file size for sharpening chain.

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Papi3

Papi3

New Member
Joined
Sep 20, 2021
Messages
1
Location
west seneca ny
hello, I am new here and I have been using a chainsaw for over 30 years. I have never owned a furnace all these years to give you an idea of the wood that I have cut in the western NY area. I know how to sharpen by hand without guides, just by eye. Although I am starting to learn more about depth guage filing. I have been filing the depth gauges by eye for years and now I am now starting to measure. I have good results with the sharpened chain, except for the depth links. I tend to file them too much as I get some pull and it's a bit choppy at times, but they do cut.
Anyway if someone can be so kind to inform me of file size. I use a .063 gauge 74 DL, .035 chain. All makes through the years and I have been using a 3/16 inch file. I have a Stihl 026.
I picked up some Oregon chains years back and I am just starting to use them. They are L74 35SL. They call for a 5/32 file size from the package.

My question is can I use my 3/16 inch files on this chain or do I need to buy 5/32 inch files? I read somewhere that it may be okay to interchange file sizes that will affect the sharpness longevity vs performance.

Using my common sense it seems that the larger the file the more blunt the tooth edge will be and that edge may last longer vs using the smaller file and creating a finer edge that will be sharper but won't last as long.
I figured I ask you people who know much more about than I. I thank you in advance for any information.
I can just buy a 12 pack of 5/32-inch files, but I am curious about this more than anything. thanks again.
 
Philbert

Philbert

Chainsaw Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 25, 2006
Messages
18,510
Location
Minnesota
Welcome to A.S.!

I always recommend using the the specified file for each chain. The engineers and designers that work for the chain manufacturers spend a lot of time on this.

If you intentionally choose to use a different size file, or different angles, that is your choice. Not saying that it is ‘wrong’, but understand that you may get different performance from the chain.

Let us know what happens!

Philbert
 
thenne1713

thenne1713

ArboristSite Operative
Joined
May 24, 2008
Messages
175
Location
Memphis
hello, I am new here and I have been using a chainsaw for over 30 years. I have never owned a furnace all these years to give you an idea of the wood that I have cut in the western NY area. I know how to sharpen by hand without guides, just by eye. Although I am starting to learn more about depth guage filing. I have been filing the depth gauges by eye for years and now I am now starting to measure. I have good results with the sharpened chain, except for the depth links. I tend to file them too much as I get some pull and it's a bit choppy at times, but they do cut.
Anyway if someone can be so kind to inform me of file size. I use a .063 gauge 74 DL, .035 chain. All makes through the years and I have been using a 3/16 inch file. I have a Stihl 026.
I picked up some Oregon chains years back and I am just starting to use them. They are L74 35SL. They call for a 5/32 file size from the package.

My question is can I use my 3/16 inch files on this chain or do I need to buy 5/32 inch files? I read somewhere that it may be okay to interchange file sizes that will affect the sharpness longevity vs performance.

Using my common sense it seems that the larger the file the more blunt the tooth edge will be and that edge may last longer vs using the smaller file and creating a finer edge that will be sharper but won't last as long.
I figured I ask you people who know much more about than I. I thank you in advance for any information.
I can just buy a 12 pack of 5/32-inch files, but I am curious about this more than anything. thanks again.
(Generally) 5/32 is for PICO/LP chain, 3/16 for 325 chain and 7/32 for 3/8 chain; so if a PICO chain, you will get MUCH better results w/ a 5/32 file and guides
 
TnShooter

TnShooter

ArboristSite Member
Joined
Oct 21, 2017
Messages
60
Location
Sourh Eastern USA
I use the recommended file. You can usually find this on the box the chain came in.
Most chains now have an angled line on the cutting tooth (too plate). I use this as a guide when going by eye. Or some times I use a Husky file handle with built in angle guide.

As for the depth. I use a flat file. I file them to hard wood spec. As I bury my bar quite frequently, and I feel the saw runs better with a shallower cut.

Hope this helps
 
Philbert

Philbert

Chainsaw Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 25, 2006
Messages
18,510
Location
Minnesota
I’ve always used 13/64 file for 3/8 chain but know plenty of folks that use 7/32.
My understanding is 7/32 is standard for .404.
STIHL recommends 13/64 for their 3/8 pitch chain. Oregon recommends 7/32 for their 3/8 pitch chain. Different recommendations due to different cutter profiles? company preference? performance?

The 1/64” difference is small. Users can follow manufacturers’ specs, or decide if they notice any significant difference in performance when using a different file.

Philbert
 

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