Yes, I did it just for you. I went out and braved the elements this weekend just to provide you with some helpful information for the next time you’re out in the woods. It was a harsh 65 degree day today with a strong breeze whipping the autumn leaves about the landscape, but I didn’t let it keep me from doing my job. I pressed onward and I hope you appreciate the sacrifice that I made. Recently, I received a couple of items from Marc Kochan of EDC Depot, and he wanted me to give them a try and report my findings back to the Woods Monkey crowd. I was more than happy to oblige, and I started off with the Pocket Chainsaw that they have on their site along with a bunch of other great gear. For those of you that spend a lot of time in the woods and like to have the right gear on hand for things like cutting and chopping wood, this item is right up your alley. It’s a high quality cutting tool that you can use for just clearing limbs from your favorite stand or it can just be part of your emergency kit for those times when you need to improve while out in the great outdoors! But, before we get to the Pocket Chainsaw, I’d like to bring up a little information about Marc and about EDC Depot.
Marc and I met for the first time at the Wilderness & Adventure Rendezvous in New York a couple of months ago. We talked for a bit about his business and he mentioned that he’d send a couple of things down so folks can see the type of gear they have available on their site. What I like about EDC Depot is that it maintains a very good focus on a specific category of gear and the consumer doesn’t get lost in thousands of useless items in order to find the good stuff. For the unitiated, E.D.C. stands for Every Day Carry. Those are the items that are usually small or compact and can be on or close to your person at all times. This type of gear can come into play whether you’re an outdoorsman or when you encounter an emergency such as a flood, power outage, or inclement weather occurrences. If you browse through the products at EDC Depot, you’ll find just about anything you could need in a form factor that allows you to have it with you at all times. Examples of such items that they carry include flashlights, survival gear, knives, first aid items, self-defense products, and even items as innocuous as ink pens. What I have also found with Marc’s site is that they carry high-quality gear that you can rely on from such manufacturers as Adventure Medical Kits, Maxpedition, Inova, Petzl, Brunton and other great brands. You don’t have to worry about sorting the wheat from the chaff on EDC Depot as its all great stuff that you can depend on in the event of any kind of emergency.
One of the items that Marc sent was a Pocket Chainsaw that rolls up into a very small package–about half the size of a deck of cards. It has bi-directional teeth for cutting both ways, and it utilizes paracord for the handles. You can either grip the paracord with just your fingers or you can loop it over your wrists if you like. This is the kind of tool you can drop into your outdoors kit and have with you at all times when you need make quick work of cutting some wood. It’s also a handy tool to have on you because of its small size and light weight when you don’t have other cutting or chopping tools available to you. For example, if you put together a small outdoors emergency kit, you can pop this right in there and not have to worry about the additional weight and bulk of a large knife or hatchet while you’re out and about with family and friends.
No instructions are needed. You simply unroll the Pocket Chainsaw, place it around whatever you want to cut, grab the paracord handles and go to town. In all honesty, I was surprised by how quickly I was able to cut through different pieces of wood. The information on their website states that you can cut through three inch limbs in 10 seconds. I can confirm that. I experimented a little to find out what gave me the best results as far as the amount of tension to put on the saw while pulling it through the cut. Once you get a rhythm going, you zip right through the task. I was highly impressed! In the picture, you can see the small tree that I cut through using the Pocket Chainsaw. While I did the cutting, I timed it using the Mississippi method. You know, One-Mississippi, Two-Mississippi, and so on. I hadn’t even gotten to Fourteen-Mississippi before the tree bent enough that I could just push it on over. I really liked this tool! Another nice benefit of the Pocket Chainsaw is that it gives you the good clean cuts as opposed to when you’re chopping with a hatchet or a knife. Those clean cuts are nice when you’re trying to improvise and build something out in the woods like a table, bench, or what have you. It just gives it a better overall appearance. Plus, if you’re wanting to do things like clear limbs while you’re up in a tree, maybe while you’re out hunting, it’s a lot safer to use something like this.
As I mentioned earlier, the handles are made of paracord. There are upsides to it, but there are downsides as well. The benefit of the paracord is that it rolls up compactly and is very lightweight. The downside is that after I got done testing the Pocket Chainsaw several times, the stress marks that it made across the skin on my fingers and hands stayed with me for several hours. Maybe I’ve just got delicate hands. All of the stress and tension from the cutting is contained in those thin cords and they dig into your flesh after a while. So, first, I would recommend having a good pair of gloves with you and you won’t even notice it. Even without the gloves, you can get the job done with no real ill effects. It’s just a suggestion. One might think about having wider nylon straps to distribute the stress and tension of the cutting over a wider area, but then you would lose the benefit of being able to roll the Pocket Chainsaw up into a very small package. So, paracord really is the best option. I just wanted to mention this observation which was the only negative I could ascertain, and it’s a very small negative in the grand scheme of things.
But, just like everything else in life, there is a little bit of a learning curve. But, once you get through it, you won’t have any problems. I tested the Pocket Chainsaw on several trees on our land, and on the second tree I tried, the chainsaw bound up on me and wouldn’t move. It was pretty easy to see why. The tree was leaning one direction, and since I didn’t want it to fall on me while cutting it, I was on the opposite side of the lean to do the cutting. Once you cut through far enough to affect the integrity of the tree, the weight of the tree will cause it to lean over even more right at the cut you’re making. So, the weight of the tree is now pressing down on the chainsaw blade and causes it to stop. You just have to grab the tree and tip it back slightly to take the weight off the blade so you can pull it out and work it from a different angle. Also, chances are good that if you’ve cut it enough to cause that to happen, you can probably just push it back the opposite direction and let it’s own weight do the rest of the job for you. Now, remember, we’re not talking about California Redwoods here and you haven’t qualified to be a lumberjack for the forestry service. But, for small to medium work, the Pocket Chainsaw just sings through the job!
Now, we come to the unfortunate part of the review, and I just hate it. The model that I received is the military version with the OD green paracord handles. It blends in with the woods in tremendous fashion. I was out in the woods today for several hours reviewing a few different products. The products were in a shoulder bag and I had my camera in one hand and my NRA model Mini-14 in the other. Wouldn’t you know it, I came to an area while going down hill that was slick and I lost my footing just a bit. Since I was too busy holding up my camera and my rifle, I wasn’t able to protect the contents in my bag. And, since I hadn’t zipped the bag up, a few items got flung out during my slide as the bag got knocked around. You guessed it! I couldn’t find the Pocket Chainsaw. The black blade and the OD green paracord handles made it disappear on me. I scoured the hillside for quite a bit but couldn’t find it. Dang!! So, while the paracord is the best option for the handles, I would recommend replacing the OD green paracord with some flourescent orange or red paracord so you can spot it easily if you do something silly like I did or if you just lay it down while you’re doing your work.
To sum, I really enjoyed the experience of using EDC Depot‘s Pocket Chainsaw. It was easy to use and it was lightning fast. Just like all of the other items you find at EDC Depot, it’s a high-quality product that you can rely on to get the job done. It is so lightweight and compact, and does its job so well, there’s no reason not to have one in your gear pack when your out in the woods. And, yes, I’m ticked that I lost the one that I had to review. But, I liked it so much, when I’m done with Woods Monkey stuff tonight, I’m going right over to EDC Depot and ordering me another one. I don’t think you could ask for a better endorsement than that!
Tomorrow, we’ll have another review posted on a different piece of gear lent to us by EDC Depot. It’s a nice little flashlight, but with a twist. We’ll give you the details then. In the meantime, go over and take a look at the great products available at EDC Depot. You never know. One day, one of those items could make all the difference in the world to you!