Kickback 066

Al Smith

Mac Daddy
Mar 6, 2005
Northern Ohio
I just hate when this happens but I have to report another accident .

Tom ,the tree guy that I help with his equipment got in a wrestling match with the hottest running 066 I've ever seen and lost .

He was cutting the wedge on a giant oak tree and either caught the tip or dropped the wedge on the chain .It threw him and the saw backwards out of the cut .The saw came over and as a natural reaction he threw up his left hand to fend it off .

It got him pretty bad . They think they can save all his fingers but he's going to be off the job for a while .I imagine though as owner of the company he most likely will be supervising after he heals a bit .

So ,just a heads up folks ,be carefull .Those dog got some nasty teeth .
Man, I hate to hear about that stuff and Hope he heals good. I assume he was one handing the saw ??? fill us in if you don't mind.
Bummer Al, hope your buddy heals quick. Can't be too careful. The 088 threw me on my butt once, no injury fortunately. I plant my feet good after that experience.
Never fun to hear things like this.

It is easyer than most think to get kick's. There is no real fool proof way to prevent it other than not cut!

It can happen to anyone, anytime!

Play safe!
I like to learn as much as I can about these things so this will not happen to me...

Do you know or can you find out what kind of face cut he was making? (Conventional, Humbolt, Open face?)

And did he make the top cut first, then the bottom cut?

That oak is heavy! I can imagine making the bottom cut last and that heavy wedge falling on the bar, then the wedge deciding to stay put.

I do this sometimes and the piece of wood will go rolling forward when it hits the chain, but this is with lighter wood. Perhaps I should be doing the top cut last? Suggestions?
I got knocked on my ass by an 076 way back when... Got lucky... no cuts... just a bruised ego and some scratches. Those big displacement saws are no joke...

Sorry about yer buddy Al...

I've been tossed, pulled, kicked, seen saws travel 20 meter in a blink of a eye, but alway's been lucky!
Once a big saw is in motion, there is no stopping it. Best is to not be in the way.

Saty rule #3: Alway's make top cut first in a direction cut....
Bottom cut first in Hombolt...
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  • #14
The facts as I know them .First he going to be okay ,no skin grafts ,no bone loss . Two hours in surgery to sew him back together last night .

The tree was a giant of an oak an old wolf tree left over from the 1800's that grew in the open for the last 150-175 years .In the ritzy end of town ,it became a hazard . I haven't seen it yet but Tom's crew said it was right at 7 feet across . These old oaks grown without competition get about 80 feet and spread out like a live oak.Huge canopy and huger trunk to hold it all up . There are still a few of them left but they are rare .

Tom talked about when he was here last week .I suggested he use my 125 Mac with a 48" or his 084 with a 42" .Evidently he thought he could get it with the 66 and a 36" bar .

According to his crew ,he made his notch and was cutting the center out of the bottom when this all took place . I speculate he might have cut loose the top of the wedge and the bottom fell on the outside of the bar and caused the problem .That size of a wedge would likely weigh 200 pounds .

I'll get a picture of the stump and talk to Tom when I get a chance .
I am VERY understanding and sympathetic Al!!!!! (they don't call me 9 1/4 for nothing:lol:)

That sounds VERY bad to me!!! I hope all goes well for him! That micros surgery isn't any fun, and there is no way in hell to do ANYTHING without bumpng them!
Dang! I can't imagine an accident like that. I hope he can work again soon.

I have noticed if the dept gauges on a chain are too low it is choppy and likely to get a kick back. Too low of dept gauges and a really sharp chain seem to be a bad combination. Those added up with a huge notch can be understanding for a accident. I haven't been thrown or have I experienced a major kick back. And by the sound of this, I don't want to either.

But, it is good to be reminded of this stuff. Because after a while of safe practices and no incidents, I believe our guards can come down (so to speak) and WHAM! --Some one can get hurt bad.
I wish him the best. reminds me to keep my guard up with a saw. I have a buddy that run a saw up his neck and face back in the 80's. Looks like he has tiger stripes running up and down his face and throat. Almost died
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  • #20
Another thing I forgot to mention .Tom runs Stihl branded semi chisel with the anti kickback links .

Basically because they chew up chains on nails ,rocks etc and also because he buys locally from the dealer .

I ran that same saw that ate him up about 3 weeks ago .Just a typical 066 but with super amount of power .This leads me to believe he caught the top edge of the chain on the wedge .
I'm typically extra wary of folks who have done tree work for decades but still use the 'safety' chain. In my experience those people usually don't have an extensive understanding of how chain cuts, nor are they very good at sharpening their own chains. And if they haven't learned that much about chain after using it for 10-20 years then they aren't likely to change any time soon.

Yeah, beat me up for saying this, but it's true in my experience. I'm less comfortable working around a sawyer using safety chain than working around a sawyer who files his own full chisel, non-safety chain. The guys running safety chain seem much more likely to have an accident.
Another thing I forgot to mention .Tom runs Stihl branded semi chisel with the anti kickback links ..

I wouldn't think the safety chain would have any more safety than a regular chain if the chain on the top of the bar is suddenly pinched and you get a push back situation???
Hope he heals up well... Been pushed down once or twice.. Or pushed back anyway on some big lumber... Just pays to expect it to happen and prepare and brace ya self.. these big saws will kill ya.
Stay safe ....