Sharpened my first chain

Post in 'The Gear' started by xman23, Sep 2, 2013.

  1. xman23

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    Minister of Fire

    Oct 7, 2008
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    Lackawaxen PA
    I'm a bit embarrassed to admit this, but I've been replacing them for 13 years. I've had the Stihl round file clamped onto a small metal frame in the saw case for years, but never gave it a try until yesterday. The chain was getting dull enough that I was about to change it. No problem I have 3 new one's waiting. The chain was going so I could do no harm. I tried to recall all I read here, but for the most part I was winging it. Here's is what I did. Hope you guys have a few suggestions.

    Clamped the saw in a work bench wood vise. Is there a chain saw vice?

    After marking the starting cutter with a marker. I put the round file in the open side of the cutters, ever other one. The metal guide laid flat on the cutter and 30 degree line parallel with the bar. Felt like the forward stroke was cutting. Did about 3 strokes keeping the guide line parallel with the bar.

    To do the cutters on the other side of the chain I worked from the other side of the bar, and did the same thing. Total time 5-10 minutes

    I had no idea how it came out until I dropped it on a 18 inch round. It ripped thru it like a new chain. Can't say enough how straight forward and easy it was. If you aren't sharpening your own chains give it a try.

    So brothers, a few questions.

    I cut a dozen big rounds, and touched up the chain again, not because it was dull, just because I could, thinking it can never be sharp enough.
    How often do you touch up the chain?

    How many times can you sharpen the chain?

    How can you tell the chain is done?

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  2. bogydave

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    Minister of Fire

    Dec 4, 2009
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    So Cent ALASKA
    I think file sharpened is sharper than when out of the box, well at least as good anyway :)

    I sharpen when the chips start getting smaller & the RPM of the saw starts picking up

    I keep sharpening until down to the angle mark , I hit the rakers a couple times getting down that short .
    covers how many times you can sharpen. When the teeth get so short they look like the might start breaking.
    Touch ups just 2 file passes per tooth, I get several sharpenings.

    I've hit rocks & had to file quite a bit to get the damaged teeth sharp, then file the remaining teeth to the same length.

    I made a table top & saw vice. Here

    New VS several sharpenings . The short one is almost done
    Chain teeth.JPG
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