Sharpening A Chainsaw Chain

Hammers to Chainsaws

Sharpening A Chainsaw Chain

Postby kmussack » 01 Jan 2017 07:05

Happy New Year everyone!!

Through personal experience I've come to believe in keeping my gear in a state of good repair and readiness. In most cases when I need a piece of kit I need it right then and really don't want to have to fiddle with stuff that won't start or won't work.

So I'm pulling some maintenance on my Husqvarna 359 chainsaw and part of this was to sharpen the three chains I have for it.
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I just got a G1012XT Precision Grinder from Grandberg International and was anxious to try it out. I saw Wranglestar use one on his YouTube channel and was impressed with it.

I already had the chainsaw disassembled so I wrapped one of the chains around the bar and then clamped the bar in the vice.

The grinder mounts to the bar.
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The grinder has adjustments that allow the user to match the geometry of his chain teeth.
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The kit came with three different grinding stones. I picked the one that most closely matched the existing radius on my chain teeth.
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The grinder operates on 12VDC and is intended to be used in the field. The power cord comes with alligator clamps intended to be attached to battery terminals. In my shop I used one of my 12VDC power supplies instead of a battery.
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Here's a quick video;
https://youtu.be/5clCZ1gDV24
Last edited by kmussack on 27 Jul 2017 13:35, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Sharpening A Chainsaw Chain

Postby Generation 2 » 01 Jan 2017 07:38

Did you happen to purchase the appropriate fixture and file for dressing the depth "nubs" on the chain?
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Re: Sharpening A Chainsaw Chain

Postby kmussack » 01 Jan 2017 10:22

Generation 2 wrote:Did you happen to purchase the appropriate fixture and file for dressing the depth "nubs" on the chain?



Not yet.
I shouldn't need it until after several sharpenings.
Besides there is a way to dress them using this tool too.
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Re: Sharpening A Chainsaw Chain

Postby Kolt » 01 Jan 2017 13:07

I also have a Husky saw. Great saw. I have the Rancher model.

That looks like a next sharpening guide. Thanks for bringing it up. I have a few extra chanins and bars along with the files, but that fixture/jig looks useful.

A question for people more knowledgeable about chainsaw chains than myself: Is there a way to straighten a chain after it got a kink in it from getting stuck at a weird angle?

I tried a few quick/easy methods that did not work before I just replaced the chain in order to continue on with the work, but I did save the chain in case I ever came across a method of fixing it.

There may come a point in time where I can't just go buy a new chain, but by that time, I'll probably be out of fuel or even the stabilized stuff will have gone bad. Who knows? I can only plan for so many possibilities, but fixing a bent chain now would be a useful skill.

Thanks.

Take care,
K
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Re: Sharpening A Chainsaw Chain

Postby kmussack » 01 Jan 2017 13:54

FWIW, I finished up and reassembled the saw.

It is not a "hot knife through butter".
I might need to file down the depth limiter lugs.
But first need to buy a gauge.
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Re: Sharpening A Chainsaw Chain

Postby sinjar » 01 Jan 2017 17:00

Kolt,

They can't be straightened per se. But depending on the chain type, you can remove and replace the few links that are damaged. Just ensure that they are identical to the original or you'll have some potentially nasty results with the chain popping off.

Our local hardware store will build chains to your needs or sell the parts to do it yourself.

I've never repaired a saw chain, but I've done numerous bicycle chains.....same concept.
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Re: Sharpening A Chainsaw Chain

Postby Kolt » 01 Jan 2017 18:06

Sinjar,

Thanks.

That is kind of what I thought after trying a few futile attempts to straighten it, but I kept the chain in the hopes that I was wrong.

Take care,
K
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"The prudent see danger and take refuge, but the simple keep going and pay the penalty." Proverbs 27:12
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Re: Sharpening A Chainsaw Chain

Postby kmussack » 05 Jan 2017 18:33

Ok, I missed a step.

Just ahead of each tooth there is a nub that limits how deep into the wood that tooth will be allowed to cut. As you sharpen the teeth, because of their relief angle the cutting edge is lowered. So the nub needs to be lowered too.

Here we see a tooth on the left and a depth of cut control nub on the right.
Image

I got an Oregon brand depth gauge and flat file so these nubs could be lowered the appropriate 0.025".
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Filing until there is no more resistance the nub is reduced. Then I rounded the leading edges of the nubs per the instructions.
Image

Not to get all "preachy" but it's good to learn this stuff before the lights go out.
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