How to Attach a Chain to a Chainsaw

The size of a new chain depends on the length of the bar. Chains usually last twice as long as chains, but only if they are made of quality materials. To specify the right length of chain to buy for your tool, you need to measure the size of the bar. Usually the length is indicated on the side of the bar, but over time, all the markings will wear off. You can find out the length of the bar by referring to the passport of the tool or measure it with a ruler.

Measuring a guide bar. how to measure it correctly

If it is decided to replace the bar together with the chain to a larger size, it can be done in exceptional cases, when the power of the chainsaw corresponds. If you install a larger bar on a domestic saw, it will not cope with the power of the engine. The manual to the tool shows you the recommended mounting length for the guide bar.

The main mistakes made by beginners when sharpening

There are a number of recommendations on how to sharpen a chainsaw chain to avoid the typical mistakes common to beginners:

  • Apply the same amount of force to each tooth;
  • apply the same force to all teeth to avoid unevenness
  • If the chain is too dull, the file will not work and it is recommended to use an electric machine;
  • the angle must be set according to the direction in which the logs will be sawn.

When using a file, note that it removes metal shavings from the chain as it moves forward.

See video on how to sharpen the saw with an angle grinder:

It is recommended not to catch the tooth surface with it, when making backward movements. Generally all chains are turned at 30°, but after finishing the procedure it is necessary to check them with a template. This is done by the following algorithm:

  • the template is placed on the chain;
  • Check how far the depth limiter protrudes;
  • trim the limiter with a flat file.

Usually the depth stop distance is 0.65 mm, but in general it may be varied if necessary to within 0.45. 0.80mm.

How to correctly sharpen the chainSource

Side chain tensioner

Let’s look at the step-by-step instructions for installing a side chain tensioner.

  • As with the quick tensioner, the first step is to prepare a work surface on which to lay the block, combination wrench, bar and chain.
  • Drive the motor unit upright and loosen the nuts with the combination wrench. Now you can remove the chain sprocket cover.
  • Turn the chain tensioner to the left so that the tensioner makes contact with the recess in the housing.
  • Then. just as with the quick tensioner. place the chain carefully onto the bar. Start the process from the top of the bar. It is important to note the correct direction of the chain. Check that you are wearing gloves to protect yourself when handling the sharp chain cutters.
  • Turn the chain so that the bar is fully covered by the chain.
  • Check again that the chain is exactly where it is and in the correct direction. The cutter on the bar nose must be facing forward.
  • The chain in the assembly with the bus put on the sprocket. In the process, the guide bar is sliding onto the collar bolt.
  • Replace the cover on the engine block and tighten the nuts. Now the chain and the bar are firmly fixed, and it is possible to correct the chain tension.
  • if the chain is loose and slack, the chain links will not be in the bar groove.
  • Then turn the chain tightening screw until the chain slackens slightly and the chain links are in the bar groove.
  • Lift the top of the bar up and fasten the screw a little more. The chain links must fully engage in the groove.
  • Use the combination wrench to tighten the nuts.
  • Re-check that the chain is in the groove. And check that there is no slack.
  • Next check that the chain is not too tight. To do this, release the chain brake, pull the chain along the driving line (do not forget the protective gloves). If the chain does not move, you should unscrew the nuts and repeat the manipulation described above.
  • You can activate the chain brake and start working with the chain saw.

Changing the chain on the electric saw

If you need to change the tooling on your electric saw, it is done as follows. The example shows how to put the chain on a Makita electric saw.

    On the guard covering the drive sprocket on the machine, you will see a small cover with a pattern on it. If you lift it up, you get a handle with which you can unscrew the screw.

How to install it correctly

The process of assembling the purchased accessory depends on the type of tensioning of the accessory or the type of saw. For example, if the power tool is side-tensioned, it is recommended to follow this sequence of actions:

  • Release the brake by pulling the safety bar in front of you.
  • Release the tension by turning the screwdriver and then tighten the nut.
  • Lift up the cover that covers the chain.
  • Remove the chain from the sprocket guide, allowing you to dismantle it.
  • Installing the new chain starts at the front of the bar. Slide the guide bar over the top of the sprocket for this purpose.
  • Insert the guide bar in its original position.
  • Tension the chain with the tensioning screw, ensuring slight tension.
  • Put the blade guard on, then tighten the nut.

If the tool has a quick tensioner, the procedure for installing the new cutter is as follows

  • Release the saw from the brake.
  • Lock the nut on the handle. Use the nut to also secure the guard and clamp the guide bar.
  • Dismantle the housing by turning the bar counterclockwise. This will give you the opportunity to finally dismantle the old one.
  • Tuck in the chain. Start with the chain sprocket. Make sure that the cutting edge is pointing towards the body.
  • Tension the product by adjusting the guide bar.
  • Replace the sprocket cover by turning the sprocket.

this is how you can quickly install the new chain in place of the old one.

Serviceability test of electric chainsaw track brake

To prevent the chainsaw operator from being hurt by the chainsaw, it is necessary to use a brake. It is used to stop the tool before the bar hits the operator’s body.

The chain stop depends on two conditions:

The saw is started using 2 methods: contact and inertial. To protect the operator from the chainsaw being thrown, the brake is equipped with a shield against the operator’s hand. Some saws have guard strips that mask the cutting part of the tool.

Step-by-step installation algorithm

Not all chainsaws today are equipped with a setting wheel that makes the chain-saw installation procedure a lot easier. Thumbwheel systems are very uncommon in residential chainsaws. That is why it is important to know the chain-saw installation procedure and sequence.

Main points to pay attention to:

  • Prepare a level surface on which you will assemble the chain and bar. This will minimize the chance of damage to the chain saw or loss of small parts. Lay the guide bar and the chain next to it in parallel on the prepared surface.
  • Remove the sprocket guard, on modern chainsaws it is enough to unscrew the wing nut, on older models, you may need an appropriate size ring spanner.
  • At the base of the guide bar, turn the idler sprocket all the way to the right. Only in this position the chain is set.
  • Then chain is placed link by link on the fixing groove of the guide bar. Install the chain from the top of the guide bar, gradually turning it so that the bar is always at the top and the chain at the bottom, this allows the chain to always be tightened and to fit into the guide bar slot without any problem. When you perform this step, be sure to wear thick safety gloves, because your fingers will be touching the cutting edge. When viewed from above, the cutter is always positioned forward to the end of the guide bar.
  • Slide both bar and chain onto the drive sprocket.
  • Fasten the sprocket cover in place. Make sure that all mounting pins are in line with the holes. Improper installation, skewed or incomplete, can cause rattling noises.
  • Make sure that the guide rails “fit” into the special mounting trough.
  • After installation, check that the chain is locked in place on the chainsaw and guide bar. Everything should be firmly seated with no play.

An important point is the amount of tension in the chain after installation. Setting the correct tension is easy and should take no more than three minutes. First you have to loosen the nuts on the cover. Use the freewheeling adjusting screw to catch the correct tension, so that the chain does not pull away from the edge of the guide bar more than 3 to 5 mm.

Now you just need to tighten the nuts and check the tension. If adjustments are needed, you can adjust the tensioning again.

Important to know: When the chain is in motion, the friction forces cause the chain metal to become very hot and expand, increasing the chain length. That’s why it’s important to check the tension regularly and adjust it in time.

How to install the bar and chain on a chainsaw, see the following video, which provides a clear algorithm of actions:

Necessary tools and equipment for tightening the chain on a chainsaw

In order to tension it correctly you need some basic knowledge and simple tools. STIHL chain saws tension the chain simply by means of the integrated chain tensioner. This method is as simple as possible and is very fast. To tension or adjust the degree of slack in the chain, the manufacturer recommends doing the following:

  • unscrew the sprocket cover using the wing nut;
  • Turning the adjusting wheel determines the necessary length of the chain, tightening it to the desired degree;
  • the sprocket cover is closed again and the chain is secured to the bar.

If it is impossible to tension the chain of a chainsaw by the built-in mechanism, use these tools (by the example of a Sparky electric saw):

  • angle grinder with a metal disk
  • Allen wrench, 5 mm in diameter;
  • piece of wire;
  • A wooden stick or a strong chip;
  • flat screwdriver.

After deenergizing the electric saw unscrew the screws with an allen key, remove the housing cover, unscrew the tensioning screw with a screwdriver and remove the stem nut. The side of the screw adjacent to the body of the saw is ground with a disk. Then the saw is reassembled in the reverse order. A sawdust brush is required to clean sawdust from the body.

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