If you are buying a chainsaw grinder and it is your first one, you may have some questions. The main question being. Where to I find information on how to sharpen a chainsaw blade with a grinder? Secondly you may be wondering what ones are the best ones to choose from. They are both great questions and if you keep reading we will answer both.

How to Sharpen a Chainsaw [ Step By Step Guideline ]

First we will go over the basics of using a bench chain grinder. Keep in mind though directions may vary from grinder to grinder due to functions that come with it. So if you are buying new you can use the manufacturers manual that comes with the grinder you purchase for reference.

Set Up of Grinder

When setting up your grinder make sure it is unplugged, so there is no chance of it turning on while setting up. Then refer to the specifications for your change to determine the needed angle for sharpening. With the angled cutting edges facing right, place your saw chain in the vise.

While making sure your engaging the chain. This helps keep the chain stable during sharpening for your safety. To test clamping tension, squeeze the vise handle. Adjust the clamp lock nut until the chain does not move while being clamped.

Sharpening the Right Side of the Cutters

You have to loosen the angle adjustment knob, locate the correct angle to left of 0. Then tighten the knob once you have found the correct setting. Then rotate the chain until the first right hand cutter is in the right position. Then use the chain stop, to stop the chain from moving.

Pull down the hand to bring the grinding wheel into contact with the gullet. Then make adjustments that are needed. Turn the chain stop knob until the wheel just touches the edge, then tighten the knob again. Then adjust the depth adjustment knob, turn it until the wheel just above the bottom of the gullet. Then tighten the depth knob to keep it in place.

Now you can plug in the sharpener and turn it on to get ready to use. Allow the sharpener to get up to full speed before starting the process of sharpening.

Squeeze the vise handle and bring handle down until the wheel makes contact with cutter and sharpens the cutting edge. Make sure you check intermittently to make sure you don’t take too much off.

Once the first cutter is finished, shut off the sharpener before moving the chain to the next tooth. Then Turn the chain roller to move the next cutter into position. Then turn power back on and sharpen that cutter. Continue until you get all of the right sides sharpened. Once done, then shut the sharpener off while setting up for the left side.

Time to Sharpen the Left-Side Cutters

This time you will set the angle adjustment knob to the setting you need to the right of the 0 on the gauge. Then tighten the handle to keep from unwanted moving. Then follow all the steps as mentioned above for the right side cutters.

Maintenance, Cleaning and Lubrication

Part of using a chain grinder is the maintenance, cleaning and lubrication of it. It is something that needs to be kept up on in order to keep your sharpener up and running properly. Good rule of thumb is to visually inspect the general condition of the sharpener before every use. Look for broken or cracked pieces, damaged wiring, parts out of place or stuck or loose hardware.

After you are done using, take the time to wipe everything down and keep everything clean. Keeping things clean will extend the life of your sharpener. Plus, it makes it safer for the next time you need to use it. Also from time to time put on a pair of safety goggles and blow debris away with compressed air. Which will take care of the debris that you couldn’t get during wipe down.


A chain grinder is one of the best methods to sharpen a chain. Once you get the hang of it, it is also one of the fastest methods. It is also one of the ones most chosen by those who use chainsaws a lot. It will also give you the most precise cut if using a bench or wall mount chain grinder. So now that you have taken the time to read this, you should know what you need to know about how to sharpen a chainsaw blade with a grinder.