"At Pivot Point of Horizontal and Vertical" --by RusticWoodArt

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Blog entry by frank posted 10-04-2007 03:59 PM 1073 reads 0 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch

At Pivot Point of Horizontal and Vertical

—-have you yet wondered what is at the point of pivot here, where I tilt my saw from horizontal in a continuous downward motion to reach a place of vertical cut?

I must confess that the terms here ‘horizontal’ and ‘vertical’ can lead to many understandings, so I am going to try and narrow down what I am talking about here. This will lead me out again, today and over the weekend to shoot some more photo’s so that the clarification, between ‘horizontal’ and ‘vertical’ is further understood.

One of the problems that I am running into here, is since you are not here standing and watching me do this, I may have to make some type of jigs to hold the saw in place, while I maneuver through the cut and take pictures. For me, when I am in ‘the process’ of cutting a slab, it is mental focus to the max on making that cut and keeping the saw straight and on line. So you will see in this blog story that when I stop to take a picture, somewhere in the cut, getting back into the flow of the cut can be hard….as evidenced here by some slabs that ended up being for firewood….

....there you have it, the evidence of what happens from stopping in the middle of a cut and then having a try at getting the cut going again and maintaining my width across the the slab. I went off on my cut after stopping to make these photos….and then restarting the chainsaw ‘on the ground’, to complete more of the cut….


....and yes, in a perfect world of woodworking delights….I would be running a class here and you would be standing there at the side watching all this as I went from start to finish, in one continuous cut along the length of the log. So if any want to come and apprentice, while working with me, let me know….?

What I am showing, teaching and trying to get across here is that you can do this….but you will have to find the time to practice, practice and more practice! Some may say or think, ”well I’m not woodworking with slabs so this really has no relevance to me”, and to those I would offer the thought that maybe you might still want to cut//rip//crosscut slabs, so that you then have workable sizes of wood to re-saw by bandsawing! A lot of what I am cutting here will not be used for slab benches or tops, but will eventually be ran through my band saw and become other types and pieces of furniture and ‘wood art’. You only limit your-self in the woodworking process, by how much you limit your thinking from all the opportunities possible. Also, there is the satisfaction that comes from being able to say; ”I made this piece of furniture my-self”, knowing that you really did. I cut the tree down, I cut the log into lengths, I cut the log into workable slabs, I air dry those slabs, I work those slabs into the furniture and ‘wood art’ I sell….and yes, there are many starting points along this ‘I process’, but then again ‘I am’....

When I’m talking here of going from horizontal to vertical in ‘the process’ of the cut, what I am talking about is not so much cutting on the ‘horizontal plane’ as opposed to the ‘vertical plane’, but by one continuous on-going sweeping motion, I am pivoting the saw back and forth on those saw teeth there and so after I reached all the way down to vertical, I will come up in one sweep and move backwards with a horizontal motion of cut to set my new line as I now start pivoting downward once again. Now this is where it may get confusing so that is also why I am thinking on doing some sketches in a coming blog where I may be able to show this pivoting continuous motion that is all-ways going on, till I reach the end of the log. Sound confusing, well I’m trying to work this out, so that one will see just how easy it really is as one gains the understanding and confidence of being more then able, to do this ‘freehand’ method of ripping some slabs.

Much going on here, as evidenced by the many questions in my last blog entry and I will also be answering those questions and comments in the next blog story….such as:

1) ”Frank, do you do anything special to make your cut so it will be perpendicular to the plane, you know straight up and down?

2) ”I’d have to imagine that there would be logs where the teeth on one side of the bar would not engage the log on the same level on the other side of the bar.

3) ”You may even have logs where the teeth only engage the log on one side of the bar only.

4) ”....the width of the bar itself is enough to keep the saw going straight ahead, similarly as what a wide bandsaw blade does versus a narrow one.

5) ”Frank! Are you using a rip chain on your saw or the standard crosscut type?

6) ”....if using a standard chain, I found that cutting horizontally produces nice long shavings and the saw isn’t as over worked as if trying to cut with the saw as you have described,

NOW I thank you Rob, Jojo and Mark for your questions and comments and I will be answering them very soon in the coming days….it’s just that I think some of these questions and comments will benefit you and others, if I also include some photos some of these ‘cuts’....’horizontal and vertical’....and angles of degrees for the chain, the difference in ‘crosscut chains’ and ‘ripping chains’. I also welcome any and more questions that will yet come from this blog story or any others in this series….so think away and write me in the comments.

I will now leave you with a photo of what I am going for, as I proceed down the length of the log….

Thank you.

” smart, work safe, and live, to work the wood….”

-- --frank, NH,

5 comments so far

View RobS's profile


1334 posts in 4276 days

#1 posted 10-04-2007 04:32 PM

Your accuracy amazes me. Keep on slabbin and bloggin.

-- Rob (A) Waxahachie,TX

View frank's profile


1492 posts in 4175 days

#2 posted 10-05-2007 04:23 AM

Hi Rob;
—-well I’m going to be busy till some-where around Sunday….so then I’ll try and get some more pictures and sketches put together so I can start answering everyone’s questions.

Standing outside in the front this evening around 5:30 and here comes a full size large racked bull moose, walking right past me, say about 40’ from where I was standing. He looked at me and just seemed to say, see you later as he went on across the field. By the time I got into the house and grabed the camera, he was down the way….at the strides he was taking I never had a chance to catch up. Times like that just leave me in awe….

Thank you.

-- --frank, NH,

View 's profile

593 posts in 3941 days

#3 posted 10-05-2007 10:58 AM

Ditto Rob, this guy knows how to handle a chainsaw!

Frank, I guess your legs aren’t as long as the moose’s so, I don’t think is worth trying to catch up wit him… :o)

On the other hand, I’m pretty sure now I’ve grasped the whole meaning of your ”vertical vs horizontal” dIchotomy with the current post. As a matter of fact, I see a contiunous flow of pendular movement going from horizontal to vertical and then starting over again where the last cut ended, and repeat sd infinitum…

Take your time to post at your own pace, good stuff is worth waiting. Might I suggest your wife teaking the pictures -or even better, some video- while you do the cuts uninterrupted?

View frank's profile


1492 posts in 4175 days

#4 posted 10-05-2007 12:14 PM

Hi Jojo;
—-yes, I’m glad you’ve gotten the understanding of the ’pendular movement’—-”going from horizontal to vertical and then starting over again where the last cut ended, and repeat sd infinitum…

It’s in the continuous movement that I am able to achieve such straight cuts, and when I stop in the middle and start again….well you see my firewood up there in the first picture. Also once again I might mention that since I’m using such a larger beast and 7.2 of that is horsepower, along with a 24’’ inch blade….or 36’’, the weight of the saw, plus horsepower, bar length and ripping chain all work together to keep me going straight….and then one must forget the teeth on the saw where they connect at the log to get my ‘pivot point’.

During the cut, I’m CONSTANTLY GOING THROUGH A CONTINUOUS MOTION of horizontal to vertical and then sweeping up, I cut a line and start all over again. Therefore I am in one focus with the log and have all-ready worked out or cleaned out the ground area around my feet, so that I know where they are at all times. This may sound hard or complicated to some, but once you grasp the idea as you seem to by your comment it really becomes very easy.

I’m busy today and Saturday, but will try and work out some photos on Sunday….take care!
Thank you.

-- --frank, NH,

View 's profile

593 posts in 3941 days

#5 posted 10-05-2007 06:04 PM

”This may sound hard or complicated ”, Frank dixit.

It doesn’t at all. You made it very clear with a few sentences and a picture. Thanks again.

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