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best chain for cutting fire wood ?

Discussion in 'Firewood, Heating and Wood Burning Equipment' started by whiting-5, Oct 30, 2008.

  1. whiting-5

    whiting-5 ArboristSite Operative

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    just curious what type of chains you guys run brand and type regular or skip tooth ive been running husky chains (thats all i can get local) would like to expand my options and order off the internet but want something thats going to work well for me mostly just cutting hardwood firewood up dont mind spending thebucks for something good just dont want to get burned. thanks guys.
     
  2. darren_nh

    darren_nh ArboristSite Operative

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    I use Stihl RSC. About $20 a chain in 16" and 18" at the dealer.
     
  3. avalancher

    avalancher Arboristsite Raconteur

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    A sharp one too!
    ok, kidding aside, gotta agree on the Stihl RSC, its the longest lasting and one of the fastest ones out there. Costs a few bucks more, but worth it.
    If you are going to run into any dirty wood, keep a loop or two of semi chisel in your box, it will hold an edge longer than full chisel.Doesnt cut quite as fast, but its worth the extra time it will save you sharpening all the time.
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2008
  4. drmiller100

    drmiller100 AboristSite Guru

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    for sure skip tooth. you can't measure the difference in speed in cutting, but you can measure the speed in sharpening.
     
  5. ShoerFast

    ShoerFast Tree Freak

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    whiting-5

    Welcome to the site! :cheers:

    Why not get your pitch, gauge, and DL count sized up and get a one of 2 of all the options that suit you.

    You will develop a favorite in no time is my bet.

    Make sure you pick up plently of good files to fit the chain also, Stihl chain really likes fresh files.
     
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  6. timberwolf

    timberwolf Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Likely more importaint than brand is just having a shap chain. Forget skip unless you are running long bars on small saws. Skip wears out faster as each cutter needs to cut more wood, and it is slower and rougher cutting in smaller wood. There are only about 4 manufactures of chain it just gets sold under different names.

    Chain with a square corner (chisle) cuts faster than a rounded (semi Chisle) but is more subject to getting dulled in dirty conditions. Safety chain in general cuts slower, but is less prone to kickback if accidentally mishandled.
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2008
  7. abohac

    abohac AboristSite Guru

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    I use Carlton full comp (it's called something else becasue I get it from a wholesaler, but Carleton makes it). I'm pleased with it. I buy it by the 100 ft roll.
     
  8. STEVEGODSEYJR

    STEVEGODSEYJR AboristSite Guru

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    I think baileys "RC" chain is made by carelton....any who it is a very good chain also:clap:
     
  9. 68kaiser

    68kaiser ArboristSite Member

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    I great results with OREGON chain from baileys. The 75JGX its round skip chiesel. The key is to keep it sharp.
     
  10. Patrick62

    Patrick62 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    It all depends...

    on what powerhead you have, what you are cutting, etc.

    I prefer full skip on 24" and longer bars. RCS from baileys. Good stuff!

    -Pat :cheers:
     
  11. Signoflife

    Signoflife ArboristSite Operative

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    I have used the Stihl RS/RSC chains and the Oregon LP/LPX/LG/LGX chains on my saws full comp since most of my cutting is in clean hardwood with properly match saw/bar combo and I have found all of these to be good.

    To get better suggestions more specific to your setup, you should provide the following information:
    1. What size/model saw.
    2. Bar length and gauge.
    3. Sprocket pitch.
    4. Clean or dirty wood / conditions.
    5. Do you keep the chain out of the dirt / ground and away stones, nails, etc...
    6. How much experience do you have with saws and kickback?
    7. If you do much ripping (along the length of tree) or mostly cross cutting (across the grain).

    I think that's it.
     
  12. whiting-5

    whiting-5 ArboristSite Operative

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    i run 2 saws my big one is a husky 385xp 24 inch bar cut mostly clean hardwoods do hardly no ripping. keep it up out of the dirt not alot of experince but operate pretty well. ive been using a skip tooth chain.

    my second saw is a husky rancher 455 with 20 inch bar

    thanks for the help guys.
     
  13. timberwolf

    timberwolf Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Either saw will run 3/8 full comp chain, likely only want 7 tooth sprockets though. Then which ever chisel cutter chain brand you wan't they are all pretty close. Stihl is a bit more beefy but so is the price tag.
     
  14. whiting-5

    whiting-5 ArboristSite Operative

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    hey timber have question on the sprocket are these changeble like changing gears in a car higher/lower more rpm or more tourqe etc? just curious
     
  15. Signoflife

    Signoflife ArboristSite Operative

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    Sounds similar to the conditions I cut in so...

    For the 385XP I would run an Oregon LGX (they have the blue cutters, slightly harder, stays sharp longer a little harder to sharpen but worth it) or the Stihl RSC, either way whatever your sprocket is 3/8" (.375") or .404"

    For the 455 I would possibly run the Oregon LGX as well or if you want a saw/chain with slight kickback protection you could try the LPX (which I have for a couple of my saws and I don't notice any significant loss in cutting speed and if you have a helper less familar with cutting its a little easier / safer for them) or again the Stihl RSC chain in either the .325" or 3/8" to match your sprocket.

    Keep the chain sharp, don't let them get to dull and if you hand file, get the proper holder / angle tool for the right diameter files and after each 1/2 to full day of clean cutting touch the chain up with a few rubs to bring it back. After every couple sharpenings, check the drags and scrub those down as well, but use the depth gauge as well, not good to take these down below the recommended depth, it gets grabby!
     
  16. Signoflife

    Signoflife ArboristSite Operative

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    Whiting I would also suggest you could use full comp chains and not the skip on those saw and bar combo's. You should find the saws stay sharper longer and should cut smoother in your size of wood. As well more cutting teeth at full rpm's should cut faster as well, maybe not be noticeable over a few blocks but after a couple trees it adds up. Skip is usually used for longer bar / bigger wood combo's.

    As for the sprockets I believe your saws would come stock with 7 tooth (you can count them) and could be changed to 8 tooth which would give you more chain speed but yes less torque. I wouldn't suggest it on the 455 but the 385XP even stock could probably handle the 8 tooth sprocket with the 24inch bar fairly well if you are not cutting in too big and hard wood.:cheers:
     
  17. drmiller100

    drmiller100 AboristSite Guru

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    that all sounds great if you are racing, or cutting a few perfect rounds.

    Real world says you start the day with a sharp chain, and cutting wood with rocks here and there.

    as the day goes on, you start leaning into the saw more and more..... eventually you hit enough rocks you stop and sharpen.

    the number of teeth you have has NOTHING to do with how long the saw stays sharp. Neither does the number of teeth.

    Less teeth means you are more likely to sharpen.
     
  18. Signoflife

    Signoflife ArboristSite Operative

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    Last time I checked, my saw is real, wood I cut is real, rocks all around are real, dirt real, yup world is real here too...I guess some people could take a little more care as well, with proper care, chucking some blocks under logs, using log rollers / can-hooks, tend to keep my chains away from rocks. I have cut real wood for years and have had many chains run there life without ever touching a rock or dirt. It has happened a few times sure, and you do know it right away. As far as the number of cutting teeth I would think that half or two thirds the cutting teeth would have to do more work to cut the same amount of wood and therefore dullen that 50% to 33% faster in direct relation to number of teeth, could be wrong but I can't see it.
     
  19. AOD

    AOD Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I think full skip dulls really fast too, it seems to only stay sharp for 2 or 3 cuts for me, and thats in clean hardwood. Full comp sounds like a better plan...
     
  20. drmiller100

    drmiller100 AboristSite Guru

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    in the past year, i've cut 150 cords or so, all of it 3 feet off the ground. pick the logs off the ground with skid steer, put them on the table, and cut them up.

    dang bark holds sand and rocks. danged logs get those splits in them that hold sand and rocks.

    sure would be neat to have logs that never have sand, dirt, or rocks in them from falling on the ground.
     

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