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  1. #1
    Bronze Member
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    Default Chainsaw Ignoramus

    That's me. I have some questions and am wearing my kevlar suit so don't spare my feelings
    I recently bought a Stihl Kombi and added the pole saw. I've used it twice, for a total of maybe 15 minutes and am trying to carefully follow the instruction manual. Tightened up the chain (when cold) between uses. Manual said it would need it - and it did.
    We're looking to build a new home on 5 acres we bought last fall - ~2.5 acres are wooded and haven't been touched in probably 30 years. Besides the pole saw I'm going to pick up a chainsaw once we move in. Given the quality of the Kombi, I'll be picking up a Stihl.
    In preparation - and for maintaining the pole saw - I bought a Harbor Freight chain sharpener on sale for $29.99 - it MUST be worth that much... Someone posted some very good, easily understood instructions on how to tune it up. I tried to find the thread to thank the poster but couldn't find it. I followed them and still had trouble with the pressure plate grabbing the chain too high, causing it to lift and tilt. After adding the washers to the small screw below the pressure plate knob it still did it. I wound up taking a Dremel with a grinding wheel to the top of the pressure plate and now it clamps the chain sprocket teeth firmly and the chain doesn't move at all.
    I also have an old chainsaw that was given to me 20+ years ago. The story behind it is that the guy who gave it to me had been given it by a coworker of his but my friend was too scared of it to use it. His story was that the guy who gave it to him got it from his dad. His dad had a contract with the US Coast Guard to clear brush on a base somewhere (New England, IIRC) and the USCG gave him a new saw every couple of years. I did a little searching on the net and it's an Italian made saw...it's in the shed, it's dark and not worth going out with a flashlight to look at it. I'm guessing the saw is ~25 years old. I used it to take down a wild cherry tree right after I got it and put it away. Obviously, it won't start now and I don't know if it's worth the work (if I can do it) or expense (if I have to pay someone) to get it running.
    The saw came with a nice blow-molded case, a couple of hand tools, chainsaw file, a nice pencil-tip grease gun and 3 used chains. One of the chains was obviously never used after sharpening and the other two are in need of sharpening before use - if they were to be used again. Once I got the sharpener tuned up, I put one of the chains in to try the sharpener.
    The chain was all gunked up but with not much, if any, pitch/sap on it. I sprayed it down really well with WD-40, wiped it down with a couple of those blue paper shop towels and blew it 'dry' with compressed air. On closer inspection I'm not sure the chain is in very good shape. Some of the rakers are bent sideways a bit and a couple appear to have been filed down. I figure it's a good candidate for fine tuning the sharpener and practicing.
    Would the old chainsaw be worth time/money to get it running? Do you clean your chain before sharpening? If so, how clean?
    TIA,
    Charlie

  2. #2
    Super Member
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    Jul 2011
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    6,738
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    Central wisconsin
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    International 2500a with Loader

    Default Re: Chainsaw Ignoramus

    i wouldn't mess with the old saw they can be a pain to start but that's my opinion.i do not clean the chain before sharpening.
    ::welcome :::RON
    never stop learning.

  3. #3
    Platinum Member
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    Nov 2008
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    898
    Location
    Covington, GA
    Tractor
    JD 870

    Default Re: Chainsaw Ignoramus

    I hand sharpen my chains. I read posts about people grinding away at teeth ruining temper or consuming way to much tooth. Stihl and Oregon have articles on chains and sharpening that you should read up on.

    If the chainsaw does not have a safety brake you might not want to use it. Do some Google research on chainsaw kickback and ways to hang on to the handle so the brake can be useful.

    It takes about $15 in parts to get most 2 cycle machines running again. New fuel lines and a carb repair kit. Sometimes an impulse line depending on design. Add $50-100 in labor for a shop to look at it.

  4. #4
    Bronze Member
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    Default Re: Chainsaw Ignoramus

    Thanks guys. pretty much what I expected on the old saw. No chain brake & no hand guard. I can't think of a use for the power head..oh, maybe for a little go-kart for my grandsons in a couple years.
    Thanks for the pointer to Stihl & Oregon. I'll read up on them.
    Charlie

  5. #5

    Default Re: Chainsaw Ignoramus

    If you post the make and model of the chainsaw, it's likely we can tell you something about it. Also, we loooove pictures.

  6. #6
    Elite Member RalphVa's Avatar
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    Dec 2003
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    3,838
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    Charlottesville, VA, USA
    Tractor
    JD 1025, previously Gravely 5650 & JD 4010

    Default Re: Chainsaw Ignoramus

    Long ago, I used to sharpen my chains. Since we moved here in 2000, I've always just taken the chain to a local hardware store that uses a machine shop to sharpen them for $6. No more crooked cuts and time spent sharpening. I just kept a spare chain.

    Had to give away my 1992 Stihl 009L and a Craftsman. Can't use them with a pacemaker. Had a couple B&D 18v ones that my wife and I use. They work great for what they'll do. We've 3 batteries to use on them. Need at least that many to do much. Stihl would always started good once warmed up. Definite technique for starting it cold. Never did like the Craftsman.

    Ralph

    Ralph
    The natural gardener
    God's original intent

  7. #7
    Platinum Member xyz123's Avatar
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    Jul 2010
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    770
    Location
    Ohio
    Tractor
    none now

    Default Re: Chainsaw Ignoramus

    Learn to do your on repairs and sharpen your own chains IMHO. Be self sufficient as you can. http://chainsawrepair.createaforum.com/index.php
    REDNECK Chainsaw Repair

  8. #8
    Super Member
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    Jul 2011
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    Central wisconsin
    Tractor
    International 2500a with Loader

    Default Re: Chainsaw Ignoramus

    i bought a harbor freight chain sharpener 2-3 years ago does a nice job,watch for when they are on sale.
    ::welcome :::RON
    never stop learning.

  9. #9
    Bronze Member
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    Jun 2012
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    Maryland
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    Default Re: Chainsaw Ignoramus

    Quote Originally Posted by TreePointer View Post
    If you post the make and model of the chainsaw, it's likely we can tell you something about it. Also, we loooove pictures.
    Here it is. The pencil-tip grease gun is sitting on it in one of the pics.
    Make is Olympic and it appears the model is 254. It says "Made in Italy" on it.
    Charlie
    -olympic-chainsaw-r-side-jpg-olympic-chainsaw-l-side-jpg-olympic-chainsaw-case-jpg
    Last edited by Sparks45; 09-18-2013 at 09:04 PM. Reason: Make & Model

  10. #10
    Silver Member Rayster's Avatar
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    Mar 2013
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    193
    Location
    On the River in MO
    Tractor
    Kubota L3200 w/LA524

    Default Re: Chainsaw Ignoramus

    Like Ralph. I pay $5.50ea. for my chains to be resharpened and it's a better deal than spending my time on them. I normally take them all in at once, 10" 14" 20". I have 4-5 chains per saw, so rotating the chains is no big deal.
    No, I'm not politically correct

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