A chainsaw can only truly turn its power into peak cutting performance with a sharp chain. We explain below how to recognise the signs of a dull saw chain.
Even the best saw chain loose its sharpness over time. As a result, the work becomes more difficult and the chainsaw is subjected to increasing wear.
You should pay attention to the following signs:
- The saw chain does not pull itself into the wood. It has to be forced to cut by applying pressure to the engine unit.
- While doing a split cut or a cross cut (making a vertical cut) the saw chain creates fine sawdust instead of coarse strands.
- Smoke crops up even though the chain lubrication is in working order and the chain tension is correct.
- The chainsaw runs in one direction causing a crooked cut. This is an indication of dull cutting teeth on one side of the chain or uneven cutting teeth lengths.
- The chainsaw “rattles” and “bounces” during the cut. It is difficult to achieve precise positioning.
If you notice these signs while working with your chainsaw, it is time to sharpen or possibly replace the saw chain.
Using markings as aids when sharpening the saw chain
Every STIHL saw chain has so called service and wear marks.
- Marking for the correct cutting angle of the top-plate cutting edge and the minimum cutting tooth length. The saw chain must be replaced if this mark is reached during resharpening.
- Marking for the correct angle of the side plate and the minimum cutting tooth length.
- Marking for the correct angle of the depth gauge and wear. The resetting of the depth gauge must run parallel to this mark.
- Check mark for the wear of the cutting tooth running faces. Consistent wear parallel to the mark indicates normal chain wear.
All mentioned STIHL products are available at your local STIHL dealer.