Make planks with a Chainsaw

During a storm, I had branches broken of. The size of them were like a normal tree, so why wouldn’t I use that wood in another way.
On YouTube I did see somebody who was very experienced with his chainsaw and made wooden cabins in a blink of an eye.
One of the other things he did, was making planks out of trees.
This is my method:


A lot of people think I am crazy, but the only chainsaw I have is a 14″ Stihl battery operated chainsaw. With two AP300 batteries I can use it the whole time, without waiting for a new charge.

To start, make sure the tree is above the ground and I am using other branches, so it can be place on top of it. (Number 1 in the picture below.)

I tried to use wooden stakes and nail it to the tree, for stability, but I ended up with two spades making sure the tree couldn’t move anymore (Number 2 in the picture below.)

And you need a straight line as guidance for your chainsaw. You can use a sharpy, rope or whatever. To be honest, my way is just do it with my chainsaw. It isn’t completely straight, but for me it is good enough. (Number 3 in the picture below.)


Lets swing it

It is very important to have patients and ONLY USE THE TIP OF THE CHAINSAW!
This way only 2 or 3 chains are in contact with the tree.

Don’t put the chainsaw all the way into the tree and try to saw it.
Just rock is gently and have it only touch the tip of the chainsaw.

What you want to see

How do you know if you are doing it right? When you have only two or three chains have contact, you will see long wood curls. That is what you want to see. Then you know you are doing it right. It may take a while, but with this method, it is pretty straight.

Sometimes the wood curls will be in the chainsaw, and just remove it. That make life easier.

Although it look like I am going straight in, even at the last part, the chainsaw has minimum contact with the tree.

End Result

I am able to do about 10-15 min for a 8′ tree and here you see it is pretty straight.
Even after a while you can go pretty thin.

Here is the total end result.


It is possible to make planks from a tree without special tools. Just have patience and practice. I still have about 5 trees waiting for me to practice on them 🙂

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