No announcement yet.

Unhardening chainsaw chain

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • #16
    I am with the rest of you, BF to be on point. I am a sort of file horder. I have too many to need. What is nice about my affliction is I have used some very nice files, in every shape.

    BF said a specific file for saw chains. That is correct. JR


    • #17
      just file the ones you can - if the others are just a few it really won't matter - plus if their that godamn hard then I would think their not all that dull yet lol


      • #18
        A good file will do it, and if it won't it's time for a new chain.

        I filed a lot. On a whim, I tried the cheapo Harbor Fright electric sharpener.....

        Surprisingly effective, and so much faster I never went back to files.

        I see they are $30 now:

        You know, the files aren't free, and don't last forever. So really, the electric jobie is only 25 dollars, and a wheel lasts me at least 2 years.

        We heat primarily with wood, so my saw gets its exercise.


        • #19
          Something to keep in mind, good chain has the outer surface of the teeth hard chromed. Hit a rock or nail and it curls the chrome over the cutting edge. Then the file grabs and doesn't do anything when you try to file it.


          • #20
            A few years ago I built a machine to sharpen my saw chains automatically. Just put the chain on the machine and hit the start button. 2 or 3 minutes later chain is done. It operates with pneumatic cylinders and rotary actuators. Control is with a Siemens Logo PLC. It uses a grinder for the sharpening but I have on the drawing board a mechanism to use files but just never got to it.

            The problem with grinders is when you don't dress the stone correctly to the right curve. It makes it hard to hand dress the chain in the forest. That is why a lot of the pro's argue against using a grinder to sharpen chains. If the grinder is not set up correctly it changes the profile of the teeth and so in the field you have to file much more to bring the chain back to spec. therefore shortening the life of the chain. It is also important to reverse the rotation of the grinding stone for every other tooth. Also to grind/file from the short side to the long side of the cutting edge so the burr is on the outside. If you don't reverse the wheel you will get a lop sided cut. In the forest I have a small specialty vice that pounds into a log that enables me to clamp the sword so I can dress the chain. The time taken to keep the chain in tip top shape is saved in productivity. I see lots of people using the wrong diameter round file to sharpen their chains. These are the people that usually say a chain never cuts as good as when brand new. That is just not so. If it were the guys that cut competitively wouldn't be dressing their new chains before they use them in a competition, but they do!
            Last edited by Black Forest; 03-10-2018, 05:25 AM.
            Location: The Black Forest in Germany

            How to become a millionaire: Start out with 10 million and take up machining as a hobby!


            • #21
              On a whim I bought a diamond chain file. It was a cheap one, under 10 bucks I think. It actually works quite well for touch ups. If the thing is really dull, I use a regular decent quality file.


              • #22
                In a past life I worked in a saw shop and sharpened many thousands of chains, everything from rusted crap and "homeowner butchered" to custom racing and milling chains.
                For machine sharpening, Diamond is the way to go.. I even have a diamond wheel on my chain sharpener at home. Not expensive, no profile questions, cuts beautifully. oh... works great for occasional work in the machine shop too

                For hand filing (I do that a lot in the field and for touch up) get high end files - I personally like Stihl branded files, and toss them when dull or unable to be cleaned out. They don't last long and nothing like a dull file to make life miserable.


                • #23
                  Lakeside53, where do you get your diamond wheel from? I use an Oregon chain grinding set up, mostly for converting to ripping chains. I quite like the idea of giving a diamond wheel a try.
                  West Sussex UK


                  • #24
                    I suspect that people dressing new chains for competition use do so to get faster cutting at the expense of edge life.


                    • #25
                      They only have to last 3 minutes at most! Different world.


                      • #26
                        Originally posted by Alan Smith View Post
                        Lakeside53, where do you get your diamond wheel from? I use an Oregon chain grinding set up, mostly for converting to ripping chains. I quite like the idea of giving a diamond wheel a try.
                        Heck. no idea; somewhere online. Had the same wheel on Stihl sharpener for over 10 years. Mine is true diamond and the segmented type. CBN works great also.

                        Here's one source

                        Baileys offering :


                        • #27
                          Cheers. That's a great start. I see the wheels are made specifically for the model of grinder that I have. Thanks.
                          West Sussex UK