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HF Sharpener

Post in 'The Gear' started by lukem, Mar 4, 2013.

  1. lukem

    lukem Minister of Fire

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    Indiana
    I've had my HF sharpener for about 3 months now, sharpened about 30 chains (for myself, dad, BIL, and FIL) and thought I'd post my observations.

    The pro's: The motor provides adequate power. If you bog it down you're probably trying to grind off too much too fast which isn't good anyway. The adjustments for cutter length and depth are fairly precise. I mostly do the depth by sight though. The supplied wheel is wearing very well. Even though it is constructed of plastic, the assembly is fairly stiff / shows minimal flexing.

    The con's: The chain must be removed for sharpening. The vise to hold the cutter in place isn't fantastic, but it does the job...could be a lot better.

    Overall, for $32 (on sale plus 20% coupon) it is a pretty decent little machine. I would buy another (and since it is HF, someday I probably will). I can put a very good edge on a 20" full comp loop in about 10 minutes (that includes removing and re-installing from the saw). I would not want to make my living with this, but for the guy making firewood for himself it is pretty not bad.
    Sharpener.jpg
    loon likes this.

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  2. Burd

    Burd Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2008
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    405
    Loc:
    Bell bell Pa.
    I bought won a few months ago as well and I must say its worth the money. I can get my chains sharper then if they we're coming out of the box. Just last weekend i was throwing 2" wood chips.
    The key is to take very little off the tooth and go slow. As for flexing: It will flex if your to fast our rough with it. The key is to take your time and try not to boug down the rpm on the motor
  3. midwestcoast

    midwestcoast Minister of Fire

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    My experience is about the same. If you're careful you can get a nice sharp chain in about the same time as hand sharpening. I thought I would just use it every once in a while to fix chains that hit dirt or get out of whack after many hand sharpenings. Turns out I just do them all on the grinder now. A few washers and some work with a file made my chain vice and main hinge much better.
  4. nate379

    nate379 Guest

    BobUrban likes this.
  5. lukem

    lukem Minister of Fire

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    Indiana
    Neither. Its plastic...wouldn't go so far as to call it flimsy though. Definately not as strong as metal, and there is a little flex, but not enough to really be noticeable if you go easy on it.
  6. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2006
    Messages:
    14,893
    Loc:
    Northern IL
    I've have had a "Nick the grinder" for several years now. It was the original one that HF sold. I couldn't tell you how many chains it has sharpened. As said above, the trick is to take it slow.
  7. BobUrban

    BobUrban Minister of Fire

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    Jul 24, 2010
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    Central Michigan
    I just picked this one up off CL for $25.00 - basically the predecessor to the one Nate379 is using. Steel body and pretty solid. Puts nice grind on my chains but certainly not a unit one would want to be making a living on :)

    Attached Files:

  8. Excavator

    Excavator Burning Hunk

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2011
    Messages:
    204
    Loc:
    Central NJ
    I just bought the new HF one and I am very happy with it.
    I have been using hand method for 30 years and do good job but this is impressive.
    Taking chain off make good for cleaning the oiler
  9. kenskip1

    kenskip1 Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2006
    Messages:
    160
    Loc:
    Coleman Texas
    Has anyone notice in this picture that the chain is facing the wrong direction? Hello marketing!!! Ken
    cnice_37 likes this.
  10. HDRock

    HDRock Minister of Fire

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    The Hf tool does flex, like said, be real easy on it and it does a decent job, if you are bogging it down your probably taking of to much, it is only a little faster than using a file with a guide, I will use it for a while on my 3/8 low pro chains but the chisel chains I use the file n guide.
    The HF tool does a decent job at a cheep price, would I buy another one ,NO
    The HF sharpener will probably just be collecting dust once I get a Timberline
    EDIT: Like others I had to file the clamp to keep it from pushing the chain up
  11. ArsenalDon

    ArsenalDon Minister of Fire

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    What.....like a company that makes a chain sharpener is supposed to know which way the chain is supposed to go? picky, picky, picky.:rolleyes:
  12. ArsenalDon

    ArsenalDon Minister of Fire

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    plus then I do not have to take the chain off and I can use it in the field
  13. nate379

    nate379 Guest

    I have 6 or 7 chains for my saw, when one gets dull I swap to another. When I get home I'll just run them in the grinder. It takes maybe 15-20 mins to do all of them, though I usually only go through 2-3 chains with a full day of cutting.

    I have a few files I keep in the truck just in case but I rarely use them. If I planned on trashing a ton of chains, I could just bring the grinder out with me. My wood pile isn't far from a barn that has power. Or I could power it off an inverter.
  14. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

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    I have the HF grinder and use it. It works very well and is not flexy or flimsy at all if you are using it properly. The little bit of sideways flex that only occurs when you push it sideways is actually a benefit if you see a tooth that needs a little more. No regrets with this tool and I've sharpened chains for other guys and saved them money too.

    What are you folks doing to tighten the vice? I have noticed that when the teeth get short, the grinder tends to roll the link in the vice as though the vice is not clamping hard enough.
  15. HDRock

    HDRock Minister of Fire

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