8 Best Hand Saws For Cutting Trees of 2024

By Harry RamosLast update: 2024-07-12

Every avid gardener knows the benefits of a trimming chainsaw.

But it's not always a wise idea to shape your trees with one.

It's heavy-duty, noisy, and too messy.

A hand saw can also get the job done with less hassle.

That is why getting the best hand saw for cutting trees will make pruning branches a lot easier. I have a bunch of different options to review here. All of them are irreplaceable in my gardening kit.

Here are the best hand saws for cutting trees you can buy in 2024:

  • Best Overall (Rip-Cut Saws): WilFiks 16" Pro Hand Saw
  • Best For Fast, Efficient Cuts (Rip-Cut Saws): IRWIN Hand Saw
  • Lightweight (Rip-Cut Saws): HAUTMEC Hand Saw
  • Best Overall (Bow Saws): Bahco 10-30-23 30-Inch Ergo Bow Saw for Green Wood
  • Best for Small Trees (Bow Saws): BAHCO 332-21-51 21 Inch Pointed Nose Bow Saw
  • Best for Moderate Trees (Bow Saws): GreatNeck Saw BB24 24" Bow Saw
  • Best Hacksaw: CRAFTSMAN 12-Inch Hacksaw
  • Best Folding Hand Saw: Corona RazorTOOTH Folding Pruning Saw
8 Best Hand Saws For Cutting Trees
Best Overall
WilFiks 16" Pro Hand Saw
  • Rip-Cut Saws
Best For Fast, Efficient Cuts
IRWIN Hand Saw
    Lightweight
    HAUTMEC Hand Saw
      Best Overall
      Bahco 10-30-23 30-Inch Ergo Bow Saw for Green Wood
      • Bow Saws
      Best for Small Trees
      BAHCO 332-21-51 21 Inch Pointed Nose Bow Saw
      • Bow Saws
      Best for Moderate Trees
      GreatNeck Saw BB24 24" Bow Saw
      • Bow Saws
      Best Hacksaw
      CRAFTSMAN 12-Inch Hacksaw
        Best Folding Hand Saw
        Corona RazorTOOTH Folding Pruning Saw

          Best Overall (Rip-Cut Saws): WilFiks 16" Pro Hand Saw

          WilFiks 16
          WilFiks 16" Pro Hand Saw
          Pros
          • Super durable construction

          • Anti-slip handle

          • Thick and sturdy blade

          • Cut 50% faster than a traditional handsaw

          • Ideal for any work with wood, plastic, plywood, wallboard

          • Easy to reshape after bending

          Cons
          • Leave jagged and rough wood

          • A bit small for larger branches

          This WilFiks always brings pleasant outcomes to all of my cutting sections. It performs quite well in tenons, dovetails, and mitres.

          At first, I was doubtful about the saw's sharpness, but it cut through branches like a charm. I did saw off some palm tree stumps and felt happy with the result.

          Looking at its teeth, you can see that it can give precise cuts without putting much effort. More than that, it is induction-hardened for extra sharpness that lives 5-time longer than standard ones.

          I believe the blade is made of very strong and sturdy metal. It is 9 TPI high carbon steel as I read in the specs. And I would put it under the category of heavy-duty. I can even use it on PVC pipes, metal rebar, or even my wife's DIY projects.

          Cutting with this saw is pretty effortless. It features an anti-slip handle for your sweaty hand. In fact, my soaking hands felt the gripping on this unit is excellent. It didn't slide off my hand though yet lost any traction. The ergonomic design also makes it suitable for any hand size.

          WilFiks 16" Pro Hand Saw Specifications

          Weight

          13.6 ounces

          Length

          16 inches

          Material

          9 TPI high carbon steel blade

          Highlight Features

          Made of durable and sturdy carbon steel for extra sharpness. Ergonomic design, anti-slip handle

          Verdict

          This WilFiks handsaw is born to make me happy from the design, blade, construction, and performance.

          Best For Fast, Efficient Cuts: IRWIN Hand Saw

          IRWIN Hand Saw
          IRWIN Hand Saw
          Pros
          • Sharp
          • Sturdy and well-made
          • Comfortable to use and hold the handle
          Cons
          • Expensive

          The IRWIN Hand Saw is designed for professional tasks that require fast and efficient cuts. This device is applied with the combination of M2 tooth technology and Tri-Ground teeth, so it can give you this outcome.

          IRWIN Hand Saw Specifications

          Weight

          1 pound

          Length

          15 inches

          Material

          Alloy Steel

          Highlight Features

          M2 tooth technology and tri-ground teeth

          A tapered-pitch nose

          A Thick-Body blade

          The Pro-Touch handle

          Verdict

          The IRWIN Hand Saw can cut as fast and efficiently as possible, so it works well for professional tasks.

          Lightweight: HAUTMEC Hand Saw

          HAUTMEC Hand Saw
          HAUTMEC Hand Saw
          Pros
          • Good price
          • Very lightweight
          • Compact
          • Very sharp teeth
          • Smooth to saw
          Cons
          • Not good protective plastic cover

          Do your DIY tasks require a high level of precision and control? If so, a lightweight hand saw allows you to handle and maneuver it easier to make exact cuts.

          A lightweight hand saw won't cause fatigue and strain on your arms, wrists, and hands when you hold it for a long time to work, so you can comfortably hold and work with it during the day.

          In case you need to use your hand saw for different job sites, this hand saw is lightweight enough for you to carry it anywhere and move around.

          A lightweight model is more functional than what you think. Asides from cutting something, you can use it for shaping dowels.

          HAUTMEC Hand Saw Specifications

          Weight

          ‎13.2 Ounces

          Length

          35 Centimeters

          Material

          Metal

          Highlight Features

          Triple-ground and induction hardened teeth

          45- and 90-degree angles

          Verdict

          The HAUTMEC Hand Saw is lightweight, but it brings many benefits thanks to this feature.

          Best Overall (Bow Saws): Bahco 10-30-23 30-Inch Ergo Bow Saw for Green Wood

          Bahco 10-30-23 30-Inch Ergo Bow Saw for Green Wood
          Bahco 10-30-23 30-Inch Ergo Bow Saw for Green Wood
          Pros
          • Lightweight frame

          • Innovative tensioning mechanism

          • Ergonomic handle

          • Aggressive bite

          • Heavy-duty

          Cons
          • Too aggressive teeth

          • A bit hard to grip

          You know! Wood chopping is a part of my routine because I have a burning stove in the house. This Bahco has been aiding me in that chore for quite a time.

          It's a basic frame saw with a nice handle that comes with a lot of grips.

          So, you'll have a 30-inch thick-cut blade with aggressive teeth. I did measure it and reckoned there are four to five teeth per inch. When I perform on green wood, this length really renders significant movements to cut fast and easy. The wood surface looks neat.

          And I don't see why you can't use it on other materials.

          You can notice that this bow saw features a tensioning mechanism at the handle. It's a well-thought-out design that makes it easy to apply tension when the bite is slack

          The frame is nice, solid, and lightweight. It comes with a little bite guard which is a plus. Because many saw I have arrived wrapped in bubbles and would cut my fingers if I'm not careful.

          Bahco 10-30-23 30-Inch Ergo Bow Saw for Green Wood Specifications

          Weight

          2.88 ounces

          Length

          30 inches

          Material

          N/A

          Highlight Features

          Frame made to be solid and heavy-duty but lightweight. Innovative tensioning mechanism

          Verdict

          Cutting greenwood with this saw requires minimal effort, but I want to address safety as the teeth are too aggressive.

          Best for Small Trees (Bow Saws): BAHCO 332-21-51 21 Inch Pointed Nose Bow Saw

          BAHCO 332-21-51 21 Inch Pointed Nose Bow Saw
          BAHCO 332-21-51 21 Inch Pointed Nose Bow Saw
          Pros
          • Well-balanced

          • Handily pointed nose

          • Competitive price

          • Comfortable handle

          Cons
          • Found nothing to complaint

          Pruning small trees doesn't need a beast saw. When I need to cut little limbs, I use this compact Bahco bow saw.

          It's super light for better control in one hand. The pointed nose is quite handy for reaching tight spaces.

          I pretty much like the handle of this saw as it provides a great grip for easy movement. It allows me to control and cut fast with less effort.

          More than that, while many shallow-teeth saws leave rough cuts, this Bahco creates much cleaner cuts, which is better for the trees.

          I even tried to fall a 6-inch tree and got the section through in 20 minutes. Unbelievable!

          Bahco could have charged more than this price tag, I suppose. But they already made a very sharp and effective saw for a super handsome price.

          BAHCO 332-21-51 21 Inch Pointed Nose Bow Saw Specifications

          Weight

          10.6 ounces

          Length

          21 inches

          Material

          N/A

          Highlight Features

          Designed with a pointed nose to reach tight space. Ergo handle

          Verdict

          When a chainsaw is overkill for light-duty pruning, you will find this Bahco a savior.

          Best for Moderate Trees (Bow Saws): GreatNeck Saw BB24 24" Bow Saw

          GreatNeck Saw BB24 24
          GreatNeck Saw BB24 24" Bow Saw
          Pros
          • Super strong S2 steel frame

          • Long-lasting

          • Fast blade changing

          • Clean cuts

          Cons
          • Blade dulls fast

          You have to handle medium trees sometimes? This GreatNeck 24-inch saw will be the right one.

          First, the frame is built from tubular steel, featuring a chrome alloy hard steel blade for rigid construction. You don't have to worry about it getting broken midway cutting moderate trees.

          More than that, the material is what makes the saw to last. Coming with the excellent craftsmanship of GreatNeck, you can expect the saw to trim with you in years. I actually still have it in my kit after 2 years.

          Second is the chamfered drive end that allows quick blade changing. This great advantage lets you replace blades instantly and safely.

          And anything you buy from GreatNeck, you are backed with a Lifetime Limited Guarantee. Contact them to get your saw covered if there is any problem.

          GreatNeck Saw BB24 24" Bow Saw Specifications

          Weight

          1.13 pounds

          Length

          24 inches

          Material

          Tubular steel and chrome alloy extra hard steel blades

          Highlight Features

          Super strong frame and long-lasting blade. Convenient chamfered drive end for quick blade changing and retention

          Verdict

          This saw cuts fast and clean through moderate trees. It's also sturdy and super pretty easy to use.

          Best Hacksaw: CRAFTSMAN 12-Inch Hacksaw

          CRAFTSMAN 12-Inch Hacksaw
          CRAFTSMAN 12-Inch Hacksaw
          Pros
          • Remarkably durable

          • Razor-sharp

          • Budget

          • Adjustable blade angles

          • Large tension knob

          Cons
          • A bit short in length

          I really like the design of this Craftsman. The finish of the frame feels amazingly solid. It can tension up to 225 pounds to cut through hard material with ease. For trees, you need less effort.

          I also appreciate the design on the tension knob. It's large with a footprint of a propeller making it easy to twist.

          The full handle is a nice upgrade on this hand saw because I assume it offers better grip than most Craftsman saws I have. In particular, it has a solid and stable build. When some models have a very wobble handle, on this saw, you will have a more efficient control when cutting.

          Not only that, the blade can be adjusted to different angles for flush cuts from 90 to 180 degrees. With the 4.375-inch cutting depth, you can hack small limbs without sweating your back.

          Besides cutting trees, I find this saw versatile for cutting PVC, metal, and plastic. Since it's a hacksaw, don't worry if you need to saw some pesky screws for your projects.

          CRAFTSMAN 12-Inch Hacksaw Specifications

          Weight

          1.2 pounds

          Length

          12 inches

          Material

          N/A

          Highlight Features

          Frame can tension up to 225 lbs. Large tension knob. Full grip handle

          Verdict

          Craftsman has never failed me, hence this saw. It's a flexible and solid saw that will get your job done well.

          Best Folding Hand Saw: Corona RazorTOOTH Folding Pruning Saw

          Corona RazorTOOTH Folding Pruning Saw
          Corona RazorTOOTH Folding Pruning Saw
          Pros
          • Impulse hardened teeth

          • Faster cutting speed

          • Comfortable and ergonomic handle

          • Safer with the foldable blade

          Cons
          • Thin metal blade

          • The blade doesn't fit entirely into the handle

          I'm going to show you my new favorite saw. The Corona Razor tooth is a real monster in the wild. It goes through wood like chopping with a chainsaw.

          On top of the roof, this saw is a budget champion that costs you less than 20 bucks for a premium quality. It cuts a lot of larger pieces of wood that what you normally try.

          I mostly bring this saw with me to camp trips and use it to hack down small trees, cutting them into chunks for the fire.

          If you look at the teeth, you probably get frightened because of its smart integration. It features the Maxforge technology, crafting the triple-ground teeth to double the cutting speed, cutting on the pull stroke.

          Yet, the whole blade is impulse hardened to last longer than I expected.

          For overhead branches, this thing drills wet wood like meat.

          Now the handle. I had a feeling that it's similar to injection-moulded plastic polymers. It's a very tough material rendering excellent grip and toughness. Better than most, there is a lot of space for you to hold and cut.

          Corona RazorTOOTH Folding Pruning Saw Specifications

          Weight

          12.8 ounces

          Length

          10 inches

          Material

          N/A

          Highlight Features

          3 sided razor teeth. 6 teeth per inch. Co-molded handle

          Verdict

          This folding saw is a gem for outdoor activists, arborists, and anyone who seeks a compact and versatile hand saw on the go

          How To Choose The Best Hand Saw For Cutting Trees?

          Buying a hand saw sounds simple.

          But to dive deeper into what you should look for when purchasing one, I would like to walk you through a number of factors.

          Believe me. They are essential to know.

          Kind of Steel

          To be honest, the steel doesn't really matter that much.

          But if you are a very picky person about the steel, and you care about good quality steel, here is what to know.

          Basically, we have really hard steel and soft steel.

          Soft steel is good for sharpening; hard steel lasts longer.

          So, where do you want to be in the conundrum?

          Some people want to go to the hard side; some prefer the soft side.

          In fact, some saws are hard but easy to sharpen. And you will find out the range you want once you use a hand saw long enough.

          Length

          The length of the saw matters in the purpose of using it. The fact is people don't tend to use the full length of the blade. So, I would say the size of the job affects more.

          In the case of cutting branches and logs, you should opt for blades longer than 20 inches. For trimming thin outgrowth, a 16-inch would be sufficient.

          Remember that short blades always cost less.

          Teeth

          There are two different types of saw. Normally, they are first-fixed saws and second-fixed saws.

          The differences are in the number of teeth per inch.

          A heavy saw of the first-fixed saw traditionally has a roundabout seven teeth per inch of the saw blade.

          And because of that, it gives you a very fast cut, ripping through material quickly, particularly softwood. But it will leave you quite a heavy rough cut.

          A fine finished saw or a second-fixed saw has up to 11, 12, or 13 teeth per inch. Of course they are smaller teeth and not as aggressive and fast as on a heavy cut saw.

          However, these saws give you a pretty smooth finish. That's the reason for this type of saw to be more suitable for decorative work or DIY projects.

          Handle

          A biomaterial handle is better than most, I suppose. It gives you more grip, control, and comfort.

          Also, a handle with space for finger rest will make cutting a lot easier. It's nice to be able to hold your finger along the saw blade to keep it in control.

          Blade

          Look for something called hard point or an induction hardened blade. That means that the saw has been put through an extra induction hardening process. Then, the teeth are hardened to last longer.

          Which Brands Make The Best Hand Saw For Cutting Trees?

          Craftsman

          Built with pride, Craftsman is the brand that any avid homeowner, home builder, auto enthusiasts, and master mechanics can trust. Hand saws from Craftsman come with long-established pride in superior quality. They promise only high-performance products to get your tree cutting mission a breeze.

          Bahco

          Premium hand tools from Bahco are privileged in both history and performance. For over 130 years, the only thing Bahco focuses on is maintaining their legacy by delivering top-notch products. Hand saws from Bahco own the premium standard to serve cutting in its primitive yet innovative way.

          Corona

          The American tools brand is born of a need for reliability. They have tools for shearing, trimming, cutting, and everything that can cut sharp and shape precisely.

          Being a long-formed manufacturer, Corona perceives the best quality a hand saw should have to deliver into their products. Using hand tools from Corona, it's easy to reckon the highest standards in utility, quality and craftsmanship.

          FAQs

          Do I get a curved blade saw or straight blade saw?

          This question kinda bugged me around for a while since it's been a big topic amongst the outdoors. Whether you are in survival, prepping, cutting trees, or bushcraft, it is the saw that involves.

          Many people don't prefer curved blades because it doesn't cut on a pull stroke. But have you ever wondered why the particular saw is designed that way?

          So, bow saws are traditional saws that can come with different blades for different wood. Essentially, these saws are bidirectional and technically work pull stroke.

          With a bow saw, you have to bow up that actually tensions the blade. With that tension on the blade and your handle only on one side, the pressure applied will actually pull the saw instead of being pushed by your force. That is a pull stroke in which the teeth cut deep after a pull and push cycle.

          You see, that gives you an even cut regardless of the direction. The thin blade gives you a very narrow kerf which also provides less resistance. That's how the teeth can be much bigger as well as being able to cut quickly.

          Conversely, curved saws can hook into the wood in an instance, giving your body a more relief stage to pull than using a straight blade.

          Getting a curved or straight saw really depends on where you mostly cut. It relies on your arm position and torso. A straight bladed hand saw is more versatile while the curved style gives you a slight power stroke advantage.

          Can the blade be sharpened?

          When the saw is out of shape, yes you can sharpen the blade to gain the intact sharpness. On many worn saws, you'll need to sharpen every tooth on each individual side.

          You need a hand saw vise and file tools to tackle. Now, it's important to hold the file so that it's cutting the face of the tooth. At the same time, it's hitting the tooth on the top.

          You also want to make sure that you're not cutting one tooth any lower than the other.

          Flip to the other side and and practice the same process until you finish the whole saw.

          Do I need a sheath?

          I do have scabbards for most of my saws and I know many saws sold with sheath. So, I guess it's a benefit to have a sheath for your saw as it keeps the gear safe from damage and you safe from its sharpness.

          How do I maintain the saw?

          Here are some tips to keep the saw sharp and in shape for the longest time:

          • Keep the saw dry

          • Oil the blade and handle

          • Remove blade rust

          • Sharpen the saw

          How do you cut a tree branch with a hand saw?

          If you just start cutting branches, you probably cut from the cut.

          But no. That's the wrong way.

          Cutting a branch from the top may split it halfway. Sometimes, it tears to the back of the remaining wood causing a big wound, taking the bark off. That exposure will let disease in and kill your tree.

          What I like to do is I start about an inch from the main trunk, and cut underneath, upside down, to about one centimetre into the branch. Then, I reverse the saw to the top of where I'm cutting, and start cutting like normal.

          Try and you will see it doesn't cut down to the wood. That's the best way to cut off a branch.

          Conclusion

          I can say every day of my life has the saw involved. So, these are choices of the best hand saw for cutting trees in my arsenal. Please let me know if you opt for anything I recommend.

          Also, keep in mind that hand saws are dangerous tools that should be kept away from kids. When trimming trees with a saw, you should always have gloves and safety glasses on.

          I know that's not everything.

          Leave me comments to ask. Thank you and see you soon.


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