Rope Saw




Introduction: Rope Saw

I needed to remove some tree limbs that were touching my roof, about 25-30 feet up, no extension ladder. You can buy a rope saw... $40-$50 :-(

I used what I had lying around, you can improvise.

- Chain saw chain (old, you're going to be cutting it) sharp
- 60 ft or so of rope, I used 1/4 in nylon
- S hooks (2)
- metal coat hanger (or similar heavy wire)
- handles, 6 in, broom handle or something (2)
- electrical tape

- Dremmel
- Vice-grips
- Vice

Step 1: Get Your Chain.

I think I used a 16 or 18 inch

Step 2: Cut the Chain

It doesn't really matter where.

Step 3: Grinding

I cut off the last two cutting teeth on either end, so the wouldn't cut things and catch on stuff.

I also cut down a couple drive teeth, so the chain will fold over.

Step 4: S Hooks

Bend your S hooks closed and feed the chain through (might want to do those in the opposite order)

Step 5: Secure the Ends

I used a wire coat hanger, cause that's what I had, it worked pretty well. The Vice-grips helped a lot here.

Step 6: Rope

I used 60 feet, I wanted to reach some specific branches. This gave me a reach of 30 feet.

Step 7: Knots

Use your fancy boy scout skills!

and tape up the ends of the chain.

Step 8: Handles

Ultimately, I found these to not be that useful. Unless you are at the max hight, you won't use them.

Step 9: You Are Done!

After trying to get the end up over the branch, I made an accessory.

A weight on a small string, for throwing.
Also, look at which way the teeth are going, that will be the side you pull to cut. I marked the handles "cut" and "throw".

Step 10: Tip

You might need to pull back and twist the rope a little to flip the blade.

I'll be honest, this thing worked way better than I though it would!

Step 11: Oh.. and Be Careful!!

That suckered is sharp... And it's a chain saw blade on the end of some rope... Not the safest thin ever!

And don't stand right under the tree.... That's why we made the ropes longer :-)

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    6 Discussions


    4 years ago

    Worked with a friend who made one of these today. He took down several 4-5" limbs and it worked great.
    He modified the design slightly, adding cheap caribiners and wiring them directly to the blade. This allowed him the attach and remove the ropes easily.


    5 years ago

    Thanks for the idea. I just built one of these and took down a 8" diameter branch at 15-20' high. Brilliant!


    6 years ago

    I have one of these I made years ago. Having a welder I'm spoiled but I split steel rings and welded them for the ends. Still great idea working within your means and getting the project done.