Here is a quick video tip on chainsaw sharpening. The first question to ask yourself is, “when should I sharpen my blade?” While using the chainsaw you’ll see signs that answer that question. The chips coming off the cut should be big healthy ones. When they become more like saw dust, you know that your blade is dull and it’s time to give it a quick tune. It is important that the teeth are sharpened evenly. Because this is an imperfect method, you’ll want to do it on your own 10- 12 times, and then probably have it sharpened professionally.
To start, what I do is get an indelible (permanent) marker and mark one of the teeth so that I know where my starting point is. I put a glove on one hand so that as I’m rotating the blade, I don’t damage any fingers. You need to select the correct size file for sharpening. Your owner’s manual will tell you what size teeth are on the chain, and which file to use. There is a curve in the tooth, and you’ll feel how the file fits snugly into that little curve. As I said before, you need to be consistent when sharpening each tooth. So, you want to do the same number of file strokes to each one. I would suggest three or four.
The teeth of the chain alternate direction. So, you will file every other tooth on the chain the first time around. Once you reach your “starting point,” it’s time to sharpen the teeth that cut the opposite direction. If you’re ambidextrous, this will not be a problem, you just switch hands. Otherwise, you can turn the saw around and come at it in the opposite direction. Once you’ve filed every tooth, the saw should be good and sharp, and you will see some nice big chips coming off your cuts.