Calibrating your chainsaw’s carburetor is essential maintenance that requires a tachometer to get the job done properly. With a chainsaw tachometer, you receive instantaneous readings that are necessary for calibration.
The best chainsaw tachometers are accurate and easy to use so that you can take proper care of your chainsaw.
Chainsaw tachometers in their simplest form deliver readings of the chainsaw’s speed expressed in revolutions per minute (RPM). This is why they’re sometimes referred to as RPM gauges or rev counters.
A chainsaw tachometer helps you time your carburetor accurately so that you can tune the carburetor screws accordingly (Source).
A chainsaw tachometer can either be analog or digital, with screens that sometimes have memory functions. Contact chainsaw tachometers require clipping to the spark plug wire to deliver a reading. However, non-contact chainsaw tachometers commonly use lasers to deliver a reading without the need for installation (Source).
Chainsaw tachometers are crucial for carburetor calibration, which helps your chainsaw smoke less, use more power, and last longer. They’re an affordable and simple way to manage the health of your chainsaw whether you’re a seasoned tradesman or a craftsman by hobby.
Prior to purchasing a chainsaw tachometer, you’ll need to consider the minimum and maximum speeds it can read. You’ll also have to consider the type of batteries it takes, and whether you want a contact or non-contact tachometer. Memory storage is also a feature that should be considered.
Don’t calibrate your chainsaw carburetor without one of these top-rated chainsaw tachometers.
What is a Chainsaw Tachometer?
A tachometer is essentially an instrument or device that is used to measure the rotational speed of a disk or shaft, such as in a motor. Whether digital or analog, a chainsaw tachometer is specifically designed to measure the angular speed of a chainsaw.
Also referred to as a rev-counter or RPM gauge, a tachometer can help you monitor the performance of your chainsaw. With the right tachometer, you will have an easy time adjusting the carburetor for improved efficiency, and while when running or idling as well as to reduce smoking.
How Much Does a Chainsaw Tachometer Cost?
Depending on the type and mode of action of the unit, tachometer prices vary from one model to another. Most chainsaw tachometers are priced below $20. High-end chainsaw tachometer models are priced between $30 and $45.
Comparing the Top 5 Products
|CyberTech Digital Photo Laser Tachometer Non Contact Tach RPM Meter|
|Hardline Products HR-8061-2 Hour Meter/Tachometer|
|GXG-1987 Digital Hour Meter Tachometer|
|Performance Tool W89719 Professional Digital Laser LCD Tachometer|
|Neiko 20713A Digital Tachometer|
1. CyberTech Digital Photo Laser Tachometer Non-Contact – Best Tachometer For The Money
In addition to chainsaws, the model may also be used to measure rotational speed on motors, and machine parts accurately. Rated one of the best high-intensity class II laser tachometers, the model is capable of measuring any speed between 2.5 and 99,999 RPM.
Using the device is rather easy, you only need to apply a reflective mark onto the target chainsaw. Just aim the laser beam at the mark and the RPM value will be automatically displayed on its LCD screen.
The large LCD display is of high resolution and is capable of displaying g up to five digits. With a resolution of 0.1 RPM and an accuracy of +/-( 0.05%25 +1 digit), you can rest assured that the tachometer with always displays the correct figure. It will also save the last speed reading into its internal memory automatically.
2. Hardline Products HR-8061-2 Hour Meter/Tachometer – Gasoline-Powered Chainsaw Engine Tachometer
Among other things, his tachometer is renowned for its performance and reliability. For enhanced versatility, this tachometer features resettable maximum RPM settings and an adjustable input.
The surface-mounted inductive meter happens to be one of the best chainsaw tachometers in the industry, with regards to quality, reliability, and feature set. Such a tool will help you know what and when to service your chainsaw engine.
In addition to small gasoline engines, this tachometer may also be used on fuel injection engines. Regardless of the type of engine, you are using it on, you will find the device comparatively easy to install.
In this regard, it comes with a single patent wire hook-up mechanism. With this Hardline Products chainsaw tachometer, you will have an easy time planning oil changes, valve services, clutch service, chassis lubrication, and tracking engine run time.
3. GXG-1987 Digital Hour Meter Tachometer – The Most Affordable Chainsaw Tachometer
This tachometer is suited for use on small engines, particularly two-stroke or 4-stroke engines. The model comes with a wire that should be connected to the spark plug wire in the engine.
In addition to powering the tachometer, this connection relays information to the display as t whether the engine is running or not. To begin with, the maintainable meter is designed to remind you when it is time to have the chainsaw engine maintained.
In addition to measuring the rotational speed of the engine, the device also shows hours of operation of the chainsaw. In this regard, it is capable of measuring speeds of up to 10,000 RPM. The replaceable internal battery is capable of powering the device for up to 35,000 hours. It features programmable maintenance interval settings as well.
4. Performance Tool W89719 Professional Digital Laser LCD Tachometer – The Best Non-Contact RPM Gauge
The rotational speed of the chainsaw will be measured using a visible red LED beam. It is rated one of the bat high-intensity class II laser chainsaw tachometer models and is capable of measuring speeds between 2.5 and 99,999 RPM.
The non-contact design of the RPM gauge features a 24-inch reflective tape to help with the measurements. You will also like its auto zero-adjustment capability, ensuring that the device automatically stores such information as the last, minimum, and maximum RPM readings.
With this unit, you will be able to measure chainsaw rotational speed without coming into contact with the tool. It is powered by a long-lasting 9V battery.
5. Neiko 20713A Digital Tachometer – The Best Digital Chainsaw Tachometer
No products found.This Neiko Chainsaw tachometer is a highly-accurate scientific tool that features a 6 MHz crystal oscillator, and Digital Laser photo technology by the manufacturer. You will find the model to be relatively easy to operate, whether taking speed measurements or conducting diagnostic tests.
All you need to do is a small strip of the standard adhesive reflective tape onto the target. You should then aim and measure the speed using the digital tachometer. The speed will be displayed on its large LCD screen instantly in RPM. The device comes with a custom protective cushioned storage case, 3 AA batteries, and a 24-Inch of reflective tape.
The margin of error of the device is only +/-0.05% and is capable of taking measurements from a distance if up to 20 inches. The intuitive and easy to use functions allow you to store the minimum and maximum measurements with an auto-zero function as well.
Factors to Consider Before Buying a Chainsaw Tachometer
Tachometers, whether analog or digital, may be used in a diverse range of applications.
As such, the various makes and models in the market vary in one way or another. This is why you need to ensure that the tachometer you choose is ideal for use on a chainsaw.
While shopping for the best chainsaw tachometer, these are some of the aspects you should consider:
Chainsaw Tachometer Type
Having been designed to site a myriad of applications, tachometers come in different designs.
Discussed below are the three main tachometer types you should consider:
- Analog Chainsaw Tachometers
These are the traditional tachometers, featuring a dial-type display interface and a needle. These feature a basic design and are some of the most affordable chainsaw tachometer models. While some of the analog tachometers are comparatively accurate, they cannot store the readings.
Most analog RPM gauges function by converting the angular speed into voltage, which is then displayed by the dials on the gauge. However, good an analog tachometer may be, none can be as accurate as a digital model.
- Digital Chainsaw Tachometers
These are fitted with either an LCD or an LED display screen and most of the leading models have a storage memory. In addition to displaying the accurate revolutions per minute readings, such tachometers may also be used for several statistic operations.
As a matter of fact, the best digital chainsaw tachometer models may be used for precise monitoring and measurement of any time-based quantity. The growing popularity of these instruments may be attributed to this versatility, as well as their accuracy.
As opposed to analog models that have dials, digital tachometers display the readings on the screen in a numerical form. This makes them comparatively easy to read and operate. Digital small engine tachometers are also capable of measuring lower speeds, from 0.5 RPM, accurately.
- Contact Vs Nin-contact Tachometers
A contact chainsaw tachometer is one that is designed to attach to the rotating shaft physically. Such tachometers often use magnetic or encoder sensors to measure the speed of rotation. Non-contact models, on the other hand, do not require any connection to the rotating shaft to measure its speed.
The leading non-contact chainsaw tachometers come with either an optical disk or laser that needs to be attached to this rotating shaft. Afterward, the device will use laser or IR beams to measure the angular speed of the chainsaw accurately.
This makes them suited for mobile applications. Basically, non-contact tachometers may be used to measure speeds between 1 and 99,000 RPM at an angle if less than 120 degrees. Most of them are equipped with a digital LCD display that shows up to five digits for enhanced accuracy.
Most digital chainsaw tachometer models are powered by batteries. Some of the leading models use either several size AAA batteries or rechargeable Lithium batteries. This alone makes them ideal for different types of chainsaws.
For instance, the tachometer models powered by AAA batteries are suited for use on cordless electric chainsaws. Tachometers that come with a rechargeable Lithium battery are a perfect match for the corded electric chainsaws. You also need to ensure that your preferred hand held tachometer is efficient on the battery.
RPM Reading Range
What are the minimum and the maximum speed reading that your preferred chainsaw tachometer can take? Whether digital or analog, the best tachometer models in the market measure speed in revolutions per minute (RPM).
The range you settle for should accommodate the speed of the chainsaw model you intend to use the tachometer on. As opposed to the best analog chainsaw tachometers, digital modes are capable of measuring low speeds, often up to 0.5 RPM. Such devices will also display the speed accurately, up to four decimal places.
Again, chainsaw tachometers with a digital display are also easier to read. It is also advisable to get one that offers a comparatively wide RPM range. Most of the leading models are capable of measuring speeds as high as 10,000 RPM.
Modern chainsaw tachometer models are capable of storing the speed readings you collect as well as a range of other important derivatives. This is particularly useful for users who would like to monitor the performance of their chainsaws overtime.
In such a case, it is advisable to get an inductive tachometer that has a relatively large storage memory. The larger the memory, the more the number of readings the unit can store.
Besides measuring the angular speed of a chainsaw, if you want to measure the pressure of gases and liquids, you can buy a quality digital manometer. It is portable and comes handy in the testing and measuring industries.
Ready to Use a Chainsaw Tachometer?
As you may be aware, chainsaw carburetors need to be calibrated every once in a while. Traditionally, this was done using sound as a guide. Using the right chainsaw RPM gauge will make this calibration easier, faster and more accurate.
While looking for a small engine tachometer, you need to ensure that it is of the right type depending on the intended application. Like the five tachometers reviewed above, your preferred model should be capable of storing data for performance monitoring.
Regardless of the type of chainsaw or similar small-engine tool that you own, this guide will help you choose the best chainsaw tachometer for it.
Also, see our reviews of the Greatest Dust Collection Hoses listed here.
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