Can You Put a Longer Bar on a Chainsaw?

For some time now, people have been asking the question: “Can you put a longer bar on a chainsaw?”

Putting a longer bard on a chain saw is not recommended due to the dangerous design of these power tools. It is because most of the chainsaws may kickback during the action, resulting in tool damage or personal injuries.

It seems like most people who ask this question do so because they want to cut something at a distance but don’t have a saw near them or they want to cut something without getting too close.

With this in mind, we will explore whether or not it is possible by looking at different designs of chainsaws as well as what’s been done so far.

Can you Put a Long Bar on a Chain Saw?

can you put a longer bar on a chainsaw

The official answer to this question is NO, because of the design and construction of the chainsaw itself.

Most saws are built with a short bar for portability and protection against kickback. A longer bar will extend the distance between the bar tip and the engine which means that if the tip contacts an object it may result in damage to the chainsaw, the object, or both.

Moreover, if you use a saw with a long bar on woody growth that is above waist height you are exposing yourself to potentially serious injury should your saw kick back at you.

However, it is possible to use longer bars if they are designed for this purpose. For instance, the Stihl chainsaw can use a variety of bars designed for cutting agricultural crops. These have been specially made to be able to handle the additional weight and stress that come with a longer bar.

Still, it is important to note that while this may work on some chainsaws, there are some saws that will not support a longer bar. This includes the majority of chainsaws that are designed for domestic use.

Other Designs

While the official answer is NO, there are some designs out there where it seems possible. There have been fully automatic saws on display at various exhibitions around the world that include a long bar which you can see in the video below:

These types of saws are not commercially available but that does not mean that it is impossible. It seems as though these designs use a longer bar with a ratchet system at the back of the saw to prevent kickback.

There are also other types of saws where different methods have been used for cutting down long tree branches. These include tree shears, pruning saws, and motorized pruning shears.

These types of tools are specifically designed for this purpose because they can be used safely with minimal risk of kickback.

Furthermore, because the bars on these devices are also quite short, you will need to use an extension tool like a pole pruner to reach high branches. Remember that if you want to use a pole pruner, the tip of this tool must reach past the saw’s bar.

There are also other ways for cutting long branches using a chainsaw without using a longer bar. This includes reaching up and cutting from above as well as climbing the tree and cutting from within.

However, it is important to consider the dangers of using a chainsaw at height before attempting this.

Why You Might Want to Put a Longer Bar on a Chainsaw

a chainsaw resting after cutting a huge log

There are times when it is simply not possible to cut something from the ground with your normal saw because of the height of the object that needs cutting or because of strong winds that make things dangerous.

In such cases, you might consider using a pole pruner or other similar tool to cut from above. However, this is often not an option and so the only real alternative is to use a different chainsaw with a longer bar.

There are specially designed saws available for this purpose and these include long-reach pruners and tree cutter saws. These are available for purchase online and you can check out our detailed reviews on these types of saws here.

Different Types of Bar Designs for Different Chainsaws

Before you go out shopping for a longer bar, it is important to understand that they are designed differently depending on the type of saw you currently own.

For example, most chainsaws have a standard size 7-inch bar while most professionals use pole pruners to have an 8-inch bar. Remember that if you try to attach an incompatible length bar to your chainsaw, it may result in damage to the saw.

There are only certain types of bars that you will be able to attach to your chainsaw. For example, it is not possible for you to attach an 8-inch bar onto a standard size 7-inch saw because the teeth on these bars are too far apart.

Bar Lengths

Remember that a longer bar will not always give you more reach. It all depends on the angle at which you cut too. For example, if your tree branches are growing horizontally, a 10-inch bar may be too long for you to use because of the angle.

However, if your tree or vegetation branches are growing vertically then a longer bar will give you more reach. It is important that before purchasing any longer bars for your chainsaws to understand what you plan on cutting and where its main features are located.

This will help you choose whether it makes sense to attach a long bar on your chainsaw or whether you should opt for an extension tool instead.

Also, never assume that the more expensive brands of saws are better. Always check customer reviews before purchasing any product online.

Chainsaw Maintenance Tips for Longer Bars

Even if you have bought the correct length of chain for your chainsaw using a longer bar, you will still need to keep your saw well maintained.

Just because the bar is longer does not mean that it can cut efficiently through larger branches without causing any problems with efficiency and cutting speed.

Here are a few maintenance tips for your bars:

  • Clean out all of the debris from time to time. Keep your bar and chain oiled too
  • Make sure you have the right tension setting for longer bars. Remember that a long bar will tend to whip more so you must adjust things accordingly
  • Use a lubricant or file on your saw if it starts to produce excessive friction, heat, or noise

Benefits of Having an Extended Bar on Your Chainsaw

a chainsaw cutting higher branches

There are some definite benefits of having an extended bar on your chainsaws. These include:

Increased Reach

Sometimes you are simply unable to cut something from the ground with a normal length chain because it is too high. Using a longer bar with your saw will give you more reach with your cutting which can make all the difference when it comes to cutting in tight areas

More Power

Chainsaws are powerful but they need everything in order to function efficiently. Having a longer bar means you won’t be cutting at an angle so your chainsaw will have more power than it would with a standard length

Speed of Cutting

Since your chainsaw is not forced to cut at an angle, you will be able to cut through your target branches much faster. When you have less resistance, things move more smoothly which means  more efficiency

More Control

Long bars give you better control over your chainsaw. You can manipulate the saw itself more easily when cutting overhead with a longer bar which helps significantly if you are trying to cut branches on a steep slope.

Less Fatigue

Longer bars make cutting overhead much easier on your back and arms. When you do not have to bend over or reach high up in order to get a cut, it saves a lot of energy and reduces the risk of injury from getting sore joints, etc.


Can you Put an Extended Bar on a Chainsaw? An important thing to keep in mind before we begin is that not all saws are suitable for extended bars. It all depends on the length of your bar and how well it fits onto your particular chainsaw model.

Also, you will need to make sure that your current chain is compatible with an 8-inch bar since they are completely different sizes. If you do decide to attach an extended bar onto your chainsaw, make sure you read the user manual on how to do this safely.

An extended bar can be a great investment if you are looking for increased reach or power when cutting with your saw. However, it is not suitable for everyone or every type of job that needs doing. If you keep the above points in mind before purchasing an extended bar, you will find that it is much easier to decide whether or not you need one.

Good luck! and Have a Great Day!


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