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Best Chainsaw Chain for Hardwood | Reviews and Buying Guide

Let me remind you of a scene from the movie “Into the Forest.” A power outage forced the father to cut down a walnut tree to fuel their fireplace. He went out to the forest with his chainsaw and started cutting. A few moments later, he got his thigh wounded and bleeding out terribly. Chainsaw operation is always risky for non-professionals and ambiguity awaits.

However, the operation of chainsaws is much safer now with modern techs and made easier for wood cutting. A chainsaw chain gets much importance in such cases since it’s the material that gets into contact and is liable for unexpected kickback mishaps.

But choosing the best chainsaw chain for hardwood from such a vast market can be pretty time-consuming let alone bucket-loads of confusion. No worries, follow us to make your quest a lot easier.

Chainsaw Chain Buyers Guide

Before making a buying decision on any chainsaw chain you must get known some facts. These facts actually mount up your knowledge about chainsaw chains and finding your best match. Either way, you will make your worst decision and regret it after spending your bucks. We won’t let you down. So, get known to these, dear!

There are three major measurements for the chainsaw chain. These are

  1. Pitch,
  2. Gauge Rate, and
  3. Drive Link

These expose your chain compatibility with your chainsaw. Let’s see what these mean.

1. Pitch

Pitch actually means the difference between any 3 rivets on the chain and divided by 2. This is a complicated measurement. Yet, you can get this number on the tool package or the tool itself.

Pitch size is measured in inches, and the available pitch measurements of the chainsaw chain are 1/4″, .325″, 3/8″, 3/8″ (low-profile), and .404″. Amongst these 3/8″ pitch chains are the most common and available pitch size, and 3/8″ (low-profile) pitch chains are even more common than regular 3/8″ one.

3/8″ pitch (low-profile) chains displace a few of the material while cutting, because their “kerf” (the width of material removed in cutting) is more narrow, reducing the power needed for cutting.

3/8″ (low-profile) chains usually fit chainsaws whose bars are 18″ or shorter in length, which are the majority of medium-use, non-professional application chainsaws such as a homeowner might own.

However, .404″ pitch chains are made for larger, professional-grade chainsaws often used by firemen and rescue workers. The greater distance between links makes for more aggressive cutting.

2. Gauge Rate

The gauge rate is typically related to the drive links. Drive links are the portion of a chainsaw chain that remains at the bottom and fits into the chainsaw guide bar. The gauge rate is the thickness of the drive links. In other words, it’s the width of the drive links.

Generally, .043″, .050″, .058″, and .063″. .050″ is the most common and available gauge rate in the market. This rating is much important as you need the right measurement to have the right fit. Usually, the gauge rate is displayed in the user manual or on the tool itself.

Moreover, the gauge rate can be muddled with other numbers. If you’re unable to find that number. Don’t hesitate to go to a shop and make the chain gauge measured.

3. Drive Links

Drive link is the portion of a chainsaw chain that remains at the bottom of the chain. Knowing drive link numbers or counting the total number of drive links is a mandatory part to get the right match.

Nevertheless, you think only knowing the chain size can get you the right match. Then, you’re wrong buddy. The reason behind it, is the chain length is the combination of pitch and gauge rate. 20″ chain can have a lower amount of drive links while an 18″ chain has the same.

So, matching the right chain requires a drive link number. You can have this number in the user manual or on the tool. Likewise, having these three numbers get you the right chain conventionally.

Apart from these, there remain many chain types that you should know to have your satisfaction and safety measures for the grant. These types are as follows;

4. Low-Kickback

If you’re not a pro-worker and an occasional user of chainsaws, you will definitely get hurt by the kickback of the chainsaw during working hours. Low-kickback technology prevents you from unexpected kickback injuries and provides you with a safer position during operation.

Kickback happens when the upper nose of the chainsaw bar gets in contact with the wood or any material. Thanks to modern tech, low-kickback chains reduce these chances. For instance, Husqvarna’s 20-inch chain is a lower kickback tech chain.

5. Skip-tooth (Regular Chain)

If a chain doesn’t have low-kickback or any other features listed, it must be a regular chain (skip-tooth). It spaces only one link between cutting teeth. It allows you a faster and grittier cutting with lower resistance. Not recommended for the occasional and hobbyist users.

6. Full-skip (Aggressive)

Full skip chains are designed to have grittier and faster cutting with extremely low resistance. This chain is specifically recommended for the pro workers with longer chainsaw bars and has operational training for chainsaws.

This type of chain spaces two links between the cutting teeth and usually fits with 24-inch or longer chainsaw bars.

Apart from these features, there are some other spectacular features namely; low-vibration, self-sharpening, lubricated, etc. Low vibration offers less friction and a smooth cutting experience with steadiness whereas lubrication does the same as oil lubrication. An exception to these types, self-sharpening chains keep teeth filed and sharpen while it passes the guide bar.

Besides the above guides, the following topics are must-read that will help a beginner use and care for a chainsaw like a pro. Let’s check it out:

View The 7 Best Chainsaw Chain Reviews for Hardwood

Following an array of testing aptitude, we have listed the following and left no stone unturned before opting for you. We also viewed regular users’ comments on these products so that you can make an easy buying decision without hesitation.

1. Husqvarna 20 Inch Chainsaw Chain

Highlighted Features:

  • Low Kickback
  • Low Vibration
  • ⅜ Inch Pitch
  • 0.050 Gauge Rating
  • 20 Inches Chain Length

Husqvarna Chainsaw Chain 20" .050 Gauge 3/8 Pitch Low Kickback Low-Vibration

Chainsaw chain is the most important part of it since it is the secret to cutting wood smoothly and efficiently. Choosing the best match for doing such jobs is pretty tough. As you have to look into many things and consider those as well.

Among the plethora of brands in the market, Husqvarna is one of the renowned brands that produce chainsaw chains with low-kickback tech. It reduces your risk and makes you safe from unexpected accidents caused by the kickback of a chainsaw.

Plus, the low-vibration tech of the Husqvarna chain burns less energy than yours and offers you a steady working experience. It also reduces unexpected shaking and keeps the work going smoothly. As a result, you get a much quieter environment to work on.

And, its ⅜ Inch Pitch with a .050-gauge rating gives you installation convenience as well as compatibility with most chainsaws in the market. Consequently, it gets you the familiarity with the best chainsaw chain for cutting firewood available on the market.

However, this chain comes 20 inches long in size and is compatible with popular chainsaws in the market weighing only 20 ounces. 72 drive links at the bottom and sharp blades on the top of it, give you a better attachment to the chainsaw.

  • Durable
  • Compatible with the Most
  • Much Safer
  • Cheaper
  • Reduces Noise
  • A bit longer

Oregon 20 Inch Chainsaw Chain

Highlighted Features:

  • ⅜ Inch pitch
  • 20-inch chain length
  • Lubri-tech
  • OCS-01 Steel
  • Heat-treated hard-chrome surface

Oregon D72 AdvanceCut 20-Inch Chainsaw Chain, Fits Husqvarna, Remington, Makita, Stihl and Others - 2 Pack

Chainsaw’s wood cutting efficiency is highly dependable upon its chain. A perfect chain can give you the ultimate pleasure in wood cutting. Oregon D72 offers the most desired features all along such as precision in cutting, durability, etc.

Oregon D72 comes up with ⅜ inch pitch, 0.050 gauge rating, and 72 drive links. For these, it gives you compatibility with Cub Cadets, Husqvarna, and Poulan-made chainsaws. Besides, it fits well due to these features and works consistently.

Besides, its top-filling indicator provides you with an easier and more accurate sharpening. D72 is far ahead of others for this tech as it gives you a smooth cutting experience following its accurate sharpening with its full chisel cutters.

D72 provides lubriTech technology that is liable for keeping your chain and guide oily. As a result, you get less friction and sturdy chain life. Less friction ultimately introduces you to the low vibration and gets you smoother cutting with a lower kick-back.

The chain is completely made of steel (OCS-01) which ensures more durability than that of an iron-made one. Steel can be sharpened easily and boasts as an easy hardwood cutter. Moreover, it is heat-treated and able to cut effectively hardwood.

Conceivably, D72 for its spectacular and work-worthy features becomes one of the best chainsaw chains for cutting hardwood and gets you the ultimate satisfaction of cutting wood occasionally.

  • Durable
  • Lower Kick-back
  • Lower Vibration
  • Smooth Working
  • Less Noise
  • Occasional Work Efficient

Husqvarna 18-Inch Chainsaw Chain

Highlighted Features:

  • 325-(pixel) chain pitch
  • 72 Drive links
  • 18-inch chain length
  • Low-Kickback
  • Low-Vibration

Husqvarna 18 Inch Chainsaw Chain

Looking for a new chain for your chainsaw? And you also prefer durability with better safety measures. Then, the Husqvarna 18-inch chainsaw chain can be your apparent solution if it matches your compatibility needs.

Lower chain pitch size (325 pixels) with a 0.050 gauge rating and 72 drive links along with steel-made sharp blades get your jobs done easily. Cutting hardwood, firewood, and arborist jobs can be done with this efficiently and effectively. Steel adds more sturdiness to it.

The chain length is 18 inches weighing only 10.6 ounces and offers the best compatibility not only for Husqvarna-made chainsaws but also for others with this compatibility in the market.

Husqvarna is one of the renowned brands that produce a chainsaw chain with low-kickback tech. It reduces your risk and makes you safe from unexpected accidents caused by the kickback of the chainsaw.

Besides, this company offers low-vibration technology which creates low fractions with the wood you’re cutting. Hence, it produces lower decibels and creates a quiet working environment. Plus, a low fraction gets you steadiness with safety from unexpected accidents.

However, Husqvarna through an array of changes in its chainsaw chain technology marks a significant trend. This chain is designed for occasional and commercial uses.

  • Fits Well
  • Easy to Install
  • Better Cutter for Hardwood
  • Works Smoothly
  • Less noise
  • Pitch Get Broken Early

4. Poulan Pro 18-Inch Chainsaw Chain

Highlighted Features:

  • ⅜ Inch pitch
  • 20-inch chain length
  • Lubri-tech
  • OCS-01 Steel
  • Heat-treated hard-chrome surface

Poulan Pro 18 Inch Replacement Chainsaw Cutting Chain

Hardwood cutting occupies a sharpened chain with a powerful chainsaw. Every sharpen chain doesn’t work well as it may have to lack on other sides. Choosing the best match always remains vague in this situation. Poulan Pro, a name that becomes apparent in such cases.

Poulan Pro chainsaw chain comes with ⅜ inch pitch and a 0.050 gauge rate which makes it compatible with most of the chainsaws available in the market. This pitch and gauge rate offer sturdiness and standard thickness to match with.

Plus, this chain comes with a single chain pack with its mini-user manual along with the notched-bumper drive and chamfer chisel cutters‍. It offers you an easy guideline to install the chain to a chainsaw that matches. It offers a much easier installation like you can install only matching the color dot.

Besides, the Poulan Pro chain is engineered with twin corner-cutting blades that actually offer a charming woodcutting experience with better efficiency. Twin corner cutter technology is ahead of others due to its double head blades and its work-worthy.

Moreover, the Poulan Pro 18-inch chain becomes a quality cutting chainsaw chain with its low fraction with the wood and provides steadiness. Plus, it offers lower kickback tech and keeps you away from unexpected accidents weighing only 8 ounces.

  • Easy to Install
  • Better Cutter
  • Smooth Cutter
  • Durable
  • Lower Kickback
  • Vibrates much more than Others

WORX Chainsaw Chain

Highlighted Features:

  • 18-Inch Chain
  • ⅜ Inch pitch
  • 59 Drive Links
  • 0.05 Gauge Rating
  • Sharp Edge Cutter

WORX Chainsaw Chain

Chainsaw chains are meant to cut the wood precisely. Cutting wood becomes easier with this modern tech. Arborist works nowadays at ease to do. Before doing this kind of job a mandatory part is choosing your right chainsaw chain since it’s your tech ax to do so.

Worx WA0159 chainsaw chain is 18-inch long with ⅜ inch pitch and 59 drive links at the bottom of the chain as well as a .05 gauge rating. These features allow you to use this chain with WG-304 and WG-304.1. It’s a replacement chain for Worx chainsaws and WA0160 18-inch chainsaw bar.

WA0159 is an electric chainsaw chain with a sharp edge cutter at the outside of the chain. It allows a non-hectic cutting experience for commercial and occasional users in hardwood cutting. Also, it offers less fraction and suave wood cutting.

Though the chain material is unknown and Worx enclosed it with no disclosure, its gauge rate, pitch, and drive link to expose its sturdiness. It’s worthy in day-to-day uses with its easy sharpening techs.

Likewise, this replacement chain is no exception in cutting woods politely and safely with WG-304 and WG-303.1 chainsaws. This one comes up with a 23 x 1 x 0.25 inches product dimension weighing only 8 ounces.

  • Durable
  • Better Cutter
  • Less-Fraction
  • Smooth Cutter for firewood
  • Handy for Sharpening
  • Not for Industrial Use

Greenworks 16 Inch Chainsaw Bar & Chain Combo

Highlighted Features:

  • Chainsaw Bar
  • Chainsaw chain 16-inch
  • ⅜ Inch pitch
  • 0.05 Gauge Rating

Greenworks 16 Inch Chainsaw Bar & Chain Combo

For smaller chainsaw chains, Greenworks is a name of reliability. Greenworks is also reliable for its relatable performance in this industry. It comes up with remarkable product specs and packs to offer the customers.

Green Works combo reveals a chainsaw bar and a chain both of them 16 inches in size. As a result, you are able to have double replacement material at once. And, it avails you with a renewal of your chainsaw and boosts your wood cutting and other works as well.

For fitting measures, it comes up with a ⅜ inch pitch scale and .05 gauge rates with 56 drive links. Hence, you’re able to get better performance from it with easy installation procedures. This chain is engineered with low fraction techs to get your jobs done precisely and slickly.

However, this chain is compatible with Green Works made 20022, 20232, CS60L210, CS60L00, CS80L211, and CS80L01 model chainsaws. The entire package dimension is 24 x 5 x 0.5 inches and the chain weighs only 1.6 ounces.

  • Light-weight
  • Durable
  • Double Product
  • Handy in Uses
  • Specific Compatibility

BLACK & DECKER 8-Inch Chain Saw Chain

Highlighted Features:

  • 8-Inch Chain
  • Low-Kickback
  • Low-Vibration
  • Pole Running Chainsaw Chain

BLACK & DECKER 8 Inch Chain Saw Chain

You’re thinking of your neat and clean yard but you find your chainsaw chain is dull and cannot be a work-worthy one. If you run a pole running chainsaw for yard cleaning and other uses then you can have the best match with RC-800 by Black & Decker.

RC-800 is a chainsaw chain 8 inches in size but a workaholic beast in run times. It’s compatible with a pole-running electric chainsaw specifically for NPP2018 and CS818 models. It achieves its peak in cutting 6-inch depth and for yard cleaning works.

This tiny chain has lower kickback technology that prevents you from unexpected acute twitch and mishaps. Also, it provides a consistent work experience whenever you’re getting your jobs done with this. RC-800 has better sturdiness due to its techs.

RC-800 is engineered with low-vibration tech and offers you steady and elegant working. Plus, it gets your job done in time defending extra hand shudders and creating less friction.

Nevertheless, this tiny chainsaw chain becomes one of the best commercial chainsaw chains in the market due to its better performance with easier dull chain replacement tech. RC-800 comes up with weighing only 0.89 ounces.

  • Durable
  • Better Performance
  • Extreme Light-Weight
  • Easy to Install
  • Less Compatibility

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. Are there different types of chainsaw chains?

Yep, chainsaw chains differ due to its specs and other features. The modern type of chain comes up with three basic types; full chisel, semi-chisel, and chipper chain. These types are created with the sizes and shapes of cutting teeth.

2. Which chainsaw chain is preferred as best for cutting hardwood?

Cutting hardwood tree logs is tough but picking the right chainsaw chain can make it easier. Hardwood trees like maple, oak, walnut, and teak can be cut down with semi-chisel chains. Semi-chisel chains are easy to handle and safe for cutting these tree logs.

3. How often does one have to sharpen the chain?

Chain sharpening is widely dependent upon your usage. One may sharpen one’s chain after a few uses. But, if your chain is not working well and throws sawdust with increased effort on cutting, you’re about to re-sharpen it.

4. What size chainsaw chain do I need?

You can find your chainsaw chain calculating your guide bar size. You can easily find the guide bar size on your user manual or on the tool itself along with pitch and gauge rate. It’s better to match the three; pitch, gauge, and drive link numbers found on your chainsaw user manual.

5. Should I buy the same brand’s chainsaw chain?

It’s pretty better but depending on your usage and services that you expect from the provider may differ. You can pick a third-party one but make sure it supports the compatibility with your chainsaw model.

Wrapping UP!

Mishaps never come by making premonitions. Yet, in jobs like arborists, woodcutting, and other works that occupy uncertainty and fear of unexpected accidents. These suspicions can be minimized by choosing the best chainsaw chain for hardwood safety measures.

Making no hustle in working hours with many precautionary safety measures gets you away from an unexpected injury. For hardwood cutting and yard cleaning jobs make sure you pick the low-kickback and low-vibration chainsaw chain if you’re not a pro chainsaw user.

So, get your jobs done, fuel your fireplace, and stay safe with your friends and family altogether.

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James R. Robertson
James R. Robertson

James R. Robertson is an expert advisor in all types of saws. His hobby is using different types of saw tools and has over 8 years of experience. Based on his experience with different types of saws, he is sharing his opinion about various saws. So that a beginner can get started right away. Happy reading!

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