How to Sharpen Chainsaw Teeth

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Sharpening chainsaw teeth is something that you do by carefully using a chainsaw sharpening file. Sharpen chainsaw teeth with help from an experienced repair technician in this free video clip.

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Video Transcript

Hi, I'm Mark Sodja. I'm a repair tech at In this video, I'm going to show you how to sharpen chainsaw teeth. In theory all you need to sharpen chainsaw teeth is a chainsaw sharpening file. To use a file, you would just simply hold the file on the chain, maintaining the proper top plate angle and tilt angle. The problem with this method is there's no way to maintain the proper top plate angle, the proper tilt angle, or how deeply the file digs down into the chain. That's where a chainsaw file guide comes in. The file guide simply snaps onto the file and it has reference marks that will help us maintain the proper angle and the proper depth. So to get started I'm going to go ahead and clamp the saw in a vise. This will hold the saw and keep it from moving around on us as we sharpen. I'll lock the chain brakes so the chain wont move. Now we can go ahead and file. I line up those reference marks parallel with the bar. And I always want to file in the direction that the top plate angle points. So I line it up and go ahead and file. I want to count the number of strokes it takes to get the first tooth sharp. And then I'll use that same number of strokes on each tooth as I go around the saw. I'll go ahead and sharpen all the teeth on one side and then I'll go ahead and flip the saw around and do the teeth on the other side. And so on around the saw. Once I have all the teeth sharp we need to stop and take a look at the rakers. The raker is the piece of metal located right in front of the tooth and it limits the amount of wood that can be cut at any time. As we sharpen the teeth we need to adjust the height of the raker so that the proper amount of wood gets to the tooth. You do that with a raker filing guide. The raker filing guide fits over the top of the teeth so that only the raker is exposed. Then I use a flat file to file the raker down to height. And again I'll do this process all the way around the saw. And that's all it takes to sharpen the chain on your chainsaw.


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