Printer Friendly

A different angle on chainsaw sharpening....

I used to get worn out cutting hedge (osage orange). It's hard stuff. Then I learned how to change chain sharpening angles.

I use a full chisel chain ground to 25-40 degrees, and that cuts hedge as though it were bread. Twenty-five degrees is the angle of grind across the top of the chain and 40 is the angle into the gullet of the cutter. This grind leaves a point on the tooth which is easily dulled by frozen ground, rocks, wire, whatever, but cared for, it cuts hedge with delightful ease.

Such a chain is very aggressive and the likelihood of kickback is Don't attempt nose, cuts (plunge cuts) with this chain, and do not use it on a light chainsaw or it will likely kickback right through to your occipital lobe. You won't feel a thing. Ever again. For serious work, I believe heavier chain saws are preferable. The weight damps kickback, and I'm sure that only with a heavier saw do I see real cutting power. The smaller of my two machines weighs nearly 20 pounds, but with a chain sharpened as above, that weight is not a bother. I've a friend whose saw is even heavier, and when he first tried the sharpening angles noted above, he said, "I don't believe it... that makes my saw a magic wand... I just wave it around and almost by thinking about what I'd like cut, it's cut!"

A dangerous "magic wand"

It is a very dangerous |magic wand,' but I thought those same words myself when I first used those angles on a full chisel chain. And since the saw thus cuts so much easier, fatigue level is reduced, and when the person running the saw is less tired, accidents are less likely to happen.

But remember that a chainsaw is an accident waiting to happen, and a horrible one at that. Running a saw when we're tired is stupid behavior with a high price likely to be paid. Ever see a chainsaw wound? It looks like a surreal zipper carved in flesh with small chunks carved out and carried away. Making the chain more aggressive as suggested above does make cutting easier, but it also ups the risk of injury. Think about it.

And finally, do you ever need to rip a log? I was making steps for my daughter's playhouse by ripping hedge logs (cutting them length-wise). If I try to cut the log across its end, I'm cutting across the collective edges of growth rings, and cutting is slow, difficult and productive of a lot of fine sawdust. But if I cut along the side, the saw peels off layers of growth rings and spits out long curls of shavings, and does it quickly. Your bar likely won't be long enough to lay on the side of the log and cut the entire length you need. So make strokes along the side of the log using the underside of the bar nose while keeping the back of the saw as near the log as you can thus getting more of the bar's length and less of its tip in the kerf. The battered old saw noted above with its highly worn 60cc engine will rip a piece of hedge 44 inches long and of 10 inch average diameter before you can say, "Wow... I don't believe it..." if ripping is done from the side.
COPYRIGHT 1993 Countryside Publications Ltd.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1993 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Author:Silverio, Al
Publication:Countryside & Small Stock Journal
Date:Jul 1, 1993
Previous Article:Prescribed grazing treatment on one acre.
Next Article:Loyl Stromberg proposes National Poultry Museum.

Related Articles
Tailgate troubleshooting.
The well-appointed woodcutter.
The crosscut saw.
The chainsaw saga.

Terms of use | Copyright © 2017 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters