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Filing mistakes

Leaving cutters uneven

To a certain extent you can get away with some differences but the longer cutters will hit the wood harder and dull faster. Your chain starts cutting well after the sharpen but quickly feels dull again.

Cause and Cure – take more care or use a file guide.

Cutters uneven length

Beaked cutters

The side angle is too shallow and the tip is unsupported. The chain will cut aggressively and dull quickly.

Cause and Cure – could be incorrect technique or too small a file size is being used.

beaked cutter front side

beaked cutter rear side

Sloped back cutters

Chain will feel completely dull.

Cause and Cure – poor technique or too large a file size being used.

sloped back cutter front side

sloped back cutter rear side

Depth gauges too low

Aggressive cutting, saw bogs down in the cut.

Cause and Cure – not using a depth gauge tool or using an angle grinder to save time!

depth gauge too low

Depth gauges too high

No cutting or small chip size and saw screams.

Cause and Cure – not realising depth gauges need to be reduced. Use a flat file and depth gauge tool.

depth gauge too high

Damage to tooth remains

Sharpening does not remove damage to cutter.

Cause and Cure – not enough strokes of file. Pay more attention to what the tooth looks like.

working corner not sharpened

Filing guides that work with round files

You have several choices for these style guides with Oregon, Stihl and Granberg. A guide is a good method of getting all the teeth the same length and the same angle. They’re not as fast as the 12 volt grinders but are cheaper. Use every 3 or 4 sharpens to get all those teeth perfect again.

stihl guide

granberg guide

View File Guides here

Using a filing guide system

Sharpening ripping chain

Ripping chain is not a special chain – simply the top plate angle has been reduced usually between 5 and 10 degrees. It is filed in the same way, the depth gauges should be set in the same way.

Read more about View More About Ripping Chain here.

ripping chain granberg 12 volt freehand grinder

Granberg 12 volt ginder
– Grind & Joint G721


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