Best Chainsaw Sharpener under $300

   / Best Chainsaw Sharpener under $300 #71  
C clamp in a vise works well for holding the bar and saw steady.
 
   / Best Chainsaw Sharpener under $300 #73  
It is necessary to hold the saw and bar stationary. Has nothing to do with the sharpener at all. I'll use it when hand filing in the field as well. You don't want the saw moving around.
My point was that when using the Timberline sharpener it is not necessary to hold the saw and bar stationary. You can just set it on a workbench or stump. If the saw moves during use, it will not affect the Timberline’s accuracy.

Having said that, I do agree that a stump vise is a great tool. I use one all the time when filing in the woods. I like it enough that I clamp a scrap 2x4 in an old Stanley Workmate folding workbench and pound my stump vise into that when sharpening at home. (I used to just clamp the bar in the jaws of the bench vise in my shop - the shape of the jaws still allowed the chain to mover. However, I now prefer the portable workbench & stump vise, since I can get around it better.)
 
   / Best Chainsaw Sharpener under $300 #74  
The issue with the timberline on a smaller bar is, when you crank the burr handle, the saw moves about. Why I use a stump vise and in the shop, copper soft jaws in my vise so as not to damage the guide bar. I'm kind of **** about chipping the paint on guide bars. I cut rubber discs so the stump vise don't clamp on the bar directly as well.
 
   / Best Chainsaw Sharpener under $300 #75  
Last time I looked the Timberline was selling for under 200 bucks with your choice of carbide burs (1) included and extra burrs (for different pitch chains were about 20 bucks each). The timberline is really a modern copy of the old Ganim sharpener. Even look the same actually.
 
   / Best Chainsaw Sharpener under $300 #76  
My issue with ALL chain grinders is. they remove too much of the tooth which is ok if the tooth is really dull or chipped but for touching up a chain that isn't buggered up, filing is the only way to go.

Being inherently cheap, I don't need to grind away excessive amounts of tooth if not needed. Besides, learning how to file a chain properly is a good skill to learn. Kind of similar to off hand sharpening twist drills or TIG welding.
I just barely touch with the grinding wheel. I don't see where that is any different than filing to just enough to be sharp.
 
   / Best Chainsaw Sharpener under $300 #77  
Fair statement but still easier to hand file and with any 'grinder' you still have to hand file the rakers, something that a lot of owners overlook. Don't care for them simply because it's easier and quicker to dress a chain on the bar versus removing it and grinding., not that, that is all bad because it gives you a chance to inspect the rails for galling and clean the oil groove and flip the bar if necessary. My rule of thumb is I flip the bar every time I renew the loop and I inspect the drive sprocket at the same time.

Been using chainsaws forever. Still own and use a Stihl 028WB I bought in the early 60's Stihl only made the saw for 2 years. It's an RPM saw and it's loud. Has the heated stirrup on it and no chain brake either. Back then, Stihl had not succumbed to the 'noise police' like today and the saw is all alloy except for the top shroud instead of the plastic of today (like my MS saw). I own an 075 from that era as well but hardly ever use it. Has a 5 foot bar on it with 404 square tooth skip tooth chain. No grinding on that chain, hand setting only and you better use the CR or you'll leave your fingers on the recoil. Tend to run Carleton roller nose bars with replaceable noses and greaseable bearings too. I'm decidedly old school because I AM OLD.
I just set my grinder at 90° and leave the chain loose in the clamp, quickly take care of those rakes. I like one handed self feed cutting. If I take the rakes down, I can't push down on the saw because it will choke down. I just lay it on the wood and let gravity do the rest.
 
   / Best Chainsaw Sharpener under $300 #78  
I just barely touch with the grinding wheel. I don't see where that is any different than filing to just enough to be sharp.
In the hands of a skilled operator, a grinder does a good job, and is not necessarily wasteful of chain life. In the hands of someone without much experience, or who just does not care (i.e. the typical hardware store flunky who probably had all of 15 minutes of training), it's a great way of doing a lot of damage quickly and either eating up chain life or overheating the cutters.
 
   / Best Chainsaw Sharpener under $300 #79  
In the hands of a skilled operator, a grinder does a good job, and is not necessarily wasteful of chain life. In the hands of someone without much experience, or who just does not care (i.e. the typical hardware store flunky who probably had all of 15 minutes of training), it's a great way of doing a lot of damage quickly and either eating up chain life or overheating the cutters.
I remember the first time I saw a chain sharpener. My brother and I ran a couple of pulpwood trucks with cable loaders back then. We was at the saw shop and they'd just got one and was sharpening chains. When we got back to the woods, realized his help had just sharpened only one side. So, I know what you're saying.
 
   / Best Chainsaw Sharpener under $300 #80  
I do a lot of brushing along stone walls for my customers. Have to cut close to the wall and hit a rock pretty often. Used to carry a bucket of sharpened chains from the saw shop, and usually ran out half way through the day and cut slowly because chain was dull. Very slow to keep taking dull chains off.

Then I saw a Pferd 2 in 1 sharpener and tried it. Now I use a short 16 inch bar on a small Stihl. Only 40 teeth to sharpen. Sharpen on the saw every time chain starts to dull, sometimes every 15 minutes. Always count strokes and do same number on each tooth to keep chain cut balanced side to side. Chains cut very well, too. I usually get 16 sharpenings on a chain before teeth are worn too short. Each new chain lasts about 6 hours of work. Just carry 1 new chain and put it on when other one is done, not a bucket of chains. Also carry new round files and replace files in sharpener as soon as they don't cut well. That saves time, too.

I get about twice as much cutting done compared to what I used to do. Thank goodness for the Pferd/Stihl 2 in 1 sharpeners. They are expensive but worth it. I notice there are now Chinese copies out for $20. instead of $50. That makes getting a 2 in 1 a lot less painful if the Chinese did a good job copying. But you will save enough sharpening costs to get a new Stihl sharpener with every chain.

Sorry I don't know the best off the saw sharpener, but the 2 in 1 is a great way to sharpen chains on the bar. The built in guides make sure you get the angles right and the chains cut almost like new.
 
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