If you’ve ever used one of those wiry little “survival saws,” which is nothing more than a length of cable with some teeth or an abrasive surface glued on, it probably didn’t last too long. I remember the last one I owned–it snapped right before I finished cutting the first branch. Those saws are a great example of a good idea poorly executed.
The folks at Ultimate Survival Technologies have never been comfortable resting on the status quo, and their innovative version of the survival saw turned out to be an entirely different beast.
The UST SaberCut Chain Saw is a compact yet sturdy saw seemingly modeled after a chainsaw chain, which we all know eat through wood like a rabid beaver. The motor-free, noise-free, hand pulled SaberCut has 24 inches of bi-directional cutting teeth and generous nylon webbing straps on either end. The straps are soft enough to be gripped comfortably bare-handed, and the loops are large enough to accommodate gloved hands–a valid concern for use in cold weather. The whole kit is featherweight, with the saw and its carrying pouch weighing only 6.6 ounces.
So, how does it cut? Like a champ. Admittedly, I was pulling too hard on the first cuts, so it bound up on the ash log I was sawing. But as soon as I tried an easier touch, it cut quickly and deeply. The cuts in the logs look just like those of a gas-powered chainsaw, they just take a little longer to materialize. The self-cleaning teeth stayed remarkably sharp, cut after cut. But if you do manage to wear them down, the teeth can be sharpened with standard ⅛-inch chainsaw chain file. There’s actually a little bit of spare room in the carrying pouch, so I’m planning to cut down a file to add to the kit.
This saw is not new; it’s been around for about five years now, and many happy customers are still using theirs. This track record proves that if you keep the links clean, sharp, and oiled, this saw should provide years of solid use. This would be a great tool for hunting camps, backpacking trips, and Bug Out Bags.
This saw turned out to be better than I had dared to hope, and it even comes with a lifetime limited warranty, which is valid unless someone does something stupid with the saw.
Have you had one of the spindly, old style survival saws break in your face? Have you tried the UST SaberCut Saw? Share your thoughts in the comments.