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Cutting in Cold Weather 

The Oregon Technical Services Department offers a free safety seminar program to our customers in the United States. If your organization uses chainsaws, and if safety for your people is a high priority, look into our Service School Program. Cutting in cold conditions, in snow, and in frozen wood can cause rapid wear and possible breakage of saw chain.

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Use these tips to keep cold-weather wear to a minimum.

  • Oil: Use a lighter weight of bar-chain oil, or dilute bar-chain oil 25 percent with clean kerosene or diesel oil. Use twice as much of this diluted oil during operation, and be certain your chain is receiving oil from the saw.
  • Tension: Keep your chain correctly tensioned. Check and adjust often.
  • Cutters: Keep cutters sharp. Touch up every hour, more often if needed. Do not force dull chain to cut!
  • Depth Gauges: The bite of cutters is regulated by the height of the leading portion of each cutter, commonly known as the depth gauge. Check and adjust your cutter's depth gauges at every sharpening.
  • Bar: Keep the bar groove clean and oil holes open. Turn symmetrical bars over to equalize rail wear.
  • Drive Sprocket: Replace the sprocket after every two chains, or sooner if wear is evident. Be absolutely sure to thoroughly read the operator's manual supplied with your chainsaw.


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