Sharpening Oregon 45cm chain after hitting nail, and file longevity?

  • Active since 1995, Hearth.com is THE place on the internet for free information and advice about wood stoves, pellet stoves and other energy saving equipment.

    We strive to provide opinions, articles, discussions and history related to Hearth Products and in a more general sense, energy issues.

    We promote the EFFICIENT, RESPONSIBLE, CLEAN and SAFE use of all fuels, whether renewable or fossil.

bigealta

Minister of Fire
May 22, 2010
1,064
Utah & NJ
So i hit a nail with my new Oregon Pro Series 18” 45cm control cut Saw Chain L74. It did some pretty heavy damage, more on the right side cutters. So i hand filed with not guide so i could see what i was doing. Did about 20 strokes each side with a Brand New Stihl 3/16 file, which is what i use for the .325. I thought it was pretty good, but did not pull when test cutting. So i looked closer at the cutters and could see they still were not crisp and razor straight. So put the standard basic flat guide on the file and did about 15 more passes on each tooth, both sides. Ended up taking about 1/4 to 1/3 of the teeth off. This got it dialed back in to cutting great and pulling the saw into the cut. Weird thing was i checked the rakers with the guide and they were still on spec?

Lot of hand filing but did finally get it back to new chain sharp.

How long do you guys usually get from a new file. I always seem to wait too long before i change them out. This Stihl file seemed to already lose some cutting ability after just 1 side was done on this chain. But hard to really tell as i couldn't really see the metal flakes flying off on the second side.
 

salecker

Minister of Fire
Aug 22, 2010
2,086
Northern Canada
Try cleaning the file
Files are hard to wear out.
 
  • Like
Reactions: all night moe

all night moe

Burning Hunk
Nov 19, 2015
248
earth
I run Stihl saws for my work saws do to there huge dealer network. In general, I do like their saws. Have run them for many years. I do not like their files. I use Pferd from Germany, and buy them from Baileys. They cut steel like no other. After each tooth, I give the end a couple taps on the bar. This helps knock of the filings, keeping them from jamming up. They last a long time for me. I've also used a soaking in vinegar on files that are loosing their effectiveness. Loosens up embedded wood dust and oil sludge.

Edit add on: I also do a quick pre-clean on the chain. Just a quick "scrub" with a wisk broom or blast of compressed air when available.
 

bigealta

Minister of Fire
May 22, 2010
1,064
Utah & NJ
I run Stihl saws for my work saws do to there huge dealer network. In general, I do like their saws. Have run them for many years. I do not like their files. I use Pferd from Germany, and buy them from Baileys. They cut steel like no other. After each tooth, I give the end a couple taps on the bar. This helps knock of the filings, keeping them from jamming up. They last a long time for me. I've also used a soaking in vinegar on files that are loosing their effectiveness. Loosens up embedded wood dust and oil sludge.

Edit add on: I also do a quick pre-clean on the chain. Just a quick "scrub" with a wisk broom or blast of compressed air when available.
I do do the file tap each tooth but don’t clean the chain. Always suspected that was an issue but never had a great way to clean them. I’ll try at least brushing them off as you suggested. Thanks. Will also try a vinegar soak. That’s what I used to do to clean forged and rusted metal. Thanks everyone for your suggestions.
 
  • Like
Reactions: all night moe

CincyBurner

Minister of Fire
Mar 10, 2015
776
SW Ohio

PaulOinMA

Minister of Fire
Oct 20, 2018
1,507
MA
Are Pferd and Stihl 2-in-1 sharpers the same? Like Logrite makes the Stihl cant hook?
 

Wud

New Member
Nov 19, 2021
5
Wisconsin
Get yourself harbor freight chain grinder. Saves alot of work when chain has hit metal or rocks. Then I use dremel. Never used my files again. Works great on .325 chain
 
  • Like
Reactions: Dataman

highanddryinco

Burning Hunk
Aug 2, 2014
172
Denver, CO
Are Pferd and Stihl 2-in-1 sharpers the same? Like Logrite makes the Stihl cant hook?
Yes. Except a few bucks less for the Pferd. I have one.
 
  • Like
Reactions: PaulOinMA

Corey

Minister of Fire
Nov 19, 2005
2,775
Midwest
This video seems to suggest even a Pferd file will be dull after a couple thousand strokes, or removing around 1/2 to 3/4 inch of material. Keep in mind, this test was filing dead soft 1018 hot rolled steel, not a hardened steel saw tooth. I'd expect hard steel tooth vs slightly harder file would result in dulling the file sooner.

Seems like you say 20 + 15 strokes on the teeth, and I estimate about 33-34 teeth on an 18" bar(?), so 35x34 is about 1200 strokes, so given the hardened steel teeth you're filing, that could definitely be getting into 'dull file' territory.

 
  • Like
Reactions: bigealta and EbS-P

bigealta

Minister of Fire
May 22, 2010
1,064
Utah & NJ
This video seems to suggest even a Pferd file will be dull after a couple thousand strokes, or removing around 1/2 to 3/4 inch of material. Keep in mind, this test was filing dead soft 1018 hot rolled steel, not a hardened steel saw tooth. I'd expect hard steel tooth vs slightly harder file would result in dulling the file sooner.

Seems like you say 20 + 15 strokes on the teeth, and I estimate about 33-34 teeth on an 18" bar(?), so 35x34 is about 1200 strokes, so given the hardened steel teeth you're filing, that could definitely be getting into 'dull file' territory.


Wow amazing this guy created such a detailed test. And yes about 35 strokes per tooth on full house chain is what it took to get the chain back. Will look very closely at the chips that file throws and then will compare that to a new file. Thanks for posting this.
 
Are Pferd and Stihl 2-in-1 sharpers the same? Like Logrite makes the Stihl cant hook?
Yes they are the same ..I have one of each ( for diff saws ..easy to see/tell which goes with each saw )just diff colored handles ..
 

Dataman

Minister of Fire
Sep 10, 2018
1,215
Newport, Wa
Get yourself harbor freight chain grinder. Saves alot of work when chain has hit metal or rocks. Then I use dremel. Never used my files again. Works great on .325 chain
I can 2nd this. Lots easier and sharper chains. File not used since
 
Harbor freight ...