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Author Topic: New chain advice  (Read 957 times)

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Offline Hixs83

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New chain advice
« on: September 25, 2017, 03:00:53 pm »
Hey guys, another newbie to the forum.

I've got a Stihl MS 193T and a Stihl MS 251C (made 2014/used for 2 years) that are in need of new chains. I usually go to the guy in town that I bought the saws off, but he just sells generic chain off a massive roll, and it's not very good. You be lucky if it stays sharp for longer then an hour or two (new), after that it's a job to get it back to any sort of reasonable sharpness.

I'm typically logging fallen oaks right now for firewood. Our woods are 90% oak with some Beech and Ash thrown in. Prob 5+ years of fallen oaks to be logged and tractored out, so I won't be doing much felling.

What's the best chains available for the above (low kickback preferred)? I don't really care about price too much.

Cheers
Stihl MS 193T - Stihl MS 251C - 20 Cats - 4 Dogs - 2 Arabian Horses - 1 Lady - 1 Farmhouse - Lots of alcohol to sooth the pain

Offline DelawhereJoe

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Re: New chain advice
« Reply #1 on: September 25, 2017, 05:20:43 pm »
Best sawchain is a matter of opinion, I prefer the Stihl saw chain it seems to be a harder steel then the Oregon chain. With that said about it being harder it takes more time to refile if you nick a rock. I've used Oregon, Stihl and Tri-link chain the Oregon is the quickest to refile/resharpen then the Tri-link and then Stihl. You should be able to look at the bar to see what size chain you need and order everything off the Internet. Try to touch up your chain with every tank of fuel, that way you keep it sharp, instead of trying to sharpen a dull chain.
WD-40, DUCT TAPE, 024, 026, 362c-m, 041, homelite xl, JD 2510

Offline Caloren

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Re: New chain advice
« Reply #2 on: September 25, 2017, 10:11:30 pm »
I've always been told Stihl chain is the best, stays sharp longer, but harder to resharpen once it gets dull. Currently using Stihl and Oregon chain on different saws, like Stihl the best and plan on buying only Stihl in the future. DelawhereJoe's advice is right on, touch it up BEFORE it gets dull.
Stihl MS 170, Stihl MS 310, Stihl 028 AV Super, and half a dozen other no-accounts! Cat D4 D.

Offline sawguy21

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Re: New chain advice
« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2017, 11:01:50 am »
 ??? Is your local man not a Stihl dealer? That generic chain is cheap so he can make a good mark up, I imagine he sells a lot as it wears out quickly but it won't win him any friends among knowledgeable saw users.
old age and treachery will always overcome youth and enthusiasm

Offline mburrow

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Re: New chain advice
« Reply #4 on: September 26, 2017, 11:33:56 am »
you may want to try Semi-Chisel chain
Semi-chisel cutter chains are more tolerant of sharpening errors and difficult cutting conditions than Full chisel

Offline DelawhereJoe

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Re: New chain advice
« Reply #5 on: September 26, 2017, 01:30:24 pm »
Also with saw chain the raker, the bump in front of the cutting edge, needs to be filed down to the correct depth periodically too. Or after toy sharpen it a few times all you will get is fine dust instead of chips. You can purchase kits with  round files, filing guides, flat files and depth gauge.
WD-40, DUCT TAPE, 024, 026, 362c-m, 041, homelite xl, JD 2510

Offline TKehl

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Re: New chain advice
« Reply #6 on: September 27, 2017, 10:12:53 am »
LOL I've followed this thread hoping to gain a great insight.  What you guys do is the same as what I do.  Stihl chain primarily and Oregon if I need it bad and my dealer isn't open but the box stores are. 
Lucas 6-13+slabber, Mr. Sawmill bandmill, orange chainsaws, JD SSL, Case Backhoe, farm tractors, trailers, and 150ish acres of trees.  Fledgling woodshop with CNC router, laser engraver, Woodmaster 712, and a Berlin 108 moulder (project).  Oh, and a lovely (patient) wife and four offbearers.

Offline Hixs83

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Re: New chain advice
« Reply #7 on: September 28, 2017, 02:05:44 am »
Ok, cheers for the replies.

I found some brand new Stihl chains. Still in box. This is what happens when your garage ends up in a state of disarray... The difference between the sthil and crap chain was noticeable straight away. I was limbing a fallen oak and the little 193 was still sharp after a tank of fuel. The generic crap would have been smoking the wood by that time. 

I also found my bar is bent on the 251. I've yet to work out how. It's not bent due to pinching etc it looks like the chain picked up a small stone or something and dragged it through the bar as the metal bends outwards. I'll stick up a pic later to see if anyone has any ideas.

I don't know if my local guy is a dealer. He sells a lot of stihl gear, but it's mainly aimed for home users like me, so no 3k saws of anything,  he will order in anything you want though, be it stihl or otherwise. As for sharpening, I've got all the gear. 3 sets of files. The all-in-one stihl files that do the depth gauge and teeth at the same time. I've even got an electric chain sharpener, but it's pretty useless. Just chews through the chain.
Stihl MS 193T - Stihl MS 251C - 20 Cats - 4 Dogs - 2 Arabian Horses - 1 Lady - 1 Farmhouse - Lots of alcohol to sooth the pain

Offline 630red

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Re: New chain advice
« Reply #8 on: September 29, 2017, 05:48:32 pm »
our shop sold oregon chain for years,thought is was good untill a pro asked for a stihl chain we got a roll of it in ,customers tried it loved it.its all stihl now never had any come back with broken tie straps either,used to have oregon back to be joined or shortened,never had stihl streath either

Offline thedoublejranch

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Re: New chain advice
« Reply #9 on: October 06, 2017, 10:23:38 pm »
Stihl chisel bit chain. Count the drivers on your saw chain, so you dont need to take the old unit in, just order it, pre made, in boxes by Stihl.  ;D
The Double J Ranch & Timber Farm.
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Offline d1hamby

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Re: New chain advice
« Reply #10 on: October 17, 2017, 12:40:03 am »
I'm very surprised nobody recommended a carbide chain. Stihl Duro3 chain is for people who like to keep cutting all day without having to mess with chain. Try one and see if you go back to steel.
Own a Stihl 362 16" 0.050" carbide and steel, and 25" 0.063" Stihl 020T
Stihl KM131R, 130R and KM56R with several Brush Cutter and Weed Trimmer heads. Pole Pruner (with 10", 12" w/wo Carbide, and 16" bar&chains) , Blower, Modified 135 Hedge Trimmer, Straight Edger, Bed Edger, Tiller Kombi attchment

Offline John Mc

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Re: New chain advice
« Reply #11 on: October 18, 2017, 07:59:59 pm »
I'm very surprised nobody recommended a carbide chain. Stihl Duro3 chain is for people who like to keep cutting all day without having to mess with chain. Try one and see if you go back to steel.

Tried one loop of carbide chain. I'm not a fan if it. It cuts significantly slower than properly sharpened steel chain. I does last longer - at least until you hit a rock, but I just couldn't get used to the way it cuts. I also happen to appreciate to occasional break to sharpen a chain. Maybe if I were cutting in really dirty conditions, I'd appreciate it more.
If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.   - Abraham Maslow

Offline Riwaka

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Re: New chain advice
« Reply #12 on: October 20, 2017, 04:04:30 am »
With the small Stihl saws you are likely to be with .325 pitch.   
I use the rapid micro, stihl chains are cro/ cold treated in Switzerland?
http://www.stihl.co.uk/STIHL-Products/Chainsaws-and-Telescopic-Pole-Pruners/Saw-chain-loops-and-reels/21325-1631/Rapid-Micro-3-(RM3)-325-1-6-mm.aspx

Oregon has a range of different .325 pitch chains.
http://www.oregonproducts.eu/en/products/acrobat-pdf.html

http://www.oregonproducts.eu/en/products/acrobat-pdf.html   22LPX     Page 56, page 94
                                                                                               22BPX
                                                                                               M95VPX  lubri-tec etc
                                                                                                95TXL

Is you have a Husqvarna dealer you can probably get .063 gauge .325 pitch brazilian husqy chain from them.
If you get serious about cutting, look at the 3/8 pitch chains on a larger saw.

Offline d1hamby

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Re: New chain advice
« Reply #13 on: October 20, 2017, 08:07:50 am »
I'm very surprised nobody recommended a carbide chain. Stihl Duro3 chain is for people who like to keep cutting all day without having to mess with chain. Try one and see if you go back to steel.

Tried one loop of carbide chain. I'm not a fan if it. It cuts significantly slower than properly sharpened steel chain. I does last longer - at least until you hit a rock, but I just couldn't get used to the way it cuts. I also happen to appreciate to occasional break to sharpen a chain. Maybe if I were cutting in really dirty conditions, I'd appreciate it more.

What brand of chain was that? Did you bring the rakers down so it would cut faster? I've only used Stihl Duro3 and for me it usually cuts faster than any Stihl regular chain out of the box.
Own a Stihl 362 16" 0.050" carbide and steel, and 25" 0.063" Stihl 020T
Stihl KM131R, 130R and KM56R with several Brush Cutter and Weed Trimmer heads. Pole Pruner (with 10", 12" w/wo Carbide, and 16" bar&chains) , Blower, Modified 135 Hedge Trimmer, Straight Edger, Bed Edger, Tiller Kombi attchment

Offline John Mc

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Re: New chain advice
« Reply #14 on: October 20, 2017, 09:14:56 am »

Tried one loop of carbide chain. I'm not a fan if it. It cuts significantly slower than properly sharpened steel chain. I does last longer - at least until you hit a rock, but I just couldn't get used to the way it cuts. I also happen to appreciate to occasional break to sharpen a chain. Maybe if I were cutting in really dirty conditions, I'd appreciate it more.

What brand of chain was that? Did you bring the rakers down so it would cut faster? I've only used Stihl Duro3 and for me it usually cuts faster than any Stihl regular chain out of the box.

I no longer recall the brand. You generally don't see the same cutting edge shape on a carbide chain as on a steel chain. This is because the carbide needs more support to keep from chipping. That tends to slow the cut. Yes, I could counter that by taking down the rakers, but I don't like a really grabby chain (I do a fair amount of bore cutting when felling). It's also tougher on both the equipment and the operator. I tend to use smaller, lighter saws, so just overcoming it with more power is a limited option for me: my most-used saws are a Jonsered 2152 (51 cc, sister design to a Husky 353) and a Husky 357XP (57cc). Not much need to carry a larger saw for the bulk of what I am cutting (90+% is 16" DBH or less hardwoods, mostly thinning and cutting up for firewood.)
If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.   - Abraham Maslow