Numbers On Chainsaw Chain, 3 Key Things To Be Aware Of

Chainsaws come in diverse shapes, sizes and the way they are applied. As a result of this, chainsaw chains also come in different forms. Getting the right chainsaw can be quite stressful but can be easy if you already have an idea of why you need a chainsaw.

So if you have ever thought to yourself, “numbers on chainsaw chain, what do they represent?” then let’s drill down and look into it. The numbers that are often found on the side of a chainsaw chain are there to help you identify the type of chain your chainsaw uses. This is the information you need when replacing it.

The chainsaw is a piece of hefty equipment that performs a lot of tasks. But the chainsaw will be a pile of metal if the chains were not functional. This is because the chainsaw chain is the part of the chainsaw that carried out the task of cutting. Because of this, you need to understand everything pertaining to the chain which includes knowing what the numbers on the chain mean.

Every machine was made with their own special parts and if those parts need to be replaced at any point in time, it must be replaced with a similar part. If this is not done, the new part will not fit the machine or work the way it should and could be a potential hazard.

Before going to shop for a new chainsaw chain, there are three vital measurements that are mentioned on your chainsaw chain you need to know and understand. The numbers are the gauge, pitch and drive links’ number. These numbers must be compatible with the chainsaw in order for it to work safely and efficiently.

Numbers On Chainsaw Chain – 3 Key Measurements

  • Pitch

The pitch of a chain is the distance between its links. This number is usually found on the manual guide and also on the tool itself. Chains are available in different pitch sizes. These sizes varies from 3/8″, 404″, 3/8″ low profile, 325″, and 1/2. The most common amongst these are the 3/8″ low profile and the 3/8″.

Homeowners commonly make use of the 3/8″ pitch size because they are best for medium and light cutting tasks. 404″ on the other hand is wider which makes it the best bet for heavy-duty tasks and is commonly used by first responders and other professionals.

Before you purchase a chainsaw, ensure the pitch size of the chain is best for the job you require it for. If peradventure you can’t find where the pitch length has been written, you can do the measurement yourself.

To determine the pitch length of your chain, first understand that you can calculate the distance between the chain’s links through its rivets. You just have to check the distance between three rivets consecutively and divide the number you get by 2. Whatever answer you get is the pitch length of your chain.

Bear in mind that the pitch length is different and in no way connected to the chain’s length or its drive links.

  • Gauge

The chain of your chainsaw is held in place by the drive links that fit into the groove of the guide bar. The gauge number tells the thickness of the drive links. When shopping for a new chain, the gauge number is the most important piece of information you need to take with you to the store.

This is because the chain being too thick or not thick enough won’t fit the chainsaw the way it should.

The gauge number is always written at the bottom of the chain. The guide bar and gauge are interlinked and they have to match each other. Gauges are also available in various sizes also. The sizes of gauges are .058″, .043″, .063″, and .050″. The most common of these is the .050″.




  • Drive Links

The drive links of a chain are what makes the cutting teeth’s rotation and the smoothing function possible. This is why they are the most vital parts of the chainsaw chain. When buying a replacement for your damaged chain, one thing that is important is that you have the measurement of the guide bar. This helps ensure you do make the mistake of buying the wrong item, asides from that, you also need the number of drive links.

You can find the drive link’s number chain’s guide bar. If you don’t feel like finding it that way, you can easily find it in the manual guide. If you can not find it on the guide bar, and you probably don’t have access to your manual guide anymore, you can remove the chain from the guide bar and count the drive links by yourself.

Final Thoughts on What Numbers On Chainsaw Chain Mean

The numbers on chainsaw chains are very important information to have. You do not need to memorise them (there’s no problem if you do as it would save you time from constantly having to check) as you’ll only require knowing the numbers when you have to change your chainsaw chain.

When shopping for a chainsaw chain, you need these numbers to get the right size and exact fit for your chainsaw, hence their importance. Understand that a small difference in length or size can cause some major problems for you and can be dangerous.

So when you take the reading of the numbers on your chain, ensure they are exactly right and not off by even a point.

Last update on 2023-09-17 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API