Most often when firewood is cut in the mountains, it’s loaded onto trucks or trailers in 8-foot lengths. It’s less expensive to buy that way, but harder to transport and use for common purposes such as firewood. For this reason, you may opt to cut up your own firewood at home and save money. By using a handy A-frame, firewood-cutting jig that you can build from 2-by-4s, you can easily cut up a chord of wood by yourself.
Stacking logs off the ground
Cutting logs on the ground is dangerous and can ruin your chainsaw blade, so it’s necessary to get them off the ground before constructing your cutting jig. Start by cutting four 2-by-4s in half. Lay two of them down on the ground in an “X” pattern, or at 90-degree angles. Screw them together using at least four screws in each pattern.
Building the frame
You should wind up with four “X” patterns equal in size. Lean one of the Xs upright against a chair to get it perfectly square to the ground. Now measure out 24 inches, and place another X standing up in line with the first one. Lay one of the 96-inch stretchers flat along the top leg of both Xs just under the cross piece, 3 inches from the outside of the first X. Screw the stretcher on to the legs of both cross pieces.
Stand up another set of legs at 24 inches, screw them on, and finish with the last X on the other end of the jig, 3 inches in from the end of the stretcher. Now lay the other stretcher on the opposite side of the jig and screw it to the frame, matching the other side.
Using the jig safely
Lay the logs two or three at a time inside the frame, letting the ends hang over on either end, both ends, or in between. By moving the log side to side over the frame as you cut, you can avoid pinching the blade, as the fall-off pieces will drop the round away from the blade. Cut through as many logs as your saw will allow.