Chainsaw Milling Sawbars

Chainsaw Parts, Chain Saw Bars and Sawchain Facts

No matter what sawmill, chainsaw, saw bar, or chainsaw chain you are using, it is imperative that the saw cuts straight and accurately. A chain slides across the surface of the sawbar rail at 88 feet per second and the sprocket in the nose of the bar rotates close to 1 million times in the day, when milling lumber.

Lubrication is so very important to avoid premature wearing of the chain saw bars. The more oil you can get on the bar, the better, so the bar rails always have a film of oil protecting them as the chain slides along. The roller nose sprocket in the bar is nearly always overlooked in lubrication, but it is just as important considering how many times it is rotating in the day. You must use a hard nose sprocket grease gun ( about $8 ) and grease that sprocket at a minimum of once per day, through a tiny hole on both sides of the sawbar where the sprocket is located.

I should also mention here that extra lubrication is available for the saw bar in the form of an oiler kit (sawmilling only) that attaches to the roller nose end of the bar. This kit includes a small tank, hose with valve and a special nozzle. It is quite easy to install and you only have to drill 1 small hole on the edge of your sawbar. The above kit increases the life of your chain saw bar tremendously and also cuts down on friction and heat. The kit supplies oil to the bottom side of the bar because on chainsaws oil is supplied to the topside of the saw bar at the chainsaw end and although this oil is carried along the top rail it is easily thrown off at the roller nose tip, especially when the saw is inverted (sideways) for sawmilling. The extra oiler kit supplies oil to the bottom side of the chain saw bar which is what you are milling with and therefore it helps to cut down the heat and friction saving the bar and increasing it's life by quite a lot. It is a highly recommended option and is not expensive at $49 U.S. Kit is available from

Chainsaw parts for Stihl Husqvarna Oregon Cannon

You must turn the chain saw bars over every 20 hours of cutting, this allows even wear on both sides of the bar, and also allows you to clean all the oil holes and the groove of the bar. At the same time check for burrs on either side of the top rails and file them off.

Every 40 hours or even every time you turn your bar, it is critical you check that the bar rails are even with each other. If one side bar rail is lower than the other side bar rail, then one side of the saw chain will sit lower, making the the saw cut crooked or only one side of the teeth doing all of the cutting. This robs your saw of a great deal of power, creates a large amount of heat build up, which transfers up the saw bar to your saw, and really slows down the milling speed and creates uneven cuts. You can easily check this by putting a square against the side of the sawbar and across the top bar rails. Slide the square all the way along your bar and if one side is lower, you can file the other side until they are both the same height, remove any burrs on the side of the bar when you do this. This is very important and must be done correctly, if in doubt, use a fixed grinder and your bar in a jig, but do not take too much off as the drivers of the chain cannot touch the bottom of the sawbar groove. If you feel this is beyond your capability, then take it to a machine shop. If you get into the habit of maintaining your saw bar this way, you will always have accurate cuts, you will utilize the full power of your chainsaw, and save money on saw bars and chain.

Chain saw bars come in different lengths but I would like you to know that after 24" it takes more chainsaw power to drive the chain, and a large power drop over 32", so if you are running a bar over 24" for milling, you must have a chainsaw of at least 90cc, but the larger the better. Chainsaw bars also come in different groove sizes ( sawchain drivers run in this groove ) and usually the thicker the groove ( gauge ) the thicker the chain, taking out a bigger bite of the log, and more power.

Chainsaw parts such as the sprocket, sawbar, roller nose tip, and sawchain must all match in gauge (drivers of the chain and groove of the sawbar ) and the thinner you can get this gauge, the thinner the sawchain and faster milling speed compatible with safety. This also affects the power of your chainsaw because the thicker the sawchain, the heavier it is, therefore taking more power to drive it.

Chainsaw Parts

PROCUT Portable Sawmills email
2468 McBride Crescent Prince George, B.C. Canada V2M 2A1
Phone: 1-250-562-6422

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