How To Get Your Free Bitcoin Cash on Ledger Nano S Wallet

1st August 2017 became a memorable day in the history of Bitcoin.

Anyone who was holding Bitcoin before 1st August got a chance to enjoy free money in the form of BCH (Bitcoin Cash). You can read about Bitcoin Cash here.

A few exchanges also started supporting Bitcoin Cash, and a few of them like Bittrex and Kraken offered Bitcoin Cash to everyone who was holding BTC on those exchange wallets.

Users who are using a hardware wallet like Ledger Nano S, Ledger Blue, Trezor, or another wallet where you control your Bitcoin private key can also get access to BCH for free. You can either HODL the new split currency from the main Bitcoin chain or you can sell it off on one of the exchanges.

If you were holding Bitcoin on an exchange that is not offering BCH after the chain split on 1st August, you are out of luck. If you did not follow our advice, this historic event is a good reminder for you to control your private keys and don’t put your faith in Bitcoin exchanges.

Many popular exchanges like Coinbase are not offering BCH for BTC holders due to regulatory issues. Many other popular exchanges from India such as CoinSecure and Unocoin don’t offer or support BCH.

But for those who have been reading CoinSutra and storing Bitcoin on wallets like Ledger, Trezor, and on paper wallets, you’re in luck.

A few important things to know:

  • You can also claim BCH in the near future by using your private key as long as you had Bitcoin stored on your corresponding wallet as of 1st August 2017.
  • You can also use your seed word (recovery phrase) to recover BCH as your recovery phrase holds your BTC private key and thus the BCH private key. However, there is no tested and secure wallet for this.
  • If you store your Bitcoin on a paper wallet, make sure to work in a super secure environment for recovering.
  • If you don’t want to sell your BCH or want to hold BCH for the long term, you don’t need to do anything. However, if you are someone who keeps changing wallets or doesn’t remember things, it’s better to claim it now. (Out of sight is out of mind.)
  • Don’t use your private key on splitting tools or 3rd party wallets unless you are 100% sure about it. Your private key is the most important thing that ensures the safety of your Bitcoin and your Bitcoin Cash.

Now, since you and I are on the same page, let’s look at how to split existing Bitcoin into BCH.

In this tutorial, I’m sharing how you can get access to Bitcoin Cash (BCH) for free on the Ledger Nano S.

Note: I have mentioned the Ledger Nano S a lot of times in the past as this is the most secure wallet for Bitcoin out there. The reason I like the Ledger Nano S is that it keeps your Bitcoin super secure, and even if you are not a technical person, you don’t need to worry about using it.

Another reason to start using the Ledger Nano S is that it supports other cryptocurrencies like Dash, ETH, ETC, Ripple, DogeCoin, Komodo, Stratis, and Zcash. A good place to start learning about the Ledger Nano S is here.

Order Ledger Nano S

Claiming BCH on Ledger Nano S:

So now that the chains have split, there are the three things that you can do with your Bitcoin Cash on Ledger Nano S or Ledger Blue:

  1. Don’t do anything and simply claim BCH in the future.
  2. Access BCH by switching the blockchain and spending directly from the Bitcoin wallet since BCH has implemented replay protection. This means you shouldn’t be able to accidentally spend your BTC when you mean to spend BCH or vice versa.
  3. Install the BCH wallet on Ledger Nano S. Split BCH from BTC and transfer it to the BCH wallet on Ledger Nano S.

Personally, I find option 3rd to be the best as it will take a few minutes and then you don’t need to worry about anything in the future.

So are you ready?

A few things you need to do:

  • Ledger Nano/Blue users need to update the firmware version to 1.3.1. Watch this tutorial
  • Nano and HW.1 owners: You’ll need to install the 1.0.2 firmware update bundled with the updated “Ledger Bitcoin Wallet” Chrome application (you must have your mnemonic phrase available).

Now, follow the steps mentioned:

  • Connect your Ledger Nano or Ledger Blue to your computer.
  • Open the Ledger Manager app (Talked about this here).
  • Update the firmware of Ledger if it’s below version 1.3.1.
  • Install the Bitcoin Cash app on Ledger. If asked, confirm the installation on the device.

  • Now open the “Ledger Wallet Bitcoin”.
  • Click on Settings at the top bar and do notice the current chain status (see screenshot for better understanding).

  • Clicking on settings will bring up a screen like this where you need to click on Blockchains.

  • This will give you the option to select the blockchain you want to work on.

  • Click on Bitcoin Cash, and on the next screen select Split.

  • This will bring a screen like this:

  • Now, what we are doing here is copying the receiving address of your Bitcoin Cash wallet and we will transfer BCH from the main wallet to the split wallet. This will ensure the safety of your BCH tokens if in the future the developers decide to disable replay protection.
  • Click on Receive and note down the BCH receiving address.
  • Now click on Settings and go to the “Bitcoin Cash main chain”.

  • Ensure that at the top it says Bitcoin Cash main chain.
  • Now transfer all the funds to your BCH wallet address that you got in the earlier step.

  • Now transfer all BCH funds from the main chain to the split chain and enjoy your free money.

Update: If you get an error saying “cannot validate transaction”, you should switch from the Bitcoin app to the BCH app on the Ledger wallet. From here you should be able to make the transaction.

Here is the official blog post from the Ledger team on the Bitcoin fork and getting your free BCH tokens.

It will be interesting to see how the future unfolds for BCH and how this split will impact Bitcoin’s price.  For now, let me know what are you planning to do with your Bitcoin cash token. Are you going to HODL or are you planning to sell it? Let me know in the comments below!

If you enjoyed this tutorial, do share it with your friends on Twitter & Reddit!

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44 thoughts on “How To Get Your Free Bitcoin Cash on Ledger Nano S Wallet”

  1. B

    Thanks for the info. unfortunately I get the “cannot validate transaction error” and there is no bch app on my device…

    1. Harsh Agrawal

      You need to install Bitcoin cash app from Ledger manager chrome app.

    2. s

      Once you install the Bitcoin Cash app using the Ledger Manager, you then close the manager and open the Ledger Wallet Bitcoin. Once you’ve logged into your hardware nano screen, you need to toggle thru the different wallets. Normally what you saw was a choice/screen for ‘Bitcoin’, Ethereum’, Fido, etc. But you should also see a new selection called – you guessed it – “Bitcoin Cash”. You need to select this at the Nano screen at the HARDWARE level first, NOT the usual “Bitcoin” screen. If you don’t then nothing works when the BCH wallet is launched. You’ll always end up getting the error message when trying to send your BCH coins to either your Split BCH wallet or to an external BCH wallet held elsewhere. You HAVE to toggle and select “Bitcoin Cash” at the Nano hardware screen level first and enter thru there.

  2. a

    Hi. Loved the ease of transferring the coin following your tutorial. THX:) Will be holding. Question: when will I see the cash value for bit coin cash in the account?

    1. Harsh Agrawal

      Now, they have started showing the USD value. 🙂

  3. N

    I made the mistake of sending all of my BTC to my newly created BCH Split wallet, from my main BTC account. Now I don’t have any BTC, in my BTC wallet, and have the amount of BCH in my Bitcoin Cash Main wallet that I sent from my BTC account, nothing in the split wallet. I am stuck, a really worried that I have lost my bitcoins that I have worked so hard to save for. I don’t know what to do.

    1. D

      I think ledger is building a tool for this type of problem. I suggest you hold on for a while.

  4. J
    Joe Bitcoin

    I was getting the transaction error. I uninstalled and reinstalled the Bitcoin cash app and the transaction succeeded.

  5. O

    Thanks for the detailed procedure. I guess that now I have a better understanding of the split/main function. In fact, I made a successful transaction from the bitcoincash app. However, in the process of trying to get my BCH, I used the split and main function in both apps: bitcoin app and bitcoin cash app. I do not know whether it is a consequence, especially because the ledger team identified the suppression of historical details as a problem, but now I cannot see the history of my bitcoin payments. Do you know what I can do to see it again?

  6. H

    I got nothing to lose with my free BCH. So I’ll just HODL until forever. Who knows what could happen after a few years.

    1. H

      Thanks for the guide BTW. It was all I needed to get my BCH setup on my ledger nano S.

  7. Matei

    Hey Harsh, thanks for the tutorial! I have a question:

    1. I had an amount of BTC on my Nano Ledger S since before August 1
    2. To update the Ledger Nano, I transferred the BTC to Kraken, then updated the Ledger
    3. Now I am about to transfer the BTC back to the Ledger.
    4. Then I plan to use your tutorial

    So my question is: by sending the BTC to kraken and back, will the claim for BCH work?

    1. Sudhir Khatwani

      Hey Matei,

      Yes, it should work if you use the same address of Ledger on which you had your BTCs before 1 August.
      Yes, you can refer the tutorial. Do share your experience.

  8. C
    Casey Choi

    Hi, there!
    I have a Ledger Nano HW.1 where I had my bitcoins before August 1, 2017.
    Do you know the procedure to claim Bitcoin Cash from this wallet as well? I really appreciate your help!



    1. Sudhir Khatwani

      Hi Casey

      Nano and HW.1 owners : you’ll need to install the 1.0.2 firmware update bundled with the updated “Ledger Bitcoin Wallet” chrome application (you must have your mnemonic phrase available)

      Here is the official guide for Ledger Nano HW.1 users.

  9. C

    I read your approach to pre August 1st security and I removed my BTC from the exchange I use to a paper wallet several days prior to the fork. I held it there until mid day on August 1st when it looked like the fork was not going to wreck havoc on the Bitcoin blockchain. I then moved my BTC to a secure app, Bread using iOS. Will my Bitcoin Cash reside on my paper wallet, or did it move to Bread?

    1. Sudhir Khatwani

      It depends upon the time of fork as the fork got delayed a bit due to difficulty levels.

      Your Bitcoin Cash will be on the wallet address on which you had your BTC just before the fork happened.

  10. M

    Hi, my BCH wallet on my HW.1 wallet is 0. I made the firm update before and also made an recovery. What can I do? Thanks.

    1. Sudhir Khatwani

      Check the process again.
      And note that you will get BCH only if you had BTC in Ledger before and on -1 August at the time of Hard fork.

      1. M

        Yeah…I had BTC before and on 1. August on the ledger.

          1. F

            I made the process again…still empty.
            Also send email to support – no answer.
            Is it possible that BCH delivers later to HW.1 Wallet?

  11. J

    My BTC is in BTC segwit on my Nano S and when I try to transfer BCH from main I have no BCH in the account. Have I missed out of the free BTC due to having my BTC in a segwit account?

    1. Sudhir Khatwani

      If you had BTC in Ledger on 1 August 2017 at the time of fork then this process is applicable.

  12. R

    I have the same problem as Jeff above. BTC was in paper wallet during fork. Sent to Nano S, now 0 in BCH account when trying to split. What gives?

    1. Sudhir Khatwani

      You need not send BTC to Ledger. This process applies If you already had BTC on Ledger at the time of fork, which you didn’t have seems.

      Another way is sweep your private keys of your paper wallet in Coinomi bitcoin Cash wallet then you should be able to see your BCH.

  13. K
    Karl Hensel

    I have had a paper wallet since July. Now we are looking at another fork. Can I or why cant I just set up a ledger nano S and use my private key to transfer all maybe 4 coins to there appropriate chain? There are so many people scared to death using these paper wallets. They like me have no idea first, if there private key will work as getting one they may have screwed up, second, we are being told we have to send to a software wallet which then exposes our private keys to the public. Why cant we do a simple sweep to Nano S. Do we have to pay fees twice then? 4 times what? This is why most people I know do not like Crypto. Thanks

    1. Sudhir Khatwani

      Legder doesn’t support these forked coins as of now so no point in sweeping there.

  14. vhs–power

    Hi, Sudhir. Thank you for sharing your experience. I just got the Ledger and my BTCs are still parked at BitPay. Whether I can claim BCH somehow or not? Thanks beforehand.

    1. Sudhir Khatwani

      If you have seed of BitPay then restore that seed in Ledger Nano S and follow these steps you should be able to claim BCH.

  15. b

    HI sudhir

    what would be the exact procedure to claim the bitcoin cash if the bitcoin was since and before august in the bitcoin core wallet?
    i’ve sent the amount on the ledger to bitcoin (legacy, as it was at segwit) and followed the process here – still unsure if/what to do and if/where to get/recieve/send to claim bitcoin cash… ?

    do i need to send the amount from bitcoin (main) to bitcoin cash (split or main) ?

    thanks in advance

    1. Sudhir Khatwani

      That won’t help you!
      You need to use the Bitcoin private keys of your core on which you had your BTC and import that key into Bitcoin Cash wallet of Coinomi..That way you will be able to claim your Bitcoin cash.

  16. D

    how to check how much balance BCH not yet claim in my ledger?

    1. Sudhir Khatwani

      check your btc public address on a bch blockchain explorer. It will show any bch balance if at all unclaimed.

      1. C
        Crypto Question

        This comment was SUPER helpful – thank you! I was worried my unclaimed BCH was totally lost in the ether, but when I plugged in my public address, I do show a BCH balance.

        However: When I followed these steps, the balance in my “Main” BCH wallet was zero. I had all of my BTC on a paper wallet at the time of the split. I’ve successfully transferred the entire balance from the paper wallet to my Ledger Nano S.

        Do you have an article that could help me claim that BCH? Do you know where it’s hiding? 🙂 Thank you!

        1. Sudhir Khatwani

          Do one thing, sweep your paper wallet private keys into Coinomi’s BCH wallet. Sweep it in the appropriate format.

  17. B

    I transfered some bTC to the BCH wallet and now it seems to be stuck. It was confirmed on the block chain as an outward transaction on the BTC wallet but still has not arrived in the BCH wallet. very frustrating.
    support said there is an advanced applications setting on the open page of the BTC/BCH /segwit but no such page exists, and no such button. also they say use recover your bitcoin tool but there is no balance in the BCH wallet. so I am seriously worried. how to I get onto the blockchain and redirect my BTC back to my wallet

  18. R
    Robert Motzel

    Sorry if I sound dumb but what is a “BCH”
    regards Rob

  19. B

    Hi, I had bitcoins on a paper wallet before the hard fork. Today I moved them to my new ledger nano s (via The problem is that I see my bitcoins in my ledger nano wallet, but there are no bitcoin cash..! how do I get them? much appreciated!

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