We bring you all the advice and information you need for choosing a chainsaw sharpener - the ideal device for getting a dull chainsaw chain in prime condition again. Read about the various types of manual and electric sharpener, how to use them safely and the benefits of owning one. We also provide plenty of useful information about chainsaw chains, oils and other accessories.
Buying a chainsaw sharpener is a key step to making sure you get the best out of your chainsaw - if your chain has become dulled and your chainsaw is no longer pulling down smoothly during the cutting process, it's time to buy a new chain or invest in a sharpener.
If you are cutting wood or other materials with a dull chain, then you are doing extra unnecessary work which defeats the object of why you bought a chainsaw in the first place - to make cutting easier!
Rather than throwing away or replacing your existing chain it's a much smarter move to make your chainsaw cut like new again by sharpening the chain. The process of sharpening chain blades is easier than you might imagine and many electric chainsaw sharpeners cost under £40 - so they can prove a truly wise investment.
A chainsaw sharpener is a machine or tool that sharpens the individual teeth of your chainsaw. There are several different types of sharpeners including the manual rounded file sharpener, the bolt-on manual sharpener, drill set sharpeners, portable 12V sharpeners and wall or bench mount electric sharpeners.
You could opt to go ‘old school’ and buy a manual chainsaw sharpening kit featuring round and flat files and a depth gauge tool, but that can mean a lot of work. Plus the angle will not be accurate when attempting to sharpen a chainsaw with this type of device. Another option is to to buy sharpening attachments for tools such as the Dremel multi-tool which are perfectly capable of taking on a dulled chain.
However, when it comes to getting great results, it's hard to beat a standalone electric device whose sole purpose is to sharpen chainsaw chains. These devices are motor-driven and use an abrasive disk to carrying out the sharpening procedure. They typically have angle adjustments so they can be set to sharpen just about any chainsaw chain out there.
Trying to cut wood in your garden or other location with blunt chainsaw teeth is a waste of time and effort - and could pose a risk to your personal safety. It also puts a lot of wear and tear on the chainsaw itself. For these reasons alone it makes sense to invest in a chainwaw sharpener - even home users who use their chainsaw very occasionally will benefit greatly from sharpening, not least of all because they tend to use their power tool more roughly than professional operators do.
The key decision you need to make then buying a chainsaw sharpener is whether you want it to be a manual or electric-powered device - additionally, if you opt for an electric device, you will need to decide whether you want a small to medium-sized portable sharpener or a large stationary benchtop sharpener . If you want to take your sharpener with you and sharpen while you cut then you can consider buying a battery or 12 volt portable sharpener. A manual rounded file is another option but this involves a lot more work.
If you use a chainsaw in your profession and own multiple chainsaws and chains, then buying a heavy-duty benchtop chainsaw sharpener will make sharpening quicker and easier. Cheaper models of bench sharpeners are a great choice for anyone who just uses a chainsaw around their garden.
There are two easy ways to tell if your chainsaw chain is blunt and needs to be replaced or sharpened. Firstly, your chain's teeth should bite cleanly into the wood you are cutting with minimal pressure - the chain should self-feed, with the teeth cutting to the depth gauge setting. If this is not what you are experiencing and you are having to forcibly push the chainsaw into the wood, your chain is almost certainly blunt.
The second way to confirm a chainsaw chain is dulled, is if it's only cutting out small chips of wood, not much larger than sawdust - a sharp chain should be cutting out large and regular square-shaped wooden chips.
You should stop using your chain saw as soon as you suspect your chain is becoming dull. Continuing to use a blunt chain places undue wear and tear on all the parts of your chainsaw, not just the chain. There is a lot of evidence to support the view that dull or improperly maintained saw chains are the real source of most bar-related failures.
Dull chains also impact on the person using the chainsaw - they can cause fatigue, frustration and can also impair judgment. This is a huge safety hazard and has been the cause of many accidents involving chainsaws. The message is simple - if your chainsaw is struggling due to a dulled chain, stop using it and get it sharpened. If you don't want to invest in buying your own sharpener, there's always the option to pay a professional to sharpen it for you.
We discuss the benefits of owning a sharpener fully throughout this site - but here's just a few that stand out.
You'll find plenty of information here about the various types of chain saw sharpeners from leading brand names including Sealey, BMC, Einhell, Clarke, Black & Decker, Powerplus, Maxtra, Oregon, Scheppach, Stihl, TimberBoss, Power Tools, Timberline, Faithfull, B&Q, Ozaki, Blount, Arnold, Neilsen, Suresharp, Dremel and Katsu.
Top quality chainsaw sharpeners are sold by many leading UK stores these days including UK Tool Centre, Machine Mart, Building Supplies Online, Rapid Online, Amazon, B&Q, Wickes, Tesco Direct, Autosessive, Argos, eBay and Coopers of Stortford.
If you are keen to buy a few chainsaw accessories to use while cutting wood, we've got those too - we have an impressive reange of chainsaw chains, chainsaw oil and lubricants, plus various safety wear including protective gloves, goggles and visors, trousers, jackets and ear protectors.
As you can see, a chainsaw sharpener really is an essential bit of gear for keeping your chain in prime condition. Hopefully we can help you find the right sharpener for your needs so can get the best out of your trusty chainsaw.