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Author Topic: Begginer sharpening chains by hand or??  (Read 7253 times)

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Offline opticsguy

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Re: Begginer sharpening chains by hand or??
« Reply #20 on: March 28, 2012, 10:13:11 PM »
The dilemma continues . . .

Picked up a saw guide and refiled all the cutters, used the raker gauge to check the rakers.  Had removed the bar and removed all the burrs, channels, gouges, and UFO's.  The running surface is square to the bar sides and every thing looks great.  Not sure what else I could do.

So started up the saw and started a cut which immediately went right, would probably cut an 18" circle, that is really a tight turn. Never seen a saw do this before. 

So, tomorrow, out for a new chain and will also have the local service people take a look at the whole saw.

TK 1220 band mill,  1952 Ford F-2, 1925 Dodge touring, too many telescopes.

Offline thecfarm

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Re: Begginer sharpening chains by hand or??
« Reply #21 on: March 28, 2012, 10:17:00 PM »
When I kinda taught myself to shapen I just kept at it. Kept sawing on the same poor log. But I finally caught on to want I was doing wrong. Took about 5-6 chains too over a month.
Model 6020-20hp Manual Thomas bandsaw,TC40A 4wd 40 hp New Holland tractor, 450 Norse Winch, Heatmor 400 OWB,YCC 1978-79

Offline lumberjack48

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Re: Begginer sharpening chains by hand or??
« Reply #22 on: March 29, 2012, 07:21:57 PM »
opticsguy take that chain that pulling to the right and file the left hand cutters only.
Third generation logger, owner operator, 30 yrs felling experience with pole skidder. I got my neck broke back in 89, left me a quad. The wife kept the job going up to 96.

Offline opticsguy

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Re: Begginer sharpening chains by hand or??
« Reply #23 on: March 30, 2012, 11:37:14 AM »
I will give that a try, which ones are the left handed cutters?

I would assume the cutting teeth attached on the left side of the chain when viewed from the operators position? 
TK 1220 band mill,  1952 Ford F-2, 1925 Dodge touring, too many telescopes.

Offline lumberjack48

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Re: Begginer sharpening chains by hand or??
« Reply #24 on: March 30, 2012, 01:17:00 PM »
Yes, from over the back of the saw, look straight down at the cutters, if you see a shinny edge on the cutter, its dull. You have to file on till its gone, each stroke of the file you'll see it disappear. Now make sure you don't rock the file when filing, long straight slow strokes, following the angle marked on the cutter. Take your time, watch what your doing, don't get frustrated, you can master that chain.
Third generation logger, owner operator, 30 yrs felling experience with pole skidder. I got my neck broke back in 89, left me a quad. The wife kept the job going up to 96.

Offline thecfarm

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Re: Begginer sharpening chains by hand or??
« Reply #25 on: March 30, 2012, 07:56:22 PM »
Too far for me to come help you. Something so easy can be so hard too. When you get it,you will be so happy. I know I was. About time I said. Probably not in your case,but at the High school Voc Center there was a guy that put on classes on how to sharpen a saw. I know of a couple guys that took it. Helped them alot.
Model 6020-20hp Manual Thomas bandsaw,TC40A 4wd 40 hp New Holland tractor, 450 Norse Winch, Heatmor 400 OWB,YCC 1978-79

Offline ArborJake

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Re: Begginer sharpening chains by hand or??
« Reply #26 on: March 30, 2012, 09:25:41 PM »
 I think your bar is probably shot. I look at saw's from many homeowners that i work for becuase they cut crooked. Most have unevenly warn out bars. Once they really wear uneven it's extremely difficult to get them back. Usually this happens from repeatedly trying to force a dull saw through a log. The chain gets hot and dry and wears away the bar unevenly becuase of hooking the bumper spikes in for leverage you apply uneven pressure.We always carry extra chain. If one gets dull throw on another. Sharpen them back at the shop on a vise like mentioned before.
thick and thin lumber company. qaulity manufacturer of saw dust and slab wood.

Offline bandmiller2

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Re: Begginer sharpening chains by hand or??
« Reply #27 on: March 30, 2012, 09:37:20 PM »
Opticsguy,mayby you should just get one of those Origon chain grinders,if used with care will give you a sharp chain. Frank C.
A man armed with common sense is packing a big piece

Offline opticsguy

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Re: Begginer sharpening chains by hand or?? Problem solved!!!
« Reply #28 on: April 04, 2012, 11:37:44 PM »
Problem solved,  yes, my bar was worn out. 

A new bar and chain and I am now one very happy camper!!! Or saywer . . . .

Thanks everyone.


TK 1220 band mill,  1952 Ford F-2, 1925 Dodge touring, too many telescopes.

Offline brianJ

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Re: Begginer sharpening chains by hand or??
« Reply #29 on: July 26, 2018, 12:35:09 PM »
Prospecting back thru old posts, what gold you can find.    Had the same issues and questions the OP wrote about.     Thought Id give this thread a bump so some of them visitors dont need to learn the hard way like I did.    

Now Im learning to recognize dull chains, high rakers, and uneven rails earlier so its a quick adjustment rather than time and cash for a repair.

One further question is how do you know a file is dull?   Is it like knowing your chain is dull?



Offline btulloh

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Re: Begginer sharpening chains by hand or??
« Reply #30 on: July 26, 2018, 03:08:24 PM »
That's about right.  Dull is dull.  You can tell by how it feels against the tooth when you file.  It also sounds different.  You can tell the feel of a sharp file with your hand when you pick it up.  My suggestion would be to buy a new file and compare it to an old file.  Then you'd know.  Treat your file like an edge tool and don't just through it in with a bunch of hard stuff.  (Sometimes we all do that I guess, but it doesn't help the file.)  Ideally you shouldn't have several files snuggling up to each other in you tool box either.  

Offline lxskllr

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Re: Begginer sharpening chains by hand or??
« Reply #31 on: July 26, 2018, 04:52:13 PM »
A new file feels "gritty" when you sharpen a tooth, and leaves a nice bit of dust on the file. You can feel it bite as you sharpen the tooth. A dull file slips over the tooth, and doesn't bite in. You *can* file with a dull file, but it's a strain, and your form goes bad. If you have to apply significant pressure, your file's probably too dull.

I second getting a new file(s) to compare. You can forget what it's supposed to feel like after awhile, and it slowly gets harder without you realizing it. I also suspect most of us are cheap, so it's tempting to use a file longer than is sensible. Don't consider a file as you would a nice wrench. Think of it more like gasoline. It's expendable, and when it's done, it's done. Just another operating cost of running a saw. Don't fight with old files.

Offline thecfarm

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Re: Begginer sharpening chains by hand or??
« Reply #32 on: July 26, 2018, 04:56:17 PM »
A dull file,when it does not file. :D I buy my files by the box,12 at a time. When they don't grab,out they go. I don't want the file to feel like a piece of cold rolled steel when I am filing. ;D  I have a big saw and a small saw,so I have 2 sizes, 2 boxes of files. I have no idea how long a box last,6 months, a year? I think closer to a year.
I feel a sharp file helps me filing.
Model 6020-20hp Manual Thomas bandsaw,TC40A 4wd 40 hp New Holland tractor, 450 Norse Winch, Heatmor 400 OWB,YCC 1978-79

Offline samandothers

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Re: Begginer sharpening chains by hand or??
« Reply #33 on: July 27, 2018, 12:20:54 PM »
I read a thread about cleaning files.  I tried that and it did help.  After a while though a new file is in order!

Offline btulloh

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Re: Begginer sharpening chains by hand or??
« Reply #34 on: July 27, 2018, 12:30:44 PM »
Cleaning is good, but it doesn't change dull.  Use a file carder.  A rotary brass bristled brush will do a good job of cleaning as well, but you end up with the dullest file ever known to mankind.  (Don't ask me how I know. ;))

I have soaked files in white vinegar for 24 hours and it makes them sharper.  Similar to the old trick of putting a file in sulphuric acid to sharpen it, but without the possibility of permanent disfigurement. I can't really say how sharp the result was compared to a new file, but it's worthwhile.  The vinegar is a good way to remove rust.  No matter how you go about it, a dull file is not a good thing.

Offline samandothers

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Re: Begginer sharpening chains by hand or??
« Reply #35 on: July 27, 2018, 06:20:51 PM »
I used white vinegar to clean as well.  It did help.  As you may already be aware dont drag the file back as it dull the file as well.

Offline Logger RK

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Re: Begginer sharpening chains by hand or??
« Reply #36 on: July 29, 2018, 07:58:34 AM »
If you can find the right size straw,  they make a good file protector. And the hunt for the straw can be a adventure also

Offline John Mc

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Re: Begginer sharpening chains by hand or??
« Reply #37 on: July 29, 2018, 09:23:59 AM »
If you can find the right size straw,  they make a good file protector. And the hunt for the straw can be a adventure also
Stock up now: there is a big "anti-plastic-straw" movement going on in the US now.
If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.   - Abraham Maslow

Offline teakwood

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Re: Begginer sharpening chains by hand or??
« Reply #38 on: July 29, 2018, 11:47:02 AM »
We are also starting here with this movement and i support it. straws are absolutely unnecessary unless you eat in your car. 

lots of straws end up in our oceans and the turtles (which Costa Rica is proud of protecting and they do a great job) chocks on them and can die from it.
National Stihl Timbersports Champion Costa Rica 2018

Offline John Mc

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Re: Begginer sharpening chains by hand or??
« Reply #39 on: July 29, 2018, 12:31:24 PM »
We are also starting here with this movement and i support it. straws are absolutely unnecessary unless you eat in your car.

lots of straws end up in our oceans and the turtles (which Costa Rica is proud of protecting and they do a great job) chocks on them and can die from it.
I also strongly support it. I tell restaurants not to bring them to the table. I do have what is probably a lifetime supply of round file protectors now, since my wife bought a 50-pack of straws for one of my kids birthday party a few years ago.
If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.   - Abraham Maslow


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