How to choose the right chain for chainsaw

Professional loggers know that the quality of a chainsaw and the convenience of its operation depend not only on the power of the tool, but also on its configuration, and especially on the cutting element, that is, the chain. Chain - a very important part of the chainsaw. If it is incorrectly chosen, this will create an additional burden on both the operator and the gasoline unit, which can lead to its premature failure. Therefore, it is very important to know how to choose the right chain for your chainsaw, and what will be discussed further.

The scheme of the chainsaw device

The scheme of the chainsaw device.

Chainsaw chain design

To choose the right cutting element for a chainsaw, you need to know its main parts. Any cutting blade consists of cutting, leading and connecting links.

The cutting link is the most difficult part. It consists of a depth limiter cut and a cutting part (Fig. 1). The upper edge of this link is slightly wider than the blade itself, which makes it possible to obtain a sufficiently wide kerf, with the result that the cutting resistance will be minimal. The cutting link works like a planer, and the further the top edge extends, the thicker the chips will be.

Chainsaw chain design

Figure 1. Chainsaw chain design.

To the teeth of the saw chain had a certain set of technical characteristics, they are designed at certain angles. The upper end of the tooth falling at an angle forms the posterior angle of the upper blade. Its main purpose is to embed the web into wood. The blade of the tooth forms the rear angle, which is used for lateral cutting of chips. The edge of the end blade forms a rake angle with the surface of the cutting link, the value of which lies in the range of 60-85 °. When sharpening the chain, all the above angles must be strictly maintained, because even a slight change in them can lead to undesirable consequences.

Leading links transmit rotation from the gasoline engine to the cutting element through a special sprocket, thanks to which the chain is set in motion, which is carried out through a special slot. Another function of the driving link is the collection and distribution of the lubricant along the entire length of the web. The connecting links interconnect the leading and cutting links in a single mechanism.

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The main parameters of the chainsaw chain

Chainsaw chain has such basic characteristics as:

  • step;
  • the thickness of the leading link (shank);
  • profile size and depth of cut;
  • length.

Knowing all these parameters, you can easily select the desired chain of any company for any gasoline saw. These parameters are indicated in the passport to the gasoline unit or applied to the guide rail.

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Chainsaw chain step selection

Cutting element pitch

Figure 2. Cutting step.

The pitch of the cutting element is the distance between the three rivets divided by 2 (Fig. 2). This value is expressed in millimeters, but almost always the step is indicated in inches. This characteristic is decisive, depending on which all cutting blades are divided into the following groups:

  • 1/4 ’’ (6.35 mm);
  • 0.325 ’’ (8.25 mm);
  • 3/8 ’’ (9.3 mm);
  • 0.404 ’’ (10.26 mm);
  • 3/4 ’’ (19.05 mm).

The first group includes small products that are used together with petrol saws of low power. Such a tool is not intended for everyday use and cutting of dimensional logs. But for private use in the country, he will be just right.

Chains of the second and third groups are the most popular models. They are installed in more than 75% of the gasoline saws produced worldwide. The last two groups are canvases that are mounted on high power chainsaws, as a result of which their productivity increases significantly. Previously, the Taiga and Druzhba saws were equipped with such cutting elements, and today they are equipped with logging tools (for example, harvesters).

Chainsaw tire pattern

Scheme tires chainsaws.

From the chain pitch directly depends on the efficiency of the chainsaw: the larger the pitch, the higher the performance, but the wider the cut. Increasing the pitch requires an increase in the power of the benzoagregat, since when operating with such a blade, the cutting resistance will be quite large. Chains with a small pitch are not characterized by high productivity, but due to the fact that they have a large number of teeth per unit length, the cut is more qualitative.

The most popular are the chains of the second group (in increments of 8.25 mm), because they are intended for household chainsaws. The recommended power of the gasoline unit in this case should be no more than 2.5 liters. with. If you have a chainsaw with more power, then you can already install a cutting element on it in 9.3 mm increments, since the efficiency of work in this case will be better.

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Lead thickness selection

The thickness of the shank is an equally important chain parameter for chainsaws. During operation, the cutting blade moves into the groove of the tire. This movement should be smooth, without hooks, but also without excessive churning. This is achieved due to strict compliance with the thickness of the leading link and the width of the groove. According to this parameter, all chains for chainsaws are divided into groups such as:

Chainsaw chain sharpening file

Chainsaw chain sharpening file.

  • 0.043 ’’;
  • 0.050 ’’;
  • 0.058 ’’;
  • 0.063 ’’;
  • 0.080 ’’.

Products of the first group are mainly used on low-power equipment, which is not intended for heavy and frequent work. Cloths of the second group have increased strength, so they can withstand heavy loads. Such products are the most popular around the world, as they are equipped with almost all household saws, as well as some semi-professional units.

The third group is also very popular, but already among professionals. Such canvases equipped with most professional and semi-professional saws. Chains with a shank thickness of 1.6 and 2 mm are used on professional equipment of high power, which is used in the procurement work.

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Profile height, cutting depth and chain length

Comparative table of characteristics of chainsaws

Comparative table of characteristics of chain saws.

Depending on the height of the profile, the cutting blades are low and high profile. The first type is completed with household equipment, and the second - semi-professional and professional.

The depth of cut is the size of the gap between the upper end of the tooth and the limiter cut. The most popular are products with gaps of 0.635 and 0.762 mm. The efficiency of the chainsaw depends to a great extent on this parameter: the larger the gap, the better the performance.

Do not forget that with an increase in the depth of cut increases and vibration during work, which adversely affects the quality of the cut.

Therefore, manufacturers often design cutting elements, in which a large cutting depth is combined with a small tooth pitch and vice versa. This allows you to balance the vibration and performance of the gasoline unit.

The length of the chain is usually measured not in millimeters or inches, but in the number of links. Choosing the canvas for this parameter, you need to know the length of the chainsaw tire, since these values ​​should be comparable. Each gasoline saw is designed by the manufacturer for its type of chain, so using a large tire and, consequently, a large chain is not recommended, as this can affect not only the quality of the cut, but also the service life of the chainsaw.

Knowing some of the characteristics of your chainsaw (brand, number of leading links, width of the tire groove and its length), you will be able to choose the right chain that will serve you for many years.

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