How To Sharpen a Chainsaw Mechanically

While you can sharpen smaller knives with just a simple stone or file, for bigger and more complicated equipment such as chainsaws – though you can sharpen them at home – it is advised that you have the professionals do the sharpening. Correcting the mistakes made sharpening your tools at home may cost more than having it done at the service center. Most manufacturers offer these services for free, if I am not mistaken. Contact your manufacturer for more details.

A chainsaw can be sharpened mechanically with a rotary grindstone or a machine. Mechanical grindstones can be purchased in different diameters, varying from 5/32 – 5/32. On the other hand, mechanical chain saw sharpening is done with machines that are fit at an angle of 25 degrees.

  • Before securing the saw chains and cutters on the machine, first make sure to remove all dirt, dust and grime from the chain. Clean it thoroughly with detergent or any other cleaning solution, which can be bought at the hardware store. Make sure that the solution you buy is safe for sensitive equipment such as chainsaws or else it might further damage the equipment.
  • Tip. If the teeth are bent, chipped o, broken in, it is best to have your saw checked by a professional. For teeth that are less than ¼ inches, it may be best to dispose of the chain completely as the chainsaw may pose a greater risk. The excessive damage cannot be fixed and weakens the saw.
  • Secure the chainsaw on the stable platform of the machine. Clamp them in place along the track. Give it a few tugs to make sure that the saw is safely in place.
  • Once the chain is in place, identify the leading cutter that is the shortest of all cutters along the teeth. Fit the file in the notch above the cutter. Properly aligning the file will make sure that the chainsaw is angled at the proper 25 degree angle.
  • Now comes the easy part. Machines will do the sharpening for you automatically. The machine will lower the sharpening edge to the chain and sharpen the tooth. Sharpen one side first and complete the rotation of the chainsaw of the teeth. Once one rotation is done, do the opposite side and also complete the rotation. While sharpening your saw, wear the proper safety gear such as gloves and eye protection.
  • Once the sharpening is done, you can rub oil over the chain so that it grips smoothly and then reassemble your chain. You are then good to go.

Owning a chainsaw sharpening machine may be expensive, however if you own a few chainsaws, it may be a good investment. A machine takes out the toil of individually sharpening each tooth and each chainsaw you have. After a few tries at the machine, you will get a feel of the proper technique in sharpening your tools. Though you can sharpen your tools both manually and mechanically at home, it is still advised that you have your tools sharpened once every year for professional upkeep. Good luck!


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