How to Woods Port a Chainsaw

Porting is not a new idea for any kind of engine. If you are a bit familiar with the car racing scenario, you must be aware of the engine modding to get the best outcome possible from the engine. Although porting comes from the car racing and engine modifying scene, you can do it also on your chainsaw too. A ported or a modded chainsaw will run cooler even working for a long time at a stretch, you would get more power while working. But how to woods port a chainsaw?

Most of the regular joes will go to a mechanic to “upgrade” their stock chainsaw. Porting your stock chainsaw will cost you a lot of money, even up to $500 in some cases. Yes, we know, that’s a lot of money.

The mechanics charge this much as not many of woodworkers know how to port a chainsaw and it is a VERY, VERY COMPLICATED job. If you are not sure what you are doing, you might damage the chainsaw and cause a disaster!

So, let’s see how you can woods port your chainsaw?

What is “Woods Porting?”

As you have guessed already, woods porting is a method of modifying your chainsaw. By modifying, you are changing the shape of the cylinder head and tweaking the port timing to achieve an increased chainsaw performance.

But remember, porting doesn’t decrease the reliability. In fact, you can actually increase life expectancy or reliability by porting your saw.

How does this modification help the saw?

In some models of the chainsaw, the cylinder head doesn’t have enough space to exhaust the air. Your saw can BREATHE better with the modification of the muffler and the operating temperature goes down dramatically.

You must keep in mind that porting means doing different tweaks with different chainsaw model – the key idea is to make the chainsaw breathe better and smoothing out the exhaust system.

So, this is the most common way of porting your chainsaw. But there are some uncommon ways of porting.

For example, some people just fill out the combustion chamber of the saw with sawdust and get a higher compression ratio. Getting a higher compression ratio might make your chainsaw a bit more powerful but it can’t decrease the operating temperature which can damage the saw in the long run.

How to Woods Port a Chainsaw?

There are a number of things you could do for woods porting your chainsaw. Here are some of the ideas –

Open up the “muffler” by grinding, drilling, or other means of machining. You need to widen up the exhaust path.

Then, you could free up some space in the intake and exhaust port by different machining methods just like you did while opening the muffler.

Again, there is another great way of doing it – the squishing. Squishing means to lower the jug of the saw. It could be done by milling or using a thin gasket. It will raise the compression ratio.

You could even try modifying the transfer ports, changing the mechanical timing of the ports, removing additional materials from the piston, removing the coil for RPM limiter.


So, that was our guide on how to woods port a chainsaw. The basic idea is to make changes to the chainsaw engine to unleash the true power. But you must have a strong knowledge of how the engine works. Otherwise, you might damage the saw that cannot be repaired. If you think that the processes of woods porting are too complicated, you could just seek help from a professional.

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