The Laplander folding saw by Bahco is a pretty good choice. It’s also marketed by Kershaw (under their own name), so you know it’s a high-quality item.
The Laplander’s blade swings out and locks in place during use. But during a hike, it’s stored safely and securely in the handle. Think of it just like a giant folding knife, except it’s a wood-cutting saw.
You won’t be temped to leave it behind because it’s light – less than 8 ounces. This is lighter than other, best-selling folding saws.
Best for smaller branches
Although it’s fantastic at what it does, the Laplander folding saw isn’t for everyone. Since the saw blade is a relatively short 9 inches, you probably don’t want to saw through a thick branch or tree trunk. It’ll take more time and effort than if you used a larger folding saw like the Sawvivor (with its 15 or 18 inch saw blade). Any branch over 5 inches is probably not worth the effort, but that’s not much of a drawback. After all, if the branch is that thick, you probably don’t want to use it without splitting it and most of us would rather avoid the extra work of splitting a log.
But it’s still a fast saw. Since the blade is designed to cut on both the push and the pull stroke, it chews through wood (and other materials) faster than most lower-quality folding saws.
So, the Laplander functions best when you want to collect an arm-load of branches for your campfire. The ergonomic design makes it easy to cut branches from a fallen tree, no matter what orientation you’re in. It’s gives you true one-handed operation, unlike larger folding saws that work best when you use both hands.
Stays open during use
There’s no chance of the saw blade closing on your hand during use because the Laplander saw locks in the open position. When it comes time to fold up the saw, just depress the lock mechanism to free up the blade. It’s simple, foolproof, and functional.
But wait, there’s more! It also lock in the closed position. So you can pop it in your backpack without worrying that it’ll loosen up and chew up whatever it happens to be rubbing against. The design is really well thought out.
The lock actually goes through the blade. This means there’s no chance it’ll fail.
Because of the easy, one-handed push-button unlocking mechanism, you won’t be tempted to keep the saw in the ‘open’ position between uses. This means the saw blade is protected from inadvertent damage. Feel free to toss it on the ground (in the ‘closed’ position) because you won’t harm it. You can’t say the same for larger folding saws.
High quality saw blade
The teeth on the Laplander are evenly ground with a moderate kerf. This means you’ll be able to apply a good amount of pressure to the cut without causing the blade to bind. It also means you can use this saw for various cutting tasks including bone or soft metal. The hardened steel teeth won’t dull under normal use of this sort. Other popular folding saws require you to change blades if you want to cut varied materials. The Laplander is a true Jack of all trades.
The saw blade has a rust-proof epoxy coating. But aside from the corrosion-resistance, this also seems to reduce sawing friction. Your cuts will be easier than with a non-coated blade; no need for external lubrication unless you’re cutting sappy pine or something really sticky.
The handle is made of high-density, shatterproof plastic with a Santoprene molded coating. This soft, rubber-like material stays pliant in all weather conditions from hot and humid to below freezing. Since it’s a full-length handle, you’ll never have a problem getting a good grip on the saw, and because of the grippy surface, there’s no real danger of slipping and cutting yourself on the blade.
The ergonomic angle and subtle curves featured on Bahco’s Laplander fit your hand just like a glove. The design minimizes fatigue while ensuring that you can make your cuts with ease no matter how your body happens to be oriented. As you probably know, you usually find the best firewood in weird locations like slopes or hillsides. With a good saw, you can get to wood that other people passed up.
So don’t be afraid to take along a good backpacking saw on your next hiking trip into the back country. With the Laplander’s modest size and weight, and it’s great, time-tested design (refined over the years by Sweden’s well-respected manufacturer Bahco), you won’t have any excuse to leave home without this fantastic little saw. Whether you’re in the market for a camp saw, or just for a survival saw you can throw in your backpack, the Laplander is a great choice.