I have a 009 Stihl saw, 12 or 14 inch blade. It cuts find
to about an inch and a half, but then it acts like the chain
is dull or something. Cutting the rest of the way through a
limb takes a lot of doing.
I notice that the bar at the bottom is not in good shape. It's
worn down and spread out a little. So I turned the bar over
to the good side, and that didn't help.
The saw is 20 years old. The bar is probably 10.
Why don't you wait until the chain shows signs of getting dull
before you sharpen it? It could last a lot longer.
And I'm concerned about your bar. Are you sure your oiler is working
properly? I'm afaid you have overheated your bar and softened the
I brought a saw in for a problem of not cutting well with new chain and engine
running good. He took one look and took the chain off the saw and filed the
mushroom chain tracking groove on the bar to be flate. He put the chain back on
it and it cut fine. If the mushroom part of the bar gets bigger than the chain
groove it cuts. The bar will not go through the hole the chain cuts.
Just something to look at.
The chain is about a year old. I give it a quick sharpen about
every other tank of gas. I'm getting little wood chips, not sawdust,
so I didn't think it would be the chain. I can try another,
All good stuff, guys, thanks. Yeah, I thought the bar was getting bigger
than the chain groove, so I turned the bar over and used the other side.
(Yeah, the chain is in the right direction!) I thought that was the answer
for sure, but it didn't help that much, if at all.
That worries me too, how that you mention it, that the bar might be getting
too hot and not getting enough oil. I'll clean it out to make sure it's
enough, but I can tell you that the bar oil level goes down about right
every time I fill up. But maybe the bar oil is going to the wrong place.
I guess I'll take it to the shop and let the guys there have a look at my
On the cutter link of the chain, there is the blade (or
cutter) on the back part, and on the front of the link is a
piece that sticks up and keeps the blade from cutting into the
wood too deeply. This is the depth gauge. As you sharpen the
cutter, it gets cut down lower and lower. Every 4 or five
times that you sharpen the cutter, you have to file down the
depth gauge so that the cutter can bite into the wood at the
Here is a pretty good tutorial. Scroll down to the chainsaw
sharpening guide at the bottom of the page.
Most likely cause: Chain misfiled and it's trying to cut in a curve.
If it only goes in that far before binding, the chain is really in need
of a professional touchup. Take it to a chainsaw shop or small engine
shop and have them grind it. Less than $10.
2nd most likely is worn bar. Turning the bar over may or may not cure
that. Lay a straight bar across the rails and eyeball to see if it is
square to the bar (both sides).
My bet is that you need both a new chain and a new bar.
BTW small chain (under 3/8") must be kept sharp for good performance.
That is true for all chains but the smaller the more critical. The
smaller the chain, the harder it is to file properly.
You might want to spend some time browsing in arborist.lawnsite.com in
the chainsaw forum. Lots of very good info there, people are happy to
help with problems.
Chain must be oriented correctly relative to bar to cut. Rails on
bar can be worn unevenly, as can chain side-straps, so that chain is
misaligned to either side. Easy way to check bar is to place 6" or
longer straight-edge on the rails, then see how square that is to the
I've trued up a few bars with a bench grinder, after which they cut
The chain straps you can give a quick visual, or caliper-measurement.
If worn close to pivot pin, the chain is unsafe anyhow, and should be
Generally these problems are caused by hitting a rock or other nasty
on one side of the chain, and continuing to run the saw. This presses
the chain more firmly against the bar under the dull cutter(s), mainly
wearing the bar. Yet another reason to check and sharpen the chain
each refueling. DAMHIKT
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