Can You Put A Longer Bar On A Chainsaw? – Complete Guide

Have you ever had difficulty cutting logs or branches because your chainsaw bar was too short? 

If this is the case, consider increasing the length of your chainsaw bar. 

Longer bars can quickly work large stumps while providing improved accuracy and better control over every cut.

So come along as we explore choosing the right bar for your chainsaw. Also, we’ll tell you how a longer bar is installed and, more importantly – it is worth the investment.

Can You Put a Longer Bar on a Chainsaw? Quick Answer

In short, yes, you can get a longer bar for your chainsaw. However, there are some exceptions. 

You can find out what type of bar you need by looking at the owner’s manual. With this information, you can determine what size and type of bar is compatible with your model. 

It’s also important to note that most chainsaws with 60 to 70 ccs can handle bars up to 24 inches long; the motor may not support anything longer. 

How To Choose the Right Length of Bar for Your Chainsaw 

can you put a longer bar on a chainsaw

Choosing the right bar length for your chainsaw can be daunting. To get it right, it is important to consider the application and material that you are working with. 

Generally speaking, the bar should be at least 2 inches longer than the thickness of whatever you cut. 

For example, if you cut softwoods like pine or spruce, a longer bar will allow for faster and smoother cuts. 

On the other hand, cutting hardwoods such as oak may require a shorter bar to make faster and smoother cuts.

Also, if you are cutting in tight spaces or near obstacles such as buildings or fences, a shorter bar may be more suitable as it provides better control and maneuverability. 

How to Install a Longer Bar on a Chainsaw – Step-by-Step Instructions

To install a longer bar on a chainsaw, you need to follow these steps:

Unplug the spark plug: Before you begin, make sure to unplug the spark plug wire from the chainsaw so that it won’t accidentally start.

Loosen the nuts: Once you’ve done this, use your wrench to loosen the two nuts that hold the clutch cover in place and remove it. Loosen the screw until the old chain can be removed, then slide the old bar off the chainsaw. 

Measure bar size: Measure your new bar against your chainsaw model and power rating to ensure compatibility. 

Install the new bar: Install the new bar on the chainsaw, feeding it through any guides or slots until it is fully seated

Install the chain: After that, install your new chain onto the new bar, ensuring it fits snugly around the sprocket and the saw’s teeth. 

Reinstall the clutch: Reinstall your clutch cover and tighten both nuts securely before testing out your now-installed chainsaw for performance and safety verification. 

Installing Longer Chainsaw Bars: Don’ts and Don’ts

Before installing the new bar, it is essential to check the power of your chainsaw engine to ensure it can handle the extra weight and stress.

Generally, 60 cc chainsaws can handle bars up to 20 inches, while 70 cc chainsaws can handle bars up to 24 inches.

For example, the Husqvarna saws with 20 inches of bar can work up to 24 inches.

Also, the Stihl MS 391 can handle 20 inches of the bar and, with 3.3 kW of power, can handle 30 inches.

Refer to the instruction manual of your chainsaw to find out what range of bar lengths it is compatible with. 

When replacing the chain, ensure it fits snugly around the new bar and has the same measurements as your old one. 

Ensure all nuts and bolts are properly tightened and the chain tension is adjusted correctly. 

A light chain can greatly reduce a chainsaw’s performance, especially with a longer bar, due to its increased weight.

Sharpening or replacing a light chain regularly can help maintain optimal cutting power while minimizing wear and tear on your saw. 

Furthermore, the increased leverage provided by a longer bar increases the risk of kickback when operating a chainsaw with such equipment. This could lead to serious injury or even death. 

Therefore, it is recommended that operators use special anti-kickback devices when using long bars or other devices with similar leverage capabilities to reduce this risk significantly. 

Overall, taking these measures into account while working with a longer bar will provide increased efficiency and, more importantly, safety for both operator and equipment alike.

Can You Put a Longer Bar on a Chainsaw: Pros and cons


Speed of Cutting: With a longer bar, you can expect to cut through wood much faster than with a shorter bar. 

Increased Reach: A longer bar can extend the tool’s reach by up to 20 inches, allowing easier access to hard-to-reach areas that may otherwise be inaccessible with a shorter bar. 

Improved Power: Because more chain teeth engage with the wood at any given time, you will experience increased power when using a longer bar.


Reduced maneuverability: A longer bar can make it more difficult to guide the saw around curves and tight corners and move it around in general.

Possible loss of control: With a longer bar comes added weight and momentum, which can lead to kickback if not used correctly. This could lead to an unexpected loss of control if proper technique is not followed while using the chainsaw.

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Final Thoughts

To sum up, putting a long bar on a chainsaw is possible. However, it should be done with caution. 

Researching and selecting the right size for your chainsaw is an important first step. 

Consider all the pros and cons before taking this route, as a longer bar takes more power from your saw or may be ill-suited for particular jobs. 

Installing a longer bar on your chainsaw can be a wise decision in many respects by being mindful of what you’re getting yourself into and doing the necessary preparation.

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Charlie Bass

Charlie has been a mechanic for over 25 years and has worked on everything from small engine gardening equipment to huge diesel-electric mining haul trucks, trains and even aircraft. This broad range of industry experience gives him a unique insight into almost anything mechanical especially with an engine, including gardening and landscaping equipment. He currently owns his own mobile mechanic business and lives with his family in Australia.

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