It’s that time… kids are back in school, the air is cooling down a bit, the mountains around us are just starting to get a touch of orange. It is not technically but almost fall. Basically you’ve already missed Christmas. (I’m kidding…) But really, now that it is cooling down slightly and trees will start changing soon, it’s time to think about prepping your yard for the winter. Key word thinking, planning… you can put it off for at least 4 more weeks, you’re welcome!
Things to consider when getting ready for winter: You might need to cut those branches that are hanging over the roof, trim up and edge the yard beautifully, prep firewood, clean out any weed patches that went crazy while you were off playing with your kids…
Before we get to the fall yard cleanup, let’s take a walk down memory lane!
Today I am partnering with Stihl to share a few tips for working with chainsaws. (Thank you Stihl for supporting Remodelaholic and making us to be able to continue creating quality content! As always, all opinions and throwback family photos are my own.) And now you’re wondering, what do Stihl and chainsaws have to do with memory lane? Let me take you back to my childhood and you’ll see!
Growing up and even now, I’ve always been really proud of my dad. He was a journalist and nightly newscaster who later quit to be his own boss and became a (wait for it) chainsaw wood carver!
Say what?! How cool is that!?!?
I mean seriously, my dad is cooler than a rock star!
I remember as a child climbing over huge logs and building huts out of bark, while my dad was carving away in a haze of sawdust, always in his orange Stihl T-shirt!! Then getting to see all the amazing carvings coming from the workshop next to our house!
I love that he was an entrepreneur and artist! He took his passion and made an amazing business out of it! I feel like his example made me be empowered and able to create my own business from my passion for remodeling!
Flash forward to my life as an entrepreneur coming full circle when an email came to my inbox from Stihl. Um yes, I know your brand, LOVE your products and literally we have an old family picture of the entire family in Stihl t-shirts… I’m the wee little blonde in the red galoshes at the end.
I’m the youngest of 7 kids! All of my siblings got to try carving, but by the time I was old enough to carve with my dad he had actually been struggling with health issues and wasn’t carving anymore… sad! So, I think it’s now or never. I decided it is time to learn how to use a chainsaw! And I figured I would ask my dad for some of his rules for working with a chainsaw to get started!
Disclaimer: Using a chainsaw is serious!
If you choose to use a chainsaw, you do so at your own risk. Remodelaholic is not liable if you choose to do so. This post is for entertainment purposes only. Before operating any power equipment, you must read and follow all manufactures rules guidelines and warnings. Please find those safety guidelines here:
- Chain saw Safety, Operation & Maintenance video
- Demonstration of Protective Chaps video
- Storm Safety: Before the Storm
- Storm Safety Cleanup Tips
When choosing a chainsaw, I suggest finding a local dealer to help guide you. They were very helpful when I went in to pick up my new chainsaw. Speaking of, there is a new line of battery operated units that I love. I must admit starting a chainsaw with a pull chain scares me a bit! However, I LOVE the ease and quickness of a battery operated chainsaw, plus no worries about cleaning out the gas tank etc to winterize everything!
To start off here are the tools and safety products that I am using with my chainsaw.
Stihl Chainsaw Tools and Safety Products:
- Chainsaw: Stihl MSA 200 C-BQ with 12” guide bar
- Safety Equipment:
Chainsaw Safety RULES
AKA things to consider before using a chainsaw
These are some common sense rules and the rules that my dad made for himself to stay safe during his years of working hours and hours with a chainsaw. It is always better to be prepared and safe, especially when using power tools!
1 – Always wear and use the safety equipment that is suggested by Stihl. There is a great kit to get you started.
2 – Don’t cut with a chainsaw when you are too tired. If you are tired it reduces your strength and attention, two things that are critical for safety while working with a chainsaw.
3 – Don’t hold the saw above your shoulders and cut over your head. And especially, do not hold it over your head and thrust the tip into small limbs and branches.
4 – Don’t cut at dusk or in the dark. To me this rule is self-evident. If you can’t see what you’re cutting it, it might not be the best idea to be using a chainsaw.
5 – Don’t thrust the tip of your bar of a running chainsaw into branches and limbs. Any good safety booklet will tell you that the top quarter-tip of any bar is what causes a chainsaw to kick back. When you thrust the tip into brush and branches you don’t know what and when it will catch, causing the chainsaw to kick back with great force and speed in your direction. You should be cutting with the flat edge of the bottom of the bar.
6 – Always keep your feet clear. Before ever beginning to use a chainsaw, look around your feet make sure you know where and if you can step out of the way. If you can’t step out of the way, clean up the space so you can move safely and freely.
And because I got to head to Stihl headquarters and see the process of the tools being built in the USA, I also got to see one of my dad’s first carvings from the 10th anniversary of Stihl!
Such a fun legacy in my family, and I’m so glad to partner with Stihl today to share these safety tips for using a chainsaw. As always, all opinions and throwback family photos are my own.
As you are *safely* cleaning up your yard this fall, keep our other seasonal cleaning checklists in mind, too:
Cassity Kmetzsch started Remodelaholic after graduating from Utah State University with a degree in Interior Design. Remodelaholic is the place to share her love for knocking out walls, and building everything back up again to not only add function but beauty to her home. Together with her husband Justin, they have remodeled 6 homes and are working on a seventh. She is a mother of four amazing girls. Making a house a home is her favorite hobby.