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Questions and StoriesCategory: Questions🪓Why Was the Chainsaw Invented?
Shane Collins asked 4 weeks ago

🪓Why Was the Chainsaw Invented?

Now before you judge the question to harshly I have been looking into google search engine statistics and this was the most searched question in 2020 and of course I was intrigued to find out more. Somebody had done research about the topic and posted a tweet about it and it went viral the results are really shocking and quite interesting here is what I found:

We all think of the chainsaw as a devise to cut wood with but that really was not the intended use for it when the chainsaw was first invented it was used to assist in childbirth care.

Yes you read that right the chainsaw was invented by two Scottish sergeants in the 1780’s to assist with childbirth care. Before caesarian sections was a possibility the birth canal was the only way to get babies into the world and babies like today did get stuck in the breech position-the baby will come out feet first. If a baby had become stuck a chainsaw would have been used to cut and or remove bone and cartilage to create space in the birth canal to get the baby unstuck and was a great medical success however this was a very painful and messy experience as no anesthetics was given to the ladies undergoing these procedures.

As strange as it may sound the chainsaw did not alone have roots in Scottish medicine but a German orthopedic specialist had reinvented the chainsaw and repurposed it to cut damaged bone and tissue away in the 1830’s.

Again the chainsaw was not used for the “normal” cutting of wood but was intended to assist with medical purposes used to cut trough human bone.

The first chainsaws was rather odd-looking and was hand operated of course but the existence of these medical devises are the reason we have our modern day chainsaws today.

The original chainsaw was also not know as a chainsaw but a “asteotome” the initial idea as stated above was to cut trough bone and diseases to give patients a better chance of recovery however the devise was rather complicated and few orthopedic specialist used them.

World war two was revolutionary for the chainsaw only then did soldiers realize that the chainsaw made wood cutting easy. Soon after the chainsaw had a few advancements the metal used on a chainsaw become so much better and the way it operates was also changed of course. After world war two chainsaws was no longer used as medical devises but used to cut wood and timber.

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When I first saw the question I was a bit baffled and did not really give it too much of a thought until I googled it myself and wow what results I never expected to find the chainsaw a part of medical history I thought it was always intended for wood cutting until now of course. What do you think? Did you know about the origins of the chainsaw and did you also find it rather interesting?

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1 Answers
Steinar Kloverod answered 4 weeks ago

You have so many interesting articles and questions Shane.  I had no idea of the origins of the chainsaw you tell about in this post.  It is nearly chocking news for me.  I have of cours always thought that a chainsaw is a tool for cutting wood and not medical tool or instrument.  We can only imagine how painful a medical treatment with a chainsaw have been.
I have a chainsaw myself and use it for cutting trees and wood for use in the owen to warm up the house.

Shane Collins replied 4 weeks ago

Hi Mr. Steinar so nice to hear from you again I also had no idea about the origins of the chainsaw but when I did discover the above I just had to share I found it very interesting and very strange that a chainsaw was used in medical practices and honestly never really even thought about it until the research of course. It just makes so much more sense to use the chainsaw for wood cutting however if the chainsaw wasn’t used as medical devises I wonder if we would have our modern day chainsaws.

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