Important Things to Look for When Choosing a Chainsaw


Depending on the purpose of it’s use, a chainsaw should be able to cut through any type of wood, especially hardwood for that matter in regards to their size and weight. Smaller chainsaws are used to cut tree limbs that are not too big for their size as not to exert too much effort on the machine which if not properly used, would result in the pistons of the chainsaw to be burned out. It is only common sense to use the appropriate sized cutter for the right type of job. Bigger chainsaws are used primarily for huge trees that would take for ever to cut using conventional methods.

These machines have 50 to 60 cc engines that can really get job done but be aware that chainsaws of these caliber are really heavy, let alone working with it while it is running on it’s optimized performance. You really have to use quite a substantiated amount of work to handle these machines as they can be a bit difficult to operate when the bar tends to get stuck from time to time in the middle of the work being done. Caution should be noted as chainsaws tend to just literally jump off from your hands, even inflicting injuries that might result from improper handling.

Spare Parts

Obviously, getting a good chainsaw means having available parts that you can buy in the event that your machine breaks down due to it’s operational use. Having the convenience of parts that are readily available in the market which supports your machine’s brand and specific model will enable you to enjoy the full gratification of not having to worry about your chainsaw becoming obsolete in regards to it’s usefulness. The most important parts that should be available for servicing and replacing are the engines internal parts, more particularly the pistons, the crank shaft and the connecting rod.

These 3 parts are very important and you should make sure that the brand of chainsaw that you are planning to purchase supports after market parts and servicing. Another thing to consider is the pull string ignition system which is equally important, as without it, your chainsaw will not be able to run. Statistically speaking, pull strings are the very first parts of the chainsaw that usually break down first, given the nature of the frequency that user’s have to violently pull it just to get the motor running.

The Pull String

Although there is no need to worry about it’s availability since you can buy them almost anywhere, it is advised to get an after market replacement part that is of high quality which will last longer. Damage is usually incurred on the pull string itself as it starts off with fraying the fibers until such time that it completely snaps off, to which it is always a good idea to always bring an extra spare just in case you get caught in a compromising situation. The cutting bar (this is where the chain runs on) is another important part as it bears all of the inertia of the motor as the cutting chains run in high speeds. The bar should be made of high tensile strength alloy that is light and at the same time, resist corrosion since it will always come into contact with tree sap and other natural compounds and substances from wood, which can produce corrosion in metals. bars also differ in sizes but always remember to put the adequately sized bar in respect to the chainsaws engine size and horsepower.

The Cutting Chain

The cutting chains will determine if a chainsaw will have the ability to cut through any kind of wood that it encounters as flawlessly and effortlessly depending on the kind of teeth that are used on them. Usually, OEM (Official Equipment Manufacturers) parts such as the chains are very basic, which means that they dull out quite easily. Look for chains that are equipped with carbide cutting tips because the materials used on these types of tips last for a very long time without the need for frequent sharpening.

You do realize that sharpening the cutting chain is a very tedious task to accomplish since you will have to mount the bar firmly, locking it securely and filing out each and every single cutting tip of the chain. Carbide tips stay sharp even after frequent use and do not require too much sharpening and stay rust free for a very long time, but of course, premium quality parts don’t exactly come cheap. Then again, if you much rather prefer to manually sharpen your chain’s cutting tip, regular cutting tips will be sufficient enough to meet your needs in regards to cutting small trees and light types of lumber.

Auto Lube

Since all gas powered chainsaws use a two stroke motor, it will mean that you will have to frequently mix in 50 parts of petrol with 1 part of lube oil to keep the combustion chamber and the piston, along with the piston rings fully lubricated. Newer chainsaw models have built in auto lube systems that take away the need for you to frequently mix in fuel with lube oil each time you use it. An auto lube system means that there is a separate lube oil containment unit on the chainsaw mechanism that pumps in the exact amount of c that is mixed into the air and fuel mixture as fuel is drawn into the carburetor.

This mixture is then combusted and lubricates the combustion chamber and piston liners and piston rings which smoothen the the operation of the piston, avoiding any unwanted overheating resulting to excess friction and heat. Auto lube systems were first used in two stroke engines that did not have the proper fuel mix such as that of unleaded gasoline which lubricates the top most part of the combustion chamber unlike that of 4 stroke engines.

It is also interesting to know that two stroke engines have a higher torque capacity compared to that of 4 stroke engines and directly puts out more pounds per square inch faster than 4 stroke engines since it only takes 2 crankshaft revolutions per combustion cycle that leads to faster engine acceleration as that of 4 compared to 4 stroke engines. As a matter of fact, two stroke engines are hotter running that 4 stroke engines since they solely rely on the availability of running air to cool the engine down to avoid overheating.

The Carburetor

This can be literally called as the heart of the chainsaw and is solely responsible for maintaining the perfect mixture of air, gasoline and lube to make the engine run as smoothly as possible. Maintaining the correct adjustment and settings of the carburettor will enable your engine to run efficiently without wasting unburnt fuel and will produce less smoke since a lube and fuel mixture has the tendency to give out fumes. Keeping it properly adjusted will make cutting off branches easier since you don’t have to contend with inhaling the exhaust fumes that it gives out.

As for fuel efficiency, there is an air adjustment valve on the carburettor that lets you adjust the right amount of air being sucked into the engine. Making the correct adjustment to the air valve can save you fuel without compromising it’s running power. Unlike ordinary engines that have mechanical or electrical fuel pumps, chainsaws do not have the convenience of pumping their own fuel from cold starts. Chainsaw carburetors have “priming bulbs” which look like the nipples of an infant’s feeding bottle which is made of silicone rubber.

This priming bulb is used to pump in the initial fuel into the carburetor in order for it to start properly. The initial crank shaft revolution pumps in air into the combustion chamber that creates a “Venturi Effect” that automatically draws in air and fuel consequently to maintain the steady flow of air and fuel mixture into the engine. After much prolonged use and exposure to gasoline, the priming bulb will eventually start to break down and deteriorate, which results to the need for you to have it replaced on such times that you begin to see signs of cracking.

Maintenance and Serviceability

Chainsaws are really not that hard to maintain and fix, even when it means preforming a complete overhaul repair on the entire engine block for avid mechanical enthusiasts. What is really important is to learn the most easiest method of preventing the most dreadful things that could happen to a chainsaw and that is for the engine to burn out. Preventive maintenance is the easiest solution to avoiding such unwanted circumstances and doing frequent engine and equipment checks on your chainsaw each time you finish using it will prolong it’s valued service to you.

Neglecting small problems can lead to bigger consequences if you continue to disregard it and may even result to accidents. If you don’t have so much as a clue with the basic mechanical dynamics of a chainsaws engine, there are always qualified technicians that can render the proper repairs and services to keep your machine in tip top shape even after the shop warranty on it runs out and lapses. Be sure to only bring your chainsaw to a qualified technician to make sure that it is properly evaluated to make the adequate repairs and adjustments that will bring you the most acceptable results in regards to it’s performance. Never even think of buying cheap substandard parts to use on repairing your chainsaw as the inner mechanical parts are the most important aspects on how it will function properly and taking an engine apart is no easy task.