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I learned years ago not to buy chains at your local chain stores. LOL I have in the past bought these chains packaged buy whoever and would never last but a few hundred cuts, then even sharpening didn't help.
I started to go to reputable small engine type store and letting them make up my chains and boy what a difference for only a few dollars more.
Anyone else come across this?
 

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ya makes a big difference
 

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Heres a secret. I might be cutting my own throat, but this is news. I get all the chains from a local big box store that "REPLACES ALL CHAINS" after each rental. All Oregon chains. I haven't, nor my friends, have had to buy a chain in 20 years.
 

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Okay guys.. What's your faveorite chain to use.. I'm not just asking name brand.. but what type.. I been reading more and more about chains.. My mind is starting to swim...
 

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Okay guys.. What's your faveorite chain to use.. I'm not just asking name brand.. but what type.. I been reading more and more about chains.. My mind is starting to swim...
I like this one. Cuts fast, they last a while too.
 

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Okay guys.. What's your faveorite chain to use.. I'm not just asking name brand.. but what type.. I been reading more and more about chains.. My mind is starting to swim...
Full chisel yellow chain. Stihl RS, "only available in Canada" it says on the box.
 

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full chisel
 

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Depends on what you are cutting.

Full chisel, square tooth (sharpens with round file) will cut the fastest but dull quicker. If the wood is dirty at all such as a skidded log it will dull very quickly.

Semi chisel, round tooth wil tolerate dirt better and won't fall off in cutting as fast as full chisel.

Full chisel, square tooth that sharpens with a triangular file or special grinder should be left to proffessionals due to the difficulty in keeping the correct angle on it.

When you start running long bars, the full skip or semi skip chisel chain is pretty popular with the pros. The chips clear better and there are less cutters to sharpen.
 

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Here this explains things.

The two main things your concerned with are pitch and gauge.

Pitch is the distance between any three rivets divided by 2 ..... The reason pitch is important to you is it tells you weather or not the chain will match your drive sprocket and bar tip sprocket (if you have one). Think of it like this, the chain on a saw is kinda like the chain on a bike, only backwards. The bike has a sprocket with teeth that fit into holes in the chain as it goes around..... a saw chain is just the opposite, it has teeth on the chain that fit into holes on the sprocket to drive the chain around the bar. If the chain is one size and the sprocket is another then it will be impossible for the chain to stay on the sprocket and you will throw chains and cause premature wear on both the chain and sprocket assembly. The reason they measure pitch as the length between any three rivets divided by two is that the spacing between two rivets on the chain isn't the same as the spacing between the next two rivets and so they average it between any three rivets to give you the chains "pitch"..... confused yet??? Don't be, all you need to know is that the pitch of the chain you are buying matches the pitch of the sprockets on your saw.

Gauge is a measurement of the thickness of the driver (that "tooth" that fits into the sprocket) on the chain. The gauge is important because it must match the gauge of your bar groove. The bar groove keeps the chain on the bar and cutting straight. If the gauge of the chain is thicker than the gauge of the bar groove the chain will be to tight and not fit into the bar groove at all... not really a mistake you can make you'll know right away it's wrong. If the chain gauge is thinner than the gauge of the bar groove the chain will be loose in the groove and let the chain rock from side to side causing the saw to "wander" in the cut and cut poorly, or not at all.

There are a few other factors when picking a chain.... cutter shape is probably the next biggest thing to consider, and is where a lot of confusion comes in...... Full chisel, simi-chisel, square chisel, chipper, round ground, square filed, round chisel.......
It's really not that complicated (or at least it doesn't have to be) really there are only two cutter shapes you need to worry about

Full chisel (also called square chisel by some) has a cutter that when looked at straight on (looking down the length of the bar) has a sharp corner at the top of the cutter and will look like the number 7.

Simi-chisel (also called round chisel by some, also sometimes wrongfully called "chipper chain" by some) has a cutter that when looked at straight on will have a more rounded edge and look like something between the number seven 7 and a question mark ?.

Full chisel chain is the most efficient/aggressive profile and is faster cutting than simi-chisel chain but it dulls more easily... once you blunt the "point" on the cutting edge at the corner (also called the working corner) the chain quits cutting well and it's time to sharpen. That "point is pretty easy to dull if you hit anything but clean wood with it.

Simi-chisel chain is not quite as efficient/aggressive and is a little slower cutting than full chisel chain but because of the rounded edge of the cutter there is no "point" to dull. The whole top corner radius is the "working corner" and is much harder to dull and will go longer between sharpenings.

I'm not gonna go into "chipper chain" much because it's really kinda become obsolete and you likely will never see any but it will have a very rounded cutter profile and look more like a question mark ?.

The next thing to consider (or probably not for you) is cutter sequence.... full comp, skip, or simi skip....... here we go again right ......

"Full comp" (as in full compliment of cutters) just means the regular chain you already use and has the usual number of cutters..... cutter-driver-cutter-driver-cutter-driver

"Skip chain" just means that every other cutter has been left out..... cutter-driver-driver-cutter-driver-driver-cutter-driver-driver-cutter.

Skip chain is typically used on longer bars in big wood and leaves more space between the cutters to let the chain carry the chips it makes out of the bigger logs without clogging up the cut (thats the simplified version for those who would correct me). The skip chain also has about a third less cutters and puts less strain on the power head which can help a smaller saw to pull a longer bar when necessary.

Simi-skip is just a compromise between skip and full comp and has every third cutter left out of the sequence..... cutter-driver-cutter-driver-driver-cutter-driver-cutter-driver-driver-cutter-driver-cutter-driver-driver.

And thats all there is to it.... clear as mud right??

Anyway it's really not as complicated as it seems. Like I said you really don't need to worry about skip chain yet, all you have to know is your pitch and gauge and then decide if you want full chisel or simi-chisel chain. Hope I didn't cornfuse you too much.



If you want to read the rest of the day: You will learn things you don't want to know.

Here is a list of stickies from the Arborsite.
http://www.arboristsite.com/stickies/148248.htm
 

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You know, I've been using chainsaws longer than I've been alive, and that explanation was excellent. Never really thought about the skip tooth thing before, I just knew I really did not ever like anything other than a rapid cut chain. Thanks .
 

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Heres a secret. I might be cutting my own throat, but this is news. I get all the chains from a local big box store that "REPLACES ALL CHAINS" after each rental. All Oregon chains. I haven't, nor my friends, have had to buy a chain in 20 years.

Can you explain about this? Do you mean you "rent" chains?
 

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I got hundreds of chains from the junkyard and loads of bars.
People let the saws set for years and then take them to the junkyard when they wont start. A lot of them have new chain and bars on them.
 

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C5Rulz Thanks so much for your time and effort for posting that. you cleared things up for me.. truth be told i will be needing a skip chain.. as i'm getting into chain saw milling.. I'm buying the equipment over the winter to be ready for spring. Your explanation is perfect. Thanks again..

I went out to the shop to check my chains.. seems one is is full chisel but has some kinda skip thing in between the cutters that sticks up a bit. The other chain on my bigger saw is full chisel with out that skip thing in between the cutters.
 

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That little part sure doesn't seem to slow my 357 down any.. IF it does.. I can't wait to try a chain with out that.. I never gave this whole chain thing much thought over the past 25 years of saw ownership.. and 30 years of running them.. My eyes have been opened and this is a fantastic learning curve i am on.. I can't wait to get the 3120 and a 4 foot bar into some big trees to make some siding for a project my father has.

As for the dirt in or on the trees we cut. I drop the trees into the grass (natural grass and bush) and then cut into 8 or 10 foot lengths. Dad comes with the tractor and grapples them in the loader and puts the logs on my 30 foot deck trailer and i haul em home to cut..
 

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Ja, and I was born in a log cabin that I built with my own hands.
:sidelaugh Sometimes I don't type in my head very well.:duh::duh: What I meant to say was , nah , oh well. :eek::ROFLike TG says, a great learning curve c5rulz.:thanku:
 

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Yeah, I was just going to ask about that.

Is it adviseable to replace the safety chain with something else? Will it put too much of a load on the saw?
 

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C5Rulz Thanks so much for your time and effort for posting that. you cleared things up for me.. truth be told i will be needing a skip chain.. as i'm getting into chain saw milling.. I'm buying the equipment over the winter to be ready for spring. Your explanation is perfect. Thanks again..
Team Green,

Whoa now, chainsaw milling requires a different kind of chain. When milling your are cutting with the grain, rather than perpendicular. Here is a link to ripping chain from Bailey's. (if your haven't figured it out, I like Bailey's a lot.):trink40:
http://www.baileysonline.com/search.asp?SKW=ripping chain&catID=12251

Their explanation on ripping chain:


WoodlandPro 30LR Ripping Chainsaw Chain (Per Drive Link)
Ripping chain is specifically designed to cut efficiently with the grain of the wood, unlike standard saw chain. It is most commonly used to slab logs, burls and stumps. Most people use it with chainsaw powered sawmills such as the Alaskan Sawmill (Part Number 46776) or Beam Machine (Part Number 46100). Ripping chain gives you a smooth, consistent surface when cutting parallel to the grain of a log. On the contrary, standard saw chain is designed to sever wood across the grain, and when you saw parallel to the grain, your cutting speed falls dramatically, and your sawn surface becomes very rough. 30LR is used on chainsaw mills with bars anywhere from 12" to 16" long. It is commonly used on small mills such as the Alaskan Small Log Sawmill . The top plate of the semi-chisel cutter is ground at a 10 degree angle, while the side plate is ground at a 75 degree angle. 30LR is pitch x .050 gauge (1.3mm) with a low profile cutter. 30LR fits saws using Oregon 91 series and Stihl 63 PM series chain. 30LR chain sharpens with a 5/32" round file or 1/8" grinding wheel. This chain is recommended for milling purposes only. It is not designed for standard hand held use.
Chain manufactured in the U.S.A. by Carlton.

•Priced per Drive Link
•We will build a chain loop with the total quantity you enter
•100' Reel is also available OR100 30LR
 
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