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How to Start a Gas Powered Cut-Off Saw

Saw operators on jobsites ask us questions like, "Am I starting my saw right?" or "Why isn't my saw starting up right away?" Knowing how to properly start your cut-off saw can help extend the life of your equipment and ensure operator safety.

Key Takeaways

  1. Always consult the operator manual before starting your saw.
  2. Use quality fuel and proper starting techniques for the best saw production.
  3. Having cut-off saw issues? Schedule a saw inspection with one of our expert mechanics.

Before You Start the Saw

First, review the saw operator manual and understand the saw's controls. Before cutting, confirm you are wearing appropriate personal protection equipment (PPE) such as a hard hat, safety glasses, hearing protection, gloves, etc. Ensure you are working in a well-ventilated area that is clear of bystanders and obstacles. Check the saw for any visible damage or loose parts. Do not use a damaged saw. Ensure your blade or wheel is safely secured. Fill your saw with a sufficient amount of fuel with the correct mixture of gas and oil. Check the manufacturer's recommendations for the correct fuel and oil mixture and fill the tank accordingly.

Starting the Saw

To start your saw, press the primer bulb several times to fill the carburetor with fuel. Press and hold the throttle trigger lockout and throttle trigger simultaneously and move the master control lever to the START position. Release the throttle trigger, master control lever, and throttle trigger lockout in succession. This is the starting throttle position. If your saw is cold or has not run in several minutes, set it to full choke. If your saw is warm, set the choke to mid position (fast idle). Press the compression release button in, once the engine is fired it will be released automatically and close itself.

Make sure you have a firm footing. Press the saw firmly against the ground, holding the front handle with your left hand. Wrap your thumb around the handle. Place your knee on the rear handle, or your right foot into the rear handle. Pull the starter grip slowly with your right hand until you feel it engage – then give it a brisk strong pull. Do not pull out the starter rope all the way. Pull no more than 3 times on full choke. After the engine turns over or pops, set the choke to the mid position and press the decompression valve button again before each starting attempt. Continue pulling until the engine starts. Once the engine is running, squeeze the throttle trigger fully and let the engine run at full throttle for no more than 10 sec. to warm up. When it has warmed up, set the choke lever to the off-choke position.



Operating the Saw

Once the saw is started and warmed up, carefully engage the cutting wheel with the material you want to cut. Follow safe-cutting practices, and wear PPE throughout the entire operation. Make sure you have secure footing and good balance during the entire cut. Position the machine so your body is clear of cutting attachments and never stand over the material or bend over the machine.

Proper Saw Cutting Stance

Firmly grip the saw with both hands and lock out your left elbow. Place your left hand on the front handle and your right hand on the rear handle and throttle trigger. Be sure your thumbs are firmly wrapped around the handles and always cut with two hands.  When reentering the cut, do not turn the wheel at an angle or push the wheel into the cut or a pinch could occur. Remember to always let the saw do the work and never force your saw blade into the material.

For more questions or to schedule an in-depth saw training contact us.