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OEM Replacement - Here are a couple of tips to save you some frustration
on November 5, 2013
This chain is the OEM replacement - same chain that came on your new saw. They are very, very sharp out of the package and last very well. To qualify, I am cutting oak and cedar, 50/50 between the two. We are clearing 2 1/2 acres of dead oak and dead/live cedar. We are cutting every weekend and I'm putting 2-3 hours of run-time on the chain each day. I'm also going FISHING when this honey-do is done!
Okay, a couple of tips. First, if you are cutting close to the ground and contact a rock - throw your chain away. They have an anti-kickback "wing" incorporated in the design and are basically scrap after hitting a rock - cannot be resharpened. And trust me when i tell you - nothing will wear you out faster than trying to "muscle" a dull chain through a log - it is brutal.
Next - and this is the more important point - follow this installation method.
Put the new chain on and tighten everything up nice and snug. Now start your saw and run at WOT (Wide-Open Throttle) for 15-20 seconds. Shut the saw down and be amazed at how loose the chain is now. Adjust the chain tension, tighten and NOW you are ready for months of hassle free service. These chains stretch (all chains have initial stretch) but running the new chain at WOT for 15-20 stretches the chain as far as it's going to stretch right off the bat. Re-tighten and get to work. A lot of reviewers bash the saw and or the "low-quality" chain - I think this is somewhat unfair. Once I figured this out I've not had a single issue with the chain stretching after continued use.
Other reviewers have addressed the issue of ensuring the chain brake is off before changing the chain. IF THE CHAIN BRAKE IS ENGAGED - THE COVER WILL NOT WANT TO COME OFF. This is your cue to release the brake (so the chain moves freely) If you force the cover off with the brake engaged you're going to discover new uses for some of those 4-letter words.
AS always, if you have any questions drop me a note - glad to help.
Oh, one last item - while you're shopping for a new chain PLEASE consider the chaps. I am an experienced chainsaw user, wildland firefighter and outdoorsman. I have logged hundreds of run hours on saws. However, last month the saw came back at me and I ran a 4" gash across my thigh. Only thing that prevented this from being REALLY bad is that the chain caught my shirt before it caught my pant leg. Bought chaps the next day (day late) and won't even consider starting the saw without them.