Ash messed up 4 chainsaw chains yesterday. What the Heck?!

SuburbanFarmer Posted By SuburbanFarmer, May 17, 2019 at 8:08 AM

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  1. SuburbanFarmer

    SuburbanFarmer
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    Jan 20, 2009
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    A friend had some still alive ash trees taken down by crane. They were all bucked up, just lying by their driveway for me to cut and take home. I haven't had as many cutting issues since my rookie year cutting. I brought 2 Echo CS-400 saws w 18" bars. (Both chains done by a shop, one with a new Oregon bar - Due to loaning one to a friend. Won't do that again...)

    One soon started cutting crooked, the other quickly dulled, but was able to finish cutting enough to get the wood home. I put a new Oregon chain on the new bar. It cut like a champ. Until it suddenly stopped cutting. Sparks observed coming from inside the cut. I noticed the black center core of the tree on this cut. (See pics)

    I grabbed my old McCullough. Same story - Cut really well until it stopped throwing big chips. Instantly stopped. I know I did not hit anything on the ground. Have not seen any nails, etc in the trees.

    Thoughts?






    Ash Echo Dull Saw 2.jpg Ash Echo Dull Saw.jpg
     
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  2. blades

    blades
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    possibly metal/ fiberglasss /rock. support stake when tree was young- never seen any ash with that kind of super dark center. sparks suggest metal or rock ,discoloration says metal. Over the years I have hit just about everything possible in trees. From rebar and T posts to concrete, rocks that were set in a crotch long ago and over grown and on and on. When you wipe out a 4 ft bar chain full comp .404 Chisel tooth it gets a bit upsetting.
     
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  3. Jazzberry

    Jazzberry
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    You need a tree with less sparks or a whole lot more blades lol.
     
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  4. Bad LP

    Bad LP
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    So much for free wood. LOL
     
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  5. Sean McGillicuddy

    Sean McGillicuddy
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    This is when you borrow your buddies saw and play dumb …..;hm
     
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  6. heavy hammer

    heavy hammer
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    As stated above I have seen all sorts of things inside of a tree. I have a logger friend that has some old gear drive saws. He has ripped every tooth off of a bar before hitting steel posts inside of a tree. Just bad luck sorry.
     
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  7. SpaceBus

    SpaceBus
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    Sounds like you will find out when you split those rounds.
     
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  8. Jazzberry

    Jazzberry
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    I find lots of barbwire around my neighborhood trees. I hit the logs with a metal detector before I mill them. Sharpening a 42" or 60" inch blade due to a nail sucks.
     
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  9. Sawset

    Sawset
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    Yard trees can be the worst for hardware and rocks. Farm fenceline trees - use an old chain below shoulder ht. I've been lucky enough to avoid the tree stand spikes from decades ago.
     
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  10. CincyBurner

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    Are you sure it's ash ? The bark looks like sugar maple (platey), and peach color of wood is more like sugar maple too. Plus in the 2nd pic there is what looks like a maple leaf resting on the log.

    It doesn't take much stone or concrete to dull teeth. As fast as the chain runs it's practically instantaneous.
    Some arborists carry sacrificial, old, junk chain to run through the rest of a small problem section.
    You might want to pass up on the log if you have any more of it.
     
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  11. SpaceBus

    SpaceBus
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    Even yard trees without extra hardware are always harder on chains. You end up spending more time cutting up bark than you normally would.
     
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  12. Jazzberry

    Jazzberry
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    Trees alongside a dirt road can be real bad but sparks are always as bad as it gets.
     
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  13. SpaceBus

    SpaceBus
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    I get sparks limbing yard trees. My 1/4" picco chains almost exclusively cut bark are a real pain in the ass to sharpen and take forever with my file-n-jig. I always get them back to original shape, but I wish they made threaded grinding stones in 1/8".
     
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  14. thewoodlands

    thewoodlands
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    Like a poster said, that looks like sugar maple and not ash, do your rakers need to be lowered? I've been felling ash because of the EAB in our county, what's pictured isn't ash.
     
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  15. SpaceBus

    SpaceBus
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    There are still 4' trees that aren't on the west coast?
     
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  16. Tar12

    Tar12
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    Sure doesnt look like any Ash that we have around here...
     
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  17. Corey

    Corey
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    1) Doesn't look like any ash I've had either.

    2) Keep an eye on the 'shop sharpened' chains... sometimes they tend to go fast. If you see any metal bluing on the teeth, they went too fast, overheated the steel and tempered the hardness out of the steel. It will go dull much faster...which brings you back to the shop faster...and puts more money in their pocket faster. Though this doesn't seem to be an issue here as you mention a brand new chain also went dull.

    3) I've outlined an area in the photo which looks like a classic nail to me...somewhat of a long/narrow bright patch (steel nail cut through at an angle?), surrounded by a brown ring (rust), but their is no corresponding mark on the other half (so this isn't a 'bark defect' running vertically through the tree). But, yeah, one nail will take out several chains if you cut through it 'the hard way'!
     

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  18. maple1

    maple1
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    That's a really odd looking & shaped dark spot.
     
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  19. heavy hammer

    heavy hammer
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    Have you taken a couple rounds and split then yet to see what is inside?
     
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  20. CincyBurner

    CincyBurner
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    There are a couple of light gray streaks that run through the black center. Concrete ?
    Someone might have filled a cavity with concrete years ago. That was state of the art 'tree surgery' in the day.
    Pick at it with a pocket knife. Let us know what you find.
     
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  21. blades

    blades
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    yep, in fact the 4 ft bar sometimes isn't long enough mostly the Silver maples, Willow, and Cotton wood Box Elder. About 10 years back 3 Sugar maples 4 ft just barely made the grade. I have also had some 5ft Oak although mostly hollow. Ash 36"+, Honey Locust 36"+
     
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  22. SpaceBus

    SpaceBus
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    Its been a while since I've seen trees that big. I didn't realize trees could live with rotten or hollow spots.
     
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  23. xman23

    xman23
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    I took down a small tree a few years ago. It was sparking and dulled a new stihl chain in a cut or two. After another chain doing the same thing, I dragged the tree out in the woods for the wood peckers. Newer had any other dead wood do this. Seamed to be petrified, but don't know.
     
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  24. jaoneill

    jaoneill
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    My best (worst) ever was a horseshoe, grown over in the center of a crotch in a 40" hedgerow elm. Spoiled a 36" chain. Threw that section of log on a brush fire later that winter and the next day found the shoe in the ashes. Farmer must have hung it on a branch and of course I had to find it 75 years later.
     
  25. jetsam

    jetsam
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    My grandmother's place had about a half mile of gravel driveway with pasture on both sides and maybe 20' between the driveway and the fence. Early on they had apparently decided that trees were cheaper than fenceposts and run barbed wire all down both sides, on/around trees.

    Later on the barbed wire fence went electric and got hung on poles, and the old wire came down. Except for what was inside the trees.

    Bucking a tree from around the edge of the pastures was a known recipe for excitement. Saws didn't always have chain catchers on them either.
     
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