View Full Version : how do you shapen a chain saw?

10-14-2004, 09:45 PM
I have a file, but what is the proper way to do this? Can someone direct me to a web page or have pictures on how to do this? THANKS

Green Care
10-14-2004, 09:54 PM
You may want to try arboristsite.com

10-14-2004, 10:01 PM
Take it to a place that sharpens chainsaw chain. It will be $6 to $10. Hand filing is not a good idea. It is very hard to get a razor edge on the teeth. A sharp chain shaves the woods, while a dull one chips. Plus if you catch yourself with the blade, the sharp blade cuts the flesh, not tear it. (just ask my dad about that)

Bolts Indus.
10-14-2004, 10:08 PM
Totaly agree. Pay the pro to do it. It is an art that I can't master. Performance is worth the few bucks.

10-14-2004, 10:19 PM
The best and most effective way is with a round file.

Aaron Marshall
10-14-2004, 10:21 PM
I worked at a small engine shop and we used a chain saw grinding wheel, it gets them sharp but takes away alot of the chain while doing so. Now, I do it myself with a hand file (which I never did before), and every once in a while I get them sharpend by machine. I like to file a few times while I use it to keep that nice razor sharp edge to it, plus the time it takes to take the chain off, bring it in somewhere, wait to get it done go back home and put it back on, I could have had alot of stuff done by then.

10-14-2004, 10:28 PM
As with anything else in life sharpening a chainsaw chain takes experience. Experience is the best teacher. To fully explain the operation is difficult for me without pictures or best yet my standing along side of you.

I learned by watching my Dad sharpen chains. I just watched him.
Later in life I ran into a chain made by the Carleton company. They had a thing called a "File-o-Plate". Made sharpening much easier.Funny thing was that my Dad is named Carleton. No relation to the company. Some of you New England deer hunters may have heared of "CT. Carl".

10-14-2004, 10:37 PM
Hope this helps Sthil guide (http://www.stihllibrary.com/pdf/SharpAdvice061301final.pdf) :waving:

10-14-2004, 10:37 PM
Dremal with a chainsaw sharpening bit.Why would you pay for this service :blob3:

10-14-2004, 11:46 PM
I just give mine to my neighbor. He works at a tree trimming supply house. :p

green with envy
10-15-2004, 12:48 AM
I pay to have mine done. I don't need my saw that often.


10-15-2004, 12:56 AM
use an appropriately sized round file and follow the angles that the teeth originally had. Use a uniform number of passes on all the teeth so that you don't end up with a chain that tries to walk off the bar.

never knew there was anything so difficult about the process. I'd hate to know how much money I'd spend if I paid someone $6 to sharpen a chain. That would come out to several hundred dollars per year.

that's about as bad as paying someone to sharpen mower blades...

10-15-2004, 07:40 PM
There is ALOT more to sharpening a saw chain as opposed to sharpening a mower blade. There is alot to know. Do the research, and learn all about it, first. There is just far too much to even explain on here. I've seen chains come from dealers that weren't even done right. Definitely go to Arborsite and do some searching for manuals or instructions.

10-15-2004, 08:57 PM
go to a good web site and get you some pics.it has already been said it takes many years to get it right and without a teacher it will take longer
on the up side it is the best way to do it.it wont take to much off plus when you sharpen one with the wheel(as i do my customers)it may be quick but
it hardens the chain,this makes it a bear to sharpen in the field i have gone
through as many as two files to get that temp.off then its easy

all ferris
10-15-2004, 11:11 PM
Stihl makes a "sharpening kit". You'll have to get the kit for the size chain you have(.325, 3/8.....). This kit comes with a guide for the file and is fairly easy to use. If you don't get all the teeth equally sharp the saw will actually cut crooked. Good luck

10-16-2004, 01:25 AM
screw it just go out and buy a new one

10-16-2004, 01:55 AM
What is so complicated about it? Maybe I just gifted in the chain sharpening department or something.......who knows...I just don't see what's so tough about it. Follow the same profiles and angles that the chain had out of the package and work all teeth unifmormly. There's really no need to complicate it beyond that is there? Let's not over complicate something as simple as filing down a worn edge (or series of worn edges if you will) so that they are uniform and sharp.

I'm 23 now and have been using chainsaws and sharpening chains for at least the last 12 years....thanks to the farm home upbringing, and I can't say I've ever thought there was anything difficult about sharpening a chain.

I'll sharpen the stinkin things all day long for $10/chain...that'd be easy money

I'm not knocking anyone's input or anything, don't get me wrong...just seems like people are treating sharpening a chain like it is something that only certain people will ever be able to do. If you take your time on the first few and really get the feel of the process you'll wonder why you ever considered paying anyone to do such a simple task.


10-16-2004, 09:34 PM

Try the above link.....lots of good info.