We don’t throw away a pencil when it gets dull; we use a sharpener for it. Then why threw away the chainsaw chain when it wears off? Some takes the chains to vendor and pays fortune to get those sharpened. Professionals use electric sharpener to sharpen the chains themselves, but that is even more expensive and are not suitable for outdoor use.
For an easy touch up for a dull chain at the backyard or outdoor, in the middle of an operation, a tiny chainsaw file can make the chain functional within minutes. It is cheap, pocket-sized and useful for frequent use. Read ahead to get idea about chainsaw files, how they work, how to decide which one to buy and how to use one. You may end up being a pro at this and never visit a vendor again for chainsaw sharpening.
Top 5 Chainsaw File Reviews
- For 3/8 low profile and 1/4 pitch chains;
- Made of steel;
- 9.5 inch long.
The pack holds 2 pieces of Oregon 5/32 files. These files are made of smooth steel and are very fragile. So, be careful while placing in a file guide. But, they work amazingly on chains. Only a few strokes are required to sharpen each tooth.
For some, these files are worthless as they break off too easily. But I would say, a pro will not have any problem with these. For beginners, I would suggest purchasing several packs at once so that they can get used to with it. Or you can purchase ‘filing kits’ which include a handle to use with the files.
How long will these files last? I can’t tell. But they don’t need to long last if they make your chains long-lasting. These are affordable, so they will surely outperform their price.
- Faster removal of material;
- Brittle files require careful handling.
- 5/32 inch, 7/32 inch and 3/16 inch files;
- Made of High carbon steel;
- 8 inches long.
For demanding chainsaw jobs, you need files that last longer and available in a variety of sizes to serve all of your chains of different sizes. This pack is an all-rounder pack that has 3 filing rods to sharpen different chains. There is a small plastic handle at the end of the files to make a secure grip and make filing easier and more consistent.
These rods are made of durable steel material. So, they won’t break easily as other files do. But you need to take good care of them while storing. Remember to clean the files after use and store is a dry plastic box. Otherwise, the files can get rust and become fragile.
This pack is priced right way. The amount you are paying for three rods is very low compared to how they serve you for a long time.
- Comes with a handle;
- Different size for different chains.
- No cons.
- 5/32, 3/16, and 7/32 Inch files;
- Comes with additional accessories;
- 9.75 inch long.
This is a complete set of chain filing kit. 3 files of 5/32, 3/16, and 7/32 inch, a flat file, a wooden handle, depth gauge, file holder and a roll-up pouch completes this set. There is nothing you will need more to file you chainsaw chains perfectly.
All the tools of this set have been chosen carefully to make it best of its kind. The roll-up pouch is handy to take the set anywhere, take the tool you need and organize it nicely. With the filing rods, a flat file is also included to make this kit more useful. The depth gauge and file guides will add accuracy to your sharpening.
The problem with this kit is, the added tools are not durable kind. Some has complained over the wooden handle to come off frequently which makes it useless. The files are fine, but the gauge and guide are made of flimsy material. For beginners, this kit will really help to own everything they need in one pack, but for professionals, I recommend something stronger.
- A complete set of chain filing tools;
- Convenient to carry and store;
- Non-slip handle.
- May not be long-lasting.
- 5/32, 3/16, and 7/32 Inch round files;
- Comes with additional accessories.
Here is another set of kit, but it is better quality than our former filing kit. Besides, it includes more accessory which will help to precisely set the angle and make filing consistent. This kit can be a good option to start sharpening own saw at the comfort of home, the backyard or field. Cause it has a user manual with the package to make using this kit easier.
The round files of this kit are made of high-quality durable steel. The clamp-on file guide with engraved angles is convenient to use the files in the best way. The clamps keep the guide set on one place while you sharpen the tooth with round files.
The entire kit is affordable enough to keep you visiting the vendor sharpener shop for months. For one visit at those shops are more than the price of this pack. So, to start filing own saw at home, this kit is a wise choice.
- Made of durable material;
- Comes with a manual;
- Additional helpful tools.
- No cons.
- 5/32, 3/16, and 7/32 Inch round files;
- Comes with compulsory tools.
This pack is lacking some tools compared to other packs and is organized with the basics. There are files of 3 sizes, flat file, file guide, and a handle-all are organized in a pouch. The files are made of durable steel, hence we expect it to last for a long time. This kit is the affordable version of other kits we have reviewed. Saw users on a budget can spend on this to try their luck.
In the package, there is an instruction manual that was supposed to make using the tools easy for the first time users. But unfortunately, the manual does a little help to do that. Rather, YouTube tutorials are a better option to train oneself about the proper method of using these tools.
- Longlasting tools;
- Cheap price.
- Poor user manual.
Which Chainsaw File to Pick that Fulfills Your Needs
The chains used in chainsaw come with variety, so as the chainsaw files. In the market or online you will find packs that involve only a file of a particular size, or several files with a handle or a kit of 8 to 10 pieces of attachments with a pouch or box. You just need to find out which one will work for you.
We have organized our list in a way that everyone will find the file they need to sharpen their chainsaw chain. Now, before reaching to our list of top 5 chainsaw files here are some guideline that will help you to choose and decide among those.
Know Your Chain
Check out the chainsaw chain you are using. If you only use one type of chain, then only a particular file with additional tools is all you will need. For different chain types, you will need various files. Thanks to all the manufacturers because of almost every chainsaw file brand market the files as a single file and as a tool kit pack.
Have a Look in the Tool Box
Before ordering a ‘kit’ of chainsaw file, it is better to have look for the tools you already have. Most ‘kit’ packs include a wooden handle, depth gauge, guide bar, etc. if you already have these, it’s better not to order these types of packs. A single file will do.
For beginners, the ‘kit’ type packs will be more economical than ordering the essentials separately. The additional accessories that come with the files in ‘kit’ packs are necessary to make the sharpening accurate. In the beginning, you will need each one of those.
The Material of the Files
The chain sharpening files should thin enough to do sharpening well, but tough enough not to snap under pressure. Files made of high carbon steel material are better than the steel ones. These are rust free too but little pricey.
Look for the handle the file has. Some file has a plastic or wooden built-in handle to make a secure grip, other comes with a separate wooden handle that goes with multiple files. It is better to go for the built-in one because sometimes, the separate one falls off easily due to overuse.
If you are ordering a pack that has multiple pieces, then make sure you do check reviews on those additional accessories as well. You don’t want to load up your toolbox with crapy accessories.
Things to Take Care of During Chain Filing
This part is entirely for those, who are going to sharpen their chainsaw chains for the very first time. Congratulations! Finally, you decided to ditch the vendor sucks away your hard-earned money for chain sharpening. It is a small and easy task that you can do at the peace of your home or outdoor. Only the right tool and some patience are all you need. Before practically doing the job all by yourself, here are some things you need to take care of before using a file on your chainsaw chain.
Some file packs arrive with user manual. But it’s better to check out the YouTube tutorials on how to use a file to sharpen chainsaw chains. You will get the idea about which file to use, what tools you will need and how to use it accurately.
In the beginning, you will need ten to fifteen minutes to file each tooth. But the duration depends on the length of the chains. Over time, you will be able to complete the task in less than five minutes.
Use protective gloves and eye gears while sharpening the chains. The tooth on the chain can cut your skin and the fine metal dust can be dangerous if they enter in your eyes. Wearing a mask is also a good idea for a similar reason.
Using a chainsaw file requires a lot of patience. The sharpening procedure involves several tiny tools. Patience ensures the proper use of every tool to get the best results. So, make time to do this job and try not to hurry, you may end up with a useless chain.
Check for Usefulness
Before filing an old chain, carefully check the height of the tooth compared to the depth gauge. If the tooth and the depth gauge are at the same height, then there is no point of using a file on that chain. It is time to replace the chain with a new one.
Maintenance of the File
Most of the users neglect to maintain the chainsaw files as maintain their chainsaws. It results in a weak, rusty file that is prone to break. To avoid that, clean the file after use and store in an airtight tool kit or pouch. This way, the file will serve you for longer than expected.
Likewise, you need to take good care of your chainsaw chains. Brush off the wood particles after use and soak the chain in oil when it is not in use for a long time. Besides, use the right chain for right purpose. For example, never use a chain that are for softer woods for milling hard wood trees.
Sharpening files are convenient, handy and on the go sharpening solution for outdoor jobs and for users on a budget. It is effective to save you from pricey vendors who charge you too much for sharpening the chain. Or even worse, it can save you from buying new chains when the old ones get dull.
This cheap and easy solution works best when you take the right one and use it properly. Spare some time to choose the best chainsaw file for your chainsaw. In the long run, it will save you money and time.