Best limb/pruning/bow saw?

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I need to cut some 4-6 inch saplings for a project (shag bark hickory). Aft er I get the tree down, I need to limb it and clean up the brush. Because o f park regulations, I can't use mechanical devices (no Stihl). I've used a bow saw in the past but that has been truly, truly a difficult process. May be the bow saw is just dull, I don't know. I wonder if there is some excell ent saw out there that really hogs out a kerf.
Thanks.
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On Monday, August 31, 2015 at 8:56:33 PM UTC-7, Michael wrote:

Sounds like an easy task for a light axe... Bow saws are OK for limbing, awkward for low-stump-height cuts, and really excellent at sawbuck/crosscut for making firewood.
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If you think the bow saw blade is dull, it is. Time to either sharpen it or get a new blade.
The bow saw I've used was a 16"ish long model, and with a decent and sharp blade just goes right on through limbs. I've also used a pole saw, and they work as long great as long as you're cutting near the tree. If you try to take a limb down that's 4-5 feet away from the trunk, it will tend to grab instead of cut.
No Stihl, but what about a battery powered Sawzall-style saw? Porter Cable made some pruning blades (I found them at Lowe's) that looked like they'd work great. I haven't tried them, it's just too much hassle for me to haul out the extension cord (I've only the tailed model) when the bow saw and pole saw work.
Puckdropper
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Harbor freight has battery versions of chainsaws. I'd look at them but even those might be mechanical devices - maybe it is gas powered devices.
Pollution and oils are bad for the forest.
Martin
On 8/31/2015 11:37 PM, Puckdropper wrote:

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On 9/1/2015 12:37 AM, Puckdropper wrote:

I have a battery powered Sawzall with a pruning blade and it works fantastic. Cut's up to about 5" branch like butter. Haven't used my bow saw since getting this blade.
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Jack
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On 9/2/2015 8:12 AM, Jack wrote:

Actually tree wood is like lumber. ;~) I always used a standard demo blade to trim trees with my recip saw.
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A reciprocating saw is great for cutting roots or stumps too. I use a 12" blade and can cut right down in the dirt with it. It dulls up fairly quickly, but a few reciprocating blades are a lot cheaper than a new chain for my saw. Best tool I have found for digging out stumps (short of renting a stump grinder).
For cutting high limbs I picked up a TPS30 pole saw from www.americantreeservicesupply.com. They're definitely not cheap at $200, but it's less expensive than hiring a arborist. We have a lot of trees on our property and have used the pole saw a lot. It gets a little unweildy beyond 4 sections, but I have cut several 4" limbs 30 feet off the ground.
Anthony Watson www.mountainsoftware.com www.watsondiy.com
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Here's one - not 12 inches though - only 7 ...
http://www.leevalley.com/en/Garden/page.aspx?pq675&cat=2,42706,40721&ap=1
If the original poster has a cordless recip. saw - this would be just the ticket ...
John T.
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On 9/2/2015 9:34 AM, Leon wrote:

Green Tree wood is a lot different than dry lumber. Look at the teeth on a bow saw, then look at the teeth on a standard demo saw designed to cut lumber and metal. There is a big difference. A pruning blade for your reciprocating is like a bow saw blade, and cuts at least 3 times faster and with far less effort than a standard demo blade.
Try cutting across a 2x4 with a hack saw, then do it with a standard carpenters crosscut saw. You will quickly see that both work, but one is much better at it.
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On 9/3/2015 8:18 AM, Jack wrote:

So I just checked 3 pruning blades for a recip saw, Diablo and Milwaukee. 5 TPI My Recip has 6 TPI. The depth of the gullets look like they might be a bit deeper by looking at the picture. But all three are closer to my demo blade than a bow saw blade.
Regardless a standard demo blade cuts plenty fast. so cutting a 4" limb takes me 9 seconds, with a dull demo blade, vs 3, I can live with that and save the money.
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On 9/3/2015 9:32 AM, Leon wrote:

The gullets on my Milwaukee pruning blade are a LOT deeper than on the demo blades, and the teeth are not all equal length, and the points are sharper on the pruner.

Do what you want. Too cheap to spend $5 on the correct blade that cuts way faster because it is designed for the job. Do you also cut lumber with a hack saw? Same difference. I've used both, and if you have much pruning to do, the pruning blade is well worth it.
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On 9/3/2015 10:00 AM, Jack wrote:

Then that would probably make a lot of difference.

I trim 3~4 limbs a year.... And in my new house I have not trimmed a limb in 5 years. ;~)
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On 9/3/2015 8:40 PM, Leon wrote:

Oh and FWIW I was not trying to undermine the efficiency of using a job specific blade for pruning. I have an old recip saw that I hardly use any more and you change blades with a hex wrench so that is a PIA for me. I just wanted to mention that the demo blade works fine if it is in the saw and you don't have many limbs to cut.
I almost bought a pruning blade for the saw 10~15 years ago but only had a few limbs to cut. I decided to try the demo blade and was pleased. BUT once my 4 year old tree gets big enough that loppers no longer work I may try out the pruning blade.
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On 9/3/2015 9:58 PM, Leon wrote:

Well no, no need to change or buy a special purpose blade for that. I always used a bow saw for branches too big for a standard tree pruner. I bought a package of mixed Milwaukee blades for my recip saw and it had the pruner blade in the mix. The thing is scary sharp, you have to be careful just picking it up. I won't say it was jaw dropping but close, and I haven't touched the bow saw since using it.
I have a lot of trees that needed pruning and I always did the minimum needed. This blade made it easy, actually fun, so there hasn't been any pruning not done since using this saw. In fact a row of about 25 old pine trees I loped off all the bottom branches up to about 8-10 feet. The blade cuts so effortlessly, batteries last a long time.
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On 9/10/2015 12:09 PM, Jack wrote:

Always a bonus when you get an assortment with a blade that you think you may not use but find it to be a great blade when you do use it. ;~)

Given the correct tool work does become less tedious, kinda like I don't mind sanding these days. ;~)
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I purchased from Florian several years back. I bought a pole saw and separa te ratcheting pruner. The tools have a 2 foot fiberglass handle for close w ork plus a telescoping 16-18 foot fiberglass pole for heights. The saw has a very aggressive blade. I've never seen them in stores.
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These, or anything similar ..
http://www.leevalley.com/en/wood/page.aspx?pg856&cat=1,41131
Note the difference between the green-wood blade vs the dry-wood blade.
Even the cheapo versions of these will cut well.
John T
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"Michael" wrote in message

You can still use a Stihl... ;~) http://www.stihlusa.com/products/hand-tools/hand-pruning-saws/
While I've used a bow saw for such work for decades I've found that a good pruning saw is much better. I particularly like those with curved blades as they help keep the blade in the kerf when my sawing position is not good. The pruning saw also lets you make cuts where a bow saw's frame would not have clearance.
I also have a Snap-Cut pole pruner. I've had it for 20+ years and use it regularly with no problems. It too has a curved blade. http://www.gilmour.com/pruning-tools/tree-pruners/homeowner-tree-pruners/gear-driven-tree-pruner/
I've used the pole saw to limb trees in tight urban settings before taking them down with with my Stihl M271... neighbors haven't complained as I've cut stuff up for them too. ;~)
John
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I am limited on storage space so I always look for tools that fit my needs with a minimum of space. I also like having a saw handy for when I am out on the road and come across something worthy of carving, all of which is small. So I use and carry one of these...
(Amazon.com product link shortened)41123744&sr=8-2&keywords=opinel+saw
Works great. Fast hand cuts. I leave this one in the trunk and carry the 6 inch model with me. Easy to resharpen.
(Amazon.com product link shortened)41123744&sr=8-1&keywords=opinel+saw
`Casper
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I have a generic bow saw that's really sharp, and it tears through green limbs like they're butter. Heck, I've seen two-person saws rip through trunks almost as fast as a chainsaw, but only because they're properly maintained and sharpened.
So, sharpen first, and if it still doesn't cut right, *then* think about a replacement ;-)
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