Before you invest in an electric chainsaw to carve, there are some things to consider. There are many brands, models, and types of electric chainsaws on the market, so it can be hard to know which will serve your needs best and last the longest. To help you make the right choice, we’ve written this guide on the best electric chainsaw for carving, with reviews of 3 great products and an in-depth analysis of each one’s pros and cons.
A good carving chainsaw should be lightweight, powerful, and adaptable to replace or change from standard bars to carving bars. It is, therefore, essential to note that chainsaw carving should be done with at least two chainsaws: a blocking chainsaw, which is typically more extensive and more powerful, and a detailed chainsaw. We analyzed these chainsaws to understand what it takes to transform a standard chainsaw into an excellent carving chainsaw.
Next read: How to sharpen a chainsaw
Best Electric Chainsaw for Carving: Which One is Right for You?
Oregon CS1500 – Best Overall
As the best electric chainsaw, we recommend the Oregon CS 1500. Although it is not promoted as a carving chainsaw, we chose it because it has some features that will be useful in our chainsaw projects. This chainsaw is perfect for anyone who wants to do some serious carving. The Oregon CS1500 weighs slightly more than ten pounds and has an 18-inch bar. The long bar is ideal for making quick work of any project when blocking or roughing out huge carvings thanks to a powerful 15 amp electric motor powered by a 120-volt power source.
Additionally, it comes with various features that make it perfect for carving. For example, because it features a built-in power sharp self-sharpening technology, you won’t have to sharpen it manually. However, to sharpen your chain immediately on the saw, the self-sharpening system must reduce cutting downtime by 3 to 5 seconds which will not affect your work.
However, you should be aware that while using this chainsaw as a carving saw, you cannot use the chain that comes with the CS1500 because it is too aggressive for carving. As a result, you should replace the chain with the Oregon S62 AdvanceCut Chainsaw Chain, which is a better option for a carving chain for this saw. Also, keep in mind that you won’t be able to use the sharpener if you use an S62 on this saw. The sharpener will destroy any standard chain, such as the S62 when used on it.
Another feature that makes it a top contender is the user’s safety. This saw has a low kickback, and its ergonomic design includes a chain break, which provides safety when using this chainsaw. It is also quite simple to release chain tension without additional tools. This allows you to quickly and easily change your chain to keep the correct tension for the ideal cut, making this chainsaw simple and safe to use.
Additionally, the Lubri-Tec technology prolongs the life of your saw chain even in challenging situations by keeping the chain lubricated for less friction. This makes it perfect for use in your carving activities throughout the year. Finally, this saw makes less noise and vibration than the typical gasoline chainsaw and comes pre-assembled with a two-year warrant.
The drawback is that because it is corded, you may be unable to move around more than the size of the cord. It is also quite heavy and it tends to use more oil.
However, if you’re looking for an electric chainsaw that can help you carve like a pro, then the Oregon CS1500 is the one for you. The chain, the bar, and the sprocket are easily interchangeable to make it a craving saw and are available at most hardware stores or home centers, although the chain will have to be conventionally sharpened.
Another chainsaw that is worth the look for our carving projects is the WORX WG305.1. This electric chainsaw is a user-friendly saw that can handle most projects well, making it the perfect companion for anyone who likes to carve with a compact saw. It only weighs 6 pounds and has a 14″ bar and a powerful 8 amp motor supplied with a 120 volts power source. This makes it sufficient to do most carving tasks, such as making angle cuts.
It also has a comfortable, rubberized over-grip handle to improve comfort and stability when you are working for longer hours. Additionally, it has an automatic chain tension system that does not require any additional tool to release the chain. However, It does not have automatic oil technology, but it has an easy prime oil pump, making it simple to keep the chain lubricated. The oil level indicator makes operating and maintaining this saw even easier.
The noise level of the saw outside is pretty decent, and even without the earplugs, it would not spoil your ears, unlike the gasoline saws. It is also easy to replace the chain and the bar. It has a 3/8 chain pitch and an o.050 gauge. Therefore when you want to replace a chain, you should check those detail to get the right size.
However, one disadvantage of this chainsaw is that it lacks the power of other alternatives on the market. However, considering the weight and ease of use, it is worth a go.
The Makita Is probably the most economical electric chainsaw on this list, which is one of the many reasons it’s a top contender, in our opinion. That’s not to say that it’s not durable, though! The UC4051A will easily power through green or seasoned lumber and leave you with beautifully straight cuts.
It is also one of the easiest weighings, only 2.2 pounds. It has a 16″ bar, a built-in current limiter engineered to protect the 14.5 amps motor from burnout by reducing power when the saw is overloaded, and an electric chain brake for maximum productivity. Additional features include an automatic chain oiler for heavy continuous cutting and a large oil reservoir with a view window that allows the operator to check the oil level quickly. For increased comfort, the chain saw has ergonomic rubberized grip handles and a large trigger switch with a soft start for smooth start-ups.
The chain also has a low kickback, stays sharp much longer than full chisel designs, and does not make much noise. It has a 3/8 chain pitch, 56 drive links, and a 0.050 chain gauge, and you can easily replace them.
The only problem you might encounter while using this chainsaw is that it leaks oil sometimes.
Factors to consider when Choosing Electric Chainsaw for Carving
You’ll want to consider a few factors when looking for an electric chainsaw to use for carving.
size and weight of the saw
When looking for a carving chainsaw, you should know that you’ll be holding it up for long periods. Therefore you should choose a compact chainsaw that is reasonably priced and comfortable to use. A good carving chainsaw should be small in size for easier control and around 6-10 pounds depending on your physical capabilities.
power of the saw
A chainsaw’s power determines how much work it can do. Wood-carving chainsaws are usually not the most powerful. This is because this type of work does not require a lot of power. However higher amperage models boast more cutting ability than their lower-amperage counterparts. Because of this, it’s essential to check the power before you buy a saw. A good chainsaw should at least have a 10 amp electric motor powered by 12 voltages outlets.
Ideally, the bar length should match the cutting task at hand. For instance, as you are carving large carvings, you will want to start with a chainsaw with a larger bar, such as an 18-inch, to cut off the sizeable excess wood. But as your carving starts to take shape, you will want to switch to a smaller chainsaw with a medium bar, say 8-12 inches.
The rule of thumb is that the bar length should be at least some inches longer than the width of your project. For example, a 12-inch bar length is suitable for smaller logs less than 8 inches.
Compatibility with a carving bar
Many saws on the market have a standard guiding bar usually meant for cutting trees and pruning. However, the same saw can be modified to make it a carving saw when you have the proper carving bar. Therefore, you should look for a chainsaw that can accept modification of the guiding bar from the standard bar to a carving bar.
Electric chainsaws set up for chainsaw carving typically run:
- 1/4 pitch chain and thus need a 1/4 pitch sprocket…
- or you can use a 3/8lp chain (also called low pro, lo-profile, Picco)
- or .325 pitch chain, which allows you to stay with a 3/8 or 3/8lp sprocket…
However, it would be best if you only used the quarter-tip carving bars when carving with a 3/8 lp or .325 chain. Remember; Whatever pitch of chain you’re using…e.g., 1/4, 325, 3/8lp, you’ll need the same type of sprocket on your chainsaw.
Remember that buying a chainsaw is not just about having one, but also about having something you can use to carve wood. So, after reading this list of what we consider to be the best electric chainsaws on the market, we hope you found some good information to help make your buying decision easier. If you are a beginner and you would want to understand more about chainsaws meant for carving check out Chainsaw carving for beginners.