How long should a chain on a chainsaw last in oak please?

bighunk7490(Z9)November 2, 2005


I am a Katrina victim, and the going contractor estamates

to cut up this branch, and haul it off, is $3500.

I have a 20" diameter oak branch about 50'-60' long

that fell in my back yard, and I need to cut it up in pieces small enough to roll and put on a low 10" high

dolly and bring them to the street.

35 years ago I used a Sears Chainsaw and cut down, and cutup two huge hackberry trees, about 5' in diameter on my property. I must have dulled 4-5 chainsaw blades to do this with.

So now I need to cut up this 20' branch, with a Husgvarna 18" 350 chainsaw. How many chainsaw blades do you think I will use under average conditions?

I haven't bought the chainsaw yet.

Thanks for any help or suggestions.


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Buy at least 1 extra chain loop. If you are careful and keep the chain out of the dirt, it should last a while. Buy a file sized to fit the cutters and a flat file for the rakers. The operators manual for the saw should have sharpening info. The trick to hand filing is to follow the existing edge angle as close as possible.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 8:39AM
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Ought to be able to do the whole limb without need to sharpen. $3500 = robbery.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 9:15AM
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maineman(z5a ME)

I have felled and cut up over a dozen large oaks (for firewood) with my Stihl MS361 and I am still on my first chain. I have sharpened it several times, though, and I have my chain oiler set at a fairly high setting.

I realize Katrina is a special case, but oak wood is worth something, as firewood, if for nothing better. Under different circumstances, some places might take that big piece of oak off of your hands just for the wood, with no charge to you.


    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 9:30AM
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I would recommend either 2 or 3 chains for the saw. Here are some tips to keep those chains working as long as possible:
1. Use an axe to mark and clear each cut; clear the bark off (just so there's no dirt) half-way around. For this sized tree, that's about 30 cuts.
2. Keep the bar-oil tank full - more oil in its tank than fuel mix. Better to run out of gas than run out of oil. Grease the sprocket nose if applicable.
3. Only cut half-way through the tree from the top at each cut. Borrow/buy a peavey or log rolling device. Support one cut every 10-12 feet on both sides of the cut and cut completely through. Use a plastic felling wedge to keep the top of the cut open. Roll the section free so the bottom is now up; repeat step 1 cleaning off the bark.
4. Work from the top of the tree down. Once you get to the base of the tree and root ball, the diameter will increase and more dirt is likely. Be careful of the tree springback as the weight of the treetop is removed.
5. Logging chain is your friend. I recommend 20' lengths and 5/16" transport chain as a good size. Use the log chain and the saw to save your back. Since I have a pickup truck and 5 lengths of chain, I seldom pick up wood any more.
6. 24" chunks are manageable, but 18" chunks are better still. Let the saw do the work rather than your back. With a sharp chain, 30 half-cuts will take at least 30 minutes, maybe more; so don't get in a hurry. Allocate at least 6-8 hours for this project. Don't wait for the saw to run out of gas. YOU will run out of gas before it does.
7. Check and clean the air filter on the saw when you refuel. The saw will lose power if it's choked up.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 9:38AM
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turnkey4099(SE WA)

I am a semi-professional firewood cutter. You do NOT need extra chains for that job. You might have to resharpen once or twice but only if you hit dirt. Even cut to 16" firewood length you are only doing 37 cuts. The saw is a nice choice. A second chain would be nice only as a quick change out if you dull the first one.

I am still trying to picture a 50' branch.

Harry K

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 11:03AM
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Sorry = The oak tree is about 5' in diameter at it's base, and it splits into a fork at about 10', then about 4' more splits again = one of these branches broke during the storm.

It fell on top of a 16' X 30' picnic shed I have and broke it in half. The branch is sitting about 6' - 7' off the ground. The base of the branch is about 22" in diameter.

After I use the new saw, I will have no use for it, and I will sell it. I already have a gas 12" saw and that will be all I need = I HOPE.

Thanks for your help


    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 12:52PM
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newjerseybt(5b NE PA)

Maybe a used Stihl will have more resale value?

Heck, I would go around the neighborhood with a nice Stihl pro, a few spare chains and beat the hell out of any business trying to price gouge by cutting up downed trees for 1/2 their rate. Just have you and the other party sign a hold-harmless agreement in case someone gets hurt. Cut at your own risk. Plenty of work out there I am assuming. At night you re-sharpen chains.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 3:03PM
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Keep a chain out of dirt and rocks,and it will cut forever.Yes oak is hard wood,but there are a lot harder woods out there.I used a Husqvarna 51 chainsaw for fence building,mostly sloping back post tops on 8-12" post.Since I was cutting the tops,and never hit the ground,I dont remember ever sharpening the chain.That was probably over 2000 post.And locust truly is a hard wood.As far as someone trying to make $3500 off of cleaning up a limb that probably wouldnt have a pickup load of wood in it,is just plain crooked.Price gouging at its worst.Around here where I live,a tree company would take down and cleanup that entire tree for about $600.And to me,thats even a bit expensive.Doug

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 7:19PM
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Wow!! It's amazing how you guys can give an accurate professional estimate based on two sentences. Tell me, what's a fair price for a doctor to diagnose an illness?

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 7:35PM
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Also, someone who asks how many "blades" cutting up a tree will take has NO BUSINESS cutting trees professionally. The suggestion that he do it as a business is absurd. Cutting, not only trees, but dangerous, storm damaged trees, is high-risk work and requires experience. A homeowner would have to be a moron to sign something releasing the contractor from responsibility for damage. What goes through some of your heads???

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 7:38PM
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I am a Katrina victim, and the going contractor estamates
to cut up this branch, and haul it off, is $3500.

Ok $3500 for a contractor sounds about right if he is a legit contractor. He should have the experience and equipment to handle what He looked at.

I need to cut it up in pieces small enough to roll and put on a low 10" high dolly and bring them to the street.

If the Contractor is going to cut it up and haul it off. Why do you need to cut it up and roll it anywhere?

Leave it to the professional if possible and if you have no experience at cutting a fallen tree. For a falling tree is just about the most danerous type of saw work that can be done.
Limbs are under pressure from holding up the trunk, being jammed into the ground etc. Cutting bent limbs on fallen trees have been known to seriously injure and kill people.
It being on top of another object just adds to the hazards.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 8:02PM
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labour_of_love(z3A, NEK Vt)

There will always be people doing things for which they are either inadequately, improperly, or not at all equipped. Try not to become one of those statistics. Yes, $3500 sounds out of line; but - do you know how to tell which way the 6'-7' off the ground pieces are going to shift when you remove sections? If you need to be on a ladder to reach 'em (and most people would) it doesn't take much to find yourself suddenly on the ground and not on the ladder. Broken bones (or worse) make that $3500 look a lot cheaper than a stay in the hospital.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 8:15PM
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newjerseybt(5b NE PA)

"A homeowner would have to be a moron to sign something releasing the contractor from responsibility for damage. What goes through some of your heads???"

Damage??? There was a nuclear blast down there and you are worried about the pile of rubble that USED to be called a home? Yeah just what IS going on in your head?

The areas I am alluding to HAVE NO HOUSE and the property needs to be cleared for new construction. You know already that you can't depend on the government. The best helping hand you can get is on the end of your own arm and possibly from a good neighbor if your lucky. There are lot's of poor people down there that would appreciate ANY cheap help.

A hold harmless agreement from physical injury by both parties...thats all. From experience I know that poop happens no matter how good your intentions may be.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 9:02PM
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You want to get a Husqvarna 350 to cut up ONE branch and then sell it? Let me guess, you're getting the cost of the chainsaw reimbursed by FEMA and hope to make money off the deal? I love a system where people who prepared ahead of time and had a generator and a chainsaw get nothing and others get a free saw and sell it to make a buck.

Since the branches are less than twice the bar length, why not just use the 12" saw you have now??? It seems more economical than buying a chainsaw to cut up one branch and then selling it.

Also it sounds like you haven't used a chainsaw in a while. I recall that the Canadian and Australian OSHA equivalents have really good chainsaw safety booklets available as a .pdf on the web. They would be a good refresher.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 9:22PM
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Aww, shucks, i had a second hand Mac 210G, can't remember how long the blade was, not too short, and i cut oak logs until the cows came home, for many years, with the same chain that came with the saw! Went thru a bunch of starters, but the same chain--sharpened it occasionally, and finally gave it to my son this summer! And he's using it this fall for his log cutting!

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 10:16PM
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I am 73 years old and a retired city firefighter, and in good shape. I live in the suburbs of New Orleans, and had no flooding at my house. I did have roof damage, and part of my cealing caved in, plus other damages, including my back shed.

Regarding safety = I was a structual steel worker, (ironworker) for 10 years, and then became a firefighter. Safety was all around me.

I am going to support the tree and shed with 4" X 4" post, ropes, braces, etc, before I start cutting, to keep it from falling. It's 6'-7' up laying on top of the shed.

Since I don't do this everyday, I don't want any more problems then necessary. For ease of use and safety, I am using the best equipment to do the job. My present 12" saw would have to be put in top shape, and it's not too powerful = a Sears special that's over 35 years old. I could just go rent a chainsaw, but over the years I have had bad problems with rental equipment

I am being paid by my insurance company to hire a contractor to remove the tree. The amount they gave me is far removed from the going rate. I could just wait maybe a year, to let the rates get back to normal, and hire a contractor, but I hate looking at that fallen branch, and not having the use of my shed. The bottom line is that I hate getting screwed by greedy, dirty contractors. (some good contractors get greedy/crazy in a crisis also)

Please = do I have to defend myself on this thread, and account for all my actions KP? I'm seeking help on cutting up a branch and that's all fella. Please don't suppose at what you think I'm doing.

Thanks to all of you


    Bookmark   November 3, 2005 at 7:10AM
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I cut 75 large oaks with my stihl MS 290 went thru 2 chains doing it 25 0r so went for logs the rest and tops went for firewood these trees had sand embedded right in the bark as they were on a tidal river so the chains did not stay sharp very long but the saw had plenty of power some I had to quarter up to get on the wood splitter as they were to heavy to lift on by hand.

    Bookmark   November 3, 2005 at 7:27AM
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bambooo(6 CT USA)

Keep the chain out of the dirt.
If the fallen log is covered with mud, clean it off.
Buy a file and have someone show you how to touch up the chain. Buy a jug of bar and chain oil.
Don't work alone.

    Bookmark   November 3, 2005 at 8:02AM
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I don't recall the Sears chainsaws of 35 years ago, or even recent times to be very good quality. A friend had one that had some kind of a manual chain sharpener on it, that would apply a stone to the top of the chain to touch up the cutters. The sharpening job it did was not even close to doing a good job, so I can understand why you may have gone through a chain or two to do any amount of cutting.

If you buy that Husky chain saw, and take care not to touch the ground with it, or cut dirty wood, you'll do fine with one chain, likely without even a need to sharpen it. I have an old Stihl 031 that I use for my annual firewood chores and other cutting on the farm. I buy oak and other hardwood in 8 foot sticks by the 10 pulpcord semi-load. I might sharpen the chain three times to get all this cut to size, and maybe a couple times more if the wood is a little dirty in spots from the pile.


    Bookmark   November 3, 2005 at 10:03AM
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"Regarding safety = I was a structual steel worker, (ironworker) for 10 years, and then became a firefighter. Safety was all around me."

Please do not take my post as something to be defended against--I was not attacking you. I'm sure you were safe in your job as a firefighter, but you seem to not have much experience with a chainsaw. This is different work than what you'll encounter as a fireman or a steelworker, even if you used a saw to cut through roofs.

You can be the safest worker in the world, but if you don't have experience with the forces involved with large downed trees, you can get hurt. You really need to get someone experienced and competent to help you until you get the hang of it. Even then it is dangerous work.

I've seen 2 inch limbs under pressure spring out when cut with enough force to lift a man off his feet or break bones. I've seen logs suddenly roll when a supporting limb is cut. There are all kinds of unexpected things that will happen, and you need to have help until you understand the forces involved and which way they are acting. I can't stress that enough. I've seen too many people get seriously injured by negligent use of chainsaws when they did not take the proper precations. Your health and vitality and life are worth more than any tree. If you want to do it yourself, at the very least get competent help and make sure you're wearing appropriate safety gear. I can't stress that enough.

    Bookmark   November 3, 2005 at 2:19PM
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"There are all kinds of unexpected things that will happen, and you need to have help until you understand the forces involved and which way they are acting. I can't stress that enough. I've seen too many people get seriously injured by negligent use "

Describing auto driving on U.S. roads?

    Bookmark   November 3, 2005 at 6:20PM
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DanMan,you summed things up very well.Yes tree cutting is dangerous,and if your not experienced with a saw,theres some things better left alone.Ive been hurt by falling limbs,loaded limbs,I once got knocked on my ass by a 4 inch hickory tree.Driving 35 mph around a blind curve knowing well you could meet someone else doing 60 mph,is also dangerous.We all take chances of some kind every day.And Id be willing to take a risk to save $3500.Maybe others wouldnt,or shouldnt.Just be careful and think everything through.And I wish you the best with storm cleanup.

    Bookmark   November 3, 2005 at 6:53PM
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I can fell and cut up one cord with my 032 on one
sharp chain. This is the problem and why again Katrina
victoms are making so much press; all of the contractors have swooped in in order to bone people for simple tasks.
The folks in Southwest Florida cannot even get a tree trimmed or some simple water cleanup (oh that's a big deal) because "all of the guys are in Louisiana".

    Bookmark   November 3, 2005 at 8:08PM
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ron1943(E Texas Zone 8)

"I've seen too many people get seriously injured by negligent use of chainsaws when they did not take the proper precations."

I couldn't agree more. My 65 year old neighbor had a tree fall on him last year, and he's been cutting trees all his life. The tree was "weighted" to one side, and he didn't allow for it. Anyway, he'll be okay, but still walks with a limp. Point being, it doesn't take but a second of carelessness to put you in the hospital for a long stay.

BIGHUNK, I'm sorry about your dilemma, and like you, I'd probably try to do the work myself. As mentioned, you may have to resharpen your chain a time or two and adjust the tension on the bar, but you can handle that. You shouldn't need more than one chain. I'd recommend one of those little hand-held electric chain saw sharpeners myself.

Best of luck, and be safe.

"Southern Redneck Coot"

    Bookmark   November 5, 2005 at 6:56AM
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med10533(8b SE La)

I just found this message. I'm from the SE La area and every tree in my yard came down (8). I'm curious how the thread starter made out with his project.

Like him, I found contractor prices unreasonable. I removed one large pine from my home and a huge one from my detached garage (about 65ft tall and 26"diameter). I bought an 18" Poulan Pro from Sam's, I believe it was a model 4218. I have yet to sharpen the chain after removing these two from the roof and cutting up most of the rest in the yard, but I can tell it needs it now.

Actually with limited experience, one can tackle this if physically fit and using common sense. It's not rocket science and the insurance money stays in my pocket. Next up is joist and rafter replacement, sheathing and seal-tab shingles. Yep, they were out of this world on this also.
Contractors have no shame at this time down here. Thank goodness for "blue roofs", it will allow some to wait out the greed.

    Bookmark   December 25, 2005 at 7:25PM
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Spacemule: "Wow!! It's amazing how you guys can give an accurate professional estimate based on two sentences. Tell me, what's a fair price for a doctor to diagnose an illness?"
Doctors will charge big bucks and tell you to come back a few times. Asking for a diagnosis here on Gardenweb costs nothing and you may get a good answer.

    Bookmark   December 26, 2005 at 10:09AM
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I AM a licensed, insured contractor, and 3500 bucks IS ridiculous to have that tree limb removed.

Hell, I'd put a backhoe, a dumptruck, a saw, and two men on that job and have that tree limb in the truck, the hoe on the trailer and chained down, and be at the diner by noon for lunch.

3500 bucks is a ripoff.

If you are not experienced with cutting heavy suspended timber, then check with a few more contractors for other prices.

If you have a lot of good common sense, and the ability to work safely have at it. Most of us learned the old fashioned way anyhow.

What comes first, the work, or the experience? We all started somewhere. Use your head, take your time, and always consider every possible consequence of every action.

    Bookmark   December 26, 2005 at 6:12PM
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med10533(8b SE La)

Lunatic Fringe...nice to have another point of view from the other side. Thanks.

I forget to mention that 2 of the 8 I had to cut-up and remove were oaks and although it definitely was harder to cut, with a little patience (letting the saw do the work), I've managed to cut most of these up and move them to the street. Even the contractors just drag them to the curb and let FEMA/disaster recovery contractors haul them away.

They've made 3 pickups in my subdivision already and most of the cut up branches and tree trunks have been removed. They're saving the root balls for last. I have yet to tackle this and probably will need to hire someone with the proper equipment.

What a mess this storm created. It uprooted most of my trees and the largest oak had roots 20ft in the air when it was blown over.

I bought an Oregon chain file/guide today and I'll try my luck sharpening the chain. Any pointers???

    Bookmark   December 27, 2005 at 12:36PM
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Follow the link at the bottom. Everything you need to know about chain sharpening.

I tried to use one of those file guides once, and just got frustrated with it. It may work for you though.

Read the "How a Cutter Tooth Works" part first. It's easier to sharpen it if you understand what is going on, and what the working parts of the chain are.

I'm glad you've gotten through your job safely so far.

Will they pick up the root balls from the curb?? If so, try and find a local young man that is just starting out with a bobcat to move them to the curb for you. Call a few churches, and civic organizations, and ask for names of peopel they know in the bobcat biz. Support some youth that is really trying, a rare occurance these days, and save some money at the same time. Just make sure he's insured.

Here is a link that might be useful: Chainsaw chain maintenance tips.

    Bookmark   December 27, 2005 at 3:03PM
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After a lot of wood cutting, I finally found out how to make a chainsaw chain last a long time without getting dull. Here is the secret: The reason your chain dulls quickly is the oiling system is not working properly. What happens is after 2-4 hours of cutting, the chain slot of the bar fills up with dirt, and oily sawdust and clogs the oil paths in the bar. Clean it properly by removing the chain and bar. Use a stiff wire to clean the dirt out of the chain slot and the oil holes in the bar. While cleaning, spray hot water and use an old tooth brush to clean it well. Also, clean the chain (brush & hot water), clean the chain saw frame that mates with the bar. If any dirt gets between the bar and saw frame, the oil may leak. Put it back together and run it for 1 minute to get the oil to pump on the chain before you start cutting. Run the saw 1 inch away from some wood to make sure there is some oil comming off the chain. I clean mine after 2-3 fillups of gas. My chain is now lasting 10 or more times longer than ever before and doesn't streach hardly at all. Follow all the other advice like never run the chain into dirt. This really works!

    Bookmark   December 21, 2006 at 11:43AM
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Id say the main reason folks chains dull quickly is they hit dirt.If not that,then they sharpen straight across the tooth.You need to file at an upward angle to make a more durable edge.If your file aint cutting into the tie strap,your pissin in the wind while you file the saw.

    Bookmark   December 21, 2006 at 5:59PM
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maineman(z5a ME)


Thanks for the good advice on cleaning the bar's chain slot, and the technique for verifying that the oil pump is getting oil to the chain.

My Stihl dealer showed me that technique, except that he held the saw maybe six inches from a stump and revved it. Apparently oil is "slung off" as the chain rounds the end of the bar.

The oiling rate is adjustable on my MS361 and I have it adjusted fairly high to keep pine gum from gumming up my chain.


    Bookmark   December 22, 2006 at 12:09AM
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I know this guy he and his brother's and cousins rip people off throughout the Gulf Coast and Florida. Guy wanted $550.00
to cut down two white pines in my yard, I told him I would consider the price. I wound up my 30 year old Homelite, topped the trees, fell them, it took less than two hours until they were all felled, cleaned up, and cut to log length. Am I to pay an arborist $275/ hr. My Law Firm bills $275/hr. WTFIUWT?

    Bookmark   December 22, 2006 at 7:12PM
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masiman(z7 VA)

We don't know the size of your trees or the environment they are in, etc. But around here, I was quoted $650 for one tree. And I knew that was reasonable. I ended up doing the tree myself but it took about 6 hours due to height and obstructions. I am sure you can find plenty of people that would complain about the $275/hr that your and other law firms charge. Do you think that rate is reasonable? Those guys who were probably trying to make a living cutting down your trees and doing other manual labor. They may not have health insurance, etc. Compare your offices parking lot to what they were driving. I'm glad you could do it yourself. Merry Xmas.

    Bookmark   December 23, 2006 at 11:30AM
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yeah if i read bushleague's post right,i kinda get pissed.Are you saying you own a law firm and you charge $275 an hour?What your saying is that sitting on your ass and pushing a pencil is worth more than a guy risking his life climbing up a tree with a chainsaw in his hand?A lawyer accusing someone of charging to high a price?Listen bud,its plain ol everyday blue collar folks that make the world go round.Lets see how long we make it without the farmers,loggers,truckers,the guy that pumps your gas,and everybody else that bust their ass every day for a little bit of nuthin.Its lawyers we could do without

    Bookmark   December 23, 2006 at 8:06PM
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You guys that have a fundamental problem with lawyers must be living under a rock. They are a necessary part of the world as we know it today, just like good doctors and modern medical science and if you`ve had need for one recently you know that $275/hr isn`t outside the realm of normal depending on what you need one for. The Appellate lawyers here in NY charge well in excess of $500/hr and if you need one there is no substitute. The qualifications of any lawyer are well documented, both academically and through study of their cases and outcomes. Can you show me anything which establishes or documents the qualifications of the average tree ape? Yeah, maybe a few lawsuits............against him, LOL! $275 an hour for a tree crew is rape and nothing less. Don`t even start in about the investment for equipment because for that investment the tree guy gets the use of it to earn more money, tax write offs, and the residual value at resale. What does the aspiring lawyer get for a similar investment in his education? The opportunity to work 80-100 hrs/week for several years making just enough to stay out of bankruptcy with his student loans until he can make a name enough for himself to become atleast a junior partner somewhere, and even then he does not get his hourly fee entirely for himself, several other people and buracracies feed off him as well. See! There are two sides to almost every story. All that being said............

A chain will last for atleast a day`s worth of cutting between sharpenings if you keep it out of the dirt.

As a counterpoint to lakewoodrick`s post, I`d like to state that a dull chain gives the appearance that the oiler is not working properly as the oil is baked off by forcing a dull chain and dull chain also produces fine bar clogging sawdust. Chain stretch, which is actually wear, is caused both by running dull or under lubricated chain so he offers good insight.

    Bookmark   December 24, 2006 at 11:32AM
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masiman(z7 VA)

No "fundamental" problem here barbedwire. My brother is a lawyer. Despite his 120k debt he joined up with the government and is currently deployed to Iraq. The government salary does not match what he could make in private practice but the "international" experience should serve him well with his future goals.

I don't have a problem with lawyers but I do have a problem with what could potentially be an uninformed rant against some yard guys. It's easy to belittle the tree apes out there but you neglect to mention the ambulance chasers in your equation.

The only quals I pay attention to are the ISA certs. These are more important to me when I need a mature tree pruned, less so when I need it taken down.

    Bookmark   December 24, 2006 at 12:27PM
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Hi masiman,

Kudos to your brother for his service to our country in lieu of seeking financial fortune.

Call my rant uninformed, but "yard guys" shouldn`t be allowed to own chainsaws, except to provide more work for ambulance chasing lawyers, lol!

ISA certs are great, even better would be a degree from a university such as Penn State, but really, how many guys with a pickup and a chainsaw have either? How many people check the certs of the tree guys? I laud you for knowing the difference between a prune of a healthy and desirable tree and a take down.

    Bookmark   December 24, 2006 at 2:28PM
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WOW I have never seen such foolishness. I burn wood to heat my house for the winter so I cut about 20 cord of wood every year. I bought a new Husky 455 Rancher 2 years ago and I am just now changing the cain and Bar on my saw. For anyone to charge someone $3500.00 to remove a limb 20'x60' is price gouging and should be fined. I would do that here for just for the wood. I know you wouldnt need the wood there but still it should be only about $100.00 to do it.

    Bookmark   January 5, 2007 at 10:53AM
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Guess the price on this job and the removal of an identical tree next to it that had branches over the house and plants, walls and landscape to save and protect by roping. Ladder 40 ft. tree 80 ft.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2007 at 8:56PM
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How often did you sharpen your chain over those two years and 40 cords?

Even with a very light and often hand filing, a single chain in 40 cords is impressive.

I onw a nice, hard RC chain in very clean wood will last a long time, but I don't know about 40 cords. :)

    Bookmark   January 7, 2007 at 12:23AM
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dmullen(Southern CA)

Is there any particular brand of chain that is more durable than others?

I cannot get anywhere near 40 cords of cutting. Lucky if I get more than 2 or 3 cords.

I am using Oregon chains from Home Depot.

    Bookmark   January 7, 2007 at 4:20PM
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From my brief experience, the Stihl brand chain is lasting a little longer than Carlton and much longer than Oregon. I believe this is because the Stihl chain is made of slightly harder metal.

Then there is the issue of clean or dirty bark. A chisel chain (RS/RSC) will last a long time and cut best in clean wood, while a semi chisel (RM) will last a little longer if the bark has any dirt. It's a good idea to carry a wire brush to brush off as much dirt as possible from your cut line.

It's also a good idea to keep a bunch of loops available and always cut with as sharp a chain as possible.

NEVER cut with a chain that is so dull that the saw begins to run wide open. Tom over in the Arborist forum, showed a pic of the piston of a Stihl MS250 that was used for 15 minutes with a severly dull chain, which became over heated and burned out the jug & piston. :(

    Bookmark   January 7, 2007 at 9:01PM
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PLease help i have a question about echo srm 210 trimmers are they any good? last 5 year? Should i rebuild my craftsman 36cc chainsaw because it pulls hard when a spark plug is in?

    Bookmark   July 9, 2008 at 4:56PM
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Go w/ a srm230

    Bookmark   July 16, 2008 at 9:31PM
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Dirt and fine saw dust mixed with oil will eventually plug up the bar and oil feeder holes. Even if you don't hit dirt, dirt still inbedded in the bark. Caked up debri will also lodge in and around the clutch area and cover. The other BIG mistake is not keeping the slack adjusted out of the chain. Which usually has to be done about every tank full of gas.

You must clean you chain and bar regularly, Now for me thats at least every other use. I can't stand a dirty saw. You can look at the chain and if the wood is burnt on to the teeth and you have to take a pocket knife and scrape it off you chain getting little oil. even if I am very careful not letting my chain hit dirt it still needs to be cleaned after a days use. this included removing the bar running a wire or small screwdriver down the bar groove knocking all the stuck junk out. I use carb. cleaner it works great for me. I also hang my chain up and spray it down then scrub it with a nylon or brass brush, now that I got the bar and chain pristine clean, I crank up the air compressor and blow out the clutch, clutch cover, around the cooling fins, and exit slot on the pull rope side.

Now I reassemble, adjust the chain tension, and hit the chain teeth about 3 or 4 strokes with a file. Now the saw is clean, sharp, and ready for storage till my next cutting job.

IMO the worse thing you can do is put your equipment up dirty, especially if it's not used often. We've all seen them the mower decks with the big grass lumps on top of them, chain saws with the big burnt spots on the bar ect....

Now to answer the question how long the chain will last????? Till you sharpen the teeth off of them or they get sharpen down to a nub and break off. that's how long the will last.

some will say this is overkill, but for me I like a well preforming piece of equipment, just makes the job easier IMO.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2008 at 11:42PM
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