How To Sharpen A Chainsaw With a File? 2024 Guide

How To Sharpen A Chainsaw With a File? 2024 Guide

When it comes to sharpening a chainsaw, there are few more unnerving chores than filling the air with noise and sparks. It can almost make you feel like an amateur lumberjack! Fortunately,if done safely and correctly, sharpening your chainsaw may be one of the most rewarding DIY tasks – after all nothing beats cutting through wood like butter. In this guide, we’ll provide some tips on preparing for and completing the task quickly and simply so you can keep sawing away in no time! So put on your flannel shirt with cheesy suspenders if that’s your thing & Let’s learn how to sharpen a Chainsaw using a file today!

How To Sharpen a Chainsaw With a File?

how to sharpen a chainsaw with a file

Start by attaching the file guide to the bar and chain of your saw. Then tension the chain with a tensioning tool or wrench and secure it in place using a vise or other secure fixture. Use the guide to draw the file through the cutting teeth, keeping it level with each tooth and making sure that it’s sharpened evenly. Once you’re done sharpening the teeth, use a flat file to fill in the depth gauges.

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Here are the steps:

  • Choose the Correct File Size

It’s important to select the correct size file for your chainsaw. If you are unsure of what size file you need, refer to the manufacturer’s specifications in the owner’s manual.

  • Remove the Power Source

Before you begin, make sure the chainsaw is unplugged and no fuel is present. This will ensure your safety during the sharpening process.

  • Clean the Chainsaw

Clean the chain and guide bar with a cloth or brush to remove any dirt, bark or other debris. This will help you get an accurate measurement of how much metal needs to be removed when sharpening.

  • Set Up the File and Guide

Attach the file guide to the chainsaw’s bar and place the correct size file into the holder. Make sure the file is properly aligned with the chain’s cutting angles.

  • Set Chain Tension

The tension should be set to allow for smooth operation of the file, but not too loose that the chain slips off the guide bar. Use a tensioning tool or wrench to adjust the tension to the correct level.

  • Secure the Bar

Secure the bar in a vise or other secure fixture. Make sure it is firmly clamped so that it doesn’t move during the sharpening process.

  • Sharpen One Side

Hold the file at a 45-degree angle to the chainsaw’s guide bar and draw it forward through one side of the cutting teeth. Repeat this process for all of the teeth on that side.

  • Reverse Direction

Once you’ve completed one side, turn the file around and draw it back through the other side of the cutting teeth. Make sure to use equal pressure and make sure all of the teeth are sharpened evenly.

  • Electric Rotary Sharpeners

If you don’t have the time or inclination to sharpen your chainsaw with a file, an electric rotary sharpener is also an option. Follow the instructions provided with the unit and make sure to properly secure the bar before using it.

  • Filling the Depth Gauges

Once the cutting teeth are sharpened, use a flat file to fill in the depth gauges. Make sure to only file them down to the manufacturer’s specifications stated in the owner’s manual.

  • Clean and Store

When you have finished sharpening your chainsaw, clean it with a cloth or brush before storing it. Make sure to store it in a cool, dry place and out of reach of children.

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What you need to sharpen your chainsaw?

  • File guide
  • Files (various sizes)
  • Tensioning tool or wrench
  • Vise or other secure fixture
  • Flat file for depth gauges
  • Cloth or brush for cleaning

Why is it important to sharpen your chainsaw?

  1. Sharper blades mean easier and faster cutting.
  2. Correctly sharpened blades promote cleaner, smoother cuts which improve the lifespan of your chainsaw.
  3. If left unsharpened, the chainsaw will take more effort to use and can become unsafe as the teeth quickly become dull or damaged.
  4. Keeping your chainsaw sharp will make it easier to use and safer for the operator.
  5. Regular sharpening will also help to keep your chainsaw running at peak performance.
  6. Last but not least, a sharp chainsaw will save you money in the long run by ensuring your equipment runs efficiently and lasts longer.

Winding up!

Sharpening your chainsaw with a file is a straightforward task that can be done in just a few simple steps. It’s important to refer to the manufacturer’s specifications and use the correct tools when sharpening your saw. With regular sharpening, you’ll ensure that your chainsaw runs at its peak performance for years to come.


Why is it important to keep the chainsaw chain tensioned properly?

It’s important to set the tension correctly so that the file will move smoothly through the cutting teeth without slipping off. If the chain is too loose, it can slip off of the guide bar and cause injury. Conversely, if it’s too tight, it will cause unnecessary wear and tear on the chainsaw.

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Can I use an electric rotary sharpener instead of a file?

Yes, you can use an electric rotary sharpener to sharpen your chainsaw. However, it is important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and secure the bar before using it.

How often should I sharpen my chainsaw?

It’s recommended to sharpen your chainsaw every time you use it, or at least a few times a year. This will ensure that your chainsaw runs smoothly and safely for years to come.

What should I do if the chain is damaged?

If the chain becomes worn, dull, or damaged, it’s important to replace it with a new one. Never attempt to sharpen a damaged chain as it can be dangerous.

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