk begins with a cut to half in depth. Without taking out the saw, a wedge is hammered with an ax. This is a guarantee that the equipment will not be squeezed between parts of the tree. Then comes the doping.

Stump removal

Only a person with serious experience can use a chainsaw for sawing in a stump. There is a high probability of a strong rebound of the saw!

Stump type Working technology
Small Use a shovel under the root in a circle like a lever. If a tearing sound is heard - well, the process has begun.
Medium Dig a hole 2-3 times wider than the trunk. Hard roots must be cut or cut off with an ax from both sides. You can use a chainsaw, but first thoroughly clean the roots from the ground in the place of the saw.
Large Can be used as a crowbar lever. If it is possible to install - use a lever hoist or a 3-4 ton winch, if there is a strong support for its attachment.
Any Use a wood chipper, which will turn the stump into shavings with disc blades.

If it was not possible to overcome the stump, you do not want to make special efforts to cut down, and time is not in a hurry - you can use the "old-fashioned" method, which works great:

  1. Use a drill with a long drill bit to drill many vertical holes in the stump, 15-20 cm deep.
  2. Pour one of the agents into each: carbide, potassium or ammonium nitrate. The first remedy works best. For a stump diameter of 60-75 cm, 1 kg of carbide is enough.
  3. Pour the agent with water, strictly without splashing.
  4. Seal the openings securely to prevent rain from getting in. You can use chops, but it's easier to wrap the stump with construction polyethylene and tie it with twine. In order not to fly away the edges - press them down with stones or sprinkle with soil.
  5. A year and a half mixture will "dissolve" the stump.
  6. Remove the polyethylene, spread the "bonfire" on the stump and move away. A very active burning of wood will begin. Such a fire goes inside up to 2 m and burns even thick roots.
See also: 8 ways to remove stumps.

At first glance, the simple removal of a tree is fraught with many surprises and additional physical work. You need a sober assessment of the risks and time spent on this for a person who has never felled trees. serious work can be done quickly and safely only by specialists with constantly updated experience.

Industrial tree removal

It is really dangerous to cut down a tall, thick and sprawling tree by yourself. It is no less unpredictable to work with an old and rotten giant, who can “treat” not only a healthy branch on the forehead, but also fall down entirely in any direction. Therefore, we are not talking about self-cutting here at all. Unless, of course, a person does not want to risk his life.

Are you from ?

Professional arborists from the SpilKursk.PRO company will help you safely cut down a tree!


For hazardous work, there are professionals who do it every day, have vast experience and will not hurt anyone. But even they work with climbing equipment, usually with an assistant, and stop any actions in case of sharp gusts of wind or its speed is more than 11 m / s. For each object, the most appropriate method of cutting is selected, taking into account safety.

Free felling saw cut

The object is cut down immediately. Beforehand, it is important to calculate the direction of the wind and its strength, the distribution of branches from the center of gravity, the presence of cracks or large holes. From the side of the fall, traditional 45 degrees, on the opposite - felling cut. The method is used when there are no power lines, houses and other obstacles to the felling nearby. After falling, the tree is sawn into pieces for disposal. The easiest and cheapest way, but for professionals.

Free-felling variant - sawing to railings. It is suitable if there are at least 2 trees in the direction of the intended fall, comparable in diameter and size to the saw cut object. Between them at a level close to horizontal ropes (“railing”) are pulled on the ground, which slow down the tree when it falls. A problem is possible - a tree that accelerates “in flight” tears the ropes. Experts calculate the distance to the tree, its mass, the length of the fall, the strength of the ropes, the feasibility of using a quickdraw from behind to slow down the fall, and other possible nuances.

Climbing rope "standard" with a diameter of 10-11 mm in a new condition withstands a breaking load of 2-3 tons. Over time, it wears off and becomes much weaker.

Using the natural slope of the trunk

The method is suitable for even trees with an average height of up to 4 meters, a trunk diameter near the ground up to several tens of centimeters, an inclination angle of 2-3 degrees - so that there is no chance of falling in the other direction.

Scheme of work:

  1. Sawing all branches to the height of growth - before making undercuts. It is important that in case of an accidental course of the trunk with a deviation of the branch, they do not interfere with bouncing to the side.
  2. Produce classic cuts from the side of the fall at an angle of 45 degrees.
  3. Remove sawn wedge.
  4. Carry out a standard felling cut, leaving approximately 10% of the diameter of the cut out.
  5. Ropes are fixed at the top with special “big shot” slingshots, a line thrower or a stick with a hook.
  6. With ropes, a pole and wedges, they fell the trunk.

Recommended felling cut for strong trees - up to 50%, for sick and rotten trees - from 20 to 40% of the diameter. In the worst condition of the tree, the cut is made less so that the tree does not break before.

The height of the cut from the ground, depending on the further purpose of the stump:

  • 70-100 cm, it can be a little higher - if the stump is uprooted, for the convenience of working with a winch.
  • 30-50 cm - with further destruction of the stump with chemicals.
  • Minimum possible - when the stump will be destroyed by a crusher.

If the tree is not clearly displaced, or the center of the displacement is difficult to determine, specialists control the fall with wedges.

Guided cutting with guy

The method of destruction is suitable for a tree that can be completely felled into a selected area using a rope attached close to the top of the tree. To secure it, the rope with the load is thrown as high as possible onto wood. This is usually done with the help of a huge slingshot, which shoots loads with a thin braided line.

See also: How to legally cut down a tree.

Suitable for tall and mature trees with heavy branches or a large number of them, even a slight slope in the opposite direction. This creates difficulty in determining the direction of "leaving" at the time of saw cut. You can work with most trees, there would be opportunities for installing quickdraws and strong ropes.

Scheme of work:

  1. The top of the head is tied with a pole or an equipped climber, depending on the height of the tree.
  2. The rope is pulled tight by hand, winch or chain hoist (with rope backstop). First of all - side stretches.
  3. Make standard counter cuts.
  4. Felling cut in progress.
  5. A tree falls into a precisely defined region of space.

See what it looks like felling a tree with a quickdraw:

A good choice of actions for a tree in the park, forest and even on the site. Professional companies attract high-level specialists who calculate the level of tension, eliminate the risk of splitting the trunk and fall with unpredictable consequences.

Free throw swath

A method for cutting down a tree in pieces and dropping them down. It is chosen when a tall and thick tree cannot be felled freely, but there is free space under it for dumping sawn-off fragments.

Work steps:

  1. The arborist climbs the tree on gaffs (“claws” worn on the feet with which the climber digs into the tree) and a girth, cutting down all large parts of the branches “along the way” to the very top, if conditions allow. Also he can "hang up" and lower.
  2. Before cutting down the top of the tree, the climber ties a rope to its top and throws it off to a partner.
  3. He pulls the rope in the direction of fall with the force of his hands or a chain hoist.
  4. The climber cuts off the top and finally throws it off.
  5. When descending, all the remains of branches and the trunk itself are cut down.
  6. When the arborist reaches a height of 2-2.5 m, workers clear the free space at the bottom of the trunk for him.
  7. The specialist descends and cuts the remains of the trunk into plates of the desired length.

On a tree, a specialist works with two belays. Having worked one tier, he fixes the second insurance to a higher level. Only after that removes the mount from the lower tier. During the descent, the trunk is processed and cut an average of 2 m per tier. The stump is left no more than a third of the diameter high, if you work according to the standards of the Kursk region.

Hydraulic lift possible. Actions are performed in the same sequence, with mandatory insurance. If a sufficiently large and heavy tree is cut down, the ground below can be severely broken.

Cut in parts with curtain

The method is suitable when they do not know how to properly cut down a tree hanging over a fence, wires or a roof. When sawing, part of the branches that threaten important objects or buildings will be carefully lowered on the ropes. The rest of the cut will be thrown down in small fragments. A qualified assistant can lay down a shock-absorbing “pillow” on the ground from the branches, and then the falling parts of the trunk will not hit the ground / lawn so much. If space the bottom cannot be damaged - the tree will be removed with the descent not only of the branches, but also parts of the trunk on a rope.

The felling technology is the same as the free throw felling method. Next is the descent:

  1. A rope is pulled between the thickest branches, and a block is fixed to it.
  2. A tree specialist secures part of the branches or trunk with a rope.
  3. Cuts them down.
  4. At his command, assistants on the ground begin to smoothly lead the rope down, lowering the felled fragment.

This is the way to deal with all dangerous parts of the tree. As a result, the safety zone under the tree is reduced, since the fragments do not "blow up" the ground, but land in a precisely specified place. If the saw cut of a tree comes with aerial platforms, everything is done in the same way, including the fastening of the block.

It is desirable that at least two specialists work together. This reduces the operating time and makes it safer.

Complete removal

Expensive, but the safest way for the owner, balance holder or tenant of the site to delete the object. The best option is to cut down a large tree in a limited space where there are buildings, people and animals may suddenly suffer.

Work steps:

  1. A climber on gaff climbs a tree, cutting branches and lowering them on a rope.
  2. Attaches a carabiner with a rope for future hanging of sawn parts.
  3. An assistant fixes the same construction on a neighboring tree, but below.
  4. An arborist is tying a rope to a piece of wood to be cut.
  5. Leads the rope through the upper carabiner to the lower carabiner, where it is fixed.
  6. Cuts down the selected part of the tree, and it hangs on the rope.
  7. An assistant brings the felled part to the ground through the lower structure.

When two to 5 (for a large specimen) meters remain to the ground, the technology of work changes. A potential threat arises - the “pendulum” from the lowered part of the tree can damage the building, wires or residues the trunk on which the person is fixed. When the tree is rotten and split, the climber can fall from a sufficiently high height and with all the tools. Therefore, in order to avoid troubles and accidents, the remains are cut down along small particles and lowered manually or folded gently from above.

Hanging cut is not recommended in winter when the wood becomes brittle.

Sawing when the tree is completely hung

The method is especially suitable for emergency specimens that have fallen on buildings or adjacent plantings. Reminiscent of cutting with a guy, but requires a minimum of free space. Be sure to have a strong wood.

  • The climber reaches the top of the tree being cut down and ties the rope so that it is about a fifth of the height above it, provided that the tree is not in danger. A rope is installed on the emergency trunk remotely - with the help of "big shot" slingshots, line thrower or pneumatic gun. The principle of operation of the most common slingshot is simple: a cord with a weight is thrown through the base branch, under the influence of which it falls down.
  • Throws a rope over a "helping" tree and descends.
  • The rope is stretched and fixed.
  • The removed trunk is cut down and the old tree hangs on a nearby tree by a rope.
  • Cutting a hung tree starts from the bottom, with a shortening of 1-1.5 meters. The action continues until the top and bottom are balanced, to prevent the leaf cover from flipping down.
  • The rest of the stem is placed on the ground.

The method is time-consuming, suitable for a situation where it is not possible to lay down the whole specimen to be cut.

Use of vehicles

When an arborist cannot climb a tree, it is better to use the services of specialists who have additional automotive equipment: a tower or a crane.

This work is estimated to be cheaper, since it is easier and faster to work from a tower. But the “approach” of technology is not possible everywhere. More often, professional arborists with ropes are required, of which there are few. They work in dry weather without wind. It is better to call specialists in the first days of spring or late autumn, when the crown is the rarest and juices do not play in the trunk. All work is carried out in accordance with the instructions approved by Ministry of Labor and Social Protection of the Russian Federation.

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Maxim Korovin


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