The most important component of a chainsaw mill is obviously the chainsaw itself. Do remember that chainsaw milling is more taxing on your chainsaw than crosscutting. Therefore, if you want to have a high-performing sawmill, it is important you keep your chainsaw in top shape and problem-free. Regular maintenance of your chainsaw will increase its lifespan and you will not have to shell out a lot on expensive repairs. However, do read the chainsaw manual to figure out how to carry out basic maintenance. For the more technical problems, for example, those involving the chainsaw’s carburetor, you might need to seek professional help.
Here is a list of basic components that need regular maintenance:
The importance of keeping the chain sharpened cannot be overstated. Take the chain off the bar and check it thoroughly for signs of wear and tear. Use a filing jig to file the teeth of the chain. While you must file the teeth horizontally, at an angle of 30°, for chipper chains, semi-chisel chains should be filed at 10° angle below horizontal. A chisel chain needs 30° below-horizontal filing.
You must also lubricate the chain. Use a solvent to remove all grime and then keep the chain soaked overnight in fresh 10 weight motor oil.
The Spark Plug
Remove the spark plug, ideally using a socket wrench, and clean it with a dry brush and check the electrodes. The tip of the electrodes should have a consistent dark color. Some chainsaws have maintenance-free electronic ignition systems. However, if the electronic ignition system is giving you trouble, it is best to take it to a professional.
The Exhaust Port
Clogging in the exhaust port is very common. Take off the muffler and the screen and clean them both with a solvent. Remove all the grimy buildup around the exhaust port as well using a solvent.
The Automatic Oiler
The newer models of chainsaws come with automatic oilers to keep the saw chain well-lubricated. You might need to clean the oil-pickup filter.
The Air Filter
Remove the air filter from the carburetor and use a solvent to clean it properly.
Common Chainsaw Problems and Solutions
Even if you carry out regular maintenance of your chainsaw, it may develop certain problems. Some of the problems can be addressed at home by carrying out simple checks and fixes.
Here are three of the most common problems, and their probable causes:
Problem 1: Difficulty in Starting the Chainsaw
If you are struggling to start the chainsaw, you are probably dealing with a bad spark plug. The culprit can also be stale fuel. Check the spark plug and fuel conditions to address this issue. If the problem persists even after addressing these two issues, take your chainsaw to a professional service station.
Problem 2: Chainsaw Dies After Starting
In case your chainsaw starts, but loses power after some time before shutting down completely, check the air filter and the exhaust chamber. A dirty filter and a clogged exhaust chamber can spark this problem.
Problem 3: Overheating of the Bar
If the saw bar is getting unusually hot, it is perhaps time to sharpen the saw’s teeth. Blunt teeth may also be causing a clattering sound while the chainsaw is in use.