The chain, along with the engine, is regarded as an important functional part, so it has to be the best chainsaw chain picked up exactly according to the saw model. Remember, when used it actively, it rarely becomes the subject for sharpening or complete replacement. Fully replacing the old and worn chain is advisable, and it’s important to bear in mind the compatibility of all components of the saw, including sprockets, bars, and chains, when replacing any spare parts.
Match the chain according to your goals. If you need more power, it is more profitable to buy a product with 3/8 inch pitch, for low loads – 0.325 inch is enough. The cylinder volume, in this case, is not important. It’s important to take note of the sharpening angle for future care, repair, or restoration of the chainsaw. For improved productivity and better handling of heavy loads, a sharpening angle of 30º is recommended. However, if you are going to work with the complex processing of wood (if it is raw or frozen), it is better to stop at 10º. The chain length must necessarily correspond to the size of the bar. It can stretch out or sag during the work process, but the issue is solved by simply removing 1-2 chain loops.
The following surveys contain data about the best chainsaw chains on the market and the Buyer’s Guide that is aimed to help you in choosing and operation.
Chainsaw Chain Reviews
When choosing the best chain for chainsaw, start with the Oregon S56. The chainsaw chain incorporates a technology that enables precise interconnection of its elements, resulting in not just reduced vibrations and narrower cuts, but also the realization of the full power potential of the chainsaw engine. The Oregon S56 chain quickly and evenly transfers lubricant to the joints and all its working surfaces of the cutting teeth. It all happens due to the tubules for oil throughput in all drive elements. The cutting teeth of the chainsaw chain feature handy marks on their flank that aid in determining their level of wear and when sharpening is required. I’ve noticed that the unit doesn’t fit the Poulan saws, as it was indicated by the manufacturer. The chain can cut 3-foot tree trunk with ease after successful installation on the bar. It’s advisable to use the chainsaw for domestic tasks as it may not be able to handle constant heavy loads and work with thick materials.
- Precise teeth sharpening ensures accurate cutting of soft and hard wood.
- It has a fairly clean-cut surface.
- This chain model is characterized by sharp edges.
- It’s recommended to avoid prolonged usage of the chainsaw, as the chains may become dull quickly.
- The item weighs only 4 ounces and in a case of low tension, it’s possible to lose it.
Specified Oregon chainsaw chains are suitable for sawing trees and wood. Chainsaw chains are made of highly durable metals and have a considerable thickness, enabling them to work with thick and hard wood without requiring frequent sharpening. Special design and communication technologies facilitate and improve chain lubrication, which reduces wear not only on the chain, but also increases the bar’s life. When operating the chainsaw, it’s crucial for the user to wear protective glasses, as the chains can quickly cut small branches and disperse them around the work area. I really like the vibration damping system due to cushioning protrusions on the leading links, so this model became the best chain saw chains for me. The chain is easily mounted on the saw and really fits declared by the manufacturer models. The chainsaw’s compact dimensions (5 x 9 x 1 inches) allow for convenient storage in a closet without taking up too much space, even when stored separately from the saw.
- As the Oregon unit is heat-treated, it won’t be failed even under the heavy load.
- The chainsaw is comfortable to use due to its minimal kickback.
- The links are securely connected and even attempts to break the chain by force failed.
- A longstanding thick wood cutting leads to quick dulling of the saw.
- Some links have an irregular shape and are very different from adjacent elements.
The Husqvarna product boasts significantly reduced vibration levels and provides a smooth cutting experience, distinguishing it from other top chain saw chains. A special design of the cutting tooth, with a bevel under the “heel” of each tooth and placement with a gap between the bar, provides a decent absorbing effect and reduces the vibration that is transmitted to the bar and hands of the user. The Husqvarna chainsaw chain has a modified drive link, which is responsible for soft, uniform cutting properties. This chainsaw chain offers a great combination of lightweight design (15.2 ounces) and strength, as it remained undamaged even after the saw accidentally hit the ground. I guess that is possible due to the cutting teeth of the chain are reinforced over the entire surface by a specific coating with increased impact strength.
- This chainsaw chain is an excellent option for beginners who are learning to use a chainsaw, as it has reduced vibration and an absorbing effect, making it easier to handle.
- The unit performs brushing, limbing, bucking, and felling different trees.
- It copes with muddy or frozen wood.
- It’s hard to keep the chain clean due to the small bars.
- The Husqvarna chainsaw chain may not be compatible with all the models listed on the package, and it may not fit the 372 XP.
The headset is run-in by soaking it for a while in the oil, followed by a short run at idle and adjusting the tension. The SUNGATOR chain is securely fixed and does not fall off the bar. All the fasteners between each part are strong; this allows you to use it for the wood of any diameter. One feature that sets this model apart from other best rated chain saw chains is its anti-corrosion coating, which allows for storage of the unit in even the basement part of the house without fear of rust damage. It’s possible to take the chain off and keep it, for example, in winter, anywhere in the house due to the small dimensions (5.9 x 3.3 x 1.1 inches) and a light weight (8.8 ounces). The chainsaw chain is coated with anti-rust oil, making it suitable for use even under high humidity conditions.
- The chainsaw chain boasts decent assembly quality, with all the teeth moving smoothly and without any jamming.
- This saw chain can also be used with chainsaws from other manufacturers.
- Managing a tool with such a chain is easy and respectively; moreover, the work is performed fast.
- The chainsaw chain needs to be regularly lubricated with a special oil that may have an unpleasant odor.
- Sometimes it heats up and expands, making the user stop the work process.
The chainsaw chain features proven technology for carefully combining its elements, resulting in low vibration during use. I really like that the Husqvarna chain is designed so that sawing is done with an optimally balanced cutting angle, fast, soft, and without doing one’s best. It helps maximize operational efficiency. Moreover, it’s easy to install these top rated chain saw chains, but it’s important to wear protective clothes while mounting. Due to the provided chain, you can cut tree branches, logs, down trees of both soft and hard species. There is a laser knurling on the entire cutting teeth, indicating the edge wear reducing. It’s easier to purchase the specified Husqvarna chain for chainsaw than to sharpen the old one because the unit is affordable and is a representative of a well-known brand with a positive image. This chainsaw chain is lightweight and can be easily stored in a garage or closet along with other tools.
- The cutting tooth of the Husqvarna chains is processed at the molecular level (as indicated by the manufacturer) and is protected by a chromium coating, so it is an enduring product.
- It copes even with 17-inch diameter maple, which cuts without efforts.
- The chainsaw chain doesn’t experience significant stretching during operation.
- This chainsaw chain is only compatible with the Husqvarna 137 and 142 models, and it’s not suitable for other models.
- The chains are affected by the low efficiency of the lubrication system, which leads to forced wear.
This chainsaw chain model is designed for domestic use and features low vibration for ease of operation. Branded saw chain withstands high loads and has low recoil. The unit can boast with an especially high cutting performance due to narrow cuts. The chain is supplemented with a system for distributing lubricant and spreading it where it is needed. The chainsaw chain features specialized teeth that are designed to be small in size, allowing for reliable sawing of both soft and hard wood, which can be used for lumber or firewood purposes. It’s possible to ensure a long service life of the chain via well-timed refilling the oil tank. The shortened cutting edge of the tooth on this chainsaw chain means that less pressure is required during cutting. It reaches significantly faster-cutting speeds than regular chains. This product can be probably called the best chainsaw chain for agriculture, forestry, and construction with high sawing performance.
- It weighs only 1.4 pounds and can be easily stored just hanging up on the wall.
- This chainsaw chain is able to handle different types of wood with minimal issues.
- It seems that there’s no need to perform excess adjustments while breaking periods.
- If this chainsaw chain comes into contact with nails, it can quickly become dull.
- Sometimes it clings to wood and the bar gets stuck.
The STIHL chainsaw chains are entry-level units with low vibration. The beveled cutter limiter helps reduce shaking – due to it the chain moves soft and the tree slides smoothly from the cutting tooth. Special depreciation protrusions on the leading and connecting links serve the same purpose. After installation, this chainsaw chain does not experience any idling or sagging, and the saw operates as if it were new. It isn’t a bad choice for those who use a saw from time to time, or for figured cutting and tree care. I appreciate the fact that the chain can be easily sharpened using a 0.16-inch diameter round file at a 30-degree angle, and a flat file with a small notch for limiting tooth incision. Connecting links will save oil in places subject to stress. It’s strange but the STIHL 61PMM3 can get tangled when stored improperly (usually specified items don’t have such problem).
- The STIHL products can boas with a high cutting performance due to a very narrow cut.
- It has a low level of recoil, which is barely palpable by the user.
- The cuts made by the chain are precise and even, without any jagged edges.
- It doesn’t suitable for work with muddy sawing materials (due to the possibility to spoil the unit).
- The chains are not designed to cut through nails and attempting to do so can quickly dull the chain.
Widespread Types of Chainsaw Chains
In accordance with the shape of the cutting teeth, there are two basic chainsaw chain types.
The chisel tooth looks like figure 7 with an acute angle between the edges. Chisel teeth are characterized by high productivity and cutting speed. The chains have a small contact area with the wood during operation, which reduces cutting resistance thanks to their configuration. This is a professional option, but it is very sensitive to an abrasive medium and quickly dulls when working with “dirty” wood. Its sharpening requires a clear exposure of all angles and parameters. Semi chisel saw cutters are supplemented with a classic round radius edge, moreover, it’s simple to file them. Square chisel cutters are special units that have square radius edges and grind profiles. The owner has to perform frequent sharpening because such elements quickly become dull.
A chipper tooth has a sickle-shaped profile. The chipper is less effective, since it has a slightly larger contact area with wood, but it is much easier to take care of it. The rounded corner is not affected by minor sharpening errors. These links are good for working with muddy wood.
There are also carbide chains, which are made of durable and solid material that can be spoiled in the result of a heavy load and sharp blow. These chains are useful in a condition of low temperatures and high humidity but they work slowly and become less sharp after constant use.
Tips on How to Make the Chains Sharp Again
If you are wondering how to sharpen a chainsaw chain, you can use a set of hand tools or a special grinding machine. Professionals do not recommend using the first method frequently, as this can lead to malfunction of the equipment.
- Firstly, it is essential to remove any oil, dirt, and debris from the chain. Pay attention to the length of the upper point, it should be at least 1/4 inch.
- Place the device on a flat and hard surface. It is recommended to clamp the saw bar in a special vice at an angle of 80-90 degrees relative to the surface. The sharpener, in turn, should move at an angle of 15-35 degrees relative to the fixed chain.
- Next, determine the location of the lead torch. As a rule, it is the shortest on the chain.
- Apply a template so that it falls into its slot before sharpening the object. Then bring the file along the cutting surface of the tooth and make light continuous and unidirectional movements with a protrusion of 1.5 inches, parallel to the side edges of the template.
- Turn the tool over in a vice and proceed to sharpening teeth that have the opposite direction from those that you have sharpened before.
- If necessary, increase the distance of the depth gauge. Insert the template and gently grind away what falls under its slot with a flat file.
- At the final stage, lubricate the chain with special oil and check the tension.
Find out the Chain Length: Basic Recommendations
Each saw owner has to know how to measure chainsaw chain, so there are three effective ways:
- Determine the distance between the tip of the chainsaw bar and the point where the bar first appears from the casing of the chainsaw. Such a process can be made via special tape. If you have a fractional or uneven figure, it’s better to round the measurement up. The number you’ve got is the required data (usually it varies from 14 to 20 inches).
- Place the chain on the plane surface. Find the chain’s drive links, which relieve from the lower part of the item. You should count the number of drive links on the chain.
- Check out the number of drive links and the pitch numbers. The total sum of these two numbers ascertains the length you are looking for.
Leading manufacturers indicate in the accompanying documentation the chain length in inches or the number of links. It is recommended to know both parameters before buying.
Important Information about a Chainsaw Chain Tightening
Before talking about how tight should a chainsaw chain be, it is important to outline a few simple rules. Firstly, maintenance must be performed with the engine turned off. Secondly, all the work is carried out after the tool cools down. The fact is that a hot saw chain is longer than a cold chain. If you start stretching it, there will be a risk of tightening and deformation of the guide bar after cooling.
If the saw set has been recently installed and has minimal wear, adjusting its tension may be sufficient. What are the signs of under tension? The chain sags at the bottom of the guide bar and it moves sideways at the top. This leads to skew during sawing and bar’s haywire wearing out. It’s important not only correctly tight the chain of the chainsaw and get rid of its sagging but also do not overtighten it. The difficult course of the blade in the bar increases the load on the engine and other working components of the tool. Use your hand to spin the chain around the bar. If this process is difficult, it must be loosened.
Ways to Put a Chain on a Chainsaw
While being a specified device owner, he/she has to know how to put a chain on a chainsaw. Here are the highlights to follow:
- Prepare a flat surface on which you will put together the chain and the bar. This will minimize the chance of chainsaw damage or loss of small parts. A bar and the chain have to be laid out on the prepared surface.
- Remove the drive sprocket protection. It is enough to unscrew the winged nut on modern models.
- Turn the tension sprocket all the way to the right at the base of the guide bar. The chain should be installed only in this position.
- Next, place each chain link onto the locking groove of the guide bar one by one in a sequential manner. Begin installing the chain from the top of the guide bar and rotate it gradually so that the bar always remains on top while the chain is below. This will allow it to always be in a stretched state and place in the guide groove without problems. When you perform this step, be sure to wear thick protective gloves because your fingers will touch the cutting edge.
- Put the bar and chain on the drive sprocket.
- Fasten the chain sprocket cover in position. Make sure that all the mounting pins align with the holes. Incorrect installation with distortions can cause extraneous noise or rattling.
- Make sure that the guides “entered” the special mounting groove.
- Check the chain fixation on the chainsaw and on the bar after installation. Everything should be securely fixed without backlash.
Before replacing the old chain with a new one, you may also use the chainsaw chain breaker which breaks the link effectively and removes the unworkable chain.