Yes, you can cut railroad ties with a chainsaw if it is equipped with the right blade. Ensure your chainsaw has a strong, durable chain designed to cut through the tough wood and any embedded materials.
Railroad ties, those sturdy, long-lasting wooden beams that support the rails on a railroad track, pose a significant challenge due to their size and the materials used to preserve them.
Often impregnated with creosote or other preservatives, they are designed to resist decay and insect infestation.
Cutting through these ties requires power and the right tools, making a chainsaw a popular choice.
For those engaged in landscaping, construction, or re-purposing old tracks, understanding how to effectively and safely slice through railroad ties is essential.
It isn’t just a matter of having a chainsaw; selecting the correct chain and maintaining safety precautions are critical to the task at hand.
The Challenges Of Cutting Railroad Ties
Understanding the challenges of cutting railroad ties requires a mixture of practical skill and knowledge.
These heavy, dense objects serve a critical role in the foundation of our railways, making their modification not something to take lightly.
Anyone contemplating this task should know what they’re up against.
The Toughness And Density Of Railroad Ties
Railroad ties are designed to last which means they are incredibly tough.
The wood used to create these ties undergoes a pressure treatment process involving preservatives.
This not only makes them incredibly dense but also resistant to decay and pests.
Attempting to cut through these ties with a chainsaw will be met with a level of resistance demanding both the right equipment and ample physical strength.
Hazards Of Cutting Railroad Ties
- The preservatives in railroad ties can dull or damage chainsaw blades.
- Without proper gear and technique, injury from kickback or flying debris is a real threat.
- Breathing in sawdust from treated wood poses health hazards.
Legal And Environmental Considerations
Cutting railroad ties brings more than just technical challenges.
Legal restrictions may limit unauthorized alterations due to the integral role of ties in railway safety.
Environmental considerations are also significant. Treated wood contains chemicals that can be harmful, potentially violating environmental protection laws.
Maintaining Your Chainsaw After Cutting Railroad Ties
Cutting through railroad ties with a chainsaw demands rigorous maintenance to ensure longevity and performance.
Post-use, meticulous chain cleaning, and proper lubrication are critical for your chainsaw’s durability.
Cutting railroad ties with a chainsaw is a tough job. Your chainsaw needs extra care afterward.
A well-maintained chainsaw lasts longer. Perform these steps to keep it in top shape.
Cleaning Your Chainsaw
- Turn off the chainsaw and let it cool.
- Remove dirt and sawdust with a brush.
- Clean the chain groove with a special tool.
- Wipe down the body with a damp cloth.
- Clean the air filter under running water.
- Dry and reassemble all parts.
Regular cleaning prevents build-up and damage.
Sharpening The Chain
Cutting tough materials dulls the chain. A sharp chain is safer and more efficient. Follow these steps:
- Secure the chainsaw and the chain.
- Use a round file matching the chain’s size.
- File each tooth with smooth, even strokes.
- Keep the file’s angle consistent.
- Check for even sharpness across teeth.
A sharp chain cuts better and reduces strain on the motor.
Inspecting For Wear And Damage After Use
Always check the chainsaw after use. Look for these:
- Cracks, bends, or excessive wear in the chain.
- Damage to the guide bar.
- Loose or missing bolts and nuts.
- Conditions of the sprocket and clutch.
- Any unusual signs on the engine or housing.
An inspection catches problems early for safer operation and repairs.
Keep your chainsaw running smoothly for the next project. Remember, safety comes first with powerful tools. Maintain it well after each use.
Is A Chainsaw The Right Tool For The Job?
Cutting railroad ties requires a powerful and effective tool.
Summarizing The Feasibility And Risks
A chainsaw can cut through wood. Railroad ties are large and tough.
They often contain metal components and creosote. These can damage chainsaw blades.
Weighing The Pros And Cons
- Chainsaws work fast.
- They are easy to move around.
- Blades may hit metal, causing injury.
- Chainsaws can deteriorate quickly.
Consider your safety and the chainsaw’s condition. Use chainsaws specifically designed for tough wood.
Inspect ties for metal before cutting. Protective gear is essential.
Alternative tools could be better for longevity and efficiency.
Frequently Asked Questions For Can You Cut Railroad Ties With A Chainsaw
What Is The Best Thing To Cut Railroad Ties With?
The best tool to cut railroad ties is a chainsaw equipped with a carbide-tipped blade designed for dense materials.
Why Are Railroad Ties Illegal?
Railroad ties are often treated with chemicals, like creosote, which can be harmful to the environment and health, leading to their restricted or illegal use in some places.
Do Railroad Ties Have Metal In Them?
Yes, railroad ties may contain metal, primarily from plates or spikes used to secure them to the tracks.
How Heavy Is A Railroad Tie?
A standard railroad tie weighs approximately 200 pounds (90 kilograms).
Cutting railroad ties with a chainsaw can be a tough task.
It requires proper safety gear, a powerful saw, and a sharp blade. Always prioritize your safety and consider the legal implications.
For a job well done, remember to maintain your equipment and follow best practices.