Chainsaw Massacre

Does anyone know about chainsaws? (Yes I know) I bought a cheap chainsaw off Amazon a few years ago chopped off a couple of overhanging branches and it’s since been sitting in the garage for a few years. I got it out today, fuelled it up and 6 pulls later it bursts into life. The only problem is both chains are blunt as fuck. The question is, are chain sharpeners worth buying? If not any idea what is a decent brand chain to buy, 16".

Chain sharpeners are absolutely essential - it would be akin to throwing out a kitchen knife every time it loses its edge.

Stihl do an excellent one that also keeps the depth guages at the right level automatically - just depends on what size chain you’ve got on the chainsaw as to whether they do one the right size, but these things are generally pretty standard:


Recommending a sharpener that probably costs more than his petrol-station-forecourt chainy: peak Abattoir :ok_hand:

My old corpse-reducer takes cheap-as-fuck chains which get abused to living fuck and then binned: my time is way more valuable than dicking-about sharpening the cunts.

If you do go this way, remember to re-tension regulalrly cos they will stretch like fuck while you’re whipping limbs off to go thru the chipper :+1:


Afraid I’ve no idea,but chainsaws scare me.

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Bore off.

Yes the Stihl sharpening kit is worthwhile, get the one with the depth gauge suitable for your chain.

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:+1: me too

I’m sure I’ve said this before, but my mother had a very impressive scar where my Dad tried to cut her leg off with one.

The doctor at the falls clinic (decades later) be like

“What. Is. That?”


“No, how did that scar happen?”

“No really. Chainsaw.”


Ive seen the sorts of scars a chain breaking can do. I’d never buy a cheap chain, ever, as a result.

@stu if a chainsaw doesn’t scare the shit out of you, you shouldn’t be using one.

I use a stihl sharpener (a simple file) that costs about half the cost of a new chain, and it takes about twice as long to sharpen the chain as it does to refill the petrol and oil reservoirs between runs. The file has a guard with scribed lines to keep you straight - it really couldn’t be simpler. Total no-brainer when you’ve done it once :+1:

My uncle Haydn almost died thanks to a chainsaw. He mostly cut his arm off, and was found bleeding out by some passers by. Fortunately one used to be a nurse, so could deal with severed arteries until the ambulance arrived.

Anyway, whatever you do please video it for posterity and YouTube fame :grin:

I know a bloke that dropped a chain saw while up in a tree. It was attached to his waist with a safety chord and swang between his legs several times while running. He wasnt wearing armoured trousers.
Very Lucky to be able to climb down.

Its the one power tool I’ll do everything in my power not to use.

I disagree with that, you need a healthy respect for it to operate one safely. If you’re shit scared you shouldn’t pick it up as you will not be in full control. Same with using a table saw.

Those stihl guide sharpeners ain’t too bad, just keep them level, don’t force it and cut it at the right profile for your chain. Best to put the chain saw in a vice when doing it.

Always wear your protection when using it. If you don’t the chainsaw will not give you a second chance and will give you life threatening injuries.

It still amazes me that anyone can buy a chainsaw without producing a licence

The brake handle is weighted so stops the chain when a saw is dropped.

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Stihls and Huskies maybe, but an AliExpress/Aldi special, I wouldn’t be so confident.
Disclaimer: I’ve never used one but Mrs 68’s uncle and cousin are both arborists - safety first, second and third.

This, for sure. The first time I rented a chainsaw, the tool rental place had a big sign above the chainsaw bench saying:


which tickled me :joy:

Friend is a tree surgeon, his stories are horrifying.

Person dying in a tree before they can get up to try and get them down, lost limbs, lost eyes etc.

There is a reason they wear fiberglass packed trousers, proper helmets/visors, people waiting on the floor/ropes while they work up in the trees etc.

I wouldn’t bother unless I had a few acres of woods and a log burner.

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An arborist usually drops the saw between his legs on a strop so he can either change position after cutting or to just use his hands to climb. Yes the saw is still running but the inertia brake would have been engaged, if he is wise. This would have been done with a flick from back of his hand / wrist as soon as he let go of the saw. Hence the chain is not running.

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Hopefully it didn’t tickle you :skull:

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It’s a safety standard and has been for decades. If sold in the UK it will have a suitable brake.

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I rented the safety gear, and bought some when I bought the saw. Like going out on the bike, I always have a quiet word with myself first, along the lines of ‘don’t become a statistic today’…

Trained and worked as a tree surgeon from ‘92 to ‘96. Enjoyable but fucking hard work.
Most accidents are caused by poorly maintained saws or poor knowledge of use.
Climbing accidents are another thing altogether and usually a bit more awkward to deal with.