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Adolescent age vs. chainsaw use

Post in 'The Gear' started by Beetle-Kill, Jul 1, 2010.

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  1. Beetle-Kill

    Beetle-Kill Minister of Fire

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    First off- I don't have kids. My wife has one (me), so that's no help. I have an 11 year old nephew spending a week with us, after the 4th. He's a sharp kid, but mabey 100 lbs. if soaked in 30wt. So my question- when did you start using a chainsaw, under supervision? He wants to use the splitter, and I know the chainsaw issue will come up. I'm inclined to say "No" right off the bat, but his familial circumstances make me want to help bolster his "Man-thing, walk around with a clankin' pair" attitude. :cheese: I know I was 12 when I started, how about you all? Thanks, check in later. JB

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  2. midwestcoast

    midwestcoast Minister of Fire

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    Well, to me it'd depend somewhat on the kid rather than just age. Is he used to physical work at all? Raised on a farm or in front of an X-box? Does he mow the lawn, uss a string trimmer...? Has he ever even used a power tool?
    I guess what I'm saying is that a chainsaw is not the first or anywhere near the first piece of power equipment I'd want my kid to handle. I'd teach him to run the splitter, use a maul, even drive the wood-hauler before running the saw. Slips can happen fast (under supevision or not) and almost assuredly have big consequences with a running chainsaw.
    If you're affraid of busting his "clankin' pair" just tell him that you don't let anyone touch your new baby.
  3. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    I can rember getting a shot-gunn for x-mass I was nine, and about the same time running a chainsaw....Able to drive the farmall super M by 10 and mowing with the farmall A belly deck by 11-12 and this may come as a surprise but brother and I got a eger beaver for x-mass around me 11-12 and brother 14-15.......So if you are good at teaching like my father is and on top of it stand behind him with both your hands on it as well and see how he takes it.....move on to log splitting and see if he pushs you for more....
  4. Beetle-Kill

    Beetle-Kill Minister of Fire

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    midwestcoast, that makes perfect sense to me, thank you. And no, new baby is off limits to everyone. He'd use an old, crap 32cc Poulon. Mabey. When he's 16, (unless he brings his own next time). ;-P And yeah, he's from Montana, oldest of 4 brothers, and he works. But......
  5. Beetle-Kill

    Beetle-Kill Minister of Fire

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    Smokin', I hear yah. My first baby tooth got knocked out at 4, creeping the stock on a single barrel .410. Dad doesn't claim to remember that episode. I do. I know what I did, and was responsible for at that age, but I think midwestcoast is correct. I need some time to evaluate the kid, go from there. I am NOT kid-smart.(forget the 5th graders)
  6. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    We raise Beagle's as well as everything else 5th grade my friends still talk about some of the things I was doing........The deference is my dad was teaching me all the way and I will pick-up on everything..I would push him for more that is where it all lies. I wanted it faster than he could teach me.
    So, if you can throw the kid a taste of it go-for-it and stay safe!!!!!!!
  7. shawng111

    shawng111 Member

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    I know this seems pretty basic but please make sure you have consent of a parent before the power tools come out, it's the time we live in. Be safe.
  8. Oldmainer

    Oldmainer Member

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    Hello Beetle-Kill...the young gentleman will have plenty of time to develope his "big ones"...:) If he has a saw kick back or gets his hand caught while usin' the splitter it will spoil his and your day. Think about it. Franklin
  9. daveswoodhauler

    daveswoodhauler Minister of Fire

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    I think it would be different for me if it was my old child, as I would have a good understanding of what/what not my kid might be capable of.
    A nephew on a chainsaw and splitter....no way. (I do however think it would depend on the individual situation....i.e. a farm boy using a tractor at a young age vs a young kid sittin in front of the tube with the xbox)

    Edit, shoud,have just said +1 to midwest coast's post :)
  10. bsticks

    bsticks Member

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    I started using chainsaw and splitting maul, driving trucks and mowers probably at 11 or 12.

    My son is going to be 7 on Monday the 5th and has been working the log splitter lever and putting logs on the beam since he was 5 years old. He wears his "cool shades", eye goggle protection and a pair of my old gloves when working with the logs on the splitter and carrying the pieces to the pile. This past May was his first time holding the saw while it was running and the brake on. He could barely hold the MS250 and with my help we cut a small log. He was not too interested in the cutting part. I think the vibration bothered him.

    If you make it fun, safe, and use eye protection the kids will have fun while feeling a sense of accomplishment.

    Good luck and enjoy the time together.
  11. Cowboy Billy

    Cowboy Billy Minister of Fire

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    Another +1 for Midwestcost

    I started running a chainsaw when I was about 10. I had my nephew running the splitter control when he was 3 but had to take him off of it when he turned 5 because he started playing around and not paying attention to what I was doing.

    Billy
  12. quads

    quads Minister of Fire

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    When I was a pre-teen, Dad would never let me touch the chainsaw. My job was to do the splitting, with a maul. Then one day Dad got too sick to cut wood anymore. The entire responsibility fell on me, unsupervised, which included driving back and forth on the town roads to the woodlot. All alone. No cellphones in those days. We had CB radios, but that didn't help much if something happened in the brush and I couldn't get back to the truck. I was 13.
  13. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

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    Kids abilities vary because of experience, age and smarts. Evaluate the kid before making a leap. Hell, at 8 years old it was common for me to "go fetch the truck".
  14. Capt

    Capt Burning Hunk

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    Maybe consult his parents to see if they approve first? Then, if approved, it's up to you to supervise him to assure he stays safe. I started cutting wood with my uncle right around 10 years old. I was hooked ever since!
  15. Beetle-Kill

    Beetle-Kill Minister of Fire

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    His Mom is all for it. But her judgement is, um, questionable at times? If I'm not 100% confident, he'll get to do a lot of fishing instead of wood work. Thanks for all the input and personal experience.
  16. fyrwoodguy

    fyrwoodguy Feeling the Heat

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  17. cjsplitter

    cjsplitter New Member

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    I was running traps by myself by 9 and helping limb down trees for dad by 10 and got my first 22 stitches in the leg by 12. Just bumped the saw against my leg. I don't hurry any more I learned my lesson. Dad just wrapped it up with a ragged and finished loading up the trailer. When we got home mom went crazy and told dad to take me to the hospital. Very exspense wood trip.
  18. jebatty

    jebatty Minister of Fire

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    After many years of experience with a chainsaw, I attended a chainsaw safety class and learned a lot, stuff that could save my life. I would never want to be the person to let someone else use my chainsaw, youth or adult, without that person first having attended a chainsaw safety class and being provided with all the safety gear, and even then observing the person using my chainsaw to make sure that I too was comfortable with the safety practices of the operator.

    Now, if the person want to use his own chainsaw, that's his business, but if it's my wood and I saw unsafe practices, I would not let the person continue to cut my wood unless the practices were changed to avoid the hazardous operation.

    All a person needs to see to understand is a picture of a person with a severed leg or half his/her face cut off. Ouch and worse.
  19. CaddyUser

    CaddyUser Member

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    I would agree with jebatty - perhaps you could search out to see if there is a safety course offered in your area, and you and the young man could spend some time together taking the course. It would be a good opportunity for you to stand back and see what interest he has, and from there, you could judge whether he is prepared for the 'big-time' or not. Certainly the advice of your instructor would be valuable too.

    In our area, we are required to take a firearms safety course, and I was invited to attend by one of my friends / conservation officer. We were sharing teacher stories one day, and he wanted me to observe his interaction with students, as he wanted to improve his teaching methods..... Anyhow, I was impressed with the dad/son/daughter combos that attended the classes.... I was impressed that the parents were actively involved in ensuring that their kids were trained appropriately....
  20. benjamin

    benjamin Minister of Fire

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    I was 9 or 10 when my dad got a new 011 that my older brother and I were allowed to use. I think our younger brother was allowed to use it briefly under close supervision, but dad was happy to let us older two cut all we wanted. On the other hand, we didn't own a TV and went to school with kids who were exposed to similar hazards every day.

    Only if the kid is big, strong, and coordinated enough for the saw in mind and he understood the danger would I let him use the saw. Stick with the splitter unless you really don't trust him, then make him carry the wood.
  21. computeruser

    computeruser Feeling the Heat

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    I would be fine having a mentally mature child of that age run a small saw, under supervision, with proper safety procedures explained and consistently employed. Parental permission required, obviously.
  22. Beetle-Kill

    Beetle-Kill Minister of Fire

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    UPDATE:- Had my first whole day with the youngster today. Uh no, he's not touching a saw just yet. He actually knows his limitations, and hasn't tried to ask to do anything he's not confident in. He helped with the loading of the new BKK today, stowed straps after unloading, walked all over a mountainside checking out old mining shacks (we found a really cool cook stove, almost complete), and shot his first .22. But a saw is a few years away. Thanks for everyones input, I considered all of it. JB
  23. Battenkiller

    Battenkiller Minister of Fire

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    I attended my son's hunter safety course. Not only was it a good refresher for me, it allowed us to chat on the way home. There were a few points that didn't come across to him, and by being there, I was able to explain what the instructors really meant. He was very glad I went with him, and it proved to be a great "male bonding" experience.

    I also tried to attend my daughter's first date with a boy. That wasn't received very well at all. :roll: :lol:

    Glad things worked out all by themselves, Beetle. Every kid is different. IMHO, video games have corrupted the minds of lots of young lads. They think because you can do something easily with a video controller, the same thing will be easy in real life. Like most everybody on this board that is my age or older, I learned the physics of dangerous things by having them misbehave in my own hands. Teaches you your real limitations at an early age. To be honest, I don't believe age solves the problem. I know plenty of adult men that are real bright, but I'd never let them even borrow a circ saw. They never got exposed to these things at an early age, and they never got mentored by an experienced user. They sure ain't gonna accept it from me at this point in their lives.

    Same thing with guns. I grew up around the things, lived through having my dad get shot in a hunting accident as a young teen, owned and shot many guns over the years. About 15 years ago, I got a nice little setter to try my hand at some upland birds. My best fishing buddy got real intrigued and wanted to give it a try. He got all caught up in learning about every aspect of shotgunning, got a few guns, started showing up at the local trap range, etc. One day he showed at my house with his wife and her brand new Remington 20 ga. autoloader. I set up the clay thrower and my buddy and I busted a few targets each. Then his wife wanted to give it a go. She had never shot a firearm in her life. He handed her the gun with a full mag loaded and told her what to do. She squeezed off one round, they spun around to face me with her finger still on the trigger and the muzzle pointing right at my manhood. :ahhh:

    She had a big old grin on her face and said, "Wow!" I stepped out of the way, reached over to take the gun, and said we were done for the day. I was furious that my buddy hadn't gone over every aspect of gun safety before going out and buying her a deadly weapon. I tried to explain that she had a chambered round in the gun with the safety still off, and that an involuntary squeeze on her part would have left me singing soprano. She got real pissy about it and refused to accept the action as a grave mistake. I said I was sorry then, they both needed to attend a hunter's safety course before I ever allowed them to be around me with firearms. She was very offended by that comment and they left with her in a huff. She just didn't get it, and I'm not certain that even a safety course would get through to her. A few months later he told me that he had sold all the guns he had recently acquired. Thank God.

    Good on you, Beetle, for taking the time to mentor this young man. These are the things that change a boy's life forever. ;-)
  24. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    "I also tried to attend my daughter’s first date with a boy. That wasn’t received very well at all"



    I have a 13 and a 15 year old daughters and thats funny I will give that a shot! lol
  25. Beetle-Kill

    Beetle-Kill Minister of Fire

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    Hey Smokin- night vision and a ghillie suit. No need to say more. :coolgrin:
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