Hot Saws make their debut at Royal Launceston Show

SLICING THROUGH: Dale Beams of Winkleigh competes in the Hot Saw event at the Royal Launceston Show. Picture: Paul Scambler.
SLICING THROUGH: Dale Beams of Winkleigh competes in the Hot Saw event at the Royal Launceston Show. Picture: Paul Scambler.

The horsepower wasn’t restricted to the showjumping arena on day two of the Royal Launceston Show as the Hot Saws made their debut.

Consisting of customised chainsaws with modified engines, Hot Saws can cost cost up to $10,000 and require warming up before they are used in competition.

Seven competitors stepped up to the plate on Friday afternoon to slice three discs, or ‘cookies’, off tree trunk-sized logs.

Among them was Deloraine’s Matthew Gurr, who also competed in the wood chopping event.

He said getting the single-cylinder machines running was half the battle.

“The most difficult part of this competition is often getting your chainsaw to go and keep it going,” he said.

“As far as the mechanics go, they are a very touchy item as well as being very expensive to buy, maintain and run.” 

Hot Saw competitions first came to Australia in 2015 as part of the American Stihl Timbersport Series. 

One of the major events in the series, it gained a small but dedicated following across the country, which led to competitions being held at regional shows.

Mr Gurr said the sport was only going to keep growing. 

“Traditionally, we’ve only had modified factory saws,” he said.

“But I think the fact that we have now had a competition at the Launceston show with about eight proper hot saws shows the sport is only going to get bigger.”

The Royal Launceston Show will open at 9.30am on Saturday, October 14, with gates closing at 5pm.

It will be the final day of the show.

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