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Chain Sharpening?

Post in 'The Gear' started by Mr A, Mar 18, 2013.

  1. Mr A

    Mr A Minister of Fire

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    I'm cutting some downed oak. I'm not hitting the ground, but it seems there is always some dirt under the bark. I'm using an 18" bar on a 12" log My cutting isn't very efficient having to stop and sharpen every 5-6 cuts. I have a file and gauge to sharpen with, slow. How do the pros do it? Should I have a few sharp backups, a faster sharpener?

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  2. Nixon

    Nixon Minister of Fire

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    If you aren't already using it , semi chisel chain will hold up better in dirty wood than chisel chain will . It's also a bit easier to sharpen .
    MasterMech and jeff_t like this.
  3. lukem

    lukem Minister of Fire

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    If I'm cutting dirty wood I'll take a hatchet and chisel off the dirk/bark where I plan on cutting. Only takes a couple seconds and really saves on the chain.
  4. Mr A

    Mr A Minister of Fire

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    I dont know it's dirty until I start cutting, there is no visible dirt on the outside, it is in the log, under the bark. I'm not sure what type of chain I'm using. It came from a bulk roll of chain at the saw shop, I'll have to ask them what it is. Thanks for the suggestions
  5. TreePointer

    TreePointer Minister of Fire

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    If it's Husqvarna/Oregon chain, then consider a loop of Stihl chain. The thicker chrome plating makes it harder.

    Full chisel: RS (formerly RSC)
    Semi-chisel: RM (formerly RMC)
  6. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    Holy bazooka! Never heard of sharpening that soon unless hitting the ground or something in the wood. Or perhaps not filing right.
  7. TreePointer

    TreePointer Minister of Fire

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    Are you in a coastal region with wind driven sand?
  8. Nixon

    Nixon Minister of Fire

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    Have a look at this page , it'll tell you if it's Semi chisel ,or chisel .
    Understanding Cutter Teeth On Pro Saw Chain
    Browse through the rest of Madsens site , it's got tons of useful info .
  9. ArsenalDon

    ArsenalDon Minister of Fire

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    Hmmm...I have a Husky saw and chain..I never clean the bark and I am good for an outing of cutting a cord or so before I have to sharpen
  10. ArsenalDon

    ArsenalDon Minister of Fire

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    Great link
  11. Mr A

    Mr A Minister of Fire

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    I'm in the Central Valley, 3 hour drive to the coast. The wind blows here too, gets very blustery in the spring and fall. The bark on these logs reminds me of old carpeting, always sand underneath. The logs appear to have been down several years. There are knot holes full of acorns, cracks full of sand, lots of bugs. It is along a sandy creek that overflows every winter rain, probably driving sand into the logs. Had better luck today, cut up a truckload of rounds. We only get a week or two of freeze every year, maybe explaining why this down wood is seasoned, or very close to seasoned. My winter is probably what a lot you east coast guys consider "shoulder season", but I still get chilly: These logs look and feel seasoned- Light weight, bark falling off, nice ring to 'em. No punk or rot. Also, that creek sand has .05 cents of gold in it for every 5 gallon bucket. You have to pick out fine flakes of gold dust with an eye dropper if you can find 'em. This was behind the sewer plant, I only had to wheel barrel it about 100 yards to where I could pull my truck up to it, I didn't have any permission either, it's not private land, a drainage area. I don't know if it's wrong, but I didn't have any trouble. The creek runs several miles through town. Pics- view of creek that I have scrounging in. Dead tree that todays logs came from. pile of 2"-4" branches with a seasoned ring. Stump of whats left of a fallen tree. Lost a round down the ravine, into the creek. Hauled the spoils to the pick up point, just shy of a full truckload.

    Attached Files:

  12. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    But is it Chisel or Semi-Chisel chain? Husky/Oregon puts out both types as well as Stihl.

    Semi-Chisel is where it's at for dirty wood. Stays sharp longer than Chisel chain.
  13. Mr A

    Mr A Minister of Fire

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    My saw shop seemed confused when I asked about semi-chisel, suggested carbide, they can "order it". Still haven't asked their brand, but they said they sell chisel chain from the bulk.
  14. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    It goes by many names, Chipper Chain, round tooth are a couple other ones. Technically chipper and semi-chisel are not the same thing but the terms are often used interchangeably. If they sell Stihl chain you can ask for RM chain. Oregon is DP/DG series chain I believe.
  15. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    Sounds like the gulets are getting narrow. I would Like to see a close up of the chain. cutter resize.jpg
  16. farmer

    farmer Member

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    Sometimes when I am cutting oak that is really old it has just started to rot from the inside out,you will find little partices that seem like dirt but is part of the tree.When I hit this with my saw it doesnt take long to dull a chain.I am not sure if that is your problem but from what you desribe I think it is.The chain that I use is semi chisel but if I run into wood that you are desribing a couple cuts in a big round the chain is dull.
  17. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    That explains it.
  18. Mr A

    Mr A Minister of Fire

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    another thing, the saw shop told me to sharpen pushing the file from long point towards short point of tooth.I am new to firewood cutting, but not chainsaws. I've sharpened plenty of chains over the years on the construction site, with better results short point to long, although I just learned side angle, and top angle, just been using filing angle, the other two are likely off as I am not clear on what they are. and I've also never considered filing the depth gauges of the chain. http://www.husqvarna.com/uk/support/working-with-chainsaws/filing-the-chain/
  19. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    Yup, ignore that advice for sure. Sharpen from the inside out. Always.
    TreePointer likes this.
  20. blades

    blades Minister of Fire

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    Chisel chain has a square corner on the outside. Semi chisel is rounded on the outside corner
  21. HDRock

    HDRock Minister of Fire

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  22. Woody Stover

    Woody Stover Minister of Fire

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    These 'people' at the saw shop....are their heads shaped like traffic cones? ;lol

    In smokinj's pic you can see the side angle curvature ( the 'long point' is further forward than the gullet of the tooth,) although a pic from the other side of the tooth would show it better.
    I never mess with the depth guides all that much, maybe I should...
  23. Bigg_Redd

    Bigg_Redd Minister of Fire

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    I'm lucky to live only about an hour from Madsens (which is the greatest saw shop on the planet in case anyone was wondering).

    The the OP -

    1) Get Stihl chain. It's more expensive but it lasts longer and, IMO, is easier to file.

    2) Get skip-tooth chain. If you are sharpening often you might as well be filing half the teeth. Don't be fooled by the mouth breathing full-comp fan boys here: you will not notice a difference in cutting speed.

    3) Get round bit (or semi-chisel or whatever it's called this month) cutters on your skip-tooth Stihl chain. They hold up a lot better on dirty wood.
  24. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    How about something to prove that once and for all? Video (doesn't have to be yours)?
  25. Bigg_Redd

    Bigg_Redd Minister of Fire

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    You want me to get video of you breathing through your mouth?

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