Problems with Craftsman chainsaws are usually related to the blade and chain. These can include clattering and rough cuts, the chain stopping mid-cut and the chain cutting to an angle. Kinking and a loose or overly-tight chain should be addressed. Most chain-related problems can be solved with proper tensioning and sharpening.
Retension the chain if the chain does not move when the engine speeds up. Clattering or rough cutting can also indicate that the chain needs tensioning. Turn the Craftsman chain saw off and unplug. Insert the screwdriver end of the chain tool to move the chain around the guide bar and look for kinks.
Loosen the chain brake nuts until they are finger-tight against the chain brake. Turn the adjusting screw clockwise until the chain solidly contacts the bottom of the guide bar rail. Roll the chain around the guide bar to make sure all the kinks are in the bar groove.
Lift up the end of the guide bar to check for sag. Release the tip of the guide bar and then turn the adjusting screw until there is no sag. Tighten the chain brake nuts while lifting the tip of the guide bar.
Move the chain around the guide bar and make sure it’s not too tight. It won’t move if it’s too tight. Loosen the chain brake nuts and then turn the adjusting screw counterclockwise. This will loosen the chain. Re-tighten the chain brake nuts. Don’t let the chain sag below the guide bar.
Have the chain sharpened if the chain stops within the cut or the chain cuts at an angle.