The 5 Best Chainsaws for Wood Carving (January 2022 Reviews)

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You know it's possible to make wonderfully detailed carvings using a chainsaw so now is the time to find the right one...

Keep reading to see our top picks for the best chainsaw for wood carving and start creating your own wooden masterpieces today!

Top 5 Chainsaws for Wood Carving

Makita 5012B Commercial Grade Electric Chain Saw
GreenWorks 20322 G-MAX Cordless Chainsaw
Ryobi 37cc Gas Chainsaw
Makita XCU02Z X2 LXT Lithium Ion Chain Saw
Husqvarna 240 2HP Saw - 952802154

1. Makita 5012B Commercial Grade Electric Chain Saw

This electric chainsaw from Makita is lightweight and compact enough at just 9 1/2 lbs to satisfy the needs of any wood carver.

Designed to allow for quick cutting and easy handling, this durable and reliable machine features an 11 3/4″ guide bar as well as a chain speed of 5500 FPM which allows it to cut with ease.

With its robust polycarbonate housing, the tool’s lifespan is prolonged and the sprocket which has been installed into the end of its chain bar ensures a smoother chain action.

The user is well protected from flying chips thanks to the large hand protector while the inbuilt overload protector guards against any power surges.

With its double insulation, this chainsaw has been built to last and is protected by a one year manufacturer’s warranty for peace of mind.

This model is also compatible with carving bars and chains to facilitate your wood carving experience.


  • Lightweight at just 9 1/2 lbs
  • Inbuilt overload protector and large hand protector
  • Double insulation for longevity


  • Electric powered saw means that you are restricted to working near a power outlet

2. GreenWorks 20322 G-MAX Cordless Chainsaw

For all of the convenience of a gas powered chainsaw without any of the hassle of ongoing maintenance and expensive gas refills, this cordless chainsaw from GreenWorks is an excellent choice.

It allows the user to work at a distance from their home or workshop without any need for extension cables and with no harmful emissions.

This model’s brushless motor technology enables up to 100 cuts to be carried out on just a single charge and it can also deliver up to 30% more torque for even better cutting performance.

This machine also produces up to 70% less vibration than some of its competitors, increase user comfort and safety when carving wood.

It also has a low kickback chain and a chain brake which reduces the chance of accidents and improves user safety exponentially.

This chainsaw is also very lightweight at just 11.6 pounds, making it easier to maneuver and handle for better agility.


  • Brushless motor technology for faster cutting
  • Low vibration model
  • Excellent safety features


  • No battery supplied
  • Requires the user to wait for the battery to recharge between uses

3. Ryobi 37cc Gas Chainsaw

This robust and powerful gas powered chainsaw from well-known brand Ryobi features a 37 cc engine and an inertia activated chain brain which ensures that the chain can stop automatically.

This model has an anti-vibration handle for better user safety and improved comfort during use while the Safe-T-Tip protects the user against kickback.

This chainsaw also comes with an automatic adjustable oiler which prolongs the life of the chain and bar while the air filter cover can be removed with ease without the need for tools for the user’s greater convenience when performing maintenance.

The chain tensioner can be accessed from the side for easier adjustments, and as this chainsaw is lightweight.

It is easy to handle – ideal for the maneuverability and agility that is necessary when performing complex tasks such as wood carving.

As it is gas powered, it is also perfectly suited to work at some distance from the home or workshop.


  • Powerful 37cc engine
  • Safe-T-Tip protects the user from kickback
  • Anti-vibration handle ensures better user comfort and safety


  • Gas powered machine means ongoing maintenance and the expense of regular refills

4. Makita XCU02Z X2 LXT Lithium Ion Chain Saw

This cordless chainsaw from Makita is a great choice when carving wood at some distance from your home or workshop.

Thanks to its powerful lithium ion batteries, the user can benefit from 36 volt power and a longer running time with a chain speed of 1650 FPM for rapid cutting.

Without any of the harmful emissions or unpleasant fumes produced by gas powered machines, the Makita XCU02Z also produces very low noise levels of only 89 decibels, making this a great choice when sound levels are at a premium.

Thanks to its 12 inch guide bar, this chainsaw has an increased capacity and its tool-less chain adjustment system makes maintenance and operation more convenient for the user.

This lightweight model only weighs just over 10 pounds and this allows for much easier and more maneuverable handling while carving while the integrated Extreme Protection Technology ensures higher resistance to water and dust even in the harshest of jobsite conditions.

This cordless chainsaw also features a soft grip rubberized top handle which has been engineered specifically for the user to be able to easily apply a more even cutting pressure.

This model also has instant starts, making it much faster to get going than a traditional gas powered model.


  • Low noise levels
  • Rubberized top handle for better cutting pressure
  • Weighs just over 10 lbs for lightweight handling


  • Have to wait for battery to recharge between uses

5. Husqvarna 240 2HP Saw - 952802154

Husqvarna chainsaws are well known for their high quality and this model does not disappoint.

Lightweight and easy to handle at just 10.3 pounds, the Husqvarna 240 2 horsepower chainsaw is agile and maneuverable enough to easily carve and sculpt wood.

Featuring a 16″ bar and a 38cc engine, this model is powerful and robust and thanks to the side mounted chain tensioner, gaining access is very convenient for the user.

This machine is also easy to start in all conditions and a breeze to operate thanks to the manufacturer’s excellent features including the ergonomic design which improves the user’s comfort and safety.

This chainsaw also features the Husqvarna X-Torq engine which is powerful while producing fewer harmful emissions to protect the environment.

This model also features a combined choke and stop control for better and more efficient running.


  • Lightweight and maneuverable at just 10.3 lbs
  • Side mounted chain tensioner for easy access
  • X-Torq engine for power with lower emissions


  • Requires ongoing maintenance

How to Choose the Best Chainsaw for Wood Carving?

To choose the best chainsaw for wood carving, there are some things you need to consider. These include noise, emission, safety, source of power, and bar and chain.

Let's get right into this so you can pick the best carving chainsaw for you.

Noise and Emission

chainsaw carving

The first thing you need to consider when you choose the best wood carving chainsaw for you is the chainsaw’s noise and emission.

Ideally, you want these elements to stay as quiet and low as possible. Otherwise, it can distract you and you can lose in carving accuracy.

It’s also not good for the environment to have a high-emission chainsaw, as it pollutes. And your neighbors or your eardrums won’t like the noise pollution either. So pick a wood carving chainsaw with the least amount of noise and zero emission, if possible.


Then, you need to consider safety to pick the right chainsaw. You need to be as safe as possible when you use your chainsaw. This includes wearing protective equipment while woodcutting and working in a safe environment.

Protective equipment while woodcutting includes a safety helmet, work gloves, chainsaw chaps, earmuffs, protective glasses, and steel-toed working boots. Also, make sure that you do your chainsaw carving in a safe environment.

This also means you should pick a wood carving chainsaw that's as safe as possible. User safety is the most important thing for any tool, especially for power tools.

Ideally, pick a chainsaw with a stable base that provides less kickback. You can also find a chainsaw with a safety break. That's also another useful safety additional feature you can have. There are of course more safety features you can find in modern chainsaws.

Source of Power

Next, you need to find a chainsaw that has the source of power that's adapted for its intended use, which, in this case, is woodcarving.

For this type of job, you can choose between a gas chainsaw or an electric chainsaw. You can then pick a cordless chainsaw or a corded chainsaw.

Gas chainsaw

A gas chainsaw is the most powerful one, but it's loud, expensive, and has a lot of emissions. It's very powerful and can give you great results and versatility. However, you need to be ready to maintain it and regularly provide it with gas fuel.

Electric corded chainsaw

You could also pick an electric corded chainsaw. It gives you infinite battery life and you can do a lot with it, but the disadvantage is that you always need to be near a plug.

Electric cordless chainsaw

If you want an electric chainsaw but don't want the fuss of plugging it in and want more autonomy, you could pick an electric cordless chainsaw.

You don't need a cord or fuel, but it won't last as long as the others, as it has rechargeable batteries. The battery life isn't long and it doesn't offer as much power as an electric corded chainsaw or a gas one.

Bar and Chain

bar and chain for wood carving

The bar and chain combo is what carves, so it's essential you pick the right ones. If you pick a good bar length, you get increased power and capacity. For woodcarving, you can choose any saws from 10 to 18 inches.

As for the chain, the pitch and the gauge need to be up to standards as well. Ideally, check the speed of the chain for any details or sensitive work.

Frequently Asked Questions

Let's move on to a quick FAQ so you can become an expert on wood carving chainsaws.

What is chainsaw wood carving?

Chainsaw wood carving is a form of carving. As you can tell by this method's name, it's specifically meant for wood.

This carving method is also considered as an art form, especially after the 1950s, where it became increasingly popular. A lot of carpenters and woodworkers started to use a chainsaw for carving wood.

You can carve pretty much anything with a carving chainsaw and some other shaping tools. These include chisels, knives, power carvers, and gouges.

Most people carve sculptures. Examples include bears, horses, tables, hawks... It's pretty much anything you want to carve!

What do you need to get started with chainsaw wood carving?

There are a few things you need to get started with chainsaw wood carving.

First, you need a chainsaw. This is straightforward but essential for wood carving. Next, you need extra sketching and pattern tools. These depend on what you carve, and what level you're at. Finally, you need the right wood piece to carve and protective gear.

Take some time to get familiar with what you need to get the best possible wood carving result.

What are the benefits of using a chainsaw for wood carving?

What do you need to get started with chainsaw wood carving?

A chainsaw has a lot of benefits for wood carving. You can use it instead of carving tools such as knives or chisels, for example.

Another benefit is that you can use wood pieces for wood carving that you wouldn't use in other jobs. You can use end pieces, scraps, or lower-quality wood you have lying around. As long as you have imagination and a chainsaw, you can do pretty much anything you want!

What chainsaw is best for carving?

There's not only one chainsaw that's best for carving. There are so many options out there. We can personally recommend you the Makita electric chainsaw you can find in our buying guide above.

However, it's up to you to find the right chainsaw for you and for your woodcarving. Consider some aspects like power, safety, blade size, bar, chain, noise, and emission. Also pick one that's comfortable to handle for a long period of time.

You can be sure that you will find the one that best fits your needs in our selection above.


No matter what type of wood carving you do, there's the right chainsaw for you. And you can find it right here in our buying guide.

Whether you choose an electric or gas one, make sure you pick the one that fits your needs and your creativity!


Drew - CountrySilo


Co-Founder CountrySilo

Growing up around the farmlands of the Midwest you learn at an early age getting your hands dirty is a way of life. Whether it was helping my Grandpa make cedar furniture, mowing neighborhood lawns or throwing bails of hay the do-it-yourself mentality runs strong in our family.

I am excited to help you tackle your projects and discover new ways to make your house a home!

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