How to Measure a Chainsaw Bar

You can’t use a chainsaw bar that’s too long or too short. The wrong size will make it harder to start the saw, increase kickback risk and cause you to make more cuts than necessary. In this article, I’ll show you how to measure your bar so that you never get stuck with the wrong size again!

Why you need to measure a chainsaw bar

A chainsaw bar is the most important part of a chainsaw. It’s what connects your engine to the chain, and it’s what you use to cut wood or other materials. The bar has two parts: a steel shaft and a chain. The shaft is surrounded by teeth that grip the wood as you cut. The chain spins around this shaft as it cuts through whatever material you’re working with.

A good chain will be sharp and long-lasting, but if it’s too short or too long, you won’t get all the benefits from your saw! You can measure both of these things easily with this guide!

How to measure a bar manually

The first thing to do is measure from the tip of your bar to where you want it to end. This can be anywhere along the chain, but for this tutorial, we’ll use about 18 inches from the tip as an example. Make sure you place a block or something similar on your workbench so that when you lay down a ruler, it will go over the top of this block instead of into it.

Next, place a ruler flat on top of this block and have someone help hold up one end while measuring with another ruler or tape measurer toward where they will meet at 18 inches (or whatever length). You should now have two measurements: one starting at 0 inches and going up through 17 ½ inches (which represents our desired cut), and then one starting at zero going down through 17 ½ inches (which represents our desired cut). Now that we have those measurements we can calculate what size blade would fit perfectly between these two points!

How to measure the chain

The chain pitch should be measured from the tip of one tooth to the tip of another. To measure it, you’ll need a ruler and a pencil or pen.

You’ll also want to make sure that your chain gauge matches the bar size (or vice versa).

How to find the info on the bar

You’ll need to find the information on the bar. The first thing to look for is the manufacturer name, which will be stamped near where you would hold it if you were cutting wood. If your chainsaw has been properly maintained and cared for, this part of the bar will be in good condition, but if not then it’s likely that some damage may have occurred here.

Next up is length; this is measured from the tip of the blade on one side to the tip of the blade on the other side (or wherever it stops) and should be stamped on one side of each tooth with a measurement ranging from 11″ all the way up to 22″.

Pitch refers to how far apart these teeth are spaced apart (measured in inches), so make sure that yours matches whatever type/size bar was originally installed by whoever manufactured it (this figure can vary between manufacturers). If yours is different than what’s printed on there already then something might not be right with your machine.”

Deciding how long a bar you need

You’ll want to measure the length of your chainsaw, and you can use a tape measure for that. If you’re unsure about which size bar to get, just ask someone at the hardware store or call their customer service line. The best way to make sure a new chain will fit on your saw is by measuring the bar itself. Most bars come with two numbers listed: The first number is how long it is when measured from end-to-end; the second number tells how far apart those ends are spaced apart (this is called pitch).

The standard bar length for most saws is 18 inches (about 46 centimeters), but if you know that’s not quite right for your needs, go ahead and check out other options as well — especially if they’re cheaper! There are also “extended reach” bars available which are longer in length than standard ones (some up to 28″!) but have fewer teeth per inch; these types of bars tend not to be as durable so it’s important not to overwork them with heavy cuts or fast speeds because they may break under those conditions.”

Don’t go for a bar longer than you need

The most common mistake people make when measuring a chainsaw bar is to go for a longer one than they actually need.

This happens because the chainsaw user trusts that they’ll be able to cut through any piece of wood, so they end up buying a bar that is too long and ends up hitting their legs or body while they’re working. A chain saw with a longer than needed bar will also have an inefficient cutting path, which means it takes more effort to get through each cut. The last thing you want on a job site is wasted time!

A good rule of thumb: If you’re not sure how long your next project will be, just measure it first so that you know exactly what size chain and chain guard your machine needs. And remember: Always buy the shortest possible length for your job at hand!

Always use the right parts for the chainsaw

Always use the right parts for the chainsaw.

This is important because it will affect how the chainsaw performs and can even damage it. You may also be able to do damage to your saw if you don’t use the right parts. For example, if you attempt to use a wrong-sized bar on a 14″ saw, then this could cause mechanical problems with your machine and even cause serious injury or death if used incorrectly or not maintained properly.


If you’re looking to replace your bar, then it’s important that you measure it correctly. If you don’t have the right size, then your chainsaw won’t work properly and could end up damaging your machine. It’s also worth noting that some bars come with an automatic chain tensioner which makes them more convenient than others. The size of a bar is determined by its length as well as how much power it has when being used under load conditions such as cutting through wood or other materials.

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