All chainsaw chain is not created equal! There are three different types of chainsaw teeth and sequences used in the arborist industry; chisel, semi-chisel, and skip chisel. All of them have different uses and applications.Along with the different types of chain, there are also three cutter sequences; standard (chisel & semi-chisel), skip, and semi-skip.Chisel chain has a square cornered tooth that cuts wood quickly and easily for fast, efficient cutting in clean softwood. This is the fastest cutting of the three types of chains and the type of chain most often used.
Semi-chisel chain has a rounded cornered tooth formed by a radius between the top and side plates. While 10% slower cutting than full chisel chain, semi-chisel chain retains it’s sharpness longer. This makes it a good choice for cutting in a dirty environment, frozen wood, hard wood, or for stump work. Hitting dirt won’t dull the chain as quickly as it would chisel chain.
Skip and semi-skip chisel chain have less cutter teeth than the standard chain. Generally they are used on bars longer than 24″ for added chip clearance or when a bar longer than is recommended for a chainsaw is used. Fewer teeth means it takes less power to operate.
There are also three size issues to know about chainsaw chain. Gauge – the thickness of the drive links (i.e. .050, .058, .063); pitch – the distance between two rivets (i.e. .325, 3/8, .404), and the length measured by the number of drive links. All three numbers must be known to get the proper size chain for your saw. Most of the time these numbers can be found on the bar.
Be safe with your chainsaw. Use the correct type of chain for your application.